Easy frugal installation

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I have written a web page that explains how to install Easy Linux to internal hard drive, in the famous "frugal" mode:


If you are interested in doing this, I recommend waiting for the release of Easy 0.3, due out in a day or two. It has a lot of improvements and bug fixes.

I plan to write another how-to page for installing to internal drive on PCs with UEFI-firmware.

Desktop drive icons displaced

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There is a problem that comes up sometimes, afflicts most puppies. The desktop drive partition icons are on the screen just above the taskbar. However, at a later bootup, they are displaced, maybe slightly below the taskbar.

I had this happen to me a couple of times recently. The problem occurs when the monitor or TV is powered separately from the PC, so you have to turn it on separately. If you change the turn-on sequence, the problem can occur.

As I understand the situation, if Xorg cannot probe the monitor, due to it being a bit late turned on, Xorg may draw a different resolution to the screen.
In my situation, Xorg draws to the screen either at 1280x1024 or 1024x768.

Following through what happens in Puppy and Quirky:
At startup of Xorg, from /sbin/xwin, /root/.xinitrc is run. This in turn launches /usr/local/pup_event/pup_event_frontend-d, which in turn runs /usr/local/pup_event/frontend_startup.

It is the latter script that runs the utility 'xwininfo' to determine screen size, and then the drive icons are drawn.
At subsequent bootups, for efficiency, the drive icons positions are not recalculated, just redrawn at the same screen coordinates. Which is why the problem occurs.

So, trying an experiment. I have moved the 'xwininfo' code out of 'frontend_startup' to /root/.xinitirc, and it tests if the dimensions have changed since last bootup. If so, wipes the icons -- and they should get redrawn in the correct coordinates.

Note, the wiping of the icons is done by /sbin/clean_desk_icons, which is called from /root/.xinitrc.

This change will be in the next upload of Easy Linux, for testing.

Ah, Wary and Racy

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Wary and Racy are pups that I built from packages compiled in T2. Not that long ago (2013):

Wary runs the old Kdrive Xvesa xorg server. Racy uses the Xorg server and the xf86-video-* drivers.
Although Racy was released as a separate product, Wary could be transformed into Racy by installing a special video-upgrade PET package.

They were, and are, a beautiful creation. I like the theme too. And as was commented on the forum, 2013 is not really that old.

Forum member scsijon would like to keep the dream alive, by compiling updated packages in T2, and using the same Woof from the Wary/Racy days, to build a new updated Racy.

He won't be able to update Wary though, as it uses old Xorg packages that are suitable for Kdrive Xvesa. Many later application packages will not compile with those old Xorg libraries.

I guess that I am doing something similar, compiling everything in OE. I have created binary packages with minimal dependencies. I have compiled for x86_64 CPU, but I could do a i686 compile in OE, for older hardware.

Thunderbolt3, do-everything interface

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Intel has made licensing of the Thunderbolt3 interface "free", in an attempt to encourage its adoption.

As reported here:

Fascinating! I look forward to seeing this on a mobile phone.
PCs too. Apparently, Apple and Microsoft are in on this. Intel plan to integrate Thunderbolt3 into the CPU chip, thus ensuring its adoption on the PC platform.

See also the announcement at intel.com:

Ye olde Minimum Profit

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Minimum Profit (MP) is a very nice CLI (console) text editor. It also has an optional GTK2 interface, however I prefer the CLI version.

For the CLI version, the two nicest features are the popup menu, and syntax highlighting, in a very small executable -- it is about 180KB, with syntax highlighting builtin.

It is far superior to other CLI editors, in terms of ease-of-use. The full VI might have more features, but barely so.
VIM with gtk2 interface is definitely far more powerful and easy to use, but also enormous.

For sometime, I have been using version 3.2.13 in Quirky, also in earlier pups. The latest is 5.2.10, however I prefer the 3.x series as it is simpler. 5.x has a scripting language, which I don't need.

I compiled 3.2.13 in OpenEmbedded, however, found that the menu is broken. CTRL-A pops up the menu, but the keyboard refuses to navigate it.
So, compiled 5.2.10, menu now works. However, the keyboard is not right -- end and home keys don't do what they should, although the docs state the default behaviour is to move to end or beginning of a line.

The 5.x series has a different runtime configuration setup. 3.x uses /etc/mprc and ~/.mprc, and as I recall, forum member 'Bruse B' fixed the key assignments so they worked right in Puppy.

The author of MP has abandoned the 3.x series, but I hunted far and wide using google, and found a couple of later versions in the 3.x series.

I have compiled 3.3.17 in Pyro64 0.2, and everything works. Menu works great.

Coz these old versions of MP have just about disappeared from the web, I have uploaded them here:

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