:::: MENU ::::

Get ArkOS up and running on Ubuntu in a virtual machine

So you’ve heard about the plucky new all-in-one host-it-yourself Linux distribution that’s turning Raspberry Pi’s into Freedom Boxes? ArkOS is a nifty little Arch Linux spin-off with slick marketing and granny-friendly interface. Yes it runs owncloud, dovecot, XMPP, transmission, and many more. Fortunately you don’t need a Raspberry Pi to give it a spin: here’s how to run it on Ubuntu machines. Continue Reading


What Heartbleed means for Free Software

The bug in OpenSSL nicknamed “heartbleed” that was discovered this week has been labelled “catastrophic“, “11 out of 10” for seriousness, and credited with “undoing web encryption“. It reached the height of mainstream press yesterday with dedicated front page articles on The Guardian and and The New York Times. This Free Software bug is now known worldwide and is set to remain infamous for years to come. So what does all this mean for the reputation of Free Software? Continue Reading



Fix missing maps on Drupal 7 with Open Layers and SSL

Open Layers are great, Drupal are great, and the OpenLayers and associated Drupal modules that combine the two are especially great. Unless, like most modern security-conscious websites, you’re using encrypted connections to your server with SSL. In that case, maps are unfortunately invisible wherever they’re used, both on public pages, and in administrative and content editing pages. Continue Reading


Thoughts on marketing the ‘Improv’ board

At the end of last month KDE announced a new Open Hardware project to create a Raspberry Pi-like computer called “Improv“, produced by “Make Play Live” of Coherent Theory LLC. This is an important development that I’m delighted to see, and I plan to pre-order and get mine in March.

Marketing Free Software and Open Hardware based products, and specifically marketing to Free Software communities, is a fascinating and complex challenge. Let’s see if we can learn something from observing the journey of Make Play Live’s new product. Continue Reading


The marvellelous magical mysterious Git

For I ❤ Free Software, I’m taking time to tell you about some Free Software that I love. And as everybody knows, I love Git.

I sing it’s praises, often literally, everywhere I work. Git provides the plumbing of my design, development, and decision making. No, it’s more like the golden contacts along which colleagues creative energies zip. It provides the neural pathways by which our collective brain may think. It is always there, the stalwart friend by my side, adapting to my needs, taking ever new and more serpentine challenges in its stride. I love Git. Continue Reading


Fix Fedora 20: “Warning could not boot”

So you’re in front of your shiny new laptop / netbook/ ultrabook / toaster, you’ve put Fedora 20 on a USB stick, filled up the progress guitar pick, only to be dropped to an emergency shell with errors like:

dracut-initqueue[398]: Warning: Could not boot.
dracut-initqueue[398]: Warning: /dev/disk/by-label/Fedora-Live-Desktop-x86_64-20-1 does not exist
Starting Dracut Emergency Shell...
Warning: /dev/disk/by-label/Fedora-Live-Desktop-x86_64-20-1 does not exist
Warning: /dev/mapper/live-rw does not exist

Continue Reading


Wacom intuos3 button layout for Gnome 3

If you’re using a Wacom intuos 3 graphics tablet with Gnome 3, then this little button layout illustration should be useful. Gnome’s built in Wacom configuration tool is great, but the numbers it assigns to the tablet buttons are not intuitive. Use this diagram to avoid a trial and error approach to function assignment. Continue Reading


How to fix Fedora 19 “unlockable lockscreen” bug

The problem

So you’re using Fedora 19, you update yum one day, and a few days later you find some strange lockscreen behaviour. The look of your lockscreen has changed – a different background colour, clock size, and password box positioning. So far so good. But wait, why does a second lockscreen appear after you shoo away the first? Why can’t you type your password to the input field? Why can’t you get back to your desktop and unsaved work? Continue Reading


Free up disk space on /boot partition on Fedora

Had an error like this while upgrading your system lately?:

insufficient disk space
need 40M free on /boot (0M free)

If so, it’s likely because you have lots of kernels installed and the automatic size of your /boot partition, as configured during Fedora’s installation wizard, has become insufficient. In my case I have real-time kernels installed from Standford University’s CCRMA repos, in addition to the standard Fedora kernels. Here’s how to free up some space. Continue Reading