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Old Oct 19, 2011, 12:00 PM   #1
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Default Linux users should avoid Gigagyte Motherboards

In my personal opinion (not necessarily that of Steve's Digicams), Linux users should avoid Gigabyte Motherboards (at least for now). See this article:

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...tem&px=MTAwMjg

Hopefully, as this issue gets more press (and I'd fully expect it to go "viral" on Linux related sites), Gigabyte will realize that their "Use Windows" position on supporting Linux is a problem and make changes to resolve that problem.
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Old Oct 19, 2011, 1:00 PM   #2
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Thanks for the heads-up, Jim.
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Old Dec 7, 2011, 7:09 PM   #3
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Default Ubuntu and Gigabyte

I was very interested to read that Linux users should avoid Gigabyte motherboards - because I have a computer with an older Gigabyte motherboard and have just been trying out Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneric Ocetlot) on it.

Apart from my usual complaint that Ubuntu runs neither Photoshop Elements 2 nor Faststone Image Viewer, I'm much more impressed with this version 11.10 of Ubuntu than with any other that I've tried. It offers scores of programs that you can download & I was astonished to find that it already had at least three scanner programs all of which automatically operated my old Epson scanner. After trying three of them I've settled on one called Simple Scan. The name is not an exaggeration - it really is simple and easy to use. Ubuntu 11.10 also has whatever drivers are needed to make my S500 Canon printer work and it immediately ran my HP w2007 monitor at the correct setting. The sound card worked almost immediately too (the initial silence turned out to be only a matter of discovering that there was a "mute" box that I needed to click on so that it would work.) I like the word processing program (LibreOffice Writer complete with spell check) and I like the new dock display (a bit like Macintosh) that I can add my most often used programs to.

The most annoying thing was discovering that Thunderbird was the default e-mail program. Maybe it's something to do with our ISP, but no matter how I try to configure Thunderbird, & no matter whether I'm using Ubuntu or Windows, Thunderbird receives, but absolutely refuses to send e-mail. . For the moment I'm using one of the alternative email programs that Ubuntu offers - it's called Sylpheed.

I don't understand any of the techical stuff that Jim mentions but it makes me wonder - are there any particular symptoms that show up with Gigabyte motherboards that I need to look out for? As I say I don't understand the technical side of computers - all I can judge them on is whether they exhibit symptoms that bother me.
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Old Dec 8, 2011, 7:59 PM   #4
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There are problems with the way some BIOS firmware work with ASPM (Active-State Power Management) and Linux. This is not limited to Gigabyte. But, because of their "just use Windows" attitude towards the issue, they needed to be singled out.

With newer Linux 3.x kernels, a work around exists so that they should not work OK with motherboards that have BIOS issues advertising ASPM (like some Gigabyte Motherboards do). So, you probably don't need to worry about it using newer dstro like Ubuntu 11.10 using a Linux 3.x kernel.

You may also want to give Kubuntu, Lubuntu and other ubuntu distros using different desktops a spin. Personally, I really dislike the Unity desktop being used by Ubuntu, and I would never consider using it.

I'm seen a mass defection from Ubuntu by lots of formerly loyal Ubuntu users because of Ubuntu's switch to Unity, too. I think they made a huge mistake going with that kind of desktop, as many users really dislike it and are switching away from Ubuntu to other Linux distributions because of Canonical's decision to go with a Unity desktop.

But, to each their own, as some users seem to like it.
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Old Dec 11, 2011, 11:59 AM   #5
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Jim,

Thanks for the references to Kubuntu and Lubuntu. I've tried both - with quite different results from each.

Lubuntu was so simple & appealing that I've installed it on our old HP514n and set it up a single-purpose operation, attached to our equally old Epson scanner, monitor & printer. My wife really likes it because when it's turned on, the screen displays only ONE Ikon - Simple Scan - that I've positioned right in the center of the screen. Clicking on it displays the Simple Scan box - and with no need to do anything but click on the appropriate things in that box, we can scan and then print whatever document or picture we want.

Kubuntu on the other hand seems (to me) to be much more convoluted than Ubuntu 11.10 - so much so that I went back to the latter, despite its using the Unity dock. Sometimes the dock gets in the way, but when that happens there seem to be ways to get it to disappear.
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Old Dec 11, 2011, 12:21 PM   #6
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It depends on how you set it up. For example, I really don't like the default KDE "Kickoff style" Menus, and set it to "Classic Menu Style" instead (just right click on the icon in the bottom left of the panel and select the option to change it to Classic. That's a much simpler menu system and makes it easier to see everything.

I also set the desktop up for Folder View (without a separate desktop folder showing on it), so that it's a more traditional desktop.

See this brief review of SimplyMEPIS 11 and you can see how the classic menu screens look in a section showing the default desktop with LibreOffice apps installed.

http://all-things-linux.blogspot.com...ence-with.html

Here's a direct link to a screen showing how the Classic Style Menus looks:

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-0CtU0VQlct..._available.png

You can do the same thing in other distros using KDE 4.x (just by right clicking on the Menu button and changing it to Classic versus Kickoff).

In addition, I install the Lancelot Menu launcher, since I like it better than either the KDE Kickoff menus or KDE Classic Menus (and you can install icons for both in the panel at the same time). More about Lancelot here:

http://lancelot.fomentgroup.org/main

For example, see this post where I included some screen captures of my wife's laptop (using a KDE 4.5 desktop under Mepis 11) showing the Lancelot menu screens the way I have them setup. It's just a "widget" you can install in KDE 4.x based distros that acts as another menu system. So, I keep the far left button in the panel setup to the "Classic" style KDE menu launcher, and have an icon right beside it for the Lancelot Menu launcher, which is the menus you'll see in this post:

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ed...ml#post1247299

You've also got lots of different Theme choices in KDE 4.x based distros. Ditto for things like Desktop Effects. So, it's pretty easy to "tune" one to taste. For example, when I install a different KDE 4 based distro (Kubuntu, KDE version of OpenSUSE, etc.), I'll tend to go into System Settings>Workspace Appearance and install the "Elegance" Theme as used by SimplyMEPIS, since I like that Theme (and you can use a "Get More Themes" button under Workspace Appearance in KDE based distros to browse through lots of themes you can install by clicking on a button for one). .

Then, I change the KDE Menu to Classic Style, and I also install the Lancelot Menu launcher beside it; and tweak things like font choices and sizes to taste.
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