Monday, June 9, 2014

Bodhi Linux 3.0.0 Release Candidate 1

At Bodhi we work firmly on a "its ready when its ready schedule" as opposed to sticking to our set release goals and churning out something we are not happy with. Better late than never as the saying goes! Just ten days after the targeted release date I am happy to share our first Release Candidate for Bodhi Linux's third major release:

As you can see from the image our default theme has matured some (it is nearly complete in fact). For a full change log you can see my running TODO list as we work towards our 3.0.0 stable release here.

Download Links
Legacy Hardware Support

The most important new thing in this release is the addition of an ISO image that supports legacy hardware. The legacy ISO image features a 3.2 kernel that will work on 486 machines (or newer), including non-PAE hardware. This ISO image currently features the same E19 desktop that the other three discs have, but if all goes as planned the legacy disc will feature the E17 desktop by default starting with our second release candidate.

Existing 3.0.0 Users Can Upgrade

As always existing 3.0.0 users can simply use eepDater to get the latest and greatest system from their current install. 64bit users will need to implement this workaround though for a troublesome package that found its way into the beta.

Known Issues

There are a couple of small issues we are aware of and working to remedy for our RC2 release later this month. They are:
  • The quick start guide opens twice on the live CD/the first time you boot Bodhi
  • There is an Enlightenment segfault the first time you access the menu on the live cd/on a new install (just press f1 and everything is fine)
  • App Center does not work (we are still working on implementing a new installer tool for this)

Bug Reporting/Issues

As always please, please, please do not post issues in a comment on this post. Instead open a thread in the 3.0.0 testing section of our user forums. Also keep in mind this is a testing release not intended for production machines.

~Jeff Hoogland

Monday, April 28, 2014

Bodhi Linux 3.0.0 Beta Release

Its been two months since we had our alpha release and since then Ubuntu 14.04 has released as "stable". That means the core for our upcoming Bodhi 3.0.0 release is finally stable enough for me to stamp a "beta" label onto it. For those that do not really care what I have to say and just want a download link, this beta release comes in the following three flavors:
Those looking for a change log / my TODO list for 3.0.0 please see here. All of these images are built directly on top of the latest Ubuntu 14.04 packages. The 32bit and 64bit images utilize the 3.13 Linux kernel, while the Chromebook image utilizes a 3.11 kernel due to hardware compatibility issues.

The Chromebook image is tested/designed to work with the Acer C720 and HP 14" Chromebooks. It could very well work with other Chromebooks, but they have not been tested. For more information on installing Bodhi on your Chromebook follow the directions here.

Updated Release Schedule

Some folks made note that when I first posted the Bodhi 3.0.0 release schedule we were set for a stable release at the end of June. After some discussion on our user forums it was decided that we would all be more comfortable with waiting till after Ubuntu releases their first major update to 14.04 before we called 3.0.0 our "stable" Bodhi release. With this in mind the Bodhi 3.0.0 stable release has been moved from a June 27th target date to a August 2nd target date. This makes our release cycle heading towards 3.0.0 stable look like:
  • May 30th - Release Candidate
  • June 27th - Release Candidate 2
  • August 2nd - Stable Release
New Look and Applications

While I a linked a change log above, a picture is worth a thousand words as they say! Below is pictured the new Radiance Enlightenment theme that is nearing completion (Thanks Duma!) which is now the default look for Bodhi 3.0.0. Also shown in the screenshot is ePad text editor (replaces Leafpad) and eepDater system updater.

Bug Reporting/Issues

As always please, please, please do not post issues in a comment on this post. Instead open a thread in the 3.0.0 testing section of our user forums. Also keep in mind this is a testing release not intended for production machines.

Happy Testing,
~Jeff Hoogland

Sunday, April 13, 2014

HOWTO: Stream to Chromecast

I recently picked up a Chromecast and one of the things I was looking for was to stream from my laptop to my TV using the device. Thankfully setting this setup is fairly simple thanks to the aide of the TCast Chrome plugin.

Step 0 - Install Chrome/Chromium

Streaming to the Chromecast from your PC currently requires a Chrome based browser. Install either Google Chrome or Chromium.

Step 1 - Install Google Cast and TCast Extensions

Select each of the addon links below and add them to your browser:

Step 2 - Enable Streaming from your Channel of Choice

Open the stream URL you want to cast to your Chromecast. Play your stream and then click the Chromecast button underneath the video player. You will then see the following appear over your stream:

Next, click the Chromecast icon in the upper right hand corner of your browser and select the Chromecast device you want to stream to:

Your Chromecast should then take a minute to load up the stream and then it should soon be playing! In your browser page you will then see the following screen from which you can adjust the stream quality and play/pause the stream:

And you are all set - enjoy streaming twitch on your Chromecast device! Have any questions or issues please feel free to leave a comment below and I'll do my best to help.

I've only tested the above instructions on my Linux based PC, but these extensions should work on any platform that supports Chrome/Chromium.

~Jeff Hoogland

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Enlightenment Foundation Libraries Application Round Up

Most folks who have been around Linux and/or open source software for awhile are aware of what GTK and QT are - tool kits for building applications. Something that not as many may be aware of is that there is another open source tool kit out there - the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries. These serve as the building blocks not only for the Enlightenment desktop, but also for a growing number of applications.

Today I am going to provide a quick round up of applications written utilizing the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries.

System Tools -

Terminology brings "fun" back to the terminal while still being plenty practical. Supporting split panes and slew of other nice features it is stable and fast.

A simple, but functional, lightweight GUI front end for the Connman connection manager. Supports wired and wireless connections.

A simple graphical tool for the sudo command. Supports the same functions as similar tools such as gksudo. Also supports direct integration with other python EFL applications.

A tool for displaying information about the hardware in your computer. Supports exporting the formation collected to a text file.

eCcess provides a few different functions. It is a GUI for managing users on the current OS and assigning/removing group permissions. It can change the current date and time and finally it provides a simple task manager.

Similar to gDebi, eDeb allows the user to install Debian package files using a GUI.

A tool for installing package updates on apt-get based systems.

Multimedia Applications - 

Utilities -

Games -

Escape from Booty Bay (Angry Birds Clone)

Wrapping Up -

Hopefully I've introduced you to some new wonderful applications today! Most of this software is fairly new though, so sadly many of them will not have packages in many Linux distribution's repositories. You can however find every application listed here in the Bodhi 3.0.0 repos (or you can add this repo to your Ubuntu 14.04 install).

If you know of an awesome EFL based application that I haven't included here today - please let us know what it is - and where to find it - in the comments below.

~Jeff Hoogland

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Introducing eepDater - GUI for Apt-Get Package Updates

One of the things I am working on for our Bodhi 3.0.0 release this summer is a simple GUI system update tool written in Elementary and the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries. Today I would like to share an early version of this tool I am calling eepDater (pronounced epp-date-er), which is written in python utilizing the EFLs.

eepDater provides a very simple, but functional, GUI for selecting which package updates you'd like to install on your computer via apt-get:

You can simply check the box for the updates you'd like to install and then hit the apply button. Hitting refresh will check for package updates:

One thing worth noting is that eepDater does not include any code for escalation of privileges for installing software. This means you should launch it with something such as eSudo.

If you are using at least Bodhi 3.0.0 you can install eepDater on your system with the command:

sudo apt-get install eepdater

For anyone else out there, you can find the eepDater source code on GitHub here.

Have any questions or suggestions feel free to drop them below! Keep in mind though this tool is intended to be simple by design.

~Jeff Hoogland

Friday, March 7, 2014

HOWTO: Add Bodhi's Enlightenment Desktop to Ubuntu 14.04

One question we often had users ask us in the past was if it was possible to convert an existing Ubuntu LTS install into Bodhi Linux. Previously the answer to this question had always been "No", but with our 3.0.0 release built on top of Ubuntu 14.04 we are finally looking to change this. The following is how you can add the latest Bodhi desktop to your existing Ubuntu 14.04 install.

Step 1: Add the Bodhi Repo to your Sources

Open a terminal and run:

sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list

At the bottom of the file that is opened, add the line:

deb trusty main 

Step 2: Sync package lists

Next you will need to sync your package lists with the command:

sudo apt-get update

Step 3: Install the Bodhi Desktop

Install the Bodhi Desktop with the command:

sudo apt-get install bodhi-desktop

After this completes an "enlightenment" session should now be available in your login manager.

Step 4 (optional): Add Econnman/Connman

Bodhi's default network tool for the 3.x.y release is Econnman. To replace your existing network manager with Econnman run:

sudo apt-get install econnman connman

Enjoy your new enlightenment powered Ubuntu!

~Jeff Hoogland

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Buying Chromebooks for their Hardware, not their OS

I've kind of been on a Chromebook kick lately. Last month I posted a review of the Acer C720 I picked up recently, to summarize: I really love the device.

I think computers like Chromebooks are the way of the future, but not because of their operating system - because of their hardware. Relatively low cost laptops with SSDs for storage and an insane battery life are everything I want in a computer.

I liked the hardware specs of the Acer C720 so much, I've decided to replace not only my old netbook with a Chromebook - but I've replaced my primary work laptop with one as well. I picked up an HP 14" Chromebook this past weekend which has identical hardware specs to the Acer C720, while providing an even longer battery life:

Since I started posting about these laptops and my work with Bodhi Linux on them I've had piles of Linux users ask me why I am buying Chromebooks with the intent of running something other than ChromeOS on them.

This question is VERY hypocritical.

Some even go so far as to recommend "traditional" laptops that would have been a better choice. Guess what operating system these traditional laptops come with? You guessed it: Windows! Buying a Chromebook with the intent of installing a different Linux distribution on it is no different than purchasing a Windows laptop with the same intention.

Well, I guess it is a small bit different. You see - when I buy a Chromebook not only am I not paying a Windows tax for my hardware, but I am getting a laptop with a sleek form factor that gets an amazing battery life. To get these things from a Windows PC you generally have to pay a giant premium.

In closing, if you are in the market for some sleek Linux hardware at a low cost I would highly recommend checking out the Acer C720 or the HP 14" Chromebooks.

~Jeff Hoogland