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14 October 99

Still no coding news about the shell, unfortunately :-( But there is quite a bit of news on the WinLinux and my new e-zine front. I had been messing around WinLinux for a while now and it is an amazingly easy Linux system to set up! One of the first things I did after getting WinLinux installed, was to change the window manager to Enlightenment and in the process I managed to pretty thoroughly screw up my Linux installation <vbg> No wonder there really as I am an utter, total newbie when it comes to Linux. But all I had to do was log back into Windows, unistalla WinLinux and reinstall - and all within about 20 minutes! Easy as pie :-) I am on my third or fourth installation of WinLinux currently and I am so amazed at the ease with which I can install it ...

I downloaded Enlightenment 0.15 and somehow managed to fumble through the installation and get it right though there were a few problems like being locked out of the root account but being able to login with other accounts with Enlightenment as the window manager :-) And then they had to go and release 0.16 in the middle of all that! So I removed WinLinux, reinstalled it, deleted the old source code I'd downloaded for 0.15 and went ahead and downloaded the tar file for Enlightenment 0.16. I'd learnt a bit about Linux by this time (but evidently not enough as you'll understand from what follows <g>) because I decided to be a bit more methodical in my installation this time.

I installed the source code in a subdirectory of my home directory. Now this is something that is probably well known to people who've been using Linux for a while but some stuff that depend on the availability of other libraries refuse to compile from the location where I'd put them. I couldn't figure out why Enlightenment wouldn't compile and spent about two days trying to unravel the mystery! I even went on IRC and talked to the people on #E and let me tell you they aren't much different from the ones on #litestep! Actually, I exaggerate - a lot :-) They weren't rude or anything but most of the time what I got was "Read the FAQ and come back!", "Read the documentation, it's got everything you need!" etc. - sounds familiar? <g> I had done all of that before I went there - why should I talk to a bunch of people if I can find the info in the documentation? <vbg> There were a few people who were helpful though they didn't know what was wrong - probably because I did such a stupid thing that you don't even think to ask :-)

Anyway, I managed to muddle through on my own and figure out what was wrong and get everything compiled successfully. Then I ran into another problem - how to set up a usr other than root to login with Enlightenment while keeping root with the default in case I needed to fix anything. Unlike most Linux installations which give you a text based shell from which you can launch X Windows if you decide to, WinLinux comes pre-configured to launch X Windows automatically and you login via a GUI prompt to KDE by default.  So I had to do some more research, browsing and reading about setting up X to find out how I could do what I needed to do - and I had to do all of that in Windows as I have a stupid WinModem that works only under Windows!

I finally figured everything out and logged on with E as my window manager today in the morning and it was all worth it! It looks great, performs like a charm and makes me glad that I bothered to go through all that trouble :-) Now I intend to try out some other themes in the evening when I get home ...

On the e-zine front, the first issue went out yesterday and I'm already hard at work on the next issue. I'm currently hoping to have it be a weekly thing but the format is kind of flexible at the moment as I'm trying to figure out what the readership wants from it. If you are wondering what I'm talking about, I have started a new e-zine called The Cyber Chronicle which talks about stuff that interests me and perhaps will be of interest to others as well. If you'd like to subscribe (what do you mean you still haven't? For shame! <g>) just click on the link at the bottom of the page and you should be on your way. The site for the e-zine has also got an archive of old messages and there you should be able to read what you missed out on <g> and if you like it, please pass it on to others as I'm looking for lots and lots of readers :-)

12 October 99

I have been looking at the content of this journal over the last few weeks and I see that I have more and more stuff that has nothing to do at all with software development :-) I have been thinking about this recently ... I like to write and to ramble on and on about stuff that interests me such as books, movies, music, games, computers and to pass on the occassional good deal that I find when I go shopping online. But does any of this actually belong here? I don't know ... most of you are probably coming over here to find out what is happening with my new shell and instead you have to wade through a whole heap of other stuff to get at those little tidbits of information.

On the other hand, there might be those of you who actually enjoy all the extra stuff that I write about - hard though it may be to believe :-) And of course there is also the question of updating - I am hardly a regular updater and there probably are a lot of you who keep on coming back every day (does anybody really do that? <g>) and are disappointed to be faced by the same old page again. So, I have decided to try an experiment. "What is this great big experiment of yours?" do I hear somebody ask? Well it is this ...

I have decided to do a weekly (or it might be more frequent than that depending on how much content I've got ...) e-zine called "The Cyber Chronicle" :-) This will contain all the stuff like good (geek <g>) books to read, movies, music, the latest games that I'm trying out, my trials and tribulation with WinLinux, new software and even stuff about coding and tips and tricks. This journal will remain here but will be updated only when I have something relating to development to write about. Depending on whether enough people sign up for the e-zine or not, I will do the e-zine and we'll see where that leads to ...

How do you sign up? It is simplicity itself :-) If you click here and your e-mail client is set up correctly, you should get a new message window with the address already in there. Or you could simply click on the button at the bottom of the screen. But if neither of these work, simply send an e-mail to and you will get a confirmation request from a place called OneList. Just send a confirmation and you'll be subscribed. Once I have enough subscribers <g> I will send out the first e-zine ... clear enough huh?

"But what of shell development?" I hear you ask ... actually, I didn't get much done over the weekend and there really isn't much to talk of in that area. Perhaps later on this week ...

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