Thinkpad 240 now on Red Hat Linux 8

by Volker Weber

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There is some debate over the new BlueCurve UI that Red Hat uses in version 8 of their Linux distribution. It is supposed to give GNOME and KDE a common look&feel. So far I have to say that I like it a lot. Finally all those menu items have been rearranged and make sense, the icon set is easily understood. And it looks generally nice.

Installation was very smooth. The Thinkpad 240 does not have a CD-ROM, so I installed via FTP across the network. You need to generate two boot floppy disks, one with the boot image, the other with addional PCMCIA drivers. I was able to install with an old trusted XIRCOM card. It took about 40 minutes to format the 12 gig harddisk and install about 1.8 gig of software across the 10 MBit network.

Without Stefan's help I would have been unable to complete the whole thing. We decided it was not worth to make my Level One Fast Ethernet card work with the O/S. That was another lesson for me to only buy "expensive" stuff from trusted vendors. We were able to get the Cisco Aironet up and running after we fixed a really stupid error in the shell scripts (someone mixed up true and false). As Stefan pointed out, this is not going to help Linux on the desktop. Who has someone with his skills at hand when you need him in the middle of the night?

The Digital Camera Tool was a really nice surprise. Hook up the Digital IXUS, discover, bang. Worked right out of the box. OpenOffice is installed by default. If someone sends me PowerPoint files I should be able to read them. (Do you have anything to say, or do you have slides?)

This thing will not be able to run Groove Workspace, which is bad for Groove. If it only runs on Windows, it may not be running on all my computers. Microsoft is walking down a path that I don't intend to go. So far I am very satisfied with Windows 2000, but XP is not an option. Nothing that Microsoft did after Windows 2000 convinced me that this is my future.

[more later]

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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