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Everex TC2502 Linux PC

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 10 months ago

 

Various info on $199 gOS PC

Excellent Tutorial Website for gOS Help for Beginners http://www.howtoforge.com/the-perfect-desktop-gOS-1.0.1


How to create a vmware windows desktop that runs on linux

http://www.howtoforge.com/vmware_converter_windows_linux


What are the hardware requirements for gOS?

Most important is that you have enough RAM, 256 MB is the minimal realistic amount, although I have seen gOS booting to the desktop with only 128 MB ram, but starting any application with that little RAM takes forever, if it works at all. With 256 MB of RAM you can play a song and write a letter at the same time. With 512 MB ram everything speeds up, but (much) more is really not necessary, except perhaps when editing very large picture in the Gimp.

 

CPU speed is much less important, for a normal experience (when using the normal amount of RAM) a 1GHz P3 is fine, if the CPU is slower, then gOS just becomes slower in the same way, so with a 500 MHz P2 everything just takes (about) twice the amount of time as with a 1 GHz P3. using a 1.5 GHz P4 turns a gOS PC into a speed monster, at least, if you have a decent amount of RAM.


why did I lose icons at bottom?

You can easily lose buttons from the bottom "dock" by dragging them off the dock. By "dragging" I mean that you point at them with the mouse pointer, then press the left mouse button to "grab" them, then while keeping the left mouse button pressed dragging the icon out of the dock. If you the let go of the left mouse button the icon (but not the application will disappear. This is very similar to the way OSX works, but OSX will do a animation of a puff of smoke when you do it. gOS does not do this, so you might easily do it without noticing it.

 

Fortunately its easy to repair, just click anywhere on the dock with the right mouse button, and a menu will appear with which it is possible to add icons to the Dock, with it you can (re)-add an icon for any application you want, so also for the application of which icon you have just removed.

 

I do agree that it is too easy for this to happen though, and the gOS designers really should do something to make this less likely to happen (a question could pop up asking whether you really want to remove an icon), and/or it should be much easier to revert the removal, and/or to restore a "default" set of icons.

 

In a similar note, it is also quite easy to loose the clock! in which case it is a big puzzle to get it back. as it happens there is a similar way, by right clicking on the remaining "gadget", the icon with two PC's (which is a monitor for the network connections, (although that too is far from obvious, I first thought it had something to do with multiple screens). Right clicking on this icon brings another menu with confusing options, but if you search here a bit you will find an option for enabling different kinds of "gadgets", one of which is the clock.

 

The contents of the iBar section is configured under ... Configuration > My Settings > Applications > iBar Applications.

 

using the live cd I found that inadvertently dragging a bottom icon up and away from the bar removed them! Arghh!! It was possible to put them back again but I cannot recall how to just now.

 

You might have accidentally deleted Shelf 1 or if you see the geen leaf (start button) you might have deleted ibar. You can re-install it through Start/Configuration/Shelves.


Initial boot

When the gPC is booted for the first time, you will have answer a few standard configuration options that are required for most PC setups. This includes your language of choice, your time zone, your keyboard layout, and a username/password for security purposes. Once you enter this information the system saves the data and boots up to the login screen where you enter the authentication information of the account you previously added. Again, if this is the first time you booted the gPC, you will be requested to enter your password again to access the administrative tasks section, which is just needed to install the Firefox-Google-Toolbar (optional).


Accessing the Root Account on the gPC/gOS

 

One of the first things you will probably want to do upon boot up is to lock down the root account. By default, the root account does not have a password, which means anyone with access to the default gOS account can quickly gain full control over the operating system and essentially do anything they want. In order to prevent this, you have to set the root password to something you can remember. To do this, click the green leaf in the corner, select "Run Command" and type in "xterm." This should load a terminal window similar to Figure 8. Once the window opens, type "sudo password root." The computer will prompt you for the current account password, after which it will ask to "Enter new UNIX password." Type in the password you wish to assign to the root account and enter the same password again for a confirmation. Congratulations — you now locked down the root account.

 

NOTE: You will not be able to log into the initial GUI screen using the root account — and this is a good thing. There is no reason to be using the root account on your gPC for normal everyday activities. In fact, surfing the internet while logged in as root is extremely risky and should never be done for security reasons.

 

Unfortunately, the system is still insecure because anyone can enter what is called "single user" mode during the boot up process and change the root password. So, to prevent this, we need to password protect the program responsible for booting the operating system, grub. To do this, perform the following:

 

1. In terminal window, type su root.

2. Type in the recently created root password.

3. Type "grub" to access grub program.

4. Type md5crypt, then enter in your grub password (it can be the same as your root account password).

5. Record the returned results (Figure 8).

6. Type "quit."

7. Type "pico /boot/grub/menu.lst."

8. Scroll down to password part of the file and enter the following "password --md5 ."

9. Hit the Ctrl-O followed by Ctrl-X to save and exit the pico text editor.

 

At this point your machine is fairly secure. There are other ways to gain access to the root account, but these are beyond the scope of this article.


Shutting down

I later learned that you could get access to the correct shutdown options by right-clicking on the desktop.


Installing Flash

The Flash plugin was not included by default, which seems odd for a commercially distributed distro aimed at your grandma. I popped up a terminal window and installed it using "sudo apt-get install flashplugin-nonfree." I didn't spend any time trying to figure out if a naive user would have been able to get through this step.


Mouse button mapping

Also, I am unable to get my microsoft wheel mouse to scroll. Works fine and I know the button works, but just can't get it to scroll. The about:config in firefox is set to scroll.

 

Here is the mouse section from my /etc/X11/xorg.conf file:

 

Code:

Section "InputDevice"
        Identifier      "Configured Mouse"
        Driver          "mouse"
        Option          "CorePointer"
        Option          "Device"                "/dev/input/mice"
        Option          "Protocol"              "auto"
        Option          "Buttons"               "6"
        Option          "ZAxisMapping"          "4 5"
        Option          "ButtonMapping" "1 2 3 6 4 5"
EndSection

 

The default "Protocol" is normally "PS/2" which doesn't support a scroll wheel.

Using "ImPS/2" supports the scroll wheel, while "auto" works for everything! Cheesy

 

Set "Buttons" to match your mouse. Left = button1, middle = button2,

right = button3, wheel = buttons4/5. One side button? Its = button6. Two

side buttons? They equal button6 and button7.

 

The "ButtonMapping" lets you order the regular buttons and put the wheel buttons

at the end of the list. An explorer mouse would have "1 2 3 6 7 4 5" and you can

reverse the actions of the side buttons by swapping 6 and 7.


text editor

gOS INSTALL an Excellent WYSIWYG HTML EDITOR - 'Iceape Composer' FREE

Start > Applications > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager (Package Manager) > Type in your Password as needed > Search > type in "iceape-browser" > Search > Click on "Iceape-browser" > "Mark for Installation" > Apply > Apply > [ When Installed... File, Quit ]

 

gOS To USE 'Iceape Composer' :

Start > Applications > Programming > Iceape Composer ...

 

I'm all about gedit for HTML editing. I like the highlighting; it makes debugging much easier.


Games

some can be run with wine or cedega, but a lot of windows games do not run on linux. the best way to look for linux games is to load up the package manager and do a search for "game" (in both name and description), that should give you a list of linux games to install and try out. (I recommend games such as supertux, planet penguin racer, frozen bubble, battle of wesnoth, etc.) A google search for linux games might help you find some you may be interested in too.


Minimized windows disappearing from desktop

Right click on the 'Shelf 1" and add the ibox back into the list. It should include 'Start', 'ibar' and 'ibox' (in that order). Then the minimized programs will live on the bottom-right of your screen


How can I put a shortcut to 'Shut Down' on my desktop?

sure, this is some of the power of linux. you can create something called a script. it's just a text file that can be run as if you had entered stuff into the command line. here's what you do:

 

figure out how to open a terminal (i believe it's under applications>system tools> UXterm, but i am not ~exactly~ sure)

 

now create a text file on the desktop, just a plain one. call it whatever you want. say, SHUTDOWN because that looks nice and ominous. don't worry about the file extention (.exe or anything like that ) that isn't how linux works. all you need to know is that they don't matter to anyone but the user. now paste this into the contents:

 

sudo shutdown -P

echo

 

substitute your password and delete the <> brackets. save the file and get into that lovely terminal of yours, and type:

 

cd /home//Desktop

 

(same deal as before, but this time it's your username you sub in. now to make the thing runnable type:

 

chmod u+x

 

and you are finished. the only thing about this is that your password is kinda out in the open, so if you want to make sure that nobody else that goes on your computer happens to go through it and find your password you can do this (in the same directory, if you never closed your terminal you are fine):

 

chmod u-rw,g-rw,o-rw


gOS servers

Official Answers

I apologize about the repo key. There is a key, but I forgot to post it. You can get it here: http://www.thinkgos.com/files/gos_repo_key.asc

Answered by Nick Hughart

 

Add the following deb lines to sources.list to use our repository with Ubuntu:

 

deb http://packages.thinkgos.com/gos/ painful main

deb-src http://packages.thinkgos.com/gos/ painful main

 

Try to be nice to it, we are still in the process of moving servers and our current one has been under quite a bit of stress so far :)

Answered by Nick Hughart

 

Currently there is a greenos-desktop package in our repository, but it will not give you the complete experience. We are still hammering out the packaging, but eventually this will be easier to do. Also, we do not use network-manager so if you do install the greenos-desktop, network-manager will be replaced by the network configuration tools we are using.

Answered by Nick Hughart


gOs user guide

No, at least not at the time, at least not in paper form, that is partly why there is this help system.

 

gOS is largely built on the basics of Linux, or to be precise "ubuntu linux", so a user guide describing Ubuntu linux will go a large way to answer the more technical question you might have.

 

I understand that the buyers of a gPC which has gOS pre-installed have been given a single sheet with the most basic starter instructions. But as far as I know there is not a "user guide" as such.

For a "free and open" operating system such a user guide is most often written by the user community itself, as is custom for "Linux distributions" as gOS is one. But gOS is very new, so except for the single "starter sheet" there probably is not a lot of written documentation at the moment, especially written for gOS that is.

 

That said, gOS is based on Ubuntu Linux, for which there is a lot of documentation, this handles "how things work under the surface" so to say. You can find lots and lots of information here,

 

http://www.ubuntu.com/

 

and in the "official forums" here:

 

http://ubuntuforums.org/

 

 

This information is also valid for gOS, because gOS is just Ubuntu Linux with another "user interface", or "graphical shell"

 

This is because gOS uses a simpler "graphical user interface", than Ubuntu, one that works more like OS-X on a Mac. It is based on another program called "enlightenment", you can find information about it here:

 

http://www.enlightenment.org/

 

But this information also does not describe the gOS desktop exactly, because Enlightenment can take many shapes, and the gOS desktop is unique to gOS. You can switch the desktop to another "theme", that is more common, one called "bling", which is more or less a "standard" for Enlightenment. You can find it under the using the menu system of gOS.

 

If you are really new to any OS, or only have used Windows before, then just try. Everything is logical enough, and with little bit of experimentation you will find your way in no time.

 

The green leaf in the lower left hand side acts like the "start" button under windows, and the icons to the right of it start up their applications if you click on them. The icons in the top left are locations where you can "browse" for files. like hard-disk, or "your files", the area on the hard-disk allocated for your documents, pictures, music etc.

 

I am sure you will find your way, and if anything is not clear you can ask questions about gOS here, or in the official forums at,

 

http://www.cafelinux.org/gosforum/

 

Instructions about installing gOS, or adding stuff later can be found here:

 

http://www.howtoforge.com/the-perfect-desktop-gOS-1.0.1

 

All the applications on gOS also have separate documentation, the easiest way to find it is to go to the official gOS web-site at http://www.thinkgos.com/ and to click on the picture of the desktop, so you will go to the "features" page, of which there are two, one describing the web applications, and one the desktop applications. Clicking on the name of the application will send you to the web-site with extensive documentation about the application. For example, there is a lot of documentation about the video/music player Xine at its web-page at http://www.xinehq.de/, so just click on the text "movie player" to get there.

 

Wikipedia is also a good place to look for more information.

 

I am sure that a "starters manual" will be written sometime in the future, but at the moment there isn't one.

 

I hope this helped.


Minimum hardware requirements

Most important is that you have enough RAM, 256 MB is the minimal realistic amount, although I have seen gOS booting to the desktop with only 128 MB ram, but starting any application with that little RAM takes forever, if it works at all. With 256 MB of RAM you can play a song and write a letter at the same time. With 512 MB ram everything speeds up, but (much) more is really not necessary, except perhaps when editing very large picture in the Gimp.

 

CPU speed is much less important, for a normal experience (when using the normal amount of RAM) a 1GHz P3 is fine, if the CPU is slower, then gOS just becomes slower in the same way, so with a 500 MHz P2 everything just takes (about) twice the amount of time as with a 1 GHz P3. using a 1.5 GHz P4 turns a gOS PC into a speed monster, at least, if you have a decent amount of RAM.


File associations

Thanks for the mouse tips. I am a bit of a Linux newbie. How do file associations work with Linux. I have a lot of MP3 which won't play on Rhythmbox , I can install another player but my MP3s try to open using Rhythmbox even when I uninstall it.

 

Well, file associations are handled by the file manager. The default manager with gOS is the Enlightenment File Manager (enlighten_fm).

Since the default manager never worked very well for me, I installed the Thunar file manager. There should be some setup for any file manager to determine which programs are launched for the specified file types.

 

Rhythmbox can play MP3 just fine. The problem is that there are some patent/copyright clouds hanging over MP3 so

most Linux distros don't include support for it. As the end user, you can download the support libraries and listen to all your MP3s to your heart's content.

 

Use Synaptic and look for a package with "gstreamer" in it, say "gstreamer0.8-mad". The version might be different these days, but the "mad" libraries will give you MP3 support for the audio players.


Adding new applications

You will want to ADD a New APPLICATION to your "FAVORITE APPLICATIONS" Menu. Here's how:

 

Start > Configuration > My Settings > Menus > Favorites Menu > [Left side of display box choose for example...] "Application" > Scroll down to "Mozilla Thunderbird Mail/News" and then LEFT Click on it... > LEFT Click on "ADD" Box > LEFT Click on "APPLY" box > LEFT Click on "Close" > Again LEFT Click on "Close" >

 

To Test this out, Place Mouse Arrow on Blank Section of Desktop Screen, and RIGHT Click Mouse... BOX Menu will Appear. Scroll down and LEFT Click on "Mozilla Thunderbird..." and it will Start up.

 

 

gOS ALTERNATE PROCESS TO ADD a New APPLICATION to your "FAVORITE APPLICATIONS" Menu:

 

Start > Applications > [now choose an Application you want to use/Add... For example "Gimp Image Editor" we'll use] > LEFT Click on "GIMP Image Editor (Image Editor)" > LEFT Click "Gimp..." > [ When Gimp programs starts up...] > LEFT Click on Very TOP Graphic ICON... Drop Down Menu appears > Scroll down and click on "ADD To Favorites Menu"

 

That's it... you can repeat the above for any Application...

 

Well, these instructions are fine for adding/removing existing applications to the

Favorite Applications Menu, but there are problems adding new applications to both the Applications Menu

and the Favorites menu.

 

Start->Configuration->My Settings->Applications->New Application allows adding new items to the

Applications Menu. They will appear between Office and System Tools as "Other". The desktop files

for the new applications will be created in ~/.local/share/applications.

 

There is a disconnect for setting up the Favorites menu in that there doesn't seem to be a section

for the newly created "Other" applications. I've had to edit the "Categories=" section of the desktop

file and then copy it to /usr/share/applications so it will show up in an existing category for the

Favorites menu setup stuff.

 

Packages that are installed using Synaptic will sometimes not appear in the Applications menu. The

application's desktop file will be placed into /usr/share/applications, but the Categories= option will

need to be changed to an existing Category to be seen on the Applications menu.

 

When you create a new application, you have to click on advanced, and make sure you add a category to it, show it will show in the menu. Some applications when you load it from apt automatically create the desktop file so it will only show in it's native de, such as gnome. So it will not appear in the e17 menu.


Taking screenshots

I discovered that a separate utility for taking a Screenshot is not really needed and I could take it from GIMP File/Acquire/Screenshot


additional software

I added the following software to gOS : Thunar (file manager) gnome-terminal gedit (txt editor) Eye of Gnome (aka eog) picture viewer ksnapshot (for taking screenshots) XMMS audio player + crossfade plugin & skins All setup on hotkeys.


Adding startup applications

left click on pulpit, Configuration, My Settings, Applications, StartUp Applications, you may add or delete startup applications


Process control

While logged in as root,

 type "ps -ax |more" or "ps -aux |more". 
You will get a list of all processes running on your computer. You will see the process id (PID), process status (STAT) various statistics, and the command name. You can kill a process by typing "kill" and the PID number right afterwards similar to the line below.

kill 1721


Flushing USB device

What's happening is that the copy is buffered and doesn't really copy until you unmount the device, flushing the buffer. The safe way to copy is copy your files as usual, then open a terminal and type pumount /media/usbdevice replacing /media/usbdevice with the correct mount point for your MP3 player. This operation will block until the copy buffer has been flushed and the device unmounted. Now you can unplug your USB device.

 

Alternatively, unmount the device by right clicking its icon on the desktop and wait until your MP3 player stops showing a 'copying' icon on its display (if it has one) or until your CPU level doesn't show a high usage %; this indicates it is still copying the files. Use System Tools->System Monitor to see CPU level.


Installing Linux programs

But I regress, to install (almost) anything, you (almost) never just

manually download a file, to execute it.

 

For one, a downloaded file does not even have the "rights" it need to

be an executable! Under linux you have to explicitly give a file the

right to be an executable, and you need to do it while being the

system operator, so just double-clicking on a downloaded file will

never start it!

 

Instead, you must use the special built-in Linux software installer,

the "package manager". This package manager is what downloads the

needed "package" of file(s) for the application you want to install,

and installs whatever files wherever they are needed, and makes sure

that different programs can share the same copy of files they both

need, and make sure they are available, and updates them if needed. It

also does all the internal "book keeping" to ensure the system stays

stable. To ensure that only safe (non virus infected) software is

installed, the package manager only uses packages from a reliable

source, a "repository".

 

So how do you use the package manager, and how do you know what is in

the repositories, well if you know the name of the program you want to

install, and you are familiar with the linux command line shell, you

can open a terminal, and in it give a command to install the program.

The package manager is called "apt-get", so to install the program

pacman (a simple packman clone), you simply type:

 

apt-get install pacman

 

and apt-get will look through its list of available package

repositories (a list of web-addresses, or URLs) and tries to find

"pacman", and will then install it in the default location, as

assigned for this kind of programs (in this case /user/games/ ).

After it is finished you can run it by typing pacman.

Similarly you can remove programs it with apt-get.

 

But most people often do not know exactly how a program they want is

called, and they want a "graphical tool" (GUI interface) , so that is

why there are "front-ends" for apt-get. The two most popular are

Synaptic, and Add/remove. Synaptic is used to install anything, but

because of that its a large program with many options. Therefore there

often is another program that is simpler, and only installs

applications, that program is know as "add/remove" (n fact it is

called "the GNOME applications installer".

 

So to make a long story short, you need to install real player gold

through Synaptic, gOS uses the repositories made available by Ubuntu,

and you can start Synaptic, and do an "update package list" so the

latest list of available packages is downloaded, then search for what

you want, and if you found it (if there are many files which have the

name of the program you want, simply use the file with only the name

of the program you want with nothing appended, the other files may be

needed to but will automatically also be selected if needed) just

right click on the selection box before it, and choose "add this

program", then if you have selected all new programs you want to

install (or have removed, as Synaptic can do that too, click on the

button (I think it says "execute" or something) to make all the

changes and Synaptic will make them, and will often also add programs

to the menu's on the right places, if not you can start them manually,

or create a menu item manually with a "menu editor", but that is

another story.

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