Archive for December, 2006

Desktop Migration (Part 2)

December 30, 2006

I have been working some more on migrating what I was doing on Windows to Solaris 10. To my wife’s delight, I got SlimServer 6.3.1 going. Astute readers will note that this is not the most recent version. I ran into various troubles with their “build-perl-modules.pl” script which attempts to download and install the required CPAN Perl modules. Apparently, version 6.5 starts to use MySQL and that was a source of pain. For the time being, I have version 6.3.1 going after ditching their script and downloading/building the required Perl modules manually. The fact that my wife now has J-pop again hitting the stereo via the Squeezebox is a good thing. Now to get it setup with SMF which should be no trouble.

Nashville’s Skyline

December 22, 2006

Having returned to Tennessee after a stint in California it is amazing to observe all of the changes. New development is springing up everywhere and certain Sushi restaurants that used to be favorites have gone down the tubes. I was rather interested to hear about a new project in downtown Nashville. Signature Tower will drastically alter Nashville’s skyline. In this rendering you can see it is a rather tall building. Metroblogging Nashville has a pretty good write up describing the official web site and the pretentious flash intro. Beware the cuff links and classical music.

Desktop Migration (Part 1)

December 20, 2006

Like rama I happen to be the fortunate recipient of a shiny new Ultra 40. I am up and running with it and so far it is great. Since I work from home, I have big plans for this system. My goal is to use it and Solaris 10 as my one and only computer. I don’t want to be running three different systems in the home office, it needs to be my main box as well as the home server. I used to be a pretty big Mac user but then switched to Windows around Mac OS X 10.2. My Powerbook was getting long in the tooth and I wanted to build a new system. So from that point on, my primary home desktop has been Windows XP. It still is, but I am looking to change this.

As for Solaris, I was instantly shocked by the ease of which I was able to configure a large mirrored storage pool using ZFS. I had watched a tutorial and it all looked so simple but I wasn’t convinced. Going through the same motions brought it all into focus. It really is that dead simple and cool. As for applications, I have been using Solaris as a work desktop for the last 6 years or so. There really isn’t anything I need to do that I can’t do on Solaris. My main sticking points are Quicken and various photography applications.

Quicken is probably the easiest one to tackle as the thing has gotten so full of features I never use, that I won’t miss them in the available alternatives. Right now I am leaning towards Moneydance. It is a Java application and that makes it simple to get going. The latest GnuCash would likely need to be compiled, though I have seen older versions compiled for Solaris. I see Blastwave has it but I would like to avoid all the extra CSW dependencies. The one Quicken feature I will miss is automatically connecting to my bank and downloading transactions. From what I read I will have to add a manual step here and import the data files I get from my bank’s website. I can live with that.

As for photography, yes I know about and quite like the GIMP. Version 2.0.2 is present and accounted for in Solaris 10. My main problem is I like to shoot photos in RAW as opposed to JPEG. I haven’t done a ton of research here but I see at least one possibility for GIMP. There is also another Java application that looks promising called Lightzone so I will see about getting that one going on Solaris. It isn’t supported but there are some posts in their forums about running it on Linux… I also need to tackle photo organization and tagging, so if anyone has any suggestions, I am all ears.