Desktop Migration (Part 1)

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.


3 Responses to “Desktop Migration (Part 1)”

  1. richard friedman Says:

    Be sure to download Sun Studio 11 if you need to do any compilations.
    Which model Ultra 40 is it? Single processor? Dual processor/dual core?

  2. matthew Says:

    Yep, I already have Studio 11 going. One of the first things I installed after the OS. The Ultra 40 I have is the dual Opteron 280 model, which is the 2.4 GHz dual-core part.

  3. rama Says:

    Welcome to the blogosphere [again]. (btw, firefox2 doesn’t think “blogosphere” is a correctly spelled word. I’m beginning to agree. 😉

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