Video calling on Ubuntu

Dale has been having trouble with video calls back to the UK from the states.

since the start of this year I have been having lots of problems with video calling with Skype back to the UK, it worked fine in the USA but every time I tried back to the UK they would not see my video.

ooVooSounds like he has found an alternative though, with ooVoo. I’d never heard of them, so it caught my interest and I headed over to their site. Yup, you guessed it, Windows and Mac only. 🙁

Now I have to admit this is an area I haven’t tackled yet. I use Skype on Ubuntu, and I know the latest version of Skype for Linux has the video call features, but I haven’t got it working.Skype

Dale, thanks for reminding me I need to look into this, and if anyone out there has any tips on getting Skype video calls to work on Ubuntu, please chip in!

All About Ubuntu

Ineteresting new (for me!) Ubuntu blog I came across today

All About Ubuntu was launched by Joe Panettieri, a technology media veteran who has earned exclusive interviews with Bill Gates, Michael Dell and other high-tech industry vanguards. Joe is co-founder of Nine Lives Media Inc., which owns and operates several niche IT communities, including MSPmentor and The VAR Guy.Joe and Nine Lives Media Co-founder Amy Katz are incubating the All About Ubuntu site and watching the Ubuntu market’s evolution closely.

About Us « All About Ubuntu

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Adventures in home working » When to Vista

Steve Richards has some great thoughts on what to think about when considering an upgrade to Vista:

please don’t think of your programme as a Vista upgrade. Instead:

  1. Model your workforce in terms of their workstyles
  2. review the appropriate solution for each workstyle, looking at the many highly differentiated options for desktop and application delivery including consumerized/Linux solutions for some user segments
  3. rationalise down to a few desktop/OS and application delivery technologies (not one per workstyle) to keep control of cost and complexity and increase flexibility
  4. try and leverage the change programme to achieve some significant business improvement, cultural change and productivity improvements
  5. Architect your solution to loosen the coupling of the desktop operating system to the applications, to make future change easier.

Adventures in home working » When to Vista

This would raise some interesting discussion, and exciting opportunities for innovation in the enterprise desktop space. I particularly like the fact it allows for some degree of flexibility and choice.

Modelling the workforce would uncover some fascinating information, particularly if it was done in a collaborative way, inviting contributions. It would be important to think about where we want to be, rather than where are we now with our current technological and (potentially) cultural limitations.

Whilst for many Vista will be an automatic choice, I think it is a sign of both the issues Microsoft is facing with its flagship OS, and the relative strength and maturity of the Linux offerings, that we can even entertain the thought of having this conversation.

Good food for thought, thanks Steve!

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The bet is on! Ubuntu vs. Microsoft – Ubuntu Forums

This sounds like a great experiement, I hope he goes through with it. I’d be up for this too, anyone fancy betting be a laptop for using Ubuntu! 😉

I am here because of a bet I have with a friend. This is the deal: I have to use Ubuntu for 30 days. IF there is anything I can’t do on Ubuntu (except for games which he reluctantly conceded is Microsoft turf) that I can do on Vista, then I get a brand new laptop courtesy of my buddy. IF on the other hand, I lose, I have to pay for his new laptop.

The rules:
1. I have to post any and all questions I have about installing and using Ubuntu on this forum.
2. I have to save all of my correspondence.
3. I cannot use any other OS for 30 days, except for my computer at work.
4. If I can demonstrate that Ubuntu isn’t neck to neck with Microsoft in anyway, I win.
5. I have to use open source software as much as possible. If there is no equivalent, then I get to use MS software, but using some sort of emulation software to run it on. (Buddy said I’d have to learn about it here).
6. My friend wanted me to use Feisty, but I told him to step up to the plate, so it’s going to be Gutsy. (I figure since it’s new, it must have lots of issues, so the better for me).

Well, there it is. I plan on winning this bet, but I will be fair. All of this will start tomorrow. Tonight is the last evening of my beloved Microsoft for 30 days. I am downloading Gutsy and will install tomorrow.

Professor Fate

Make sure you check out his blog if you want to follow the story:

Hello,I’ve spoken with one of the mods at Ubuntuforums and we agreed that this thread should be transferred here. Please post questions, comments, whatever you like regarding this bet. I’d like to thank all of you for your interest in this bet, and I appreciate your help.PF

The bet is on! Ubuntu vs. Microsoft – Ubuntu Forums
The bet is on! Ubuntu vs. Microsoft

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IPv6 issues with Ubuntu 7.10

Since my upgrade to Ubuntu 7.10, I have not had any issues, and unfortunately not much time to explore some of the new features either!

One thing I had noticed though, is that the Update Manager hadn’t informed me of any updates since. So, I forced a check, which resulted in timeout messages for the repository URLs. Strange, though familiar, as I remembered a similar problem with 7.04.

Now, after some reading, I want to state that there is seemingly a big misunderstanding out there on exactly what this issue is, and who should be fixing it! My understanding is that with the latest linux kernels, there is an incompatibility with certain routers, which are messing with the TCP headers and shouldn’t be. IPv6 being enabled in Ubuntu 7.10 by default might have something to do with the problem. If any of that is incorrect, please leave a comment and correct me!

Anyway, the issue is real, and its causing headaches for quite a fewUbuntu’ers! My view is that if the Ubuntu folk can do anything to avoid this, then that’d be a good thing, as most people’s initial reaction is to blame poor old Ubuntu!

So, I just wanted to document the changes I made, mostly to remind me if I ever need to remember what I changed, and if it helps anyone else, well great!

From the command line: gksudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/aliases and change the line alias net-pf-10 ipv6 to:

alias net-pf-10 off

From the command line: gksudo gedit /etc/hosts and comment out the ipv6 section, leaving it as follows:

# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
#::1 ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
#fe00::0 ip6-localnet
#ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
#ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
#ff02::2 ip6-allrouters
#ff02::3 ip6-allhosts

From the command line: gksudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist and add the following:

#disable IPv6
blacklist ipv6

Microsoft vs Mandriva: The plot thickens

Jonathan Carter has an update on the goings on regarding the Classmate PCs in Nigeria:

The plot has thickened as more details emerges in a PC World article.

The funder of 11000 of the 17000 classmate PC’s is insisting that Mandriva remains on the machines, at least for now. This will have a big impact on the project as a whole, and Mandriva might just yet be the default system on all these machines after all.

In the article it also mentions that the Microsoft country manager for Nigeria, Chinenye Mba-Uzoukwu wrote that Microsoft is working on an agreement with the Technology Support Center (which seems to be an independent service provider in Nigeria) to pay them US$400 000 for marketing activities around the classmate, if they switch to Windows.

Hopefully this means the door is not cloased on Mandriva.

While I can understand the stakes are high for Microsoft, if only half of this is true, their ethics need questioning.


Mandriva Vs. Windows

Yet more strange decisions regarding software choices where Microsoft is involved.

François Bancilhon writes an open letter to Steve Ballmer regarding the news that Mandriva Linux will be replaced by Windows XP on the 17,000 Classmate PCs for Nigerian schools.

We actually closed the deal, we took the order, we qualified the software, we got the machine shipped. To conclude, we did our job. And, the machine are being delivered right now.

Now, we hear a different story from the customer : “we shall pay for the Mandriva Software as agreed, but we shall replace it by Windows afterward.”

This raises so many questions, both business and ethics. How much pressure and money did MS throw at this?

We will probably never know the truth, and it is likely not going to swing back Mandriva’s way. Unfortunately. Such a shame that so many children will have there first computing experiences tarnished by politics and an out-of-date OS running on low powered hardware.

It is the apparent lack of ethics and arrogance that Microsoft seem to be showing that really gets my goat.

Plenty more commentary out there including this and this.

10 Rocking Features in 10 Days – Countdown to Ubuntu 7.10

As we close in on the release of Ubuntu 7.10, codenamed Gutsy Gibbon during the development cycle, we thought we would tell you a little bit about some of the new features and improvements that make the release exciting. So over the next ten days, we will talk about one rocking feature each day until the 18th of October, when Ubuntu 7.10 goes live.So what is in store for you with 7.10? We’ll be looking at the following features:

  • Starting today, desktop search via Tracker and Deskbar
  • Improved usability for configuring the graphic environment, with features such as Bulletproof-X and Graphical X configuration
  • Spectacular desktop visual effects by default, brought to you by Compiz-Fusion
  • Improvements in Firefox plugins, including Gnash installed by default
  • Fast User Switching for those with shared machines
  • Printer auto-detection
  • Better handling of non-free drivers (including firmware installation)
  • Improved security with AppArmor
  • Easier access to your files on Windows with NTFS writing

Exciting times for an Ubuntu user! This series of articles is one to check out over the next week-and-a-bit.

Here’s the first, explaining what we’re getting related to desktop search.