…And We’re Back!

Or rather I am back.  As in I am going back to blogging.  I apologize for the months of silence.  Moving houses, and migrating web hosting providers will do that to a person.  Migrating the web hosting to a completely self-managed environment was quite a learning process, and took quite a bit of time.  I did not realize at the time, that my websites would be down for months.  Fortunately everything is back to normal now.

I won’t commit to posting on a regular schedule, since that is simply not realistic.  However I missed quite a few excellent opportunities to blog in a timely manner.    Especially everything surrounding PyCon and all the new things I’ve learned since that time.  I will try to make that up by writing articles about events, knowledge and ideas.

It is good to be back.

Website Hosting Migration

You may have noticed the recent changes on my blog & portfolio website.  I am in the process of migrating my websites, domains and what not to a new hosting service.  A nicer hosting service provider who doesn’t support SOPA/PIPA for one.  Plus is much more responsive and nicer to work with.

Anyways a lot of things are up in the air.  Especially since I am still transitioning in terms of my new work.  Plus I am working on a grey op (not quite black) project, that I plan to reveal shortly.  Please excuse the sporadic changes and some issues might pop up while I get everything sorted out.

Migrating to openSUSE

If you’ve followed my dents on identi.ca, you may have noticed that I asked people for their recommendations for a good KDE4 Linux distribution.  Well after a bit of thought I decided that I would move away from Kubuntu to openSUSE.  Why the change?

  • KDE4 is the desktop environment that gets all the attention and polish.  Kubuntu is great and valiant effort by the community to bring the Ubuntu experience to KDE4.  However, there is a lot of polish and integration missing that openSUSE provides.
  • A system that supports my hardware. From some weird reason, the Ubuntu kernel maintainers removed a flag that cause my DVD burner not to see CDs.  This is not the case in openSUSE.  I actually tried to burn something off a LiveUSB before installing openSUSE.  Yes, I could of recompiled my kernel with the right flags.  But if I wanted to do that, I wouldn’t have moved off Gentoo to Kubuntu.
  • A system with lots of packages and community repositories. This is why I didn’t choose some of the lesser known distributions.  openSUSE (and Fedora) do a good job at this.
  • A stable system. Fedora does not do that.  The upcoming release of Kubuntu LTS et al, seems to break things.  openSUSE is extremely conservative in this manner.
  • Something I am familiar with. This was not a hyper-important point, but I do like the fact that I’ve used SuSE in the past.  So installing openSUSE is a bit like going back to an old and comfortable place.

And so far I am pleased.  The desktop looks polished, quick and a great KDE4 experience.  All that said there are somethings I don’t like:

  • Configuration is weird. I am not a huge fan of YaST.  It is good, but somehow my brain has gotten used to thinking either configuration files or KDE’s System Settings.
  • Leaving Upstart. Upstart is really, really neat way of dealing with services.  Now I’m forced to think in terms of rc.d runlevels and I’m not a happy bodkin.
  • NXServer installation breaks things. Oh yes it does.  I fought for quite a while with getting my OpenSSH server starting at boot.  It looks like the bootscript for nxsensor (nxserver’s statistics gathering engine) screws up runlevels.  Never ever had this issue in Ubuntu.
  • No DEBs. I miss DEBs,  aptitude and various DEB tool.  I’m hoping that zypper and yast manage RPM dependencies in a saner manner than what I remember from 2004-2006ish.

Somethings I look forward to trying out:

  • How easy updates work. openSUSE 11.3 is in the works, and I can hardly wait until it comes out in July.  I got a taste of KDE 4.4 via a backport  PPA in Kubuntu.  And I want that that goodness, without my system acting weirdish after the update.
  • Easy to do backups. I could not for the life of me setup a decent backup scheme under Kubuntu.  openSUSE provides a backup module right into YaST.
  • Better performance. So far openSUSE feels snappier than Kubuntu.  We’ll see what will happen once I restore all data from a backup.
  • Developing and distributing KDE and Qt with ease. This is a huge one.  I want to get into programming in Qt and enhancing the KDE experience.  I’m hoping that the tools and build system in openSUSE makes this braindead easy.

Moving In…

I migrated my blog to its new home here a few days ago.  Already I feel a lot more comfortable than I ever did in Blogger.  It feels like a moved from an apartment to a single family detached house.  And yes I am liking it.

Like an new house owner, I am now in the getting settled in and “painting” mode.  I’m experimenting with different professionally made themes.  I’ll probably end up making my own sometime in the future.  I cleaned out the glob of categories created, when I imported my data.  So now I have a bunch of posts that I need to retag and re-categorize.  I’ll work on that part slowly.  I plan on putting up some my articles and setting up a gallery sometime in the future too.  This is quite cool, and I am glad that all I needed to do is buying hosting in GoDaddy, set up a few options, install WordPress as a Hosted App and import my Blogger content.  So painless and honestly a lot more fun then I thought it would be.  Now if I can figure out this Drupal thing, my hosted web life would be total awesomeness.

Moving House and Home…

Please excuse the past few days of silence. But I’ll moving this blog/journal/collection of incohesive rants yet again.

The new home will be at my new brand new domain: http://dorianpula.ca/

Now at the moment of posting this message, the domain is not up.  CIRA, you fail again.  So for the next few days I’ll be working on putting up a new blog on that site, and copying over my content.  I’ll keep this blog up for posterity though.  However I will post new entries on the new site.  Also I might be silent for a few days while I transition over.