If you’re part of the late night crew on Facebook you might already know this story. I have an old laptop. It is for playing… for hacking. It is where code is written and experiments are performed. Instead of Windows this computer runs Linux.
Linux is an operating system, Think language, like English or Italian. Ideas are expressed in similar fashion in all languages though the words are pronounced differently. Same with operating systems.
I’ve loaded different flavors of Linux dozens of times on old hardware. Because the underlying code used in Linux is Open Source people can freely modify it and redistribute it at will. Anyone is allowed to make a Linux distribution!
The install never goes 100%. Last night was no exception.
I was attempting to install Mint which is based on Ubuntu which is based on Debian. Don’t ask me to explain the last sentence.
The Mint install was flawed. It couldn’t activate the wireless (802.11g) function on this laptop. Royal pain.
Meanwhile, while trying to get everything straightened out I realized how little I liked Mint’s look.
I downloaded a Xubuntu distribution, burned a CD and installed it.
Xubuntu is “Ubuntu light.” It uses a different graphical system meant for less powerful machines. It loaded the first time. I’m using it to compose this entry.
On my right is a new wireless router. It is 802.11n capable. Newer pieces of hardware also use that protocol.
I found it at Newegg for $19.99 including shipping. Tough to resist.
Before I install it I will “flash” it with new firmware, Open Source router code called DD-WRT. DD-WRT is often discussed and referenced on the Geek boards.
What does it do better than the stock firmware? No clue. Will learn.
Make no mistake, nerdiness this deep doesn’t happen overnight. I was nerdy from the cradle. This will never change.