Karmic Koala

The next Ubuntu release is still months away, but it’s not too early to talk about Ubuntu 9.10 codename Karmic Koala. Expect Ubuntu 9.10 to contain a new Linux Kernel 2.6.30 with UXA Kernel Mode Setting support for Intel graphic cards, Gnome 2.27.1, the ext4 file system comes by default, and Grub 2.0. Karmic Koala is currently in Alpha 2.

Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala Highlights

  • Linux Kernel 2.6.30
  • UXA support for Intel graphics cards
  • Gnome 2.27.1
  • Default ext4 filesystem
  • Grub 2

Microsoft 7 without IE in Europe

Microsoft has agreed to remove Internet Explorer 8 from Windows 7 in Europe to comply with European laws. Regulators are saying that the inclusion of IE8 to the Windows 7 operating system violates antitrust laws. This is good news for Firefox, which by the way, have a strong following in Europe. IE will most likely lose market share. Other browsers like Firefox, Opera and Safari will pick up the slack. It’s only a question of how much market share will IE lose. Will we see a similar antitrust law against Microsoft in the US? Probably not. Microsoft gets a free pass in the US and antitrust laws are just not the same as Europe. Microsoft plans to roll out IE8 in the US and elsewhere outside of Europe.

Ubuntu in 10 seconds or less

Ubuntu 10.04 is aiming for a sub 10 second boot time. Canonical plans to take an aggressive approach to next year’s release to achieve its goal. Improvements to the Xorg display, to how root file systems are mounted, to suppressing the splash screen and progress bar are just a few things that are being considered. Ubuntu has already made dramatic changes to the boot time the last few releases.

Ubuntu 8.10 = 65 seconds
Ubuntu 9.04 = 25 seconds
Ubuntu 9.10 = < 25 seconds
Ubuntu 10.04 = < 10 seconds

USB Penguin Drives


This may look like ordinary penguins, but try stuffing it to a computer and it becomes a USB drive. Active Media Products along with WWF (World Wildlife Fund) are promoting USB drives themed after endangered animals. The USB Penguin drives come in 2GB, 4GB, 8GB and 16GB versions ranging from $12.95 to $42.95 at Amazon. My only gripe is: the penguins look really suffocated when they are plugged in to the laptop. Penguins just don’t get any respect.

Install Firefox 3.5 on Ubuntu 9.04

So, you are getting a little envious because Fedora 11 just came out and they have Firefox 3.5 Beta 4 installed by default. You want to test out the latest Firefox on your Ubuntu desktop. No worries. The following instruction details the steps necessary to install Firefox 3.5 on Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope.

1. Open up your current Firefox browser and get the Public Key for Firefox 3.5. Copy, Paste and Save the public key to a text file.

2. Open System > Administration > Software Sources. Click on the “Third-Party Software” tab and add the following source:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/fta/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

3. Click the “Authentication” tab and import the key file that you saved on Step 1.

4. Open System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager. Click the Reload button first, Search for “Firefox 3.5” and then Install.

5. After the install, you can run Firefox 3.5 by accessing Applications > Internet > Shiretoko Web Browser.


What’s the big deal with Firefox 3.5? The biggest feature is the Private Browsing Mode or anonymous browsing. This means that you’ll be able to browse websites with no history, no cookies, no visited pages, no search and form history, no saved passwords, no download list and no web cache files. Awesome.

Fedora 11

The long awaited Fedora 11 is finally here. Delayed by two weeks, the Fedora Project Team finally announced just moments ago the release of Fedora 11 a.k.a. Leonidas. You can download Fedora 11 on single CD with either a Gnome or a KDE environment. Fedora boasts a 20 second boot time using the default Ext4 file system. Fedora 11 comes with new versions of KDE 4.2.2 and Gnome 2.26.1, Firefox 3.5 Beta, Thunderbird 3 Beta, new artwork and a host of other things. Read more.

Grub 2.0

Grub 0.9, I hardly knew you. Since I don’t have dual boot on my desktop nor do I use multiple kernels, I never got to see Grub in action, but I know it’s there running quietly in the background. Enter Grub 2.0. Wait, what happened to 1.0? Well, it never happened. It just skipped to 2.0. Grub 2.0 is now the standard boot loader for Ubuntu going forward. You will most likely see Grub 2.0 included in Ubuntu 9.10.

Linux First Driver for USB 3.0

I wrote a brief post about USB 3.0 back in September 2007. In less than two years, Linux becomes the first operating system to have a driver written for USB 3.0. Thanks to Sarah Sharp for her groundbreaking work. True to word, USB 3.0 transfer speed tops at 5 GBps. Expect USB 3.0 support to be included in future Linux kernels possibly by September 2009.

Delinking Spammers

Spam seems to be everywhere. It’s in your email, blogs, social networks and even text messages. Spammers are getting creative in terms of getting around spam blockers, captchas and even fooling unsuspecting bloggers like myself.

A typical comment such as “Great post” or “Great article” or “I’m a little confused about what you wrote” or “Can you explain what you meant by this” don’t seem harmful. Some even manage to make intelligent comments. But if you look at the author’s link, it’s a dead giveaway.

I usually smell a comment spam a 100 miles away because of the author’s link or website. If the commenter’s website is a non-personal or non-blog website, I usually remove the link, but I let the comment stay if it’s within topic.

The main reason comment spammers leave comments on blogs is to promote their own businesses, blogs, sites, etc by means of a link back. Spammers are merely trying to improve their search rankings. One of the things I have been doing to fight this type of comment spam is to delink the spammer’s link.

Comments may seem legit and even make sense, but the commenter’s link is removed. I use the Delink Comment Author by Alex King, an excellent plugin¬†WordPress Plugin to delink comments.

All it takes is one click of the mouse. It’s very effective.