MEPIS Talks 2

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Note: this podcast was created 4/1/2007, and you can download the original audio file here.



Warren: Here we are.

Matt: Alright, welcome to podcast number 2. I think we're ready to go. Hopefully the quality is going to be much better this time, and I also think we have a name for our podcast.

Warren: Yeah.

Matt: Brought to us....yes...umm, this is now going to be known as the MEPIS Talks. Umm...this was given to us by...umm, Jerry Bond. An idea for us in the comments section of the last podcast, so we thank Jerry for the idea. We both liked it.

Warren: Yep

Matt: And so I think we're going to go with it. And, so here we are MEPIS Talks episode two.

Release of 6.5

Warren: Okay..... Well, what shall we talk about?

Matt: Well, we have lots of things we can talk about. Umm, let's kind of recap this past week a little bit. Umm, some things have been going on. We've been--at least you've been--working hard on going to final with this new release and sounds like you're pretty close right now.

Warren: Yeah, it's uh, I mean, I know there are people who still have issues. Uh, somebody here, somebody there. Umm, but I think we have the major issues out of the way and the fact is we really need to get final with this because, uh, we've taken the 6.0 code base about as far as we really, really can. Umm, we'll get to work next on a 7 version. Which hopefully will, umm, we've learned a lot from 6 and 7 will be a lot easier to upgrade and maintain and we'll be able to do that on a more continuing basis instead of waiting as long as we did this time.

Matt: Right, and believe that the 7.0 version is going to be based off of Feisty, as far as we can tell at this point.

Warren: Umm, well ya the Feisty pool promises to be a good one. It's looking good right now. The 2.6.20 kernel that is being synchronized with the rest of Feisty, or the rest of Feisty synchronized with it really, that looks like a good stable kernel and one of the major considerations that we have every time we work on a new major release is to use a stable kernel. That's why the 6 series had the 2.6.15 kernel and why we did not upgrade to one of the newer kernels during the fall. Those kernels were really not very stable. So 2.6.20 looks good as a kernel. Feisty packages are being built to be compatible with that. And it really looks promising for us to build a new major release on top of that and take those packages and put the special little MEPIS twist on it.

Matt: Right, some of those earlier kernels, they were doing a lot of changing during that time. Especially with things like udev and things like that with how they were handling a lot of hardware.

Warren: Well, that's an ongoing thing regarding kernel development. I think if you talk to Linus would discover that he expects about one good kernel per year. Part of what one has to do when building a version of Linux is decide which kernel is a good kernel to go with. I think some of the distros really give that a lot of attention and some less so. But, since we've been working with kernels for quite a while now and customizing them to work with lots of hardware on our own, I think we're in a good position to take advantage of a good kernel when one comes along.

Matt: Right, yep. So, sounds like, here in the next week, we'll have a new release out. Which will be good for everybody. We've been using 6.5 now for a long time. Things are, I think, pretty darn stable for the most part. I haven't had any major issues with it. I know there are some that some people have here and there, but I think for the most part this is definitely a good release to our end.

Warren: Well, we started trying to just do an improvement of 6.0 but then one thing led to another, we were able to add this and that and everything else. It's really time to say enough is enough for this round.

Warren: Yeah, any major package and particularly OpenOffice, Firefox to some degree, really are tied closely to other components that are in the release. With OpenOffice there has been a conscious decision or many decisions made in the Debian tree about how to break out the pieces that comprise OpenOffice. Not just OpenOffice itself but the other pieces that it depends on, the other libraries and so on, how those will be broken out into individual pieces. So when a new release of OpenOffice come along it isn't always an easy task to fit that into an existing version of Linux, at least in the Debian tree. So if you look for 2.2 for Dapper I don't think you're going to find it ever. Because it's too much work to try to make that happen. That's the main reason that we can't always update things as much people would like. The fact is, if we know the people want it we're going to do it if we can possibly do it but it just simply isn't always possible.

Now I do believe that we learned a lot doing the 6 series of releases based on Ubuntu. From what we've learned we'll be able to do better in 7 so that we can be more prepared to work around the areas where maybe Ubuntu or Debian has made decisions that are not really compatible with our goals of doing things. Like always having the latest version of things available for people who want them.

Matt: Right...... One of the other things, too, I believe that one of the concerns about OpenOffice was that there's security problems with it as well. If I recall this past week Ubuntu actually did release security patches for the current version of OpenOffice. So if they're worried about security and those types of things, that's one thing that Ubuntu is very good about, is going ahead and actually making sure the security updates are kept current.

But the one thing, Warren, like we were saying. One thing we found about 6.0 or with doing the 6.0 releases, we really felt the Ubuntu was going to do a little bit more with their back ports and that really hasn't happened. So, we've been having to do a lot of the compiling of new things ourselves and rolling them in ourselves. Like Xorg 7.1 that we have and a lot of those types of things. I even believe that the latest versions of Firefox aren't in the Dapper pools, so if you want 2.03 of Firefox, well you really can't get that if you're using Dapper as far as I know because we're actually going ahead building that ourselves.

Warren: Well, we're trying to fill in the gaps where we can. The fact is that the Ubuntu team is very, very busy and they have a lot to do building new releases. I'm sure that from their point of view their doing what they need to do to maintain Dapper. I think they would say, but I'm not sure, that if you want something on the bleeding edge you should be using a newer release, and if you want something that just works as it is then they offer Dapper.

We happen to offer something a little different, but then at the same time we're trying to give people the option of upgrading packages without updating the entire release that one is using. Our philosophy is different than theirs and besides, like I said, they're very busy building the next major release, and that's an awful lot of work.

MEPIS Community

Matt: Right, right. Okay, so what else has happened this week?

Well, I can think of one thing right now and that's the new community page that we have, and I think we're very happy about having. If you go to it will actually take you to a page now that directs you to the different parts of MEPIS that we feel the community was looking for. A lot of you didn't know exactly where to go to do what, or how you could even help. I hope by having this new page people will start to feel like they can get a little bit more involved, we would like a lot more involvement. We're also going to building upon this as we go, as we find more things that we could use the community help for we're going to add it to this page so that people know what we're looking for and how they can help us out.

One of the big things right now is actually getting people to use the wiki and trying to take a lot of the frequently asked questions that happen in the forums and actually go ahead and getting them in to the wiki so that when new people come in instead of having to ask the question over and over again and people having to respond to it. Well, now they should be able to go to the wiki first be able to find their answer, what exactly they are looking for and hopefully they will be able to find that either through like a Google search or hopefully on their own.

Let's go ahead and take a look at the page real quick. Actually we spelled out a way for users to go ahead and find new information. We have a section called “How can I get help�? and we actually have a four step process of how people need to go about looking for help and currently that's reading “First, go ahead and read the MEPIS wiki.�? We have a “Getting started�? section that actually has just recently has been updated.

I really actually, for this whole page and for a lot of the things in the wiki we have to thank the current whole MEPIS community out there for the people that contributed but specifically I would like to thank AdrianTM and also Jerry Bond, they have put in a lot of hard work this past week getting this ready to go. They also did a lot of updating, it's not just this page that they updated but they updated a lot of things in the wiki. Getting it ready to actually be a little bit more user friendly to new people coming in and also to people that have already been there knowing that needs to be updated. They went through and updated a lot of things that they knew were old that needed to be updated. Like the first one, “Here are the recommended methods for finding answers for your questions 1. Read the MEPIS wiki�?. Right now it may not have the absolute best information, but through the entire community's help we hope to get that going.

We also have a couple of different MEPIS wikis. We have one for English, one for Spanish, French and Italian. So, if you can go ahead and help I'm sure everybody would love helping in their specific languages, if they can go ahead and do that. Translate things from the English version if they are there, and if they started out as a Spanish page go ahead and translate that to an English page so that we can get information out there to everybody so that they can find things.

The next one that we want to have people to look at is, we have several different forums too. We have forums that are actually in a couple of different languages, we have the MEPIS Community forum, which is the English forum for the community. We also have the Spanish forum, a French forum, and an Italian forum as well and we also have LinuxQuestions,org that people can go and ask questions for as well. And, not to forget we still do have the MEPIS project forum and that forum, we're going to be doing some work to it, but we're hoping that's going to be a forum that can be used for more technical questions. If you can't seem to get an answer at one of the other forums, you can go to the MEPIS project forum, ask your question there. If your having trouble, like I said if it's to technical of a question, if it's hardware related, something like that that's just not working for you. You can come there and hopefully you'll get your question answered, it's kind of like the top tier support for the community forums that we have going.

Also we're going to be using that forum for a whole bunch of other things. We're really going to try to get the community involved and what we see that forum being used for is actually the other projects that happen with MEPIS. We've had a lot of other people coming to us lately and asking “Well, how can I help�?, “is there something I can do?�?, and once we find a place for that the MEPIS project forum will be the proper place to go ahead and talk to your group about that. It will be a place for the community leaders to go and talk about things. When beta testing comes out it will be the forum used for that, so it's not going away at all. But, there is definitely going to be a little bit of change of how things are working with it, just so that we can have a little bit more clear defined area of what's going on where. Also, we feel that will prevent some of the double work that's happening because right now there's a lot of work going at these other forums and also at the forum and information's kind of spread out a little bit. So hopefully this will consolidate where you can find the proper information for what you're doing.

I definitely suggest checking out the new community page, like I said they spent a lot of hard work on it. It really looks good, and we have a lot of information out there and we hope to get a lot more with everybody's help so go ahead and take a look at it.

I believe you've glanced at it, Warren, do you have anything to add?

Warren: Well, I had hoped for a long time that we would have something like this, and I'm just really glad to see that it's there now. I see this really as just the beginning, that now we can start using the wiki to talk a little more about what MEPIS is about, what MEPIS is up to. If a specific project gets started there can be a section at the wiki about that project, informing people about it, telling about how they can participate in it or what that project is producing that they might be interested in.

I feel that we've really been needing this. I'm hearing from people almost every day now, personally, who are basically saying one way or another “let me offer someway that I can help�?. The fact is that there are so many things that can be done to help MEPIS that I usually don't even know how to answer that question. It really depends on what you know how to do. Often people have thought that “I can't help MEPIS unless I can code�?, but that's not true at all. We need to be doing a lot of things, including the kind of work that's been done recently to improve the wiki, the work that is ongoing now to see to it that when there are good answers that they in up in the documentation.

There are people out there who write to me and say “well, I've been doing this or that to promote MEPIS with my friends, with people at work and so on�?. That's another area where I feel like people are probably doing this but they're just doing it on they're own and there could be more of a community effort in that regard. If you like MEPIS and you want to promote it or show it off or what ever. Then we need to have a place where you can get together with other people like you and talk about it and come up with ideas or come up with plans about what to do or share your success stories and things like that.

The same thing is true in many areas where we haven't been able to do that in the past. I believe it's equally true that it would be nice for people to be able to share they're success stories about installing MEPIS on specific hardware, where we don't really have that hardware compatibility database, or what ever you want to call it, like some other operating systems have. This is the kind of thing that could really help the new users. If you successfully install MEPIS and you tell what worked and what didn't work and how you got things working then also other people can learn from that and get MEPIS working on their computer. Maybe they can share back something that worked for them and then maybe that will benefit you. In the end, hopefully that kind of activity will lead to lots of people being able to use MEPIS on their computers better than they are able to right now.

The ideas can just go on and on about the things that we can do as a community and we just need to start doing them. I hope that people will go to, I suppose maybe that the right place at the moment could be the MEPIS forum, and through out an idea. Something that they would like to do or get involved with.

Matt: Right, and that's one of the things too. You say you have people asking what they can help with and you said first of all that you need to know what they're good at. And the second thing is you also want to make sure that when you contact us about things like that. Just don't tell us what your good at, also make sure that you enjoy that. Because we don't want to try to make someone do something that they really don't want to do. This is meant to be fun. It's meant to help you grow if you want to and it's meant to help MEPIS grow and it should be fun. If you don't enjoy doing what ever your volunteering for, don't volunteer for it. Even if your maybe not an expert at something but you enjoy doing it, if you want to do that to help out, that's great. Let us know and we can definitely try to help put you to work doing something that you enjoy doing.

Warren: And regarding that, let me mention, that we don't have much time available to put you to work. That actually what we need as much as anything are people who not only are interested in a particular area, but people who really want to take a responsible role in that area. Bringing together other people to do particular things. So, that is most welcome.

Matt: You were also talking before about, basically, advocacy of MEPIS and getting the word out. We actually do have a section on that, under the “How can I help�?, and it pretty much blank right now. I mean there is really not a whole lot there. So if somebody out there, I know we've heard some people too on the forum lately asking, “What are we doing about advocacy?�?. Well, to be honest we're not really doing a whole lot. So this is your chance to hop in there, you can answer the wiki, talk about what you want to do and I'm sure that people can hop in there too. We'll be taking a look at things and help guide it in the right direction. So there's a lots to be done, a whole lot to be done.

Warren: Yeah, I have a pet area that I've..., there's been some work in this are by some people but I haven't understood why it hasn't really caught on in a bigger way. And that is the idea of putting MEPIS on older computers for use in school systems. I know there is some people who are doing this like Christian Einfeldt who's doing this out in San Francisco and our own forum guy, Alan, who's does that kind of thing down in I think the Long Beach area. But I haven't understood why that hasn't really caught on as an idea in general. You know I think this is something where the idea is much better received outside of the U.S. than inside the U.S..

We have school systems everywhere, here and all over the world where there aren't any computers or there are very few computers where children don't get a chance to use computers. And where there are lots of older, surplus, off lease computers that can be donated by corporations if they knew, here in the U.S. anyway. It seems to me that that's one of those areas where advocacy could really take off and make a difference. And I'm just not quite sure why that idea hasn't caught on in the bigger sense. I know individuals are doing it but.....Doesn't this ring a ...., ring true in with lots of people.

What about your school system where ever you are, who ever is listening to this? Aren't there plenty of people out there who would need this? Or that could get involved in this kind of way? I know that the people that do this already talk about the computers that they find in the strangest places that are basically free, that they can refurbish, put MEPIS on and make a difference by doing it.

So...That's just an example, as well, of the kind of thing that could happen from the community by people who just really get a bug for doing that. Who think that's the way they want to contribute to their community or to the world, or to MEPIS or what ever. Do that kind of thing. Find other things like that.

Matt: Right...Yep. We definitely hope we get some help on that. And hope to see that whole section, I just hope to see that whole community section take off. In a whole bunch of different ways with people wanting take on some responsibility and do some of these things. So, definitely excited to see what's going to happen with it.

Ongoing Development

I'm trying to think, what are we going to talk about next? Any Ideas?

Warren: Well........, I'm trying to think if we've had any really interesting, I'm sure that we've had some interesting questions this week but right now I'm having trouble trying to remember what they were. I know that that question about why don't we include this or that is a big one. And it's, like I said, it's just that we do if we can and we've learned a lot about how we get road blocked by the up stream sources so we hope that then next time around we'll be able to update a lot more things than we did this time. Fact is we updated a lot, we went a lot farther than the code base that we started with and we really pushed it to the limit, updating it.

Matt: I know that one of the things that I worked on this past week, too was. I was informed that people,..... there was a actually a problem with the unified wiki login with the login. One of the problems that people where having was that, people that had underscores in their names were having trouble logging in. That's because the wiki software actually translated that into a space and so it when it was trying to do an authentication against the site it was getting a failure notice because it didn't see the underscore when that information was being passed. So what I did is I took a look at the authentication script and I hacked it up a little bit, and I believe I made it work for both people that have underscores and spaces in their names. I've reported some success, I've created a couple of different accounts to test it and I had some pretty good luck with it. So if anybody out there as any trouble logging in to the MEPIS wiki using their login please contact me. You can private message me through the site or you can send an e-mail to and go ahead and just let me know that that is a problem out there and I can take a look at that. I think I've got it working for just about everybody at this point. A tricky to get resolved but it wasn't too bad.

Warren: Well, sounds pretty tricky. (laughter)

Actually, I want to mention that even though we're declaring a final that doesn't mean that we're going to stop working on 6.5. It just means that any subsequent changes will be put in the pools and people will be able to update from there.

Matt: Right, it kind of means the end of big system changes. Like we're not going to be upgrading the version of or anything like that. This is just going to minor upgrades, security release of Firefox and those types of things and maybe even some updates to the MEPIS utilities if we see something that can be worked on there.

Warren: Exactly, now we do have some very specific development plans for additional versions of 6.5 which we will be working on in the weeks after the release. In particular we're planning to come out with CDs for both Spanish and French where we have committed help in the community for doing that. We can do other languages as well and this is one of those areas where I believe the wiki will really be helpful. As we get more and more things into the wiki regarding what do we need in order to work with the community, a group of people, to do a translation into a particular language.

That hasn't actually been spelled out anywhere. But, the fact is we do need a small number of people who are committed to not only translating the MEPIS utilities but also looking over the mastered CD, maybe adding some tweaks regarding translations. Making sure that everything is appropriate to that culture, hopefully everything that we're doing is neutral but you never know, maybe something isn't.

So, like I said, Spanish and French are planned and I don't know if we'll be doing any other languages for 6.5, we don't have any other groups committed yet but if some people now want to volunteer. And I mean more than just a single person volunteering, although it starts with that, but getting together a small group of people who can share the work and who can look over each others work and contribute to the whole and work as a team to make something like that happen. Basically, who ever does that would be working with us to tell us about specific things that might need to be included that we don't know about, maybe a particular spelling dictionary instead of a different one and things like that. Or translations for particular menu entries or that sort of thing as well as translations for the utilities.

So that is definitely planned for the short term. I continue to have hopes of improving or of integrating the MEPIS on usb key idea with the MEPIS encrypted home directory on usb key idea. But I just haven't had time to work on that at all and there are some technical issues there, I mean not big technical issues, just those two things are independent of each other and they would need to be combined together.


Also, of course, I very enthusiastically made sure that MEPIS was compatible with Mactel as much as possible and my primary development machine is a Mac Pro where everything works except for some real small details. The alsa sound driver does not support the mic in for example.

Matt: Right, that's a problem everywhere, that's not really like just a generic problem, that's a problem with just alsa and mac audio in general.

Warren: To some degree, it's also that the Mac-tels use the newer Intel audio chip that uses the HDA Intel driver. The guy who maintains that for alsa is just pulling his hair out. That chip is so flexible that there's a million different ways to configure it. So it works but, you know, he doesn't have access to all the hardware in the world or the time to do it for all the hardware in the world. So there are features, with that particular chip sometimes there are features that don't work quit right on one particular brand of computer or another.

In any event the audio out works fine but the mic in does not work on my Pro. Otherwise I think every thing's working at this point.... Oh actually, also the built in DVDrom or DVD drive seems to be not as fast as it should be. I've seen people Googling us saying that that a generic complaint when you combine Linux with the Mac Pro no matter whose Linux, no matter what version of the kernel, that there have been issues with that. And I've even seen people claim, I have no idea if this is true, but claim that the drive was deliberately slowed down by design. But I don't know if that's true.

But, anyway I put a lot effort, well maybe not to much effort, but I really was committed to 6.5 working with Mactel. We even have a utility for preparing your Mac bootable hard drive for OSX so that you can install MEPIS very painlessly. That has been tested by a few people. I'm really just surprised that it hasn't caught on any more than it has.

Matt: I think, me personally, my belief on that is one the final comes out and once we get a little press going and definitely talking about supporting the Mactels that people will start to look at it and realize what it's got. Because I mean it's really, you did spent a good amount of time getting things just to work properly with it and actually made sure that everything was working well so you didn't have a lot of these little issues of, well I installed it and now my sound cards not working.

Warren: Well, in general, with Linux and Mactel it's dangerous, with the other distro's that I know about. It's dangerous doing it, you really need to be very careful about what you do and how you're doing it, or you'll end up with a broken.... or with your system destroyed software wise. You have to reinstall your OSX.

On the OSX side we have the app that prepares everything and on the MEPIS side there are protections built into the installer so that you can't do the things that would other wise would make your OSX system unbootable. As far as I know MEPIS is the only distro that is that way out of the box or even afterwards. But I understand that most people who buy a Mac buy it for OSX and their not interested in MEPIS. I guess I'm just saying that for people who want some really good hardware to go with Linux, the Mactels are some really nice computers.

Matt: And also if you want a great cross platform development box. I mean you've got Mac you've got Linux and you've got Windows all right there. Couple that with some applications like being able to develop in QT or something like that, you've got a great test bed to make sure everything is working right as well. So for developers it a great environment.

Warren: Yeah, I've pretty much have all that. I do a certain amount of development in OSX, not a lot because obviously I put a huge amount of time into MEPIS. I did a little bit of work for a friend of mine during the fall on an app for OSX, so I do development in OSX and I can do that on my machine. I also have 32 and 64 bit MEPIS there, both. I can run Windows in VMware from inside of MEPIS. So I can run any of those operating systems.

As you mentioned I can develop an app with QT and its a matter of an hour or two or three to port that app to Windows or to OSX. Or I can do development in Java and same kind of thing is true. It's really a very, very.....well the Pro computer is a really fast system and the Mac's are really... now you can really run everything from a Mac. And, yeah as a developer I think it's incredible, looking back to my days when I was doing..working as a consultant developing mission critical solutions and things like that for big corporations. From that point of view it's a dream machine in that you can do so many different things with it.

Matt: We may also want to mention too that if you are getting the Mactel, make sure that you are getting the 64 bit version of MEPIS because this is the version that has everything built into it for the Mac since all of the Macs are 64 bit, to make sure that you go ahead and get that version for your Mac.


Warren: Well, I think that, in that regard it's the usual trade off that 32 and 64 bit are still not identical although with MEPIS 6.5 most things are identical whether you're running 32 or 64 except that 64 will be faster. But there are some things that are different and that's no different for a Mac-tel verses a PC. And that is that it's a little more iffy about whether all of your multimedia will play. If you are playing multimedia that depends on newer Microsoft codecs and things like that, which you are not really supposed to use with Linux but people do that. You can't use those with the 64 bit version, so that latest and greatest video or what ever that your wanting to play that was produced with a Windows Media Player 10 codec, you're out of luck if you're running 64 bits.

Matt: Like flash and things like that work fine, running on the web.

Warren: Yeah, flash works fine. RealPlayer, I know there's controversy amongst purists about whether to use RealPlayer but the fact is there's a lot of RealPlayer video streams out there that work very well with Linux. So, it's nice to have RealPlayer because of that and RealPlayer works the same in 64 as in 32.

I'm trying to think if there's any other things that do not work the same. Actually, the fact is.... I have no idea why this is but Sun still, as of today has not produced a Firefox compatible JVM so you cannot run the Sun JVM in...for 64 bits you cannot run the Sun JVM with Firefox so you cannot play Java applets. Now I hardly ever see Java applets in web pages anymore, so I'm not sure that's a real big deal today. And this has nothing to do with Java script working, Java script works fine. And the fact is the Sun JVM works fine with the Konqueror browser and with Opera, I think. I haven't actually done it with Opera but I'm pretty sure I was told by somebody sending me an e-mail that it worked fine with Opera as well.

It's just that if you want to run Firefox and you're using 64 bits and you have some reason to be playing Java applets in the web page you actually need to install a second JVM or second version of Java which is the older blackdown version which is in the pool. You can still use the Sun Java for most things but when you're running Firefox you can use the plugin for the blackdown Java.

Of course another thing is, getting back to beating us up over OpenOffice. The version of OpenOffice that's compatible with the 6 series, there is no 64-bit version of it. So we have to run that as a 32 bit version which works fine.

Matt: But it's still there.

Warren: It's just not as fast as it would be or as pretty as it would be if we were running a native 64-bit version. That of course will all be taken care of in the next release.

Matt: Also, we've seen some confusion out there too about what you can install the 64-bit version on. Since this the first real release where MEPIS is going to have a 32-bit and a 64-bit release. Some people where just kind of questioning what kind of hardware can I install it on?

Well pretty much anybody who has an AMD 64-bit processor, that includes like the Turion, and things like that. Also if you have a Intel Core 2 Duo.

Warren: Core 2, Core 2 Duo or not. Or Xeon.

Matt: Right, they're all going to be compatible with the 64-bit. Anything else that we can think of?

Warren: Pentium D's. Really any Intel processor that has what is called EM64T technology which is really is just that Intel licensed the AMD 64 technology and put it into their chips. That's very standard now but it just really started happening about a year to a year and a half ago with the Pentium D's.

Matt: Right. If you have any questions, like if your ordering for our store or taking the plunge and doing the download of MEPIS and your just not sure. Go ahead and download the 32-bit. Umm, it will run fine even on 64 bit processors, so if your not sure and you want to give it a try, like I said the 32 bits work run just fine. And you can get started there and then if you want to venture on later in trying out the 64 to see if that will actually run, you can always download that and try it out as well. But if you just want to get started and your not sure 32-bit is the way to go.

Warren: Yeah, really at this point in time, like I said earlier, our 64-bit version is almost identical to the 32 in most respects and can be a little bit faster. But the fact is that for most people your not really gaining much by going with 64. And if your wanting to do things like play every possible kind of multimedia that you could, you're probably better off with the 32. On the other hand, if you want to be on the bleeding edge, if you want to say look I've got a 64-bit and it really does darn near everything or if you need the last little bit of speed because you think that makes a difference. Then you certainly can get the 64-bit. It works..... and it does......huh?

Matt: I was just hearing some very loud beeps on this end. I wonder if it was the connection to the phone.

Warren: Umm, I heard a couple of beeps and, yeah, I'm not sure what that was. I have a feeling that it's going to be in the recording but we're not going to be able to do much about that.

Anyway, bottom line, if you like bigger numbers which it seems that a lot of our users do. Then if you have a 64-bit processor you can use 64, and if you have a 32-bit processor you can't. You know, you could always get both. (laughter)

Tip of the Week

Matt: Alright, well. Umm, one of the next things I want to talk about, I'm going to give like a new user tip hopefully every week. Umm, and this week I'm going to make it pertain to the actual, what we're doing right now which is the podcast. For those of you who are familiar with iTunes and things like that. How do you subscribe to a podcast?

Actually with MEPIS it's very easy. You can use Amarok and, umm, you can actually just subscribe very easily. So if you click on you're....the MEPIS icon on your task bar and go up to... like your menu button. And go up to where it says Multimedia, and then click on where it says, Audio Player (Amarok). It will launch the Amarok application.

So that was my tip of the week. How to add a podcast feed to Amarok.

Warren: Okay, great.

About the Podcasts

Matt: Anything else you can think of for this week, Warren?

Warren: Well, actually back at the beginning I wanted to mention that... you were very enthusiastically saying that the audio was going to be much, much better this week. But, I'm sure it's going to be better than it was last week but I'm not sure if it's going to be great because we were having trouble when we were setting up. We had a storm here today and the line was noisy now I think at this point it cleared up, I can't hear the static anymore but at least when we where getting started I could hear static in the back round that I assume was getting in the recording.

Matt: Right, and as we do this we're going to get better with it, so just bare with us. Hopefully we'll get this ironed out with the audio quality.

Warren: Well that fact is, everybody, we started this just using the minimum of technology..., playing around. This is really the cheap, simple way of creating a podcast. I have a cordless phone system here, Matt's in a different location and we're talking on the phone. Which is why his sound doesn't seem to be as good as mine most of the time. It would be a lot better if he were here at the same place. But, umm....So basically here's how to do a real cheap podcast. (laughter)

Take, in this case I have a Uniden cordless phone system and I'm talking to Matt on the phone. I'm taking an extra phone and I am turning that phone on, pressing the talk button that is, as if I were conferencing in an other person on the call here locally at my place. Form there I have an adapter cable, that I got at Radio Shack, coming out of the headset jack of the phone and going through another cable and into the mic in of one of my laptops. From there I'm simply recording this with Krec.

So...that's all the technology that we're using right now. It's not all that great, it would be better if we were in the same location, it would be better if we had more of a studio type set up and everybody on nice microphones and an audio mixer and so on. But, you know, we're doing this on the cheap and simple for the moment. Hopefully we'll have more of those other things latter.

Matt: I was going to say, depending on how much interest we see in this I think will determine about how much time we're going to spend in improving it things like that. Last week was very encouraging, we've had over 31,000...,sorry, 3,100, three thousand one hundred, people listen to it. So that's definitely and encouraging sign that you guys are interested in what's going on here and what Warren and I have to say. So, if that keeps up I think we're definitely going to try to do things to make this better and keep up this weekly show.

Warren: And that reminds me, another thing. I don't know if we mentioned this last week but if the listeners would like for us to talk about a particular subject they should let us know.

Matt: Right, yes, definitely. I had even mentioned to you... I knew we had talked about this. About maybe putting a pole up of coming up with a couple of different topics and letting people vote on that. To be honest, I haven't gotten around to even looking to see about doing that. So anyway....that might be something we do but in the mean time people can just send us their ideas and we can talk about them.

Warren: Well, I would really like to hear what everybody would like for us to talk about. I know one of my pet subjects is that we get people involved in more areas and that we figure out how to do that. And also that we move in the direction of MEPIS being more of a place where people can come to learn about Linux and MEPIS. And how do things both at home and professionally. So those are subject areas where I would be very interested in what people have to say about that and whether they...what they would like to hear about those subjects.

Matt: Right....definitely the educational part, that sounds really good. So anybody with ideas on that we are definitely open to hear what you have to say and we'll try to talk about it in future episodes.

Warren: So I guess this has been about an hour. And that seems like a good amount of time. So....

Matt: Hopefully they're not getting to bored by now. (laughter) Alright, again we'll put a plug in. If you find that you're liking these podcast and you're enjoying what you're hearing and you want us to keep it up, please go contribute to the MEPIS store. Many ways to do that, you can buy product. You can go ahead and just do a straight contribution on the front of the store. So anything that you can do along that regard will help out greatly in the development of MEPIS.

Thank you very much for listening again. Hope to have as many hits this week as we did last week, and looking forward to your comments about future shows. That's all I have Warren.

Warren: Okay. Well, yeah thanks for listening everybody, and we'll be back in a week.

Matt: Alright, talk to you guys later.

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