tonybaldwin | blog

non compos mentis

Candy in the Clouds! (or peppermint os on an everex cloudbook)

with 6 comments

You may recall that I wrote previously about Adventures with an Everex Cloudbook (or not, but I did write that).

Well that machine is still here! The Everex Cloudbook!  You may recall, it came to me initially with ubuntu hardy herron on it, and then I tried upgrading to newer ubuntu flavors, but with all kinds of bugs and headaches, so finally installed Debian Lenny on, since, after all, Debian is the BEST OS EVER.  But, the truth is, even Lenny was having some issues managing the display on this little guy, and the wifi was fickle, so, I decided to do some more experimenting.

So, today I tried Peppermint OS.

Their own site says Peppermint is:

Peppermint is a Linux based Operating System that is Cloud / Web Application Centric, Sleek, User Friendly and Insanely Fast.
Built for Speed
Peppermint OS was designed to be easy on your processor and system resources so you can get going and get things done…
Lightweight
Peppermint OS is under 512MB and easy to run as a Live CD or USB. Loads and Shuts down in Seconds…
User Friendly
Step-by-step installation, Works out of the box, Easy to Navigate with Automatic Updates….

My experience says:
Peppermint OS IS SPEEDY AND LIGHT! Indeed! (As far as “user-friendly” I largely tend to agree with Tuomo Valkonen on such matters…but that’s another story). Largely, I must say:  kudoz to the peppermint os project!  Good stuff!  Peppermint is tight system with LXDE as the default desktop, drawing from both Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and, includes the following default apps: Firefox Web Browser, Drop-Box, Exaile [Music Management & Player], Prism, X-Chat [IRC Client], Transmission [Bit Torrent Client].  I had downloaded the .iso file a couple of days ago and burnt it to a usb stick with unetbootin, and, finally today got around to playing with it.  And I like it.  So I installed it.

One little tricky part of the installation was that, when I got to the “Prepare disk space” part, the window did not show the “back/forward/quit” buttons that showed in all over windows, so, I was at a bit of a loss to proceed.  I even grabbed with windows with alt-leftclick and pulled it around a bit (helps on that tiny screen, allowing one to move windows outside of the screen area), and still couldn’t find these buttons.  I was stuck.  Eventually, I alt-leftclick grabbed the window and pushed it up, almost off the screen, and then grabbed the bottom corner (plain left-click, withouth alt), and stretched the window down another couple of inches, and, indeed, the buttons had been hidden, and stretching the windows thus alllowed them to be discovered.

Installation was FAST!  Seriously. I have never installed a gnu/linux system faster in my life. Ever.

Post install, as usual, typically involves a bit of personalization, although, this system is extremely useful right out of the box.  Nonetheless, being the curmudgeon I am, I like to have things my way.  Peppermint OS is largely configured, as I see it, for the happily clueless, and I imagine, is a great product for such folks. No surprise, thus, that those in the know (or not, as in my case) may want to move some things around. For instance, for my part, I’m replacing the default Xchat IRC chat client with IRSSI, at this very moment. While Peppermint OS includes Exaile, which is, in fact, a very handy and dandy music player that I only recently discovered and have been enjoying and do recommend, I am still adding my old standby, moc (music on console), just because it’s quicker and more efficient for many listening tasks. Also, it pretty well goes without saying that I’m updating my favorite scripting language, Tcl/Tk 8.5, so I can install the tools I wrote with it (8.4 is installed by default, needed by Xchat).  I am replacing Firefox with Google Chrome (my preferred browser, any, for ease of synching stuff across multiple machines)  as the default browser (not removing FF, just adding chrome and making it my default).  I’m adding a few other scripty tools, text manipulation tools, file conversion tools.  I’m adding FBReader for reading ebooks (they should have thought to add this by default, imho).  I’m removing catfish (some local search utility…if I can’t find stuff with find/locate/which/whereis/grep, I don’t need to find it).  Peppermint actually does NOT come with an office suite installed, rather pointing one to the use of google-docs, via a browser window, for editing documents, which can be most useful, in various situations.  Nonetheless, I am installing OpenOffice.

One thing here really got my ire up, momentarily.  It’s called cowsay, and, I have to say, the inclusion of this little annoyance really seems like an attempt to alientate anybody with a preference for using the command line (read: anybody not a completely clueless n00b). WTF?  Please, when I open a terminal, I want to do important stuff, not see a happy talking cow.  The fact that I can’t aptitude remove it without removing the entire peppermint system is a bit of a PITA. Bah…

All in all, I suppose I can let talking cows babble, and just be happy to have found a tight little system that breathes life into an old, discontinued netbook.  Peppermint runs super-fast, and, so far, wifi is working flawlessly, the display hasn’t had a hitch, and, even with this 1.2ghz 512mb system, I can’t seem to lock anything up, crash anything, or otherwise annoy the system.  That’s good. It has a handful of apps that are going to allow you to watch your youtube and hulu, listen to tunes, either locally or via online radio, catch up with your twitter via seesmic, and communicate and stay organized with google tools (docs, calendar, gmail).  I would not call Peppermint a desktop os, but it is, for my purposes, precisely IDEAL for my little netbook.

./tony

Advertisements

Written by tonybaldwin

February 3, 2011 at 12:46 am

6 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Shane and tony baldwin, tony baldwin. tony baldwin said: Candy in the Clouds! (or peppermint os on an everex #cloudbook) http://goo.gl/fb/0GnII #freesoftware #gnulinux #cloud […]

  2. Sounds like Peppermint Ice may have suited you better. It comes with Chromium as default broswer, and has more speed than One, but YMMV. BTW, bot Ubuntu, but rather Lubuntu, and yes I know Lubuntu is based off of Ubuntu, but the devs clearly lay that out on Peppermintos.com. Just sayin. Still glad you like it.

    oldrong

    February 3, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    • Perhaps I will have to download and try Peppermint Ice, then.
      Oddly, while running from the USB stick, the wifi was flawless, now, after installation, I have not once successfully connected to my wifi.
      Maybe Ice will resolve that.

      tonybaldwin

      February 7, 2011 at 10:03 pm

  3. Nice review. Regarding cowsay, try the following in LXTerminal. ' gksudo leafpad /etc/bash.bashrc '

    Remove or comment out the line ' /usr/bin/mint-fortune ' at the end of the file. Close and reopen LXTerminal and it should be gone.

    cxexa

    February 3, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    • Thank you!
      I hadn't even looked at the bashrc file.
      I would just sudo nano $file, rather than gksu leafpad $file.

      tonybaldwin

      February 7, 2011 at 10:01 pm

  4. I have peppermint one running on 2 machines, now: the everex cloudbook mentioned above, and a used dell latitude d420 that I just scored on ebay, cheap. Runs great!

    tonybaldwin

    February 12, 2011 at 11:51 pm


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: