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Install Easy to hard drive tutorial updated

March 12, 2019 — BarryK

I am gradually working through the tutorials and updating them. Have just done this one:

https://easyos.org/install/how-to-install-easyos-on-your-hard-drive.html

It is for Easy 1.0.12, not yet released. A difference between 1.0.11 and 1.0.12 is that I have refined the automatic "fixing" of the BOOT_SPECS file in the initrd. Installing earlier versions of EasyOS will require manual fixing.

I have also attempted to make the tutorials more readable, no unnecessary verbiage, but also not leaving out important details. 

Tags: easy

Firefox SFS updated to 65.0.2

March 11, 2019 — BarryK

Got feedback from Rodney in the Puppy Forum, that Firefox 64.0 does not run in a container in Easy 1.0.11.

Yes, it crashed at startup. The error can be viewed here:

/mnt/wkg/containers/firefox/.session/tmp/xerrors-firefox.log
There is a problem with dbus. Applications would normally recover gracefully from this situation, but not this version of Firefox -- it crashes.

I have created an SFS of Firefox 65.0.2, and that works in a container. I played a video at youtube.com, sound worked also.

If you already have Firefox installed in a container, delete it first:

menu -> Filesystem -> Easy Container Management

Then click on the "sfsget" icon to install the latest Firefox SFS. 

Tags: easy

SMPlayer 18.10.0 for Easy

March 11, 2019 — BarryK

It was reported that the SMPlayer PET did not work in EasyOS 1.0.11. This was due to it being linked against a different Qt5 library than that used in the latest Easy. There was the same problem with Gnome-MPV and VLC, but they were fixed, and work in Easy 1.0.11.

So, have recompiled SMPlayer, and bumped the version from 18.3.0 to 18.10.0. You can download it direct from the ibiblio.org repository, however, it is recommended to run "petget" (see icon at top of screen) and update the PET package database, then install MPLayer PET -- you will find that it needs two dependencies, mpv and mpeg2dec.

Runs really nice for me. Here is the homepage:

https://www.smplayer.info/ 

...notice that the homepage refers to it using mplayer. Instead, I am using mpv, which is a fork of mplayer, and some think is superior. For example;

https://www.reddit.com/r/archlinux/comments/43ky44/mplayer_mplayer2_mpv_which_one_is_your_choice_and/ 

And:

https://www.slant.co/versus/13972/13973/~mplayer_vs_mpv 

Tags: easy

BOOT_SPECS now even simpler

March 10, 2019 — BarryK

I am going through another iteration of refining bootup in the initrd. The BOOT_SPECS file was simplified in Easy 1.0.11, now it is even simpler.

Here is an example:

BOOT_UUID='308C-E204'
BOOT_DIR=''
WKG_UUID='3dd847b4-41e4-11e9-a94e-c025e90feb00'
WKG_DIR='easy'

Variables BOOT_PARTNUM and WKG_PARTNUM are removed. They were redundant, as partition-number can be determined from the UUID, however, I had left them in as a double-check. However, that is not necessary.

Easy 1.0.11 also has variable INITRD_X_GUI, however, that does not need to be there, and is now stored in the working-partition, at <working-partition>/sfs/settings/initrd/INITRD_X_GUI
This file can be edited, it contains "yes" or "no", and you can change it to "no" if you don't want the Xorg GUIs at early bootup.

Next up, I am going to revise the automatic "fixing" of BOOT_SPECS when the initrd file is clicked on. This is still troublesome, and I hope to remove that troublesomeness. 

Tags: easy

Install to SSD tutorial updated

March 09, 2019 — BarryK

I have updated this tutorial:

https://easyos.org/install/how-to-install-easyos-on-a-new-ssd.html

As well as updating it, I also endeavoured to make it simpler. The problem is, if a lot of detail is provided, some people have a very low threshold for absorbing information, and they flounder.

It has to be a tradeoff, and in this page I have moved toward less detail, unless it is strictly required.

What has prompted this, is the comment of one person that the EasyOS documentation is "confusing at best". This is from the user-reviews at distrowatch.com:

https://distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=ratings&distro=easyos

The average so far is 7.7/10, which is reasonable!

Anyway, for those who cannot cope with anything more than short, completely dumbed-down tutorials, I hope to achieve a balance that they can strive to comprehend.

Then there was one person complaining that Easy does not have Synaptic package manager or Thunderbird! Ha ha, please close the door on your way out.

EasyOS is an experimental distribution, compiled entirely from source, and has a small collection of packages. It has a package manager, in fact two, SFSget and PETget, and a Thunderbird-equivalent in the SeaMonkey suite.

But this is another problem, people complain if the distribution is unfamiliar, if the procedures and apps are different. There is no interest in learning or adapting. This is another class of people that should quietly move-on.

I am having bit of a whinge, but why not, it is frustrating to read the posts of those unwilling to embrace what EasyOS is all about. Not that I really care, I don't really want Easy to become "popular", just a niche player for those interested in its unique features. 

Tags: easy

Easy version upgrade tutorial fixed

March 09, 2019 — BarryK

In the release notes for EasyOS 1.0.11, I mentioned that, as "the goal-posts have shifted" somewhat, some of the online documentation needs to be updated, Here is a start:

https://easyos.org/user/easy-version-upgrade-and-downgrade.html

Clicking on the 'initrd' file to automatically fix the 'BOOT_SPECS' file, has been a bit problematic, and still not right on 1.0.11. But, it is easy enough to manually edit the 'BOOT_SPECS' file.

I think now that I have got the automatic fixing of 'BOOT_SPECS' working properly, and that will be in the 1.0.12+ release. Auto-fixing, when it works, does make upgrading an installation to a new version, a super-simple operation. 

Tags: easy

EasyOS 1.0.11 international releases

March 09, 2019 — BarryK

EasyOS 1.0.11 was announced yesterday:

http://bkhome.org/news/201903/easyos-x8664-version-1011-released.html

There are now de, es, fr, pl, pt and ru builds, download from here:

http://distro.ibiblio.org/easyos/amd64/releases/pyro/1.0.11/international/

These are intended to bootup ready-to-go, fully translated, however, you will find it a bit patchy, with English text appearing here and there.

So, input is welcome to improve the situation! Easy has an app named MoManager, that you will find in Utility menu. This is a nice GUI tool for managing translations.

You will see that there are two of them, "MoManager0" and "MoManager". The former is an older version. Probably best to use the newer one, as it has extra features, unless you have an issue with it. Note that the maintainer of the later one is 'L18L' who will find on the Puppy Forum -- send him a message if you want to report a bug or need help. Puppy Forum:

http://murga-linux.com/puppy/

I have created a new "International" section in the EasyOS forum:

https://easyos.org/forum/

If you would like to contribute translations, even if just for one file, that is great, post it to the forum in that "International" section.

One area that does need translation is the early bootup text. In MoManager, you will see a section named "SSS" and in that, the files boot_strings and initrd_strings. The former is translations for the menu you see when first booting, and the latter is for translations during bootup (in the initrd).

We did have translations for the initrd, for some of the languages, however, the translation method got changed with 1.0.11 (changed from using gettext to SSS).

Here are some links about MoManager and non-English builds:

http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=81259

http://bkhome.org/news/201901/non-english-builds-of-easyos.html 

Any help, however small, is most welcome! 

Tags: easy

Bugs in EasyOS 1.0.11

March 08, 2019 — BarryK

EDIT 20190309: BUGS FIXED!
The two bugs described here have been fixed, and 1.0.11 release re-uploaded.
 

We have already found a couple of bugs in 1.0.11. I will add to this list as more are found, as quick reference.

  1. UltraSNS, the new network manager, cannot handle SSIDs with space characters in them.
  2. Upgrading an existing installation is broken, requires a manual fix.

With earlier versions of Easy, the password was encrypted using the working-drive disk-identifier as the "salt" for the encryption.
For 1.0.11, I changed to using the UUID of the working-partition as the "salt".

Upgrading of an existing installation is described here:

https://easyos.org/user/easy-version-upgrade-and-downgrade.html

When you click on the initrd file and open it up, choose to manually fix it. Make sure that BOOT_SPECS has the correct UUIDs for boot-partition and working-partition -- you can use the blkid utility to find out the UUIDs, for example:

# blkid /dev/sdd1
/dev/sdd1: UUID="02EC-4B5C" TYPE="vfat"

To fix the "salt" problem, open init in a text editor, and fix this line (line 475):

    POLICY="$(echo "$PW" | e4crypt add_key -S "s:${WKG_UUID}" | tail -n 1 | cut -f 2 -d '[' | cut -f 1 -d ']')"

Variable ${WKG_UUID} will need to be replaced with the disk-identifier of the working-drive. Let's say that you working-partition is in drive sdd, so run fdisk:

# fdisk -l /dev/sdd
Disk /dev/sdd: 28.7 GiB, 30752636928 bytes, 60063744 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: dos
Disk identifier: 0x66fffcf7

Device Boot Start End Sectors Size Id Type
/dev/sdd1 * 2048 1310719 1308672 639M ef EFI (FAT-12/16/32)
/dev/sdd2 1310720 60063743 58753024 28G 83 Linux

Then what that line needs to become:

    POLICY="$(echo "$PW" | e4crypt add_key -S "s:0x66fffcf7" | tail -n 1 | cut -f 2 -d '[' | cut -f 1 -d ']')"

Then click on initrd to update it.

I need to figure out a more permanent string for the "salt".

Tags: easy