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Internet Connection Wizard deprecated

June 19, 2021 — BarryK

EasyOS inherits the various Puppy network connection tools, including SNS, Frisbee, GPRS and PupDial, managed by the Internet Connection Wizard. The Wizard can be launched via right-click on the desktop "connect" icon, or via the "Setup" menu.

However, EasyOS uses NetworkManager, which for most users does everything that they need. Having the Internet Connection Wizard in the menu may lead to confusion. Users will be tempted to select it, to find out what it does, even though they already have an Internet connection -- or if they don't, they should use the NetworkManager to get it sorted out.

The NetworkManager is a tray applet, either click on it in the tray, or left-click the "connect" icon to launch it. That is all that is needed.

The Puppy tools are still there, but now harder to get at. I have removed launching of the Internet Connection Wizard via right-click on the "connect" icon, and have removed it from the "Setup" menu.

Have removed the Frisbee PET from the package-list.  

Tags: easy

LibreOffice 7.1.2.2 compiled in OE

June 17, 2021 — BarryK

The last time that I compiled LibreOffice (LO) in OpenEmbedded (OE) was in the Pyro-series. My port of OE back then is still on github, search for "oe-qky-src'.

It wasn't easy though. I couldn't have done it myself -- 'schnitzeltony' is the guy who did most of the hard work, see his github repo:

https://github.com/schnitzeltony/meta-office

Someone once described cross-compiling a major app is like trying to sweep sh*t uphill. Yeah, it is unnatural. Some source packages, though, even large ones -- Gnumeric comes to mind -- are so cleanly designed that they cross-compile without any issues.

Developers will usually use a cross-compiler to create a basic working Linux system, then either run it on native target hardware, or in a virtual machine, to compile more apps.

OE though, is a powerful beast, a complicated monster of a build environment, and it can be made to cross-compile any app, even LibreOffice.
There is a certain satisfaction with this -- select the target architecture, say aarch64, and let her rip. Wait at least 9 hours, and there are all the packages compiled and ready to use in a distro.

For the Dunfell-series of EasyOS, packages compiled in the Dunfell release of OE, with my EasyOS layer, I have not compiled LO. Instead, I compiled it after getting a running EasyOS. I posted how that was done:

https://bkhome.org/news/202104/how-to-compile-libreoffice-in-easyos.html

Yesterday I decided to take on the challenge of compiling LO in OE. Success. As before, schnitzeltony's recipe doesn't work as-is for me, needed lots of hacking. but got there.

Next thing, want to make some changes to the pre-compile configuration and the dependencies, and build it again. Then intend to use it in the next release of EasyOS ...ha ha, maybe should reduce that to a two-letter acronym also, "EO"  --- so compiled LO in OE and it will be in the next EO.

My OE-Dunfell is not on github, only uploaded as tarballs. Will upload the latest in a day or two, to here:

https://distro.ibiblio.org/easyos/project/oe/dunfell/

A note about the latest compile in OE: have dropped support for 'jack', and have removed 'modemmanager' and 'modem-manager-gui'. Won't go into the reasons now.  

Tags: easy

Gpptp fixed

June 16, 2021 — BarryK

Gpptp is a GUI frontend created by forum member 'jafadmin' for the 'gpptp' utility, a PPTP VPN client. I posted about fixes in 2020:

https://bkhome.org/news/202005/gpptp-fixed-in-easy.html

However, forum member 'OscarTalks' has found some more issues:

https://forum.puppylinux.com/viewtopic.php?p=27822#p27822

We found that /etc/ppp/options.conf from the 'pptp-linux' package was replacing the same file in gpptp.

And, gpptp requires the actual 'yaf-splash' popup utility, a problem that was fixed a few days ago:

https://bkhome.org/news/202106/all-yaf-splash-replaced-with-gtkdialog-splash.html

An historical note:
'yaf-splash' was used in early releases of Puppy, when we compiled all the packages in T2. The T2 project put X binary executables into /usr/X11R7/bin, and that was where 'yaf-splash' was.
Later on, when 'gtkdialog-splash' was written, it was placed at /usr/bin, and symlink /usr/bin/yaf-splash created to point to it.

An odd situation, and when the path /usr/X11R7 was dispensed-with, we dumped the original 'yaf-splash', and just had the symlink /usr/bin/yaf-splash to /usr/bin/gtkdialog-splash. Not sure what the latest situation is, with the mainline pups, but at one time, and it is still the situation in EasyOS, /usr/X11R7 still exists, but as a symlink to "." -- that is, /usr/X11R7/bin will resolve to /usr/bin.

Anyway, the bottom line is that cannot have two yaf-splash binaries, unless you keep the old separate path /usr/X11R7/bin or put it somewhere else not in $PATH.    

Tags: easy

OpenEmbedded attempt fix for host glibc 2.33

June 16, 2021 — BarryK

OE is a cross-compiler, that compiles almost all of the packages for EasyOS. The host system is EasyOS Dunfell-series, which has glibc 2.31 -- up until Easy version 2.7.3 that is.

I recently did a complete recompile in OE, bumping glibc from 2.31 to 2.33, and released EasyOS 2.8.1 with glibc 2.33.

Running Easy 2.8.1, the host system, yesterday I attempted to compile a package in OE, and got a warning:

WARNING: Your host glibc verson (2.33) is newer than that in uninative (2.31). Disabling uninative so that sstate is not corrupted.

That was followed by a compile error, 'pseudo' package.

I found a fix here:

http://git.yoctoproject.org/cgit.cgi/poky/commit/?id=88cb39cc3cf55ff39c8913e93f497c3c07e9e862

Good, did not get the "uninative" warning.

But then the 'pseudo' package failed to compile. Hmmm, maybe just need to update the recipe for 'pseudo'.

EDIT:
Updated 'pseudo' from OpenEmbedded master branch online repository.

The build of 'pseudo' was successful, but then 'linux-libc-headers' failed the do_install step -- a failure related to pseudo.

I looked at the recipe for pseudo. There is a warning that any changes to the recipe not recommended, due to tight integration with the 'bitbake' script.

I ran out of patience. The OE edifice is a delicately-balanced high-wire act. I have something that works, will leave it at that. Will boot EasyOS 2.7.3, with glibc 2.31, whenever I want to compile a package in OE. Not a big deal, will install 2.7.3 in a spare HDD partition.    

Tags: easy

All yaf-splash replaced with gtkdialog-splash

June 12, 2021 — BarryK

A long long time ago, we had a C utility in Puppy, /usr/X11R7/bin/yaf-splash, which draws splash popups on the screen.
Later on, a script /usr/bin/gtkdialog-splash was written, that is mostly a replacement for yaf-splash, and a symlink /usr/bin/yaf-splash was created to link to it.

The problem is that "mostly".

What I have now done, is gone through all the scripts, in woofQ and in PETs, and replaced calls to 'yaf-splash' with 'gtkdialog-splash'. With the exception of one PET package, 'gpptp', written by jafadmin, which actually needs the real yaf-splash, see here:

https://forum.puppylinux.com/viewtopic.php?p=27822#p27822

I have removed the yaf-splash symlink in woofQ, and intend to compile the original yaf-splash and include it in the next release.

EDIT:
The real yaf-splash, version 1.02, has been compiled in OE, for both PC and Pi4, and will be in the next release.
Here is the yaf-splash homepage:

http://www.nongnu.org/yaf-splash/    

Tags: easy

Paragon ntfs3 driver compatibility issues

June 11, 2021 — BarryK

The 5.10.39 kernel used in EasyOS on the PC, now has the Paragon ntfs3 driver, builtin not as a module. Blog report:

https://bkhome.org/news/202105/kernel-51039-compiled-with-paragon-ntfs3-driver.html

There are some issues. In the initrd, the 'blkid' utility reports partitions with ntfs filesystem as TYPE="ntfs", however, to mount it requires -t ntfs3 parameter for the 'mount' utility.

To fix this, the scripts in the initrd now do this:

  if grep -q 'ntfs3' /proc/filesystems;then #20210611 has paragon ntfs3 driver.
mount -t ${WKG_FS/ntfs/ntfs3} /dev/${WKG_DEV} /mnt/${WKG_DEV}
else
mount -t ${WKG_FS} /dev/${WKG_DEV} /mnt/${WKG_DEV}
fi

After the switch_root, I put in a udev rule, recommended by the Arch Linux guys, /etc/udev/rules.d/10-ntfs3.rules:

#for the paragon ntfs3 driver, which has f.s. type "ntfs3"...
SUBSYSTEM=="block", ENV{ID_FS_TYPE}=="ntfs", ENV{ID_FS_TYPE}="ntfs3"

However, I have still kept the ntfs-3g fuse driver, as it has the user-space utilities, required by gparted. Paragon have not yet provided user-space utilities (they have promised to).

/bin/mount is an ancient script, that explicitly uses ntfs-3g to mount ntfs partitions.

I say "ancient" because that script goes right back to the early days of Puppy, and although I have been meaning to review it, never got around to doing it.

So still using ntfs-3g, even though the kernel now has ntfs3.

A ntfs partition mounted in the initrd, in the case of Easy being installed to an ntfs partition (which is allowed for case of having a save-file rather than a save-folder, discussed in earlier posts), then that partition cannot be modified by gparted. The fact that ntfs3 was used to mount it and not ntfs-3g should not matter.

So, I think that everything will still be sane. In the future, will think about changing to ntfs3 as the default, and finally I might review /bin/mount.

EDIT 2021-06-12:
After reading this comment, my enthusiasm for ntfs3 has been dampened:

https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/ntfs3-dkms/?O=10&PP=10

This driver damaged two of my NTFS partitions after a power outage. Even windows' chkdsk couldn't fix them. Thankfully I didn't have anything too important on them.

Please don't use this crap if you care about your hard drives.

Regarding the above udev rule, I have removed it, as it doesn't work. Busybox mount still needs an explicit "-t ntfs3".

So, holding back on this one. Will probably leave the ntfs3 patch out of the next kernel compile. Will wait until/if it merges in the kernel.  

Tags: easy

EasyOS Dunfell-series 2.8.1 released

June 10, 2021 — BarryK

This is for PCs with x86_64 (amd64) CPUs. Version 2.7.3 was released on May 5, see blog announcement:

https://bkhome.org/news/202105/easyos-version-273-released.html

Lots of things have happened since then, see the release notes for 2.8.1:

http://distro.ibiblio.org/easyos/amd64/releases/dunfell/2.8.1/release-notes.htm

If you need help how to boot it on a PC:

http://distro.ibiblio.org/easyos/amd64/releases/dunfell/2.8.1/readme.htm

English, French and German builds may be downloaded from here:

http://distro.ibiblio.org/easyos/amd64/releases/dunfell/2.8.1/

There is also a mirror at NLUUG, at the time of writing not yet synced with 2.8.1:

https://ftp.nluug.nl/os/Linux/distr/easyos/amd64/releases/dunfell/

Feedback is welcome at the forum:

https://forum.puppylinux.com/viewforum.php?f=63

have fun!   

Tags: easy

Conf files for MPV and Celluloid

June 10, 2021 — BarryK

There has been some discussion on the forum about configuring MPV and Celluloid:

https://forum.puppylinux.com/viewtopic.php?p=27390#p27390

Thanks to the Arch Linux guys, who explained how to copy default conf files to ~/.config/mpv:

https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/mpv#Configuration

Have added this to packages-templates/mpv in woofQ.

Celluloid configuration, though, is a mystery. I think that it will automatically use the mpv conf files, though it is confusing as "Preferences..." shows the path to the conf files as "home". They can be changed to the appropriate files in ~/.config/mpv, though whether you really need to do this is not explained.

It could be that the conf files in Celluloid are separate from the MPV ones, to specify extra settings, but that isn't explained anywhere.

Making changes in Celluloid preferences and saving them, they are remembered next time Celluloid is started ...but where on earth are these settings saved???!!! I hunted everywhere. Did google searches, to no avail.

2021-06-11:
Problem solved, thanks to OscarTalks:

https://forum.puppylinux.com/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=3201       

Tags: easy