The Thrill

One of the blogs I read more often than not is Wil Wheaton’s blog.  It probably has a lot to do with me being a Star Trek nut and looking to see what became of one of the gawkier members of the Enterprise crew.  His most recent post details his latest effort to fix a glitch in his Debian PC (his mouse disappeared) and how he came to reclaim his title as Propeller Head Geek!  Apparently some lowercase geeky mouse retention tools didn’t work so he tried something else –

Finally, I gave up, and decided to just start over with a clean partition and a new install. So I did mv /home/wil /mnt/hda1/backedup/, did a diff to make sure I didn’t miss anything, and burned myself a copy of the latest  Debian (Sarge) Network installer.

Oh. My. God. Becky. It was so easy.

Okay. Seriously. Back in the old days of 1999, everyone told me how
easy it was to set Red Hat up, but how much cooler Debian was if you
could just get past the nightmare install . . . well, this was about as
easy an install of
anything I’ve ever done. It was literally a
handful of commands, and then a bunch of waiting while it grabbed a ton
of packages and set them up.

I’m now sitting here with a honest-to-goodness Debian system, running kernel 2.6.8!

Check it out:

wil@bender:~$ uname -a
Linux bender 2.6.8-1-386 Thu Nov 11 12:18:43 EST 2004 i686 GNU/Linux

Okay, this is probably not as exciting to anyone else as it is to me . . . but the fact that I got this working, and took all the HAM radio and isdn stuff out of the kernel, and still got it to work . . . it’s a pretty big deal to me.

I’m logged into Gnome right now,( which I usually don’t use — I’m a
KDE or Enlightenment kind of guy — but it looks beautiful) and I’ve
got apt installing Firefox and Thunderbird in a terminal, and then I’ve
got to restore some of the backups, but I’m very proud of myself. Until
I totally screw something else up, I feel like I can put on my
propeller hat and give it a mighty spin. *snort*

I know that propeller hat thing!  I have felt the thrill that comes with stepping forward as a computer geek person!  I know the thrill of recovering a file I thought lost (mainly because I renamed the source file and managed to screw it up completely – thank goodness for backups) or even installing the latest version of and opening it up to see all the new and cool stuff that awaits in the final version.  Ok, so it isn’t quite the same as a recompile of the Linux Kernel or installing a new distro but it is my thrill!

On that note, I have 10 copies of Ubuntu Linux (a South African Debian distro) and while I am too scared to go and install it on a partition on my Windows PC (mainly because I am likely to trash my whole harddrive and lose all my data, notwithstanding my obssessive compulsive habit of backing up onto DVD and whatever else will fit my data) I will step up to the plate as soon as I lay my hands on an old, unwanted PC. 

Then, I will know the Thrill!






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