Merry Christmas 2014

[caption id="attachment_1828" align="aligncenter"] The Goose that never Voted for Christmas[/caption] The Goose that Never Voted for Christmas Lovingly drawn by Susannah Dora Majlati Well, it's been a funny old year. Lots of hard work going on behind the scenes, but not a great deal to show publicly for all the effort. The new Joomla site is still in progress - struggling to use our existing template on the new CMS, whilst working round Joomla's bloody awful new "Twitter" templating system. Several other new items are also still under way, but sadly not ready in time for Christmas, as we had… Read More ►

Server updates

Regular visitors will notice that quite a few Garfnet features are looking a bit tired. And you have probably encountered quite a few 404's too. The reason for this is that Garfnet is undergoing a fairly major overhaul at the moment.Moving to a new, better designed and much faster serverDumping dead or unsupported projectsIncorporating experimental projects - and some nifty toys from deoss.org.The .org part  of DEOSS is being parked-up for a while. Meantime the .com tales care of the business side, whilst the .net manages the network, server, vhosts etc. etc. Garfnet itself will continue to host the experimental… Read More ►
Radio Pécs International played in the excellent KRadio4 player for Linux users with the KDE desktop

“This Is HansinUngarn, from Pécs Hungary…”

[caption id="attachment_349" align="alignnone"] "This Is HansinUngarn, from Pécs Hungary"[/caption] "...playing his favourite music, I hope you like it." These are the first words you will hear when you connect to the internet radio stream of Radio Pécs International. And I recently had the pleasure of meeting the man behind the show, Hans Randau. His station is located in a small basement room in his lovely home, which overlooks Pécs, a Mediterranean style town about 200km south of the Hungarian capital, Budapest. HansinUngarn, playing his favourite music, 2014-01-07... Hans is a German citizen who married a Hungarian lady, way back in… Read More ►

Merry Christmas 2013

[caption id="attachment_1829" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Christmas card 2013. Ebenezer Goose at St Faith's, Havant.[/caption] In 935AD, Havant was known as “Hamafunta” – the spring of Hama – referring to the water spring to the south-west of St Faith’s Churchyard. The settlement was located at the crossing point of the track from the Downs to the coast and another track running east to west along the coast. By the time of Domesday Book, 1086, Havant was a village with a population of around 100. In 1200, the monks of Winchester Cathedral were granted permission to hold a market in the town, known… Read More ►

Having a Gander

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="900"] Having a Gander 2013-09-08[/caption] I always enjoy photographing geese. They are curious creatures and they always seem so keen to pose for me. These particular geese live at the Weald and Downland Living Museum, a fascinating 16 hectare open air site, about 30 km east of my studio. The chap in the foreground seemed particularly keen - right up to the point where he tried to eat my camera. Fortunately it was only my old Fuji HS20 bridge and geese have no teeth! Read More ►

Eighteen Years of GarfNet

1995-08-18 to 2013-08-18 Editors note: quite a lot of this article is obsolete. The site has changed quite a lot since 2013! GarfNet is penguin-powered and full of unixy goodness! Yep! we're "open source" and enjoying every moment of it. GNU/Linux is serving us so well that there is hardly a whiff of the mighty Micro$oft on this site these days. Just penguins and of course, a goose! If you haven't been here for a while, then there are some shiny new things to look at. Firstly there is our new and improved internet radio tuner, linking you to some… Read More ►

Merry Christmas 2011

[caption id="attachment_1830" align="aligncenter" width="425"] Christmas card 2011. Ebenezer Goose discusses his Christmas dinner..[/caption] More goosy nonsense courtesy of Mr.Goose's infamous Webfooted Weblog:- https://garfnet.org.uk/mrgoose Take a trip down memory lane and browse all our earlier Christmas cards in our special on-line Christmas Card Anthology:- https://garfnet.org.uk/cms/category/christmas-cards/ Image was created/edited using GIMP, a free, open source graphics package bundled with many Linux distributions. Free download for Windows & Linux... http://www.gimp.org “Tux”, the original Linux penguin was created in 1996 by Larry Ewing, using GIMP. Tux is the official logo of the Unix-based, open-source, GNU/Linux computer operating system. Linux is a registered trademark belonging… Read More ►

Merry Christmas 2010

[caption id="attachment_1831" align="aligncenter" width="849"] Christmas card 2010, The Old Cemetery in the Snow.[/caption] The Old Cemetery runs alongside Southampton Common, about 800 metres from where I live and work. It is a beautiful and peaceful place at any time of year. However, it seems particularly photogenic after a heavy snowfall. Earlier Christmas cards:- https://garfnet.org.uk/cms/category/christmas-cards Read More ►

Novatech X16 Pro | Clevo W76TUN review

My first introduction to the Novatech *16 Series was in the Beginning of October 2009 when I bought one for my mum & put Ubuntu 9.10 64 bit c/w Medibuntu multimedia thus saving eighty-five quid (or more) Microsoft Tax. My mum is in her seventies and she really does not like computers at all. Interestingly, she says she prefers Ubuntu to Windows - mainly because she does not have to bother about virus checkers and all those other security annoyances that seem particularly scary for elderly users. She also like the fact that she doesn't have to pay for any new… Read More ►

Novatech/Clevo E16 & X16 Wireless Networking under Ubuntu Linux

This was actually rather annoying. These days one rather expects wireless networking to work "out of the box". Anyway, seems the fix is reasonably simple. These instructions are very specific and therefore need to be followed exactly. They assume you are using the 64 bit version of (K)Ubuntu. I'm also assuming you are using Firefox to download the driver file.which is called:- • rtl8192se_linux_2.6.0010.1012.2009.tar.gz and that you save this file to the default location i.e. your Desktop. OK, here's what you do, once you have downloaded the file onto your Desktop Open a terminal, by clicking the Applications|Accessories|Terminal menu item.… Read More ►

Trying to buy a PC without Windows part 6 – Lenovo

IBM is not one of Microsoft's biggest fans, particularly after it was well-and -truly shafted in the OS/2 fiasco. So it seems very surprising that its subsidiary Lenovo refuses absolutely to provide any refunds for unwanted Microsoft Licenses, thus completely ignoring the Microsoft EULA. 2009-11-26 12:57 Good afternoon Garfield Unfortunately we are unable to advise the cost of the Operating System License as this is a bundle price including our OEM costings from MS. Kind regards Lenovo Sales Team Read More ►
Penguin nil-points graphic

Trying to buy a PC without Windows part 5 – Acer, the most shameful response so far

On 2009-11-26, I wrote to Acer UK to establish what its policy was regarding the Microsoft Tax. This was its response:- Hello, Thank you for contacting Acer. Regarding your enquiry, The value would be £33.95 for vista home premium. This can only be refunded within 30 days of purchase and to get it refunded you would need to send the laptop into the acer repair centre to have the HDD formatted.  This would not be covered under warranty so would cost £51.99.RegardsJonathanAcer Technical Support Team This is one of the most shameful responses so far and justifies raising the matter… Read More ►

Struggling to make Ubuntu look good

Editor's note: This article is old and outdated. Blubuntu was eventually fixed in 2010. KDE4 also went on to be really rather good too. That was until they messed it up again with KDE5, but that is showing signs of being rather good now (2018-12-27) too. Seems that Canonical has woken up to the fact that the basic Ubuntu looks, well, rather turgid. Fortunately help is at hand in the form of a theme called Blubuntu. Now, Blubuntu is a great looking theme - far more attractive than Ubuntu's default dung-like hues. Unfortunately, there is a bug in the package,… Read More ►

Stop software patents in Europe

Editor's note: this petition dates back to 2009 and can no longer be signed. However, you can still visit the site if you wish. The patent system is misused to restrain competition for the economical benefit of a few but fails to promote innovation. A software market environment is better off with no patents on software at all. Healthy competition forces market players to innovate. If you value your computing freedom then sign the petition to stop software patents in the EU. Sign petition now. Read More ►
KDE 4 logo

Upgrade to 64 bit Goosebuntu (9.04 & 9.10)(Jaunty & Karmic)

This is a relatively quick and very effective way to beef up your (K)Ubuntu installation. In other words, it's how to install all your favorite Ubuntu apps all in one go! Note this primarily applies to (K)Ubuntu 9.04 & 9.10 (Jaunty & Karmic), 64 bit versions. For (K)Ubuntu 8.04 please visit earlier (and possibly outdated) article:- http://www.garfnet.org.uk/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=124&Itemid=58 Basically the list below contains most of my favouirite (K)Ubuntu applications complete with their code libraries. The name "Goosebuntu" is not entirely serious - it is just a name we coined in the office. However, the following apps will turn a standard (K)Ubuntu… Read More ►

Upgrading Ubuntu 9.x to Kubuntu 9.x

Firstly, as ever, please back up anything that is important - as you would with any major upgrade on any computer system! Then you can either use the Synaptic package manager or in this instance it is probably quicker to install from a Terminal window. First you need to ensure the system is fully up to date. Simply type one line at a time followed by the return key... sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get upgrade Now your system is ready for Kubuntu. Type... sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop This will install the Kubuntu desktop. The download will take a while because… Read More ►

Trying to buy a PC without Windows part 4 – eBuyer

This is the fourth article in a series of case studies illustrating the difficulty one has purchasing a PC in the UK without being forced to pay a "Microsoft Tax". We use Linux on all our PC's and have done so for several years. Therefore we do not need, nor should we be forced to pay for any Microsoft software licenses. This week we focus on eBuyer.EBuyer is another British "pile-em-high-sell-em-cheap" internet-based boxshifter that shifts a heck of a lot of PCs and laptops. We have bought quite a bit of kit from it over the last two years including… Read More ►

Update – Laptops Direct

We eventually did hear back from Laptops direct. Amazingly, its sales team openly admits that it ignores the Microsoft EULA! So nil penguin points! But if there were a category for honesty then it would get plenty of penguins! The emails are in reverse order and since I guess the sales person is just "following orders", his/her name and email has been withheld for privacy reasons:- Subject: RE: [Fwd: RE: - Sales Enquiry]Date: Tue, 14 Jul 2009 16:19:18 +0100From: [Laptops Direct salesperson] To: '[removed]' References: That is correct,[Laptops Direct salesperson]From: [removed] [mailto:[removed]@garfnet.org.uk]Sent: 14 July 2009 16:16To: [Laptops Direct salesperson]Subject: Re:… Read More ►