March 2014

Downloading Video from TiVo Premiere

The instructions for downloading video for the Premiere Elite are nearly the same as for the Series 2 TiVo. The only difference is the Now Playing web page for the Premiere will list two formats, MPEG-PS and MPEG-TS. Tivodecode crashed trying to decode the MPEG-TS format, so use MPEG-PS.


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Viewing Canon RAW .CR2 files in Ubuntu 13.10

Install gnome-raw-thumbnailer.


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Boon Installation of Ubuntu 13.10

Boon is a 64-bit AMD machine with 2 GB RAM. It has Ubuntu 10.04 LTS on it which, while still supported, is a little long in the tooth. For instance, it doesn’t support my Canon 60D RAW files very well and a few applications are no longer supported, including Chrome and the newest upgrade of BeerSmith 2.
Since the OS on this computer is so old, I decided to perform a new install and migrate the user accounts.

The installation is going to replace an Ubuntu 9 installation. I renamed the Ubuntu 9 partitions for Ubuntu 13. Here’s what will be used:

/ on LVM volume ubuntu13-root, 10GB ext4
/home on LVM volume ubuntu13-home, 32 GB ext4
/boot on /dev/sda6, 9GB ext4 (yes this is unnecessarily large, but there was one chunk left at the end of the disk)
swap on /dev/sdb9, 3GB swap
Boot loader installed on /dev/sda

Both Ubuntu 13.10 64 and 32-bit and 12.04 LTS experienced hard lock-ups running from the USB drive and after logging in when installed to the hard disk. It seems the problem is a conflict with the NVidia graphics card and the Nouveau drivers.  Because of this it took a few tries, but eventually the installer was successful.  The first step when booting up the new OS is to Ctrl-Alt-F1 to a text terminal, log in and replace the Nouveau driver:

sudo apt-get install nvidia-current

From there, it was a mostly normal set up.

Settings > Appearance > Auto hide launcher on

Open a terminal and install Synaptic, which is much faster than the Ubuntu Software Center:

sudo apt-get install synaptic

In synaptic, install gkrellm, nautilus-dropbox, keepassx, and emacs.  From Firefox, install Chrome.  After starting each of these except GKrellm and Emacs, right click on the respective application icon on the Launcher and lock it to the launcher.  GKrellm should start at log in.  To do that, run Startup Applications and add GKrellm.  The executable is /usr/bin/gkrellm.

To keep the rest of the family happy, I want the old 10.04 LTS version to boot by default.  So before going further, that should be done with Grub Customizer.  Start Grub Customizer from the Dash.  Under List Configuration, move the entry and Advanced Options group for Ubuntu 10 to the top.  Under the General Settings tab, change the default entry to Ubuntu 10.  Under “advanced settings”, uncheck GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT_QUIET.  Save and reboot to test it. The Grub configuration wasn’t working. To find out why, I installed Boot-Repair and ran the report generator. Grub was updating the boot loader on /dev/sda, but BIOS was booting /dev/sdb. Telling Grub Customizer to install the the MBR on /dev/sdb fixed the problem.

Google Maps in Chrome is pinging the CPU at 100% and taking a long time to update. It’s running just fine in Firefox. I read while diagnosing the Nouveau driver problem that new versions of Chrome disable hardware acceleration on older NVidia cards. It looks like that’s what’s happening, as shown in chrome://gpu. There’s an article on correcting this. I enabled these to (mostly) fix it (Chrome version 33.0.1750.146) in chrome://flags:

  • Override software rendering list
  • GPU Accelerated SVG Filters

Install the Logical Volume Manager GUI, which is in package system-config-lvm. There’s currently a bug starting it, so rather than running it from the Dash, run it from the command line with

sudo /usr/share/system-config-lvm/

Set up links to the Ubuntu 10 file systems for reference by adding these lines to /etc/fstab:

/dev/VolGroup00/ubuntu-10.04-root /mnt/ubuntu10-root ext4 ro,user,noauto 0 0
/dev/VolGroup00/ubuntu-10.04-home /mnt/ubuntu10-home ext4 ro,user,noauto 0 0

Create the mount directories with

sudo mkdir /mnt/ubuntu10-root
sudo mkdir /mnt/ubuntu10-home

Mount the file systems:

sudo mount /mnt/ubuntu10-root
sudo mount /mnt/ubuntu10-home

Next, mount the NAS.

Install Oracle Java 8:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install oracle-java8-installer

Install Minecraft for the kids:

sudo cp -a /mnt/ubuntu10-root/usr/local/games/minecraft* /usr/local/games/.

Install GnuCash and soft link the ~/gnucash directory to the NAS. Under Edit > Preferences, select the Register Defaults tab and change Default Style to Transaction Journal.

Migrate users and home directories

sudo cp -a /mnt/ubuntu10-home/{user1,user2,user3} /home/.

Edit /etc/passwd and copy the entries for the migrated users from the file of the same name on the old file system. This is actually the list of users, not passwords. To copy the passwords, do the same for /etc/shadow. Since all users in Ubuntu have their own group, also repeat for /etc/group.


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