Ubuntu Linux on my IBM Thinkpad

Linux for human beings

Originally uploaded by Santosh Dawara.

More pictures of the Ubuntu Live CD booting up on my Thinkpad.

I am very impressed by Ubuntu. After watching or hearing of several friends installing the International Linux distribution, I thought I would give it a try. I got the Live CD of their website, burnt it to Disc and booted up. The boot up process was a little slower than I expected – being a Live CD, that was quickly forgiven. I was most impressed by the GNome Window Manager.

Pleasures: Apart from the fact that its Linux and is Open? None yet.


  • The Ubuntu installation ships with GNome optimized for the OS.
  • Clean fonts, professional icons, great user experience.
  • Ubuntu invite hardware feedback after you install, the feedback is used to update a HW DB.
  • The O.S is quick and responsive unlike older versions of Linux where you ‘felt’ like you were using a WindowManager over the O.S.
  • Wireless network access was configured out of the box
  • My external NTFS-formatted drive was immediately mounted over USB.
  • Hard drive tools now show the drive size in MB instead of blocks.
  • Most Thinkpad laptop management functionality was available to me, including power source details.


  • Mp3’s won’t play in the player that ships with Ubuntu (RhythmBox 0.9.0 for GNome).
  • My Thinkpad T43 scroll button was inactive. I probably will have to figure out what needs to be done to get it work.

I have been using Linux since 1999 thanks to Praveen who introduced me to it.

UNIX: Retrieving meta-info on your file-system

Turns out there is no direct method to retrieve the information stored in the superblock for most file-systems within Unix.

Try ‘tune2fs -l /dev/hdXY’ instead, this will definitely work with ext2 and ext3:

tune2fs 1.32 (09-Nov-2002)
Filesystem volume name: /
Last mounted on:
Filesystem UUID: c5ba8667-4b47-4074-801a-b55be89e4df9
Filesystem magic number: 0xEF53
Filesystem revision #: 1 (dynamic)
Filesystem features: has_journal filetype needs_recovery sparse_super
Default mount options: (none)
Filesystem state: clean
Errors behavior: Continue
Filesystem OS type: Linux
Inode count: 2415360
Block count: 4827532
Reserved block count: 241376
Free blocks: 2490514
Free inodes: 2028280
First block: 0
Block size: 4096
Fragment size: 4096
Blocks per group: 32768
Fragments per group: 32768
Inodes per group: 16320
Inode blocks per group: 510
Filesystem created: Fri Oct 8 08:26:03 2004
Last mount time: Thu Mar 10 15:27:44 2005
Last write time: Thu Mar 10 15:27:44 2005
Mount count: 1
Maximum mount count: -1
Last checked: Thu Mar 10 15:27:41 2005
Check interval: 0 ()
Reserved blocks uid: 0 (user root)
Reserved blocks gid: 0 (group root)
First inode: 11
Inode size: 128
Journal UUID:
Journal inode: 8
Journal device: 0x0000
First orphan inode: 0

Joel On Software – Biculturalism

A quote from the article:
“What are the cultural differences between Unix and Windows programmers? There are many details and subtleties, but for the most part it comes down to one thing: Unix culture values code which is useful to other programmers, while Windows culture values code which is useful to non-programmers”

I am not sure if I agree with that entirely, there is definitely no clear line! In fact I feel he might be missing the point entirely! The users themselves aren’t the same? Do I agree with that? But let me not hold onto that point!

My other favourite quote:
“I have heard economists claim that Silicon Valley could never be recreated in, say, France, because the French culture puts such a high penalty on failure that entrepreneurs are not willing to risk it.”