Ubuntu Linux, Free and free, actually free'er than free

Place to discuss Debian Linux and Debian based distributions
User avatar
Void Main
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5716
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2003 5:24 am
Location: Tuxville, USA
Contact:

Ubuntu Linux, Free and free, actually free'er than free

Post by Void Main » Sat Dec 11, 2004 1:37 pm

I have been meaning to try this distro for a while now as they have intrigued me with their distribution methods. If you don't have access to the Internet or do not have the bandwidth to download ISO images they will ship you a CD free of charge, they will even pay postage:

http://www.ubuntu.com/

This is a debian baded distro (uses dpkg/apt and deb packages). I installed it under VMware the other night and didn't get a lot of time to play with it but my initial impressions are that it is extremely easy to install, it seems to be nicely put together, uses GNOME as the default desktop, is very pleasing to the eye and is easy to use. They do have their own repsoitories which I assume everything has been well testing in but I noticed a few packages missing that I normally use. I'm sure if you wanted to be daring you could point to the Debian repos but I wouldn't assume that would be problem free, at least until I try it.

One thing that is not like your "standard" Linux distros is it is intended that you don't ever log in as root. If root level things need to be done it does it through the sudo mechanism and as a security measure it asks you for *your* password when needing to change something at the system level. I believe MacOS X is also like that (correct me if I am wrong OS X users). Now, I am sure with a small amount of work you can change the security to the traditional Linux/UNIX type security.

For instance, I noticed I couldn't "su -" because I didn't know the root password (you don't need to ever do this with the default setup). I could however "sudo vi /etc/shadow" and replace the "*" in root's password field with a copy of my encrypted password further down in the file. Then I could "su -" and use my password to become root, then change root's password with the passwd command. There are probably instructions on how to change the security model on the web site if you want to do it. I think it's intended as more of a "home user" distro though which is fine. At least they don't log you in as root as a couple of other non-security minded distros have done. Requiring to type your own password is a fine security measure that is just as good as requiring root's password. In fact for new users it would "force" them to not log on as root so in some ways the security model is actually better for new Linux users than it is on regular distros where users might become frustrated and just log in and use the system as root for all their work (bad).

I would certainly recommend this as a distro to try out and it might be a perfect fit for you. I will surely be learning more about this distro in the future and give more updates as I learn. At some point I might have to add it to my list of distros that I personally am willing to confidently support (along with redhat*, fedora*, debian*, knoppix*, openwrt*). It's a little early for that right now though but the rest of those are ones I use regularly).

insomnia
programmer
programmer
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:58 pm
Location: Belgium, Antwerp

Post by insomnia » Wed Dec 29, 2004 9:59 pm

I just got all 5O CDs I ordered.
Did it really came all the way from America for free?
(I wonder how they do this)

All CDs come with a live CD as well.
For some reason this doesn't boot on my main system.
I also can't find any other working boot option besides the graphical ones.

I had no problem with the normal installation.
I also don't have any problems using all Debian packages with apt/synaptic(I'm now using unstable).

So far it looks like a nice mix between Debian and RH/Fedora.
It also seems to have a very helpfull community.

Tux
guru
guru
Posts: 689
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2003 10:40 am

Post by Tux » Thu Dec 30, 2004 11:43 am

> Did it really came all the way from America for free?
> (I wonder how they do this)

No. They come from South Africa :)

> All CDs come with a live CD as well. #

Only the ones for x86 32-bit.

insomnia
programmer
programmer
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:58 pm
Location: Belgium, Antwerp

Post by insomnia » Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:41 pm

Tux wrote: No. They come from South Africa :)
Even more amazing.
So it's an African distro...

From their website:
Our order system is designed to send one shipment of CDs per release. Going back and updating your record will not result in new order for Warty Warthog Ubuntu 4.10 CDs. By default, you will be shipped more CDs at the next release (never longer than 6 months).
Does this really mean they'll keep sending CDs for every release!? :)

User avatar
Void Main
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5716
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2003 5:24 am
Location: Tuxville, USA
Contact:

Post by Void Main » Fri Dec 31, 2004 12:50 pm

Man that's great! I wonder if we can get them to ship free computers with those CDs? :)

insomnia
programmer
programmer
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:58 pm
Location: Belgium, Antwerp

Post by insomnia » Mon Jan 10, 2005 9:20 pm

Here's a nice(and very complete) "Unofficial" Starter Guide:
http://ubuntuguide.org/

Lord C
scripter
scripter
Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2003 9:20 am
Location: London, UK
Contact:

Post by Lord C » Sun Mar 06, 2005 5:31 pm

Just a note, you seemed to do a long-winded way of changing root's password.

I simply ran "sudo passwd root" to set my root password.

User avatar
Void Main
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5716
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2003 5:24 am
Location: Tuxville, USA
Contact:

Post by Void Main » Sun Mar 06, 2005 6:56 pm

Lord C wrote:Just a note, you seemed to do a long-winded way of changing root's password.

I simply ran "sudo passwd root" to set my root password.
Or you could just "sudo passwd root". :) Nice catch, but that's too easy. :)

Lord C
scripter
scripter
Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2003 9:20 am
Location: London, UK
Contact:

Post by Lord C » Tue Mar 08, 2005 8:59 pm

I don't know about you guys, but I am very much liking Ubuntu! :D

insomnia
programmer
programmer
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:58 pm
Location: Belgium, Antwerp

Post by insomnia » Fri Mar 11, 2005 1:24 pm

Lord C wrote:I don't know about you guys, but I am very much liking Ubuntu! :D
Same here ;)

I did have two problems though...

SVCD/DVD converting:
Since some Ubuntu base libs are even newer than the ones from Debian Sid, I coudn't use apt for installing stuff like ffmpeg...

Using sudo with unsupported KDE apps:
Doing this seems to change some needed 'user' permissions, making it impossible to log in GNOME again.
Luckily, all you need to do to fix this is:
#chown user_name /home/user_name/.ICEautority

Buzza24
scripter
scripter
Posts: 59
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2003 2:01 am
Contact:

Post by Buzza24 » Wed Mar 23, 2005 2:30 am

on the topic of this awesome version of Linux....

I am trying to reset the root password but i get these errors:
[buzza@dan-comp:~ $ sudo passwd root
Password:
Sorry, try again.
Password:
sudo: 1 incorrect password attempt
buzza@dan-comp:~ $
The try again bits is where i have entered a password, but i get that returned.
Any ideas?

Tux
guru
guru
Posts: 689
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2003 10:40 am

Post by Tux » Wed Mar 23, 2005 5:04 am

Your password sucks.

Make it longer, mixed case, alphanumeric, etc :)

User avatar
Calum
guru
guru
Posts: 1349
Joined: Fri Jan 10, 2003 11:32 am
Location: Bonny Scotland
Contact:

Post by Calum » Sun Jan 21, 2007 7:38 am

ubuntu really does kick ass. i installed it off of an old ubuntu 5.04 cd and have been bumping it up the versions from hoary through breezy and dapper to edgy (6.10) with very few issues. Only minor apt configuration issues so far, all of which easily sorted by looking in google.

i will have to look into how to configure sudo though, every user getting root priveleges by default through sudo is just too much in my opinion.

JoeDude
administrator
administrator
Posts: 355
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 1:41 pm
Location: Sutton Coldfield, UK
Contact:

Post by JoeDude » Mon Jan 22, 2007 12:00 am

I've been using Ubuntu now for just over a year (6.06 LTS Dapper Drake), and I have to say, I absoluteky think it's great. I have been able to sort out any problems fairly quickly, the ones I couldn't, I found support for in thier forums. I do agree with the sudo issue. But that's so far the only real problem I have with it.

Ice9
guru
guru
Posts: 577
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2003 12:40 am
Location: Belgium
Contact:

Post by Ice9 » Mon Jan 22, 2007 2:06 am

I would find it interesting to put a ubuntu box next ot my debian box and actually compare both systems to see what's different, besides the sudo thing (which I don't like anyway) and desktop environments of course.
I don't think there would be too many differences and that raises the next questions in my mind:
-Why not going for the "real deal" and go debian?
-What's the use of forking projects like it has been done with the *buntus?
-If its for the sake of ease of installation/use, why not bundle the efforts and work on improving debian instead of luring devs away?

Post Reply