For a long time now I have been looking for a way to record directly off the soundcard. While I had no difficulty with this in Windows, Linux proved a little more elusive.
I trawled the Internet and came across a lot of solutions, such as hot-wiring the speaker socket to the microphone socket, or lengthy sessions with Terminal.
The other day I found the solution I had been looking for, and as I suspected, it was simplicity itself.
My sound editing programme of choice is Audacity. That gives the option of selecting the source for recording and this is where I was making my big mistake. The trick is to leave that alone.at its default setting.
Open up Audacity and also Pulse Volume Control. In Audacity, click the wee drop-down by the microphone symbol and select ‘Start Monitoring’
Now select Pulse Audio Control and go to the Recording Tab.
In the resulting screen, you will see Audacity listed as ALSA Plug-in [Audacity]
All that is required now is to make your selection from the drop-down list provided. Select one that starts “Monitor of ..” and you should be OK.
I just replaced Linux Mint 10 with Mint 11 and to my surprise, Pulse Audio Control was missing. It took a bit of research but I fond that the package I was looking for was pavucontrol. I tried installing it from the Software Manager but it kept getting stuck at 12%. I then tried
Just for the laugh, I loaded Windows 3.1 into my Virtual Machine the other day.
I did it, mainly just to see if I could.
What you see above is both Windows 7 and Windows 3.1 running in their own Virtual Machines on a Linux Mint host.
When I started working with PCs the standard machine came with 1Mb of memory and a 20Mb hard disk. Windows 3.1 was considered to be fairly bloated as it weighed in at nearly 15Mb, so it took most of the disk space. Of course, Windows wasn’t an operating system in those days; it was essentially a programme that ran on DOS, which also had to be loaded onto the PC.
In those days, the Internet was still very much in its infancy, and neither DOS nor Windows came with TCPIP/IP software or a browser so they had to be loaded and configured separately. What was worse, loading IP and a browser required a full 2Mb of memory to run properly. To connect to the Internet meant adding memory, loading a TCP/IP stack (Lan Workplace was the software of choice), configuring DOS to handle the stack and then installing Netscape Navigator.
In contrast, Windows 7 handles IP and the Internet as an everyday item and we take it for granted that it will connect to the Internet as soon as it is installed. There is one small difference between 3.1 and 7 though – while 3.1 weighs in at 15Mb, 7 comes in at around 12Gb. Nearly a thousand times bigger. I would also love to see it try to run with 1Mb of memory!
Things have changed a bit over the last twenty years.
A good friend – Kirk – suggested I try it initially, and I have been using it ever since.
I was talking to Kirk the other night and we got onto the topic of Mint 10 KDE which has been imminent for some time. He gave me the address from which to download it, which I promptly did. However, Kirk suggested I just update my existing KDE to 4.6.00, as I only wanted to have a look to see if it was worth switching over from Gnome. He gave me the address for the software repository ( ppa:kubuntu-ppa/backports ) which I duly entered.
That was when the fun began.
I ran a check to see if there were any updates, knowing that there would be some, as I was running and old version of KDE. It came up with a list of 380 updates! The following morning, I told it to install the updates, but it refused, saying that I had a broken package. Unfortunately it didn’t tell me which one.
I hunted the Internet for a solution to my broken package problem and found several suggestions, none of which worked. One of the suggestions had been to run Aptitude and supposedly it would at least tell me which package was at fault. It didn’t but during the process I must have hit a wrong key somewhere because it suddenly announced that it was installing and uninstalling a list of programs. I don’t know where that came from!
To my disgust, one of the programs that Aptitude removed was Oracle VM VirtualBox which I use a lot. I tried reinstalling it from Software Manager, but it steadfastly refused. In the end, I downloaded the package and manually installed it.
At this stage, I was more or less back where I started, but still was none the wiser about broken packages. I decided to install updates a block at a time, selecting just twenty updates. That worked. The strange thing though was that I worked my way through the entire list of 380, and not one update failed. Weird?
With all the updates installed, I tried to run KDE by logging out and logging in again. No go. For some reason, I was only presented with Gnome as an option. Back to the drawing board.
I can’t remember the exact details, but my next step was to install KDE 4.6.00 directly from Kubuntu. That worked. At last.
KDE 4.6.00 running Windows 7 within VirtualBox
I used KDE for the rest of the day, and it was good. There were a lot of features I liked, but I won’t be using it. My distro download (which is now officially released) is tucked away for emergencies, but I won’t be installing it. Why not? Partly because I am so used to Gnome at this stage, but mainly because I found KDE to be a lot slower despite this laptop having 4Gb of memory.
Where I would recommend Linux Mint 10 KDE though is for someone who would like to try a Linux distro but is afraid of it being too different from Windows. KDE 4.6.00 is a lot closer to Windows than Gnome, and would be an excellent introduction to Linux.
I have a laptop, which has plenty memory and disk space. It was bought with a licenced copy of Windows 7 installed.
I have repartitioned the hard disk into a Windows area and a separate area where I have installed Linux Mint. It is of course a duel boot machine now. The Windows area is hardly used at all now, and is there mainly as a fallback.
There are one or two programs that I like and am used to that only run under Windows, Windows Live Writer being one of them. To avoid constant reboots, the obvious answer is to install a Virtual Machine within Linux. This leads to my little question regarding ethics.
I need to install Windows 7 within the VM, as that is the whole point of the exercise. Technically, under strict interpretation of the law, I should buy a new copy of Windows 7. I see from Amazon, that this would cost me around $180, which is quite a lot for the privilege of running one free program. However, I already have a licenced copy for this machine, which by definition cannot be used if I am within Linux.
Legally, I presume I should purchase a new copy of Windows, but ethically, I don’t think that should be necessary.
For various reasons, I decided to reformat my Linux partition recently.
One of the things I like about Linux Mint is its fast and reliable install. I had my Mint 10 [Julia] 64-bit DVD already burned so it was simply a matter of banging it into the drive and letting it run.
Everything went as smoothly as I expected and I then set about installing all the applications I use. Again, with Mint, this is utter simplicity, and all that is really required is a little time.
I had forgotten about Adobe Air however.
For reasons unknown, Adobe have no 64-bit version of their Air installer, and any attempt to run the provided adobeair.deb will fail miserably. However, I had done it before but hadn’t bothered writing down the instructions. Big mistake! What was worse, it was a nightmare trying to find the fix I had used before.
The rest of this article has become obsolete, as Adobe have removed Adobe Air 32 bit from their site.
I have an old copy of my modified Adobe Air 64 bit DEB file which can be downloaded from here. It has worked every time for me so it should work for you!
If Adobe ask me to remove the file then I shall of course remove it, but in the meantime……….
I never did find my old fix, but have found a way around which works very well. I am writing it up as a reference for the future, and it maybe help others in the same situation.
Download adobeair.deb from the normal location. This is the 32-bit version so don’t try to run it.
Open a terminal in the download folder and create a temp directory –
Next, extract the downloaded file into the temp directory –
dpkg-deb -x adobeair.deb temp
Now extract the control files –
dpkg-deb --control adobeair.deb temp/DEBIAN
Change the architecture from ‘i386’ to ‘all’ –
sed -i "s/i386/all/" temp/DEBIAN/control
All that remains now is to create a new DEB file –
dpkg -b temp adobeair64.deb
Now all that remains is to install the package –
sudo dpkg -i adobeair64.deb
It worked flawlessly for me, and I was immediately able to install Tweetdeck, amongst other things.