Friday, 14 November 2008

Ubuntu 8.10 Review updates

I've been using 8.10 for a while now at home and at work. Naturally the more demanding of the two has been at work, where I've been working both on ISO9001:2000 documentation and also web page development. Two things have struck me as annoying, and I've found one little solution and one big solution.

The first problem I've had is when I enable the nVidia restricted drivers for the video card in this GX270 OpenOffice has problems with it's rendering. Specifically the menu names, the font name, font style etc all become transparent and I can't read them. When I close a document and the dialogue box for Save/Discard/Cancel comes up I can't read the options. Firefox is unaffected, which is fine, but I spend a fair bit of time in OpenOffice and it's very inconvenient. The fix? Well it's a little one - I disable the restricted drivers and problem solved. I don't use a lot of the extra graphics effects so that's fine.

The other problem is the workspaces control applet in Gnome. There are only 2 workspaces by default and ordinarily you right click on them to add extra workspaces. For some reason this doesn't work all the time. There is a bug report about it I believe. Yesterday I was cranky enough that I re-installed Ubuntu (this was an upgrade machine that I've "tweaked" and so a fresh start was a good option). Voila! The workspaces thing is working again. At home, however, it isn't and I'm not about to re-install that machine too. For the time being I'll suck it up, find the config file and manually change it if I get cranky enough. At home the extra workspaces isn't such an issue, but I do like to have 4 at any given moment.

Apart from that, everything is going extremely well. The darker theme is very soothing to the eyeballs and that's a good things - especially with many hours spent staring at the screen. Well done, good work and keep it Linux Developers!

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