Friday, April 07, 2006

Using Ubuntu

So I've been using Ubuntu for almost a week. How's it going?

Fine, thanks for asking. The nice thing about Ubuntu is that nearly everything is available as a precompiled package. If you remember, with Fedora I had to compile FVWM, xnetload, and msmtp, and other things I've forgotten now. Well, Ubuntu has all those packages available. OK, I haven't gotten msmtp to work right yet, but anyway ...

Now if I had wanted to recompile those programs (and I'll have to do some compiling, such as for ical), I would have been out of luck with the default install, since neither the gcc compiler nor make is installed by default. Neither are many of the header packages (which usually end in dev). You just have to try compiling until something breaks, then try to find the appropriate header package. Usually this involves a Google search.

What else? Ubuntu ships with Firefox 1.0.7, not the latest and greatest version of 1.5. So I had to go the the Firefox site and download my own copy. Not terribly hard to do, of course, and it fits in /home/local just as before.

I also want to get the Intel Fortran compiler installed. Like Fedora Core, Ubuntu ships with gcc 2.4+, and that doesn't support the old g77 Fortran compiler front-end. So to run Fortran, I need a good compiler, and the best free (as in beer) one is from Intel. Maybe this weekend.