minutes · linux from scratch distros ha voip · 2010-03-18 · stevenix


Siouxland Libraries Oak View Branch near Third St. and North Bahnson, Room 3 at 6:30pm.


The room will open at 6pm for setup.

A few business items:

  • Plans for upcoming meetings.
    • High-availability server tools - tentative April topic
    • VoIP - standby April or May topic
  • Other business items the group wants to discuss.

Presentations on:

  • Linux From Scratch - the why and the how
  • Hulu on Linux demo
  • Live CD demo (if there's time/interest)

Conclude with an open discussion period.

The library closes at 9pm.


Prepared by Glenn

The Oak View Library gave the group a last-minute room upgrade, which may have confused members looking for the meeting.

If Room 3 is empty on meeting night, members should look for a Tux poster or the current SLUG program poster to find the correct room. The poster will be displayed at the meeting room door.

If all else fails, ask a friendly Oak View librarian for directions.

Meeting Plans

The group plans to have a picnic or pizza party sometime this summer. This meeting will be a social event, with no formal presentations.

There was some interest in FreeNAS, a FreeBSD-based distribution for network attached storage. The topic has been added to the program list.

The SLUG is still looking for someone with experience in local network media servers who is willing to give a 30- to 45-minute talk.

Install Fest

The group discussed organizing an install fest, when and where to hold one, and how much publicity would be needed. There was general agreement to include BSD in the offered distributions if someone with BSD experience can be found.

Linux from Scratch

Charles explained the process of getting a Linux from Scratch (LFS) system running. LFS is the distribution he uses for his everyday computing.

Reasons for running LFS

  • Control - less bloat
  • Security - no need to wait for a maintainer to apply patches
  • Speed
  • Education/Accomplishment - the user will learn about Linux

The documentation on the LFS website is good, and new users should pay attention to the manual's clear warnings and alerts, he said.

Charles has written shell scripts for the LFS build process to ensure that the correct commands are executed each time. Charles urged new users to make a backup image of the LFS partition after Chapter 5 in the LFS manual, just in case they make a mistake in building the system in Chapter 6.

He said that his first LFS build took about 60 hours, not including compile times.

Once users have a working LFS system, they can either use it as a command line environment, or they can look at Beyond Linux From Scratch (BLFS) or one of the other LFS-related projects.


Hulu Desktop on Linux

Rob demonstrated the Hulu Desktop, which is available for Fedora and Ubuntu.

Although it uses the Adobe Flash web browser extension, Rob likes the Hulu Desktop because it does not become bloated.

The application allows the user to stop playback in the middle of shows. The next time Hulu Desktop is run, it plays one commercial and then resumes playback from the stopping point.

The user can subscribe to shows, and Hulu Desktop will add new episodes to the user's queue as they become available.


Live CD Issues

Glenn showed how to access a computer's BIOS and change the drive boot order, if the machine won't automatically boot from a live CD.


Seven people attended the main meeting, including one new member who has joined the mailing list.

April Meeting

The SLUG will meet at 6:30pm on Thursday, April 15, at the Siouxland Libraries Oak View Branch in Room 3. The room will open at 6pm for setup.

Alex Dean will present April's topic: High Availability tools for Linux.

The SLUG is still looking for a 5- to 10-minute demonstration for April's meeting. To volunteer, contact Glenn.

Free Linux live CDs will be available for folks who want to try Linux for the first time.

May topic


Future topics

Video streaming, general help session, FreeNAS, picnic or pizza party.