Computer Software

Kubuntu re-install

Having got a a completely messed up Linux partition, I decided to re-install Kubuntu. This installer gives you the option of either erasing the whole hard drive or installing Kubuntu alongside your existing Windows partition.

After the installation, you find that the “GRUB” loader makes the machine boot up in Linux by default. On the Ubuntu discussion forums it tells you to use terminal commands to change this, but in the latest version of Ubuntu, this is not necessary – you can use:


The StartUp-Manager allows you to update the GRUB menu options with a few mouse clicks.
You access the StartUp-Manager  via System > Administration > StartUp-Manager. If it is not in your menu, install it via synaptic ( System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager. StartUp-Manager is in the ‘universe’ repository. If you don’t see ‘startupmanager’ listed in synaptic or the command line method doesn’t find it, go to Synaptic’s Settings > Repositories > Ubuntu Software and make sure the (universe) repository is checked.  Click the ‘Reload’ button to refresh the package list and then select startupmanager or install it with:

sudo aptitude install startupmanager

Hope this helps!

Cats, Computer Software

Bell the cat

Our cat has been hunting in the garden. He has brought in countless slow-worms, frogs, mice and birds. His last victim was a blackbird which used to sing up in the tree. I had to hoover up all the feathers indoors and remove the body. Enough is enough – he is now wearing a collar with two bells on it and jingling along like a morris dancer.

That reminds me of Kubuntu netbook remix. It is a cat which you need to turn into a morris dancer. What is Morris Dancing? Don’t you know? Click on the link.

Computer Software

Kubuntu netbook remix

Kubuntu netbook remix is an option which worked with Kubuntu 10.10. It does not work after you have updated to Kubuntu 11.04.

What is “netbook remix”. Well, it is a launcher. Your applications appear on the desktop window as clickable icons. However, if you install it, you find you cannot get rid of it. Installing it seems to change Kubuntu in some mysterious way, and if you uninstall it, then various strange things happen.

My advice, do not install Kubuntu netbook remix.

Computer Software

Kubuntu 11.04

The reviews of Kubuntu 11.04 are encouraging and you may well be tempted to give it a try. Early impressions of this package are very favourable, but after you have been using it for a while, things start to go downhill.

If you have the Ubuntu Desktop as well, then Kubuntu 11.04 gets confused – it starts to slow down and you end up with a blank workspace where there is nothing to click on.

Computer Software

Zorin OS

What is Zorin OS? I hear you say.

Do not be alarmed, it is just another Ubuntu distro. Of interest is the fact that the installer allows you to install Zorin onto your existing Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Xubuntu installation without erasing your personal files and applications.

This installer is useful if you have messed up your installation of Ubuntu, and want to start again without erasing your stuff.

Computer Software

Amiga Emulators for those who have a real Amiga A500

If you have a real Amiga gathering dust in the loft, you can give it a new lease of life by using it in conjunction with an Amiga Emulator on your Window or Linux machine.

An A500 is the machine which is most compatible with all the games and software which has been written. The main problem with the A500 is that it doesn’t have enough memory, and that’s where the emulator comes in.

The advantage of the A500 is that it can easily be connected to any television set, unlike a Windows PC or a Mac.


I you have a modern LCD TV with an analogue SCART input, you can connect the Amiga directly using a special SCART lead. This SCART lead needs three resistors in the circuit.  You need a 330 ohm resistor between pin 10 on the Amiga video connector and pin 20 on the SCART connector, a 1k ohm between pin 22 and pin 8, and a 75ohm resistor between pin 23 and pin 16.  These components cost under a £1 from Maplins, the next time you are in there.

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Amiga Emulators for Windows


The Universal Amiga Emulator for Windows is more unstable than the E-UAE Linux version, in my opinion: If you have got a machine running Linux, then you are better off using that. The Windows version is very likely to freeze you up, particularly more so if you are running Vista or Windows 7.

However, if you can get it working, it does emulate a high-end Amiga.

To get it working you need to get an Amiga Kickstart ROM image and the relevant Workbench Environment an applications. You cannot obtain these free of charge very easily. If you have a real Amiga, then it is much easier. If you have got an old A500 languishing away in the Wardrobe, then get it out.  If the disk drive is full of dust and crud, and none of your disks will work, then you have got the job of taking the machine apart and cleaning it out with some cotton buds.

Transferring your Workbench disk to your Windows PC is easy. There is a package you can download called “Amikit” which includes the necessary program.

Amikit does not include everything you need to emulate a high-end Amiga. For that, you have to buy  “Amiga Forever” on a CD. If you have not got the Amiga Forever CD”, then the Emulation boots up, but you can’t install anything. You can however, emulate an A500, or perhaps an A1200, if you have the Workbench disks for that machine.

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Amiga Emulators for Linux


E-UAE is the name of the version of Universal Amiga Emulator which works under Linux. The current version is E-UAE 0.8.29, which is available for installation using the “Synaptic” installation manager.

The instructions which are available for using this package are rather confusing. First of all, there are four versions of this program! There is UAE for Windows, UAE for Mac, UAE for Linux and E-UAE.

E-UAE for Linux can only emulate an Amiga A500. There are facilities in the program allow you to set it to use a 68020 processor, and use a 3.1 Kickstart ROM, but you cannot boot it up as an A1200.  If you try to do so, the screen turns blue and you cannot rectify this. Emulating an A500 works however. In the Synaptic Package Manager, “E-UAE” is known vicariously as “The Egalitarian Ubiquitous Amiga Emulator. Perhaps this is why?

UAE for Linux

In the Synaptic Package Manager you will see “UAE”,current version 0.8.29-7.  This is unstable in my estimation, and you are better off with “Egalitarian” A500 version!!



Computer Software


SheepShaver is a Mac OS 9 emulator for Windows, Linux, and Macs running Mac OS X.

I have got it to work on Vista, using Mac OS 9.01 install CD, and Mac OS ROM taken from a Mac LCII. It also works with the “New World” Mac OS ROM taken from “Mac OS ROM update 1.0” extracted with Tome Viewer. These are downloadable from Apple’s web site.

Running under Tiger, you need a new world ROM. I cannot get it to work under Tiger, or Linux.