Friday, April 25, 2008

Fastest way to upgrade to Ubuntu 8.04 within 24 hrs of release

Yes... the long awaited Ubuntu 8.04 is finally out... but everyone is trying to upgrade their system through the Ubuntu Update Manager. Why get stuck with the Ubuntu Update Manager and a sluggish Ubuntu server when there is a faster way? Even, the Ubuntu mirrors take time to get the latest release.

Note: This guide is meant for the impatient...
  1. Get the alternate cd iso bittorent file. Get it. (Note: this ONLY works with the alternate cd, and NOT with the Live CD.)

  2. Use a bittorent client such as transmission to download it.
    (Tip: sudo apt-get transmission if you dont have transmission.)
    This will take anywhere from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours. Depends on your luck.

  3. Verify the iso file you downloaded using a MD5 check. (Get the MD5 file from the same place where you got your bittorent file.) (This step is optional but recommended.)

  4. Mount the iso file. E.g.: (note: /cdrom is similar to /media/cdrom) [Time saver: no need to burn CD!]
    sudo mount -t iso9660 ubuntu-8.04-alternate-i386.iso /cdrom -o loop

  5. Hit Alt-F2, type in and run the following:
    gksu "sh /cdrom/cdromupgrade"

  6. Sit back and relax. Go and grab a cup of coffee. Restart your computer at the end of the upgrade. The upgrade takes about 30 mins on a Intel C2D 2.0GHz.
    Enjoy a game of classic minesweeper while the installer runs in the background.
    Don't panic if your system does not function "normally" during the upgrade.

    Note: if you encounter the "exclusive lock" error associated with aptitude, hit ctrl-alt-backspace and re-login.

  7. Say "hello" to Ubuntu 8.04 LTS! Congrats for making it through!
    Note: some programs may appear to "crash" when you first login. Don't panic. Simply click away the error messages, logout and re-login and most of your problems will be solved. (For me, I had to coax my wireless to work.)

  8. You may now remove the CD entry to the image found in the file: /etc/apt/sources.list
    Tip: Hit Alt-F2 and run gksu "gedit /etc/apt/sources.lst" and comment the following line:
    deb cdrom:[Ubuntu 8.04 _Hardy Heron_ - Release i386 (20080422.2)]/ hardy main restricted (or something similiar, with the "8.04")

  9. Total time I took ~ around 2.5 hours.

Thanks to Albert Bicchi's guide for insight into this matter.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


This blog has been very quiet for almost a month. The primary reason is that I have been busy writing an extension called Fireclip for Firefox.

Fireclip is a nifty tool which allows you to clip out portions of webpages and reload them later to check for updates. The latest version is 0.2.1 and it is a stable release.

This blog post is a CFC (call for comments) or rather, call for reviews on Mozilla's Add-ons Page. Fireclip is currently labeled "experimental" and reviews are needed before it can go public. So, to all those out there, please get a Mozilla account and write a review here (on the right)! Thanks!

If you are interested in trying out Fireclip without registering an account, download, extract the xpi file, and drag and drop it inside your Firefox browser.

More Resources:
- Official information
- Short video tutorial

File Sharing Services

Here's a list of file sharing services which I find useful.

Anyway, it possible to solve a rubik cube in 6 seconds.... even better, 0 seconds for this one.