Saturday, February 6, 2016

Linux is A Mistake

I had installed Debian Linux on this Toshiba as a smoketest a while back.  It worked well, including external monitors.  Linux Mint keeps dropping the WiFi, and will not detect external monitor.  Back to Debian, I think.

Also frustrating is Mint install does not easily give you the choice of installing it alongside Windows.

If you have the Toshiba on the docking station, the external SVGA connector is inoperable; I just needeed the external monitor on the docking station SVGA plug.  The wireless is working now, although the way that Mint shows which connection is currently running is less than obvious.

Also,, Cinnamon (which is I think what makes it look a bit like Windows) keeps crashing. Apparently because of need for nvidia driver updates.

And there is no way to find out what drivers are needed! I am installing MATE instead of Cinnamon.  There are times I see why Microsoft remains in business. Linux Mint w/Cinnamon ISO is useless.  There is no way to update it to MATE, update the nvidia drivers, or otherwise make it useful on the Toshiba.  Now downloading Linux Mint w/MATE ISO.  This will take a while.

This happens everytime I fantasize about Linux: it turns out to be uninstallable.

Linux Mint w/MATE will not install; problem with unmountable file system.   As much as I dislike Ubuntu's "wouldn't you rather use ksh?" UI, it at least installs and runs. 

Or at least Ubuntu 14.04 did earlier today.  Now it is taking more than 30 minutes to get to the install or run live choice.  Bad DVD-RW?  Try again with another DVD.  Soon, I will just abandon Linux completely.  DVD-RW have a limited number of W cycles, and this one seems to have reached the circular file level.  Installing Ubuntu now.  If it wasn't so late, I would try again with Mint on a fresh DVD-R.

Congrats Ubuntu.  14.04 is useless.  The Displays control has a launcher monitor control much like Windows has for specifying main desktop display, but once you select the external monitor instead of the default built-in monitor, you can't return to the original monitor to close the Displays window, nor can you open System Settings on the only usable monitor. 

Ubuntu Software Center showed me that openlp was available, but also put up a grayed out button for identifying the universe to search.  And it stayed grayed out.  No way to install.

Linus seems to be degrading with version number.  I used to think that there was a non-Microsoft future.  No more.


  1. Toshiba is not very helpful with their drivers. In the past I've had to find out exactly what chipset they're using followed by a visit to the chip manufacturer to get appropriate drivers.



  2. Sounds to me like you've got an issue in your storage subsystem. I'd suggest trying to install to a thumb drive and seeing how that performs. If the USB works well then you've at least narrowed down the problem to something that probably means dumping the Toshiba, but at least knowing what the problem is is something.

    Personally, I don't do laptops too much, but I've done Mint on a couple of Dells with the fancy Nvidia K5100M adapters. Windows had no end of trouble with them because Dell tried to use the crappy Intel video drivers for most everything except really high performance graphics, but Mint worked flawlessly. It seems strange that for an essentially unmeasurable difference in battery life, Dell was willing to compromise one of the main selling points of their high end laptops. The sad part was that I had to update the BIOS, then go in and turn off the fancy switching to make Windows work. At least Linux worked around the BIOS bugs.