Phase 1: Upgrade my work computer from Kubuntu 9.04 to 9.10

Today at work I had a lot of documentation to read, so, why wait, lets upgrade my Kubuntu 9.04 running on an HP nx9420 portable computer to the latest Karmic Koala release, while I slip through documentation…

Upgrading from 8.10 to 9.04 on this computer was a bit of a pain, mainly because I was already running KDE 4, so at the end of the upgrade I was without any graphic environment installed and working… but everything was solved by accessing the console and installing manually KDE 4 again.

Upgrading from 8.10 to 9.04 I was also bitten by the drop of support of ATI for this HP graphic card an X1600, so I ended up with the open source drivers, and some problems that I didn’t had with ATI proprietary drivers: screen corruption on refresh of some application areas (pretty annoying), crash on street view on google earth, vmware console missing buttons, to name a few. At the begining I had also a lot of crashes related to screen activity, but upgrading to the tormod ATI driver, solved most of the crashs, but other issues still remained.

So, I was expecting some problems upgrading from 9.04 to 9.10 this time, but the upgrade mostly went well, except one minor detail: menu.lst for grub was not updated with the latest kernel, so after booting up, and logging in I ended up with a garbage full screen and an unusable desktop… going to a session console and back again restored the desktop screen but everything was too slow. So I corrected the Grub configuration to use the correct kernel, and things started much better:

– Boot time: way faster on 9.10 than on 9.04

– Screen appearance and fonts seem more streamlined and better. I think my screen real estate is now better used.

The bad news: My company provided vmware workstation stopped working on kernel 2.6.31… The vmware modules are unable to compile, so I’ll have to download version 6.5.3 and see how it goes. (Edit: using VMware Workstation 6.5.3, does work)

I’ll have to do further tests so see if at least the ati driver issues are better, and also to see if I don’t have any new issues.

Anyway, one of the things that happened is that 9.10 uses Firefox 3.5, and I was using 3.0… Some plugins that I had on 3.0 stopped working on 3.5, namely switchproxy tool and fxinfo… The good news is that now I can use Mozilla Weave… yeay!

On my home computer, I’ve also upgraded firefox, but due to the issue with vmware, I’ll see if I can fix it before upgrading this one… also I have an ATI 4870, so I’ll wait a bit more before jumping…

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