Posts Tagged ‘Ubuntu’

Ubuntu 17.04 – UI Feels more Responsive

March 24, 2017

I upgraded to 17.04 beta a few days ago and I could swear that the UI perceptively faster than 16.10! Has anybody else experienced this, and do you know why if you have?


Common Lisp Hunchentoot Quicklisp on Ubuntu Server @ Rackspace VM

November 22, 2016

So after six years I finally get round to revisiting this subject, a lot has changed over the years, but not much either, the basics are still the same.

So you want your own lisp web server to hack away at but where do you start? Well don’t despair, what follows is a recipe for getting such a server running in no time.


So I am using Rackspace servers a bit like you would partition your favourite linux install. We are going to store data on one Rackspace volume, have the live data on another and use a different volume for the server. The basic idea is that you can disconnect your data volumes, spin up a new server and reconnect them if you should need to. This way you can also choose which volumes you need as SSD and which not.

You can find a lot of good “how to” stuff on Rackspace at


Ubuntu 13.10 – Scrambled Screen Crash

October 24, 2013

I have been experiencing multiple crashes a day (some times more than 3 per hour) in Ubuntu since upgrading to 13.10 that results in a scrambled screen being shown. To recover I have to hard reset my laptop (Lenovo B590). I thought it was screen driver issues but could not get it resolved, so out of desperation I switched to Gnome3 and in 48 Hours I have had only one crash.

I have no intrest getting involved in the Unity vs The World debate, I just posted this here in the so that it might save some other poor Ubuntu user some frustration.

SBCL glibc Error on Ubuntu

June 15, 2012

I use Ubuntu and SBCL for all my lisp development but lately the latest versions of the two have not been playing nicely with each other.

This will effect some of the instructions to install SBCL in my other blogs.

To get around the problem install sbcl in the following manner:

sudo apt-get install build-essential
sudo apt-get install sbcl
sudo apt-get install time
bzip2 -cd sbcl-1.0.57-source.tar.bz2 | tar xvf -
cd sbcl-1.0.57-source
sudo sh
sudo apt-get remove sbcl
sudo sh

To test SBCL:

Ubuntu Gnome 3 PPA – Evolution 3 Urg!!

June 2, 2011

I have been using ubuntu with gnome 3 from the unofficial PPA for more than a month now. I liked it from the word go but then again I had used unity long enough to not have a major culture shock. As with any work in progress I would expect glitches but so far there has been no real “train smashes” and usually after a couple of hours there would be a fix to download.

For a time there I was happy.

Then some where along the line evolution 3 got added to the PPA. Ok so they are working towards the future, fair enough.

I am no longer happy.

Evolution 3.0.2 in the PPA as it stands at the point of this writing is a complete @#$%. I have bitched about evolution before in previous Ubuntus but they got it right (eventually), good for them and thanx I had many months of trouble free evolution usage!!!

Evolution 3.0.2 however is an abortion. To give you an idea of what to expect here are just some of the issues I have with it:

– I have to open and close evolution to get new mail (the send/receive button seems to be for show)
– it fetches all (old = already read) mail from the server some of the time so you end up with tons of duplicate mails in your inbox
– and when I reply to some mails (usually from my gmail account) evolution just blinks out of existence.

So things really came to a head this morning when for the briefest of seconds I considered going back to MS and outlook, yes I am ashamed to admit that I even thought it, even if it was for the briefest of seconds!!!. At that time I reigned myself in and said : Hey stop bitching and log some bugs!!

Yeah right, after an hour of scratching and reading on google I decided to try to run evolution with a debug flag….splat she goes!!! (And before you ask no you cant run it with the ubuntu bug reporting thingy because it declares promptly that you are not running an official ubuntu.)

**As an aside do a search in launchpad for evolution bugs with the word “crash” in it…

Yes I KNOW its “experimental”!!! AND yes its my own fault and yes its my own problem, I DID IT KNOWING that stuff in the PPA could be broken.

I have not googled it but I am pretty sure there is a difference between experimental and just plain broken, at least if you look at those words in their true sense.

So be warned, my gnome3 experience has been great (thank you PPA guys), but if you are going to use evolution with it you might want to hang back a week or so before you try it.

UPDATE: 14 June 2011

No evolution fixes yet.

I have gone back to Unity, I got tired of battling with Evolution and I really missed tortoishg which does not work with the nautilus in gnome3.

Lisp Web Server From Scratch using Hunchentoot and Nginx

November 9, 2010

**************************I tried my setup on Ubuntu 13.10 server and had some issues so I decided to update this article, unfortunately I dont have the time to rewrite it so I am just hacking the bits that where issues on Ubuntu 13.10**********************

So you want your own lisp web server to hack away at but where do you start? Well don’t despair, what follows is a recipe for getting such a server running in no time. (Don’t worry you won’t be coding it from scratch you will be building it with a “software lego” set.)

Much of what you will see here was taken from different websites especially these two great articles and These articles do a better job of explaining what is afoot than my posting here. Please do go to these articles and show your appreciation for the hard work that went into them by leaving a comment.

All that I am doing is giving you an A to Z recipe in one place to get you going.

There are a lot of good articles in the slicehost articles collection as well that are worth a read on their own if you want to understand more about the iptables and stuff.


Evolution Stable on Ubuntu At Last – (How about tackling MS Office doc compatibility next)

June 8, 2010

Fistly I have to state that I have only ever used Evolution on Ubuntu. For months I had to kill Evolution a couple of times a day because it just froze up. Finally in Lucid Lynx this is no longer the case! I dont know who fixed it (and dont care), all that matters is that it is working properly now as far as I am concerned.

This is a majour step in getting Ubuntu ready for the real world in my opinion. There is however one majour stumbling block left before Ubuntu can take the place of MS Windows for the average office jock. MS doc/docx compatibility in Open Office needs majour work. I put this before the door of the Ubuntu team and not the Open Office team because I think the Ubuntu team has the resources and hopefully the will power to get it right.

Come on guys tackle this one for us! Please!?!?

VPSLink – Ubuntu 9.4 Mail Server from Scratch

March 2, 2010

Like in so many of my other posts I have to state that I am not an expert on this subject. Then why am I posting about it at all you might be asking! Its simple, the experts usually give us just enough info to hang ourselves. Yeah thats right, they make it look simple enough that we consider trying it and then leave out just enough “obvious” info to get us into trouble. To be fair I don’t think they do it on purpose they just forget that the obvious is all but obvious to the poor newbie.

Well after that little poke I have to add that there are some prerequisites to being able to use this little recipe of mine. You need to be able to read…hehehe …sorry bad joke. You need to be able to use vi or nano at least.

This post is a simple recipe for getting the job done, it is most likely not the best way of doing it but it works. The problem with this type of recipe approach is that the “why for’s” and the “where for’s” are minimal or non existent. Any comments and/or corrections are more than welcome.

What this exercise leaves us with in the end of the day is a mail server that can handle multiple domains and email addresses. The domain and user data is stored in an postgresql database while the actual mails end up in special directory.

We will not only be able to administer the mail server from a web interface but the email account holders will be able to access their mail via a web interface. To do this we use Ubuntu 9.4, postfix, postfix-admin, dovecot, roundcube, postgresql and nginx.


Centos Virtualbox Guest in Ubuntu Host Issues

February 16, 2010

This is not a how to but a quick set of notes regarding the installation of Centos 5.4 (dvd iso) as a guest os in VirtualBox 3.1 on a Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic) host. There are more detailed tutorials about this subject but I wanted to do this quick post because of the issues I had with the install.

First issue, was that if I set up the virtual disk as an ide device (default behavior of vbox) then the virtual instance would not boot from the dvd. Booting from the dvd stopped after giving one line of output as follows: “ISOLINUX 3.11 ….”. Change the disk to a sata disk in the Settings menu after creating the virtual machine to get past this.

Second issue, the install hangs at/after reporting the following “Registered protocol family 2”. This was fixed by enabling IO APIC in Settings menu.

What the reasons where for the issues I had and what the exact implications are of what I did to get past these issues are beyond my knowledge.

Out standing issues:

Centos boots terribly slow initially complaining about crash kernal memory not being in the allowed range. Its the first time I have installed Centos so I dont know if it just boots slowly or whether there are more issues to be sorted out. In all fairness I must add that I did a server + gui install and only gave it 512 meg ram to work with.

Otherwise it seems to run just fine.

Hunchentoot Virtual Hosts with nginx

August 5, 2009

(This posting is dated have a look at for a newer approach)

I looked at a couple of options to do virtual hosts with hunchentoot, but eventually I settled on nginx. It might not be the best solution but it does what i need with minimal effort. (I did not have to read and understand the source code to be able to use it or compile it or patch it or any of those nasty things that causes you to pull your hair out trying to remember or repeat it some other time.)

My setup is as follows. I have a vps server that is starting up sbcl in a screen session that loads one instance of hunchentoot. For me to be able to run multiple sites (same file names (NOT SAME FILES)) from the one instance of hunchentoot I used a prefix of the site name to differentiate individual sites. No its not greek.


(No I am not running huncnetoot on port 80 because that would cause me to pull out more hair.)

These then have to translate to domains like (http://localhost:8090/my-site/) and (http://localhost:8090/my-other-site/).

I am not going to go into how to setup hunctentoot, there are plenty of tutorials on that subject, thou I would advise going the clbuild route.

Here is how I installed nginx on Ubuntu 9.04.

1. sudo apt-get nginx
(Yes I know it might not be the latest version but it will only serve as a reverse proxy and that part works fine.)

2. sudo gedit /etc/nginx/sites-available/default

I deleted all the stuff that was in there and replaced it with the following

server {
        #The port nginx must listen on
        listen   80;

        #The name of the domain to route

        #To default to the home page from;
        rewrite ^(.*)/$ $1/home.html;

        location / {
            #Where to route the listed domains our case hunchnetoot
            proxy_pass http://localhost:8090/my-site/;

            #Some more config stuff if you want it. This can be moved to /etc/nginx/proxy.conf and 
            #the following line can replace everything up to proxy_buffers:
            # include /etc/nginx/proxy.conf;
            proxy_redirect          off;
            proxy_set_header        Host            $host;
            proxy_set_header        X-Real-IP       $remote_addr;
            proxy_set_header        X-Forwarded-For $proxy_add_x_forwarded_for;
            client_max_body_size    10m;
            client_body_buffer_size 128k;
            proxy_connect_timeout   90;
            proxy_send_timeout      90;
            proxy_read_timeout      90;
            proxy_buffers           32 4k;
        #This is needed to handle the links to all the images,stylesheets and javascript files 
        #This was also the bit that was missing from all the other examples I found. 
        location /mu-site/ {
                proxy_pass http://localhost:8090/my-site/;

server {     
        listen   80;

        rewrite ^(.*)/$ $1/home.html;
        location / {
            proxy_pass http://localhost:8090/my-other-site/;
        location /my-other-site/ {
                proxy_pass http://localhost:8090/my-other-site/;

Save and start nginx with sudo /etc/init.d/nginx start.

Now go to your favourate browser and browse for or what ever you used as you domain.

PS: If anybody can give me an example of how to use hunchentoot-vhost to do the same I would really appreciate it.