Sunday, August 19, 2007

Hardware Configuration Specialist

I'm defining a new market for my services, in serious hopes that someone will pick me up and pay for what I do. I've got a room full of computers that are all doing something or other, mostly different from each other in ways that I can substantiate to ordinary people who are not substantially technical in nature. This market is called hardware configuration.

Some companies expect an investment from you, to start working with them. Some companies invest themselves substantially in free and open software distribution models, like Red Hat and The Fedora Project, and Sun Corporation; these companies make their software available for no charge, in hopes that their market will grow faster if they place fewer obstacles between their customers and their software.

I'm giving Solaris 10 a shot on my desktop workstation, and it looks like a good system! There is a distinction that programmers make, between Free and Open Source Software, as compared to simply "free as in beer" software, and some would say that Solaris is not as free as Linux. This is not a distinction that is meaningful to non-programmers, as hard as we programmers may try to explain sometimes.

For Solaris 10, it took a small amount of googling around to make the NVidia video drivers operate properly. Aside from that, the updates have not all applied properly, and I can't find an easy way to add a new user for regular system login from the main login screen. But if you ignore these niggling details, there's nothing wrong! Log in as root, and use the system to produce documents and surf the web just like you use any computer.

I've also heard of a new piece of software called WUBI that should allow me to use the free space on my Windows installation to support an Ubuntu client OS. Slick! I think that both of these operating systems are on the same level of difficulty. More to come, it's late and I need rest so I can make it to my real job tomorrow.


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