Something Happened: Windows 10 upgrade, and linux dual-booting

Two days ago I joined the many in upgrading my existing Windows 8.1 OS to Windows 10. There are plenty of features I’m very excited about such as Virtual Desktop.

Something happened.

Something bad happened, if you are a linux user there’s a high risk that if you are using the same hard drive disk to dual boot, as in having different partitions, then you are probably in for some struggle.

This stems from Windows 10 inability to actually tell which partition is actually the Windows one. Which is weird, this is my old partition layout:

  • / (ext4)
  • /boot (ext4)
  • /home (ext4)
  • swap
  • Windows (ntfs, duh)

So basically, that was the layer I choose a long time ago. What Windows 10 kept doing was mistaking the /boot partition was the main one, trying to get meta information such as free disk space.

Solution?

Have a Windows repair disk at hand. There’s just no way of going around this problem. Basically I forced Windows to recognize ext4 partitions through ext2fsd project. It actually worked at first, but the main issue remained; the setup thought that the /boot partition was the primary one (containing Windows).

Knowing that there was no way around it I decided to just give in and delete all linux/swap partitions.

There’s a catch, you have to recover MBR and fix the boot records. You can do so!

Boot your windows repair cd. Use these instructions at your own risk. In no way I’m responsible for what happens to your computer.

Go to repair computer  
Advanced tools -> Command prompt  
type:  
bootrec /ScanOS  
bootrec /fixmbr  
bootrec /fixboot  
exit  

Reboot your computer

If something like /Boot/BCD error appears

Then boot the Windows DVD again

Go to repair computer  
Go to advanced options  
Go to a label that says "Automatically fix issues"  
It will find the issue and solve it. It will automatically reboot after it's done fixing the issue  

By now you should see Windows logo and everything is normal.

The catch

I’ve yet to test if dual booting is yet possible with Windows 10. I was planning to reinstall Fedora 22 back.

I’m reminded that the os-prober Fedora 22 ships may not detect Windows 10. This means that I’ll have to do a lot of lifting to actually dual boot.

Yet, how does it exactly guarantee that the dual boot is possible? It should be safe to assume that the boot loader is the same as Windows 8. But what if it isn’t? This is pretty much why I didn’t toy with the dual-booting option. I didn’t want to go through fixing mbr and records again, it’s actually very time consuming.

Windows 10

I’m finally in Windows 10. After all the decisions taken it feels good to actually use my desktop.

Windows 10 feels like it has taken inspiration from GNOME 3 and KDE. The taskbar in Windows 10 feels almost the same as KDE with Icon-only taskbar. The virtual desktops shortcuts behaves almost exactly as the one from GNOME 3.

Sadly, these are the things that the average user may never know.

I feel like Windows 10 took a lot from what makes the current desktop environments. Whether you share this feeling or not is completely understandable.

Cortana

I’ve had a lot of bad experiences with Google voice crap. Cortana? Cortana is INCREDIBLE. Privacy issues aside I’m looking forward to see how Cortana evolves from here.

And so it ends. A rather “straight to the point” post. I’m hoping to be more detailed in the future about Windows 10.

Review: Fedora 22 feels like home, or why should you use Fedora

Review: Fedora 22 feels like home, or why should you use Fedora

I’ve been on a journey. A journey to find an acceptable GNU/Linux distribution, where I know that no matter how many updates I apply to my installation it will remain rock solid. I’m happy in a way because I won’t be looking any further.

Fedora 22 will make you feel at home. It’s a completely bare GNU/Linux distribution that delivers GNOME 3 as its default. I’ve come in terms with GNOME 3 over the past few months and learned to like it for what it is. The Fedora has done an amazing job to deliver this great product to the masses.

And yet there’s only one or two things that currently bug me about Fedora, and no, it’s not about the Long Term Support (LTS).

Before we get to the cons of Fedora. I’d like to take my time and explain myself why I feel like Fedora 22 does justice to the desktop users, yet actively doesn’t.

GNOME 3

Fedora 22 undoubtedly has one of the most polished GNOME 3 experience out there, hands down I don’t think I can name another distribution.

Fedora makes GNOME 3 sing the lullabies to the user. In the past with different distributions like Ubuntu GNOME I couldn’t configure correctly the Sharing section in GNOME Settings because for some reason there was always a problem with the VNC set up. Anything I turned up in Ubuntu GNOME sharing side never worked correctly.

Fedora 22 doesn’t sweat it. I turned up the Screen Sharing feature, and the SSH feature. And guess what? It worked as GNOME 3 upstream intended.

Something I will never agree with Fedora is turning on Wayland by default. I remember the last time I installed Fedora there were too many problems running GDM and GNOME Shell under Wayland. I’m glad that Wayland is no longer the default, for now.

Delta RPMs

If you have never heard of Delta RPMs then you are missing a lot. You could be saving bandwidth as we speak. Imagine a 1GiB update getting cut through 300MiB thanks to delta RPMs. This is a great deal especially to us who don’t live in areas with high speed internet (I’m still on a 4Mbps connection).

If you live in undeveloped areas, delta RPMs will save you time and indulge you in getting things done faster.

Users need to be offered RPMFusion options

While Fedora ships with a lot of software, it doesn’t include all Free(not as in gratis) software, and there’s no non-free repository available. This hinders the experience of the user who just wants to enjoy his/her desktop.

RPMFusion must be an option in Fedora settings. It doesn’t have to ship with RPMFusion enabled, but please at least consider the option of giving the option to the less technical user.

It’s hard to present Fedora as an option

If you think it’s easy to convert people to Fedora. I believe it isn’t. The reasons above should be enough to make a person stick to either Ubuntu or Linux Mint.

Even if it’s a simple task of sudo dnf install http://url.to/rpmfusion.rpm It’s not an acceptable solution in no way, especially if you want to make Fedora available to every possible user regardless of technical knowledge.

And yet it feels like home

As a developer, Fedora brings a lot of goodies such as groupinstall where you can get your environment set up rapidly, and at the cost of installing useless libraries, servers.

For me? I’ve been dabbling in Qt for a while. It has taken me a while to get used to Fedora’s package naming but it hasn’t been so bad to steer me away.

Why? Because Fedora works. I installed NVIDIA drivers, Qt, gcc-c++, gdb, and many other software with no problems. I can sigh in relief that my desktop will remain stable.

Try Fedora, it won’t hurt you a bit.

C++ Adventures: `const madness`

It’s been an incredibly productive week for me in terms of soaking myself in C++ dark holy waters. I gave up on the idea of having “well-written” C++ in the sense that I don’t think I can get this right this year. I need to read a LOT of code before I can get the gist of writing C++ in an acceptable manner.

By what measure would it be acceptable? Obviously not by internet “standards”, at the very least I want to feel peace of mind that I’m not creating a tiny little black holes every time I compile an application.

An example of what I mean: (explanation taken from IsoCPP.org)

What’s the difference between “const X* p”, “X* const p” and “const X* const p”?

Read the pointer declarations right-to-left.

const X* p means “p points to an X that is const”: the X object can’t be changed via p.

X* const p means “p is a const pointer to an X that is non-const”: you can’t change the pointer p itself, but you can change the X object via p.

const X* const p means “p is a const pointer to an X that is const”: you can’t change the pointer p itself, nor can you change the X object via p.

At my stage, I shouldn’t worry about things like these right now as I’m not building a library or complex code that requires that. However, I can’t really turn an eye on it and pretend it doesn’t exist either.

Thus, for me this issue would be best to attend to as it happen.

In the meantime, I’ve been working my brains off studying Qt Framework which I believe will really help me in the future. I finally feel comfortable working with it even though what I write in C++ feels incredibly messy.

That said, I’m looking forward to new challenges.

I cannot be the jack of all trades

Around thirty minutes ago I finished making the last additions to this theme, which I’ll be releasing soon under insert open source license. I’ve fixed various things that have been annoying me for a while.

I’m also planning to add a new color for the theme thanks to the abstraction made with Less CSS.


The jack of all trades is a very frustrating trade. Over the years I’ve touched various languages like Java, Python, C++, PHP, and there’s nothing more frustrating than forgetting the function members of each class, the global members.

Just a while ago I was staring at the screen wondering, “well, I need to google jQuery’s API documentation because I don’t remember a thing.”. I haven’t forgotten how to use jQuery; I’ve forgotten how to use certain things about it.

At the same time, if I start writing Python now I’ll probably be hours in the documentation as I wait for my memory to return.

This doesn’t have much to do with the syntax. Keeping all those languages and its quirks in pure muscle memory? Life has a way to make you forget. After 2-3 months without using the language it feels awful trying to get into a uninterrupted workflow.

Thus, this is why I have to reaffirm my direction towards C++ and C#. I’ll leave the details on that for another post.

Domain change.

Like I’ve mentioned in plenty of posts, the domain change has now taken place. Nothing has changed as I’ve assured that dgzen.pw remains relevant to wget users.

Content remains the same. If a link doesn’t work just shoot me an e-mail. It’s in the about me page!