Hack and / - Memories of the Way Windows Were
I'm a half-organized person. On one hand, if something of mine has a place, I can be pretty anal about making sure I put it back every time I use it. On the other hand, if something doesn't have a place, it inevitably ends up in a pile or a junk drawer. I've learned that if I want to be organized, I must give everything a home.
The same rule applies to my desktop environment. Back when I used to use Windows, I didn't have much of a choice—everything ended up stacking up on the same desktop, either maximized or at some arbitrary size. Once I started using Linux though, I discovered this interesting multiple desktop model. With Linux, I could assign windows into certain groups and then arrange each group on a particular desktop. The main downside to this much organization was that every time I opened a window, I usually needed to resize it and move it to a particular desktop. That's a lot of manual work on my part, and it wasn't long before I discovered that certain window managers supported window memory. With window memory, every window I use on a regular basis can be assigned a location, a size and a desktop.
My first exposure to window memory was with the Enlightenment window manager. Its window memory was quite easy to use and to set. All you had to do was right-click on a window, and you could check off attributes that Enlightenment would remember the next time you opened the window. In addition to having certain sets of terminals and Web browser windows open on certain desktops, I also was able to have windows always stay on top or stick across all desktops. Although it did require a little setup, by the time I was finished arranging my windows once, everything I used on a regular basis had its place on my desktops.
I stayed with Enlightenment for quite some time, even though I was eyeing this new window manager called Fluxbox as a potential replacement. It wasn't until Fluxbox added window memory, however, that I made the switch. Fluxbox's window memory worked a lot like Enlightenment's—right-click on a title bar and toggle the attributes you want to remember. As with Enlightenment, these attributes were assigned based on the window title, so if you had two windows with the same title (say, xterm, with no extra arguments), they both would take those same settings.
I used both Enlightenment and Fluxbox for years, but I kept eyeing the GNOME and KDE desktops all the cool kids were using. For me, window memory was the crucial requirement though, and it wasn't until I made the switch to using Ubuntu that I decided to give one of the “standard” desktop environments a fair shake. Out of the box, it didn't seem like Compiz had any window memory, and this was a major strike against it in my book. However, almost a year later, I still am using Compiz, and I have to credit the advanced window memory that I discovered buried in advanced Compiz settings for keeping me here.
By default, at least in Ubuntu, there are only so many settings you can tweak in Compiz. Compiz provides a tool, however, called CompizConfig Settings Manager (or ccsm) that gives you very detailed control over many different aspects of both Compiz eye-candy effects as well as a lot of the important settings for the window manager itself. The major downside to ccsm, however, is that there are almost too many options—if you don't know exactly what you are looking for, expect to spend some time digging through different categories. Even window memory settings are split between two different categories.
Ubuntu didn't install ccsm automatically for me, but I was able to install it with a quick trip to the package manager, and it should be packaged for other distributions that include Compiz. Once it is installed, you either can type ccsm in a terminal window or click System→Administration→Advanced Desktop Effects Settings. As I mentioned, the default window can be a little daunting (Figure 1) and is split into a narrow left pane that displays the categories and a larger right pane that shows all the particular settings you can configure for the category.
Everything you need to configure window memory in ccsm can be found in the Window Management category, and once you click on that category in the left pane, you drill down into a much more manageable set of options (Figure 2). For some reason, ccsm splits window memory into two different sets of options, Window Rules and Place Windows. The Window Rules options allow you to configure window attributes like stickiness and geometry, and the Place Windows options let you control the viewport and location where the window is placed.
Kyle Rankin is a VP of engineering operations at Final, Inc., the author of a number of books including DevOps Troubleshooting and The Official Ubuntu Server Book, and is a columnist for Linux Journal. Follow him @kylerankin.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
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|The Firebird Project's Firebird Relational Database||Jul 29, 2016|
|Stunnel Security for Oracle||Jul 28, 2016|
|SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager||Jul 21, 2016|
|My +1 Sword of Productivity||Jul 20, 2016|
|Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!||Jul 19, 2016|
|Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)||Jul 18, 2016|
- The Firebird Project's Firebird Relational Database
- Stunnel Security for Oracle
- My +1 Sword of Productivity
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)
- Parsing an RSS News Feed with a Bash Script
- Google's SwiftShader Released
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide