Linux @ Home

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My laptop at home dual-boots between openSUSE and WinXP. There are a few reasons why I don't boot the Linux side very often, some of them work related. And, what the heck, here are the two reasons.

1: Wireless driver problems
I have an intel 3945 WLAN card. It works just fine in linux, well supported. What throws it for a loop, however, are sleep and hibernate states. It can go one, two, four, maybe five cycles through sleep before it will require a reboot in order to find the home wireless again. If it doesn't lock the laptop up hard. Since my usage patterns are heavily dependent upon Sleep mode, this is a major, major disincentive to keep the Linux side booted.

I understand the 2.6.25 kernel is a lot better about this particular driver. Thus, I wait with eager anticipation the release of openSUSE 11.0. This driver is currently the ipw3945 driver, and will eventually turn into iwl3945 driver once it comes down the pipe. What little I've read about it suggests that the iwl driver is more stable through power states.

2: NetWare remote console
I use rconip for remote console to NetWare. Back when Novell first created the IP-based rconsole, they also released rconj along side ConsoleOne to provide it. As this was written in Java, it was mind bogglingly slow. This little .exe file was vastly faster, and I've come to use it extensively. Unless I get Wine working, this tool will have to stay on my Windows XP partition. It works great, and I haven't found a good linux-based replacement yet.

Time has moved on. Hardware has gotten faster, and the 'java penalty' has reduced markedly. RconJ is actually usable, but I still don't use it. Plus, it would require me to install ConsoleOne onto my laptop. It's 32-bit, so that's actually possible, but I really don't want to do that.

The Remote Console through the Novell Remote Monitor (that service out on :8009) has a nice remote-console utility, but it also requires Java. I'm still biased against java, and java-on-linux still seems fairly unstable to me. I don't trust it yet. It also doesn't scale well. When I'm service-packing, it is a LOT nicer looking to have 6 rconip windows up than 6 browser-based NRM java-consoles open. Plus, rconip will allow me access to the server console if DS is locked, something that NRM can't do and is invaluable in an emergency.

Once the wireless driver problems are fixed, I'll boot the linux side much more often. Remote-X over SSH actually makes some of my remote management a touch easier than it is in WinXP. And if I really really need to use Windows, my work XP VM is accessible over RDesktop. There are a few other non-work reasons why I don't boot Linux very often, but I'll not go into those here.

So, oddly, NetWare is partly responsible for keeping me in Windows at home. But only partly.

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Can't speak for the wireless issues, but my way around NetWare remote control on Linux is to use rdesktop to connect via RDP to a WinXP box in my office that has all my needed Win32 admin apps like C1, AdRem, etc. Works great.