Saturday, April 25, 2009

I'm back!!!

OK, I'm back from Brazil where I was for two months mostly in the small town of Corinto which is bang in the center of the state of Minas Gerais. Yes, this is one of these small towns where everybody knows everybody else and, being the only gringo in town, I quickly became quite a celebrity.
However, the people, with just one or two notable exceptions, were extremely friendly and helpful to me and I enjoyed my stay there very much.
One major problem, however, was the Internet. Although a small number of houses have what they call high-speed Internet (2 Mbps), due to limited phone line capacity, the majority of Internet users have to settle for one of these 3G mini-modem things. Take it from me, folks, in this location at least, these things are a joke. Our download speed was typically in the range 40-120 kbps (which is about 1% of what I have here in Ireland) although they advertise a minimum speed of 128 kbps with a maximum of 236 (yeah, 236, not 256).
What's more, this only worked in Windows. I just couldn't get an Internet connection at all in Linux although with such a lamentably slow speed it really wasn't worth the trouble even trying.
So, for this reason, I went nearly two months without opening Linux (I know you don't need Internet to work in Linux, but the truth is that 95% or more of what I do involves the web).
Anyway, I'm back with Linux and my 7 Mbps Internet connection (which, of course, is by no means fast by todays standards).
The first thing I tried was to upgrade my version of Ubuntu on the EeePC 901 from 8.04.1 to 9.04.
However, ran into problems here which I'll describe next.

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