Thursday, January 26, 2012

The general gameplan

So before I get any further, I'm going to come up with a general gameplan here.  For starters, I need to invest in some more RAM and another HD.  At the same time, I'm going to need to fix up my Hackintosh (I know, I'm moving away from it, but I need it for the transition period), get it all running the way it should. 

After that, I'll be running one distribution after another (look for another post talking about different distributions that I'll be trying) in virtual machines.  Yes, I know, VMs are not the way to be sure, but seeing as my audio hardware doesn't work in Linux...yet, I kind of need something else.  After I've settled on two or three of them, I will most likely be dual booting for a while to test out each of the remainders as a usable environment.

Finally, I'll be migrating to that environment permenantly.  I may even take my laptops with me, but that's for another time period.  At this point, I'm content to focus on my desktop.

So the general plan is:

Update Hackintosh and purchase new hardware - end of February/beginning of March

Start testing new distributions - as soon as the new purchases are installed and I've done some transfers (got a few ancient drives I need to get rid of)

Choose two or three final candidates and start testing them - Probably about May

Finalize on one and migrate towards it - I'd guess June.

Of course, that's a basic generalization and completely reliant on what appears to be a long term project that might not be usable by June, so, for now, I'm focusing on the Hackintosh.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012


I feel that the description above, while accurate, is lacking a great number of important details.  This introduction post will help me convey these without bogging down the top of the page.

First of all, currently I'm a mid-twenties audio engineer with a bachelor's degree in management and a minor in music.  In my college career, I spent much of my freshman, sophomore, and some of my junior year playing with Linux.  With the exceptions of checking compatibility and the occasional gaming, I have not booted a computer that I own into Windows proper in over six years.  I have, occasionally, had to use a virtual machine to boot into Windows in order to use Internet Explorer or something similar.

Furthermore, for the past three and a half years, I have not booted any of my computers into Linux without it being a virtual machine, and even then, for only a brief time period.  When I was in college, my distribution of choice was Gentoo, mostly because I had the mentality of "If it ain't broke, don't stop tinkering!" and the Gentoo community seemed very willing to help whenever I broke something (on average, every other day or so).

Now I have a number of reasons for leaving the Apple Software front, the first that I'll mention is the last of my concerns.  Technically speaking, to use Apple software, you are required to use Apple branded hardware.  My desktop has an Apple bran, in the way of one of those Apple stickers that I got with my first iPod.  I use a Hackintosh as my desktop.  The reasons for this are rather complicated to explain, but primarily, it's because I want the ability to add interface cards as needed and have multiple hard drives.  In order to do this on a proper Mac, I'd need a Mac Pro, ad I'm not about to spend that kind of money on a computer right now.

The real reason I'm leaving Apple is explained in most cases, by the Walled Garden arguments against Apple's iOS devices.  Since Apple's move last year to put OS X updates exclusively in the Mac App Store, I have been attempting to find a method of leaving Apple's software for good.  I have no desire to be purchasing software through a virtual medium without ever receiving a physical version.  Furthermore, the thought of purchasing through the App Store is similar to one of the reasons I left Windows (aside from most of the issues I was facing being due to overall stability as well as other personal preferences), which is "Windows Genuine Advantage" or, as I prefer to refer to it, system-wide DRM.

I fear for the day that Apple decides that the computing world is better off running more like iOS.  It's becoming obvious that Mac OS and iOS are starting to move closer and closer together, and I don't want to spend money on something that I don't really want to use.  Instead, I'll move to the Linux world, and donate as I see fit for software that I use regularly.

So, in six hundred words or less, this is the primary motivation for migrating off of OS X.  The other reason I'm doing so now is that I currently am not active in recording circles, so I will be working on adapting this to my abilities before I have to use it professionally.  I'm eager to put it to use.