Well, I've come full circle and am back to Ubuntu.
When Ubuntu dropped Gnome and went to Unity, I couldn't take the change and switched to Linux Mint Debian with Xfce. I used LMDE till I had issues with Wifi and switched to Linux Mint 13. I did play around with Cinnamon and Mate, but settled on Xfce as with LMDE.
When I started playing around with XBMC on the Dell 6000, I switched that machine to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. With that change, I used Ubuntu a bit and found I liked it. Thus, I have changed over the Acer Aspire One to 12.04.
Up front, let me say, I had no problem with LM13 Xfce. I guess I was ready for a change and/or bored and wanted something new to play with.
Other that a new look, for me, there really isn't much of a change in my day to day use. I use alt+f2 to start a program, so that is no different. I really only use my Acer for email -- Gmail, internet surfing and my website -- Firefox and listening to music -- Rhythbox. Other than those 3 things, I do occasionally use LibreOffice, Bluefish and Gedit, but, really, overall, I can live in Firefox with no issues.
round and round -- back to ubuntu
I think this is why I like my little netbook so much. With what I do with a computer, I really don't need much power. Granted, it can be a bit slow interent surfing because of the lack of CPU speed and memory, it really doesn't bother my to much. I like the portability of it. And, as opposed to a tablet, I do like a keyboard and like the functionallity of a keyboard since I use shortcuts all the time.
But I digress, back to Ubuntu. My current thoughts and comments.
Have to say, I am happy with the current install of Ubuntu. For one thing, I know whether it is Linux Mint or Ubuntu, I will be staying with the long term releases. I can remember back in the day, when I first changed to Linux and was using Ubuntu, I changed with every release. This is not the case for me anymore. If I do any change, it will be to check out Linux Mint 13 with Cinnamon.
This change started with my fucking up my LM13Xfce install. Somehow I messed up apt causing it to be unable to update anymore. I found the only option was to re-install the OS. This brought up the option of just going with XBMCbuntu. I tried going with this, but I had issues with the installs attempts to connect with the internet -- I think this stemmed from my use of a USB wireless toggle. Since I couldn't get it to install, I decided to go with Ubuntu over Linux Mint so I could add the XBMC ppa for updates. Had a couple of issues at first, but this was resolved with deleting the .xmbc folder from the previous install and restarting XBMC.
Here are the notes and observations from this change:
And that is all for now. I'm going to enjoy a beer and watch the Masters for a bit.
Life is grand with XBMC these days. I've spent time RTFM and learned quite a few things.
I have to say, I am very happy with how this experiment with XBMC has worked out. I am at the point of just using the XBMC GUI and no longer switching back and forth with Xfce. If you are looking for a Media Center program, I have no problem suggesting XBMC.
Have to say, wish I would have tried XBMC a long time ago, it makes watching video so much easier / pleasant. The SnapSteam Firefly Mini remote is working great. As this was my motivation for checking out XBMC, hey, I am a very happy camper. I am also loving how XBMC has a weather display. I commute by bike and the weather is always a step or two back from the front of my mind.
Overall, I am psyched with XBMC , but there are a couple issues I am experiencing and want to figure out.
1) Sound. I am using my Dell laptop with its audio-out fed to a Sony receiver. Even with the volume level around 80% in XBMC, I am having to turn up the receivers volume to 50%. Prior, when in the Linux Mint 13 Xfce environment, I only had to turn up the receiver to 20% for the same audio output. It makes my nervous having the volume turned up this high in case I forget to turn it down before switching to another audio source.
2) For some reason, the automated scan doesn't recognize a few TV shows. For example, Once Upon a Time episodes are skipped during the automated scan. The Once Upon a Time folder is recorded but none of the episodes. If you look in the 'Files' section, they are all there. Stange
One thing I need to learn in XBMC is file management. Right now, I log out of XBMC and into Xfce for file management. No biggie, but I should figure out the file manager in XBMC.
Many moons ago -- circa 2007, I had a DIY PVR. I built the PVR with parts from my DIY desktop along with BeyondTV and a Happauge TV tuner card. With either the BeyondTV or card, I received a SnapStream Firefly Mini remote.
These days, my Dell 6000 laptop, which replaced the desktop, is replaced by my Acer Aspire One. The Dell is mainly used for watching video. This can be a pain in the ass though. Once a video ends, I have to venture to the Dell and select my next video whim.
Hmmm, a remote would come in handy for this.
I had read the XBMC wiki pages about remotes. I read about how you had to edit this and that config file to set up a remote. I, on the other hand, just plugged in the remote receiver and started pressing buttons. Wow, I can navigate the XBMC screen with my Firefly Mini. Awesome.
Now, I haven't played to much with it yet. I am currently cleaning out the home folder to create plenty of room for storing video. I had used an external drive for video, but with a remote, I use the 250 GB drive the Dell has from now on. That should have enough room for a while.
As I play with this, I'll post more.
Have no problems with my Acer Aspire One.
I'll have to go spend some time on the Linux Mint forums and see what I can find out.
Update -- 01 August 2012
For whatever reason, sound is working fine now. I did stop using SMPlayer.