This is part two of Ronix’s adventures in building a Linux machine for EVE. In part one he outlined his plans; in part two, they fail to survive contact with the hardware. […]
The Road Begins One thing I will say about Apple: for all of their expense, they work, and things are easy. This project was uncharted territory for me. Anticipation was high as I installed components, connected cables, and closed up the case. I slid the LiveDVD into the drive and powered on the system. Through the fog of my e-cig vapor I see the monitor flicker and a boot menu show on the screen. IT’S ALIVE! My excitement was short-lived, as when I clicked the boot option I saw just a black screen. Thus began my journey on the path of Google-Fu, and browsing the Linux Mint forums. While doing my research and trying to get the computer running, it suddenly powered off. When I would try to boot the computer it would stay on for about three seconds and cut out again. My sealed water cooling system for my CPU had a power cable I had missed; I plugged that in and had my first success – assembly was done! Video Woes Next, I found out that NVidia cards need to have the proprietary drivers installed; the generic ones included with the 17.1 LiveDVD broke my video. Forum searches uncovered a number of ways to correct this issue: apparently Linux is no different from other technologies, where there is rarely a ‘right’ way to do things. I was able to find a parameter that allowed the video to work with a generic driver, but once I started the installation and rebooted, that parameter was missing and I was broken all over again. The solution, I discovered, was to use the motherboard’s built-in video card to run the computer long enough to install the NVidia drivers. When that was complete, both monitors worked on the GPU and it was happy days. It took about two hours of googling and putting a couple of solution threads together. What No Internet? Did I mention in the video section that I had to use Google and browse the LinuxMint forums? Rest assured this was not on my awesome l337 desktop but on my trusty laptop (I will miss you), because my brand new computer had no Internet connection: the USB Wi-Fi adapter I had purchased was not being recognized by the system. So much for my research on components that would be compatible with Linux. I had to make a run to WalMart to get a Belkin N300 USB adapter. The Internet said that the Asus AC51 was compatible, and there are official Linux drivers for it on the Asus website (it was on the Internet so it must be true) – but after more in-depth investigation I realized that you had to compile it yourself and use hacks. The Belkin was just plug and play: thirty dollars well spent to check another box on my list. Installing Eve and Teamspeak Teamspeak has a native Linux client; it was straightforward to download, set the .run as executable, open a terminal window, and run the file, which creates a folder structure. Just add a launcher to the .sh script in the folder and you are done. I started up Teamspeak, set my profile image and registered with my alliance server. I then went into the software manager and installed Wine; the package listed in the software is the latest available on the WineHQ website. At this point, I started to believe that I was on the home stretch. I could see my future self logging into Eve with high video settings, to wonder at all things spaceships. I downloaded the offline files, installed the application, and logged in with no difficulties. I updated my Jita orders (double your ISK!) and checked another item off of the to-do list. At last I would be able to join fleets and move my Archon. Eve has sound? Two steps forward and seemingly one step back: I noticed that my headset was not working while running Eve and Teamspeak. I frantically searched Google, wondering how I would break it to my wife that I need to buy another computer part. Back to the support forums I went – but in the end it was just a matter of being able to read “line out” and all of the other speaker icons stamped into the metal shield that came with the motherboard. A reboot and the cables correctly connected, and I had audio. I was learning patience – a skill that would be sorely tested before long. To Be Continued… In the final part of the series, I put these lessons to better use than I could have imagined – and question why I ever started on this quest. * – Apologies to Jonah Goldberg for stealing his joke.