Peppermint Linux

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yogi
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Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

dennis@dennisVB ~ $ cat /etc/os-release
NAME="Peppermint"
VERSION="10 (Ten)"
ID=ubuntu
ID_LIKE=debian
PRETTY_NAME="Peppermint Ten"
VERSION_ID="10"
HOME_URL="http://peppermintos.com/"
SUPPORT_URL="http://forum.peppermintos.com/"
BUG_REPORT_URL="http://bugs.launchpad.net/~peppermintos/"
VERSION_CODENAME=bionic
UBUNTU_CODENAME=bionic
I installed Peppermint Linux as a virtual machine on the Windows 7 tower. Not bad for a minimalistic version of Ubuntu. LOL After testing Peppermint for a while I decided it was time to install it in the laptop.

BIG MISTAKE

I figured the performance on the laptop would far exceed the VM install, which wasn't bad speedwise to begin with. But, as you may or may not recall, I also have Ubuntu installed on that laptop; Ubuntu 19.10 in fact. The mistake? Look at the output of the release file for Peppermint. It ID's itself as ... UBUNTU. So, it just overwrote the Ubuntu bootloader that was previously existing on the laptop. Now the option to select Ubuntu brings up Peppermint. This is the exact same problem with Linux Mint which also identifies itself as UBUNTU.

Explain to me again why Linux is better. :crazy:

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

I have no idea, other than to say, most programmers are idiots when it comes to thinking outside their little box!

Maybe there is a Rule or something that states if you build an OS on top of Ubuntu, it must be named Ubuntu?

Try installing Windows XP, 7, 8 and 10 on the same computer and let me know what happens with the Windows bootloader.

I think you will find the exact same problems with BootMgr and WinLoad.exe

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

Your speculations about the Windows Boot Device Manager and its MBR bootloaders do not compare to what the Ubuntu Linux developers are doing. I will most likely attempt to put two versions of Windows on the ASUS tower, at which time I will report back to you exactly what happens. But that is a project for next year.

This year Linux Ubuntu is corrupting the boot process intentionally. For all the issues I've run into with booting Windows 10 side by side with Linux (-anything), never once has the Windows bootloader eliminated an OS previously listed in the disk's EFI partition. The last OS installed generally takes on the master bootloader role, which is why you saw problems with Windows vs Grub on Deb's computer. You may not have liked what Windows was doing, but it never overwrote and corrupted what was already there. I can't say the same about Ubuntu distros.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

I got an answer ... from a developer nonetheless. I took this problem over to the Peppermint support forums and wasn't getting a lot of help. Then somebody posted the following as an explanation of why they call Pepperment Ubuntu:
PCNetSpec wrote:There is nothing we can do short of paying Microsoft for our own signing key and hosting our own version of GRUB and our own copy of the kernel .. that is the reason nearly all smaller distros reuse the Ubuntu signed version of GRUB/kernel .. if we renamed anything in it, it would fail to pass UEFI/Secureboot key signing and not boot.

For the vast majority of people it's not an issue as whatever you chose it would load GRUB (either Peppermint's or Ubuntu's) .. and GRUB will list both OS's anyway.
(you could point the EFI entry at EITHER of the GRUB stage 2 .. on the Pep or Ubu partition)

So as there's no real benefit, it would mean a LOT more work staying on top of kernel security patches ourselves (rather than relying on upstream) and would add an additional cost, we can't really see the point.

I'm not really getting the problem here ? .. even if it were possible to do what you wanted (and it probably is as long as you don't use Secureboot), no matter which you picked you'd still end up at GRUB listing both distros ???
(and the GRUB you end up at would be EXACTLY the same, package for package .. the only difference would be where GRUB stage 2 was locate)
The full story if you are interested: https://forum.peppermintos.com/index.php?topic=9168

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

Looks like the second to last post gave you a possible way to fix the problem using efimanager and changing the label.
Hope that works out for you!

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

They gave me a way to fix the problem by rebuilding the directories their Linux distro destroyed. The developer as much as said tough luck - he didn't even realize you can boot into Linux from Windows. I have no choice but to fix the corrupt files, and I might try efibootmgr when I return home from this road trip. I might also just repartition and reload some Linux OS's that are not Ubuntu based. If I do give Ubuntu any space on my laptop it certainly won't be the Peppermint version. Linux Mint corrupts the EFI partition in the same fashion as Peppermint so that I won't be likely to go that route either. That leaves plain ol' vanilla Ubuntu which is going down the tubes with its mobile wannabe desktop. About the only good thing to come from this experience is I might learn something about efibootmgr. I already learned a lot about the attitude of Linux developers.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

I have no idea how it would work but someone mentioned using the Ubuntu boot to start another instance of Grub instead of starting Ubuntu.
When you start Windows you only have two options, start Windows, start Ubuntu, but then when you hit start Ubuntu it brings up the Grub so you can select all the installed OS's.
Sounds simple, but I doubt it is at all, hi hi.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

Yes, you are right! It is as simple as you describe it. In fact that is exactly how this laptop is now working. The Windows menu only shows ubuntu but selecting that brings up the Grub from Peppermint. In THAT Grub I can select any of the OS's installed on the laptop, including Windows. The dev in the Peppermint forums describes that scenario as the solution and can't understand what I'm bitching about. LOL

The issue I am having is that I am not a die hard Linux hacker who doesn't care how things work as long as the end result is what I need. My Windows Boot Device Manager is designed to boot into any and all operating systems listed in the ESP directory using standar UEFI protocol. One of those entries was sabotaged by Linux Peppermint so that the menu now displays incorrect information. Windows is not broken, but now I have to jump through some convoluted hoops to get where I want to go in Linux-land. Not only that, but what is going to happen when the day comes that Grub gets updated by any one of the three Linux distros on my machine? I don't know for sure, but I'd say there is at least a 90% chance it's going to break the kludge Grub that now exists. I don't want to hack into Linux in order to use it.

There are a few ways out of the situation, and hacking Grub is one of them. Also, I can just abandon Grub and the Windows bootloader and go with rEFINd. I've done that in order to navigate through the broken boot menu in Windows and it works really well. I can also just get rid of all the Linux distros on this laptop, save maybe for one, and confine my Linux adventures to virtual machines that are totally isolated from the rest of the world. Or, better yet, I can just use Linux on a stick - I've got LOTS of experience going that rout. There probably are other solutions too. But why can't somebody -- anybody -- just make Linux Peppermint (and Mint by the way) so that it doesn't break other operating system? The answer to that question is that they don't give a flying fig about any other operating system but their own. Sad, but that is the reality of Linux development.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

One of the fellow that came to Christmas dinner as a date to one of Debi's cousins, after we got to talking about computers for a bit. Instead of installing different Distro's on his computer, he just downloads them as an ISO to his hard drive, then he just runs it like a Live CD.
I thought that was impossible, but he said it works for him simply by selecting the word RUN instead of Display when he clicks on it.
I happen to have a couple of ISOs on my computer so I tried it last night and didn't work for me at all.
All I got was the error message that said it was not executable.

Here is a poser for you to ponder:
My HP laser has WiFi in it, and I get a 5 bar signal from it.
However, I have it on the LAN so I can print from any computer,
AND I have it connected via USB to the Silver Yogi so it prints faster and I can get the status reports.

NOW, since my LAN is hardwired to the WiFi router, and the printer is hardwired to the LAN.
It seems to me, that since I am getting a solid WiFi signal from it.
Shouldn't this mean I could connect to the printers WiFi from the Silver Yogi's WiFi card and reach the Router through the hardwired LAN. Or not necessarily the Silver Yogi, let's say I have an Echo Dot that cannot reach the WiFi from my office, but it can see the WiFi on the printer just fine.

Now I do know on a computer, you can connect via the LAN, or by the WiFi (if it is in range) but not both at the same time of course. But my thought was to use the printer WiFi as a repeater through the LAN to the router for connecting WiFi devices that can't reach the router.
Apparently WiFi don't work that way, hi hi.

I've tried a WiFi extender that I placed by the vent up in my attic to see if I could reach my office.
It didn't work, although I could just barely perceive the signal using a terminal code to check on the Silver Yogi.
I pick up three neighbors WiFi's no problem, all over 30.

I wonder if they make a LAN to WiFi box?
I really don't want to use a repeater or extender because they cut your bandwidth in half.
At one time I had my normal router, and a second router that was WiFi and had them connected together.
But when the router burned out, I just started using the WiFi router for everything.
Routers do tend to get pretty hot with all we have connected to them, hi hi.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

I believe you told me once your office is wrapped in tin foil (or something similar) which is always going to play havoc with WiFi, or any RF signal for that matter. It is for that reason I'd recommend using WiFi for line-of-sight connections only. Anything you try to transmit out of yoru foil box or receive in should be wired. You may be lucky and have enough RF leakage to make a device or two work properly, but it's a risky attempt in my opinion.

A router is indispensable for your operation. If you have one in your office that also has WiFi, then anything the router can literally see can connect easily. If the router cannot "see" the target device then you might want to think about using a bridge. A bridge is just a wired version of a repeater but has no bandwidth limitations as might a WiFi channel. The disadvantage is that it's not routable. If all you want is a repeater, then the bridge would do that easily.

I would be very surprised to learn that HP would allow you to use their printers in multi-mode scenarios. You can use WiFi, Ethernet, or USB but not a combination of them. That's not to say it can't be done but I don't believe HP is selling printers that have that functionality. There may be an exception if your printer has a WiFi/Internet server built in. Servers intrinsically can cross modes of communication, but I'd not know how to make the print server from HP do it. Regardless, it might be inconvenient to lay cable for switches on the network, but that is by far the most reliable way to make your computer farm work reliably.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

My house is like a huge Faraday Cage, hi hi, but my office is just sticks an drywall.

I ordered a cheap Access Point. It will connect to my LAN up here in the office and provide WiFi capability in the office and outside around my office too!
I did order one that can also be used as a repeater, but in that mode, you lose half of your bandwidth.

However, doing it this way defeats my goal of having access for when LAN cable gets damaged, again.

I think the WiFi in the printer is only a receiving WiFi so you can print from a laptop or cell phone.
It still has a transmitter to talk to the device sending the print job, but it looks like it has no connection to the LAN from the WiFi part.
I CAN use both USB and LAN. You can't get the printer reports or stats on just a LAN connection.

What got all of this started is the frau bought a new Alexa with video for the kitchen, and gave me the Alexa Dot for my office. The idea was to use it as an intercom.
It works during the day sitting in the window on a box to hold it up high.
But it cuts out at night, which is odd since radio signals travel further at night.
Also, you have to have a Schmartz-Fone to set up that feature. It is not available in the on-line set up program.
One can only wonder why they don't include all the set up features since they went to the trouble to make an on-line set up program.
Her new one has all kinds of security features the little Dot does not have.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

I'm pretty sure WiFi printers must be bidirectional. There's a lot of handshaking going on just to get a print job started. The WiFi transceiver, however, may or may not be connected to anything else, such as your LAN card. All that depends on the people who write the firmware for the printers.

The idea behind Alexa always impressed me as a high security risk. I have one and only used it one night to prove that it works. It insisted on having it's own port in my router which was a show stopper in and of itself. I don't have any spare ports to connect an always on microphone. Alexa is akin to Siri, Cortana, and Google assistant in the sense that it always is listening to the surrounding sounds. If it detects something it recognizes, it responds. Hopefully the response is something you want it to do, but that's not always the case. While Alexa is looking for key words, it is in fact listening to everything in order to pick out the key words. What do you suppose it's doing with all that extraneous information? I don't want to know, but I"m sure Amazon does know.
Last edited by yogi on 28 Dec 2019, 18:43, edited 1 time in total.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

Actually, unless you have it set in Drop In mode, it is doing nothing on the WiFi at all.
The program that listens for the word Alexa or whatever optional word you chose is built into the device itself.
It does not have to be connect to WiFi to wake-up upon hearing Alexa, but then not being connected it will just shut back off again, usually with a blue light that stays on until it is connected so it can respond to your request.

Now, after you say Alexa and it wakes up, then it is listening until it finishes doing what you told it to do.

You can also set the timer to turn off the microphone from such n such a time to such and such a time.
But when you do that, it does not respond at all when you say Alexa.

Now the folks who work on Alexa programming can Drop In on your Echo, but they only do so if you have reported a problem. We are told they don't eavesdrop, hi hi. I don't know about the older Echo's, but all the newer ones flash RED and can also Ring Once if Drop In is activated from another Echo or from anyone else for that matter.

After my Access Point gets here, then we are going to set the Echo's up like an Intercom.
It is possible to use them like a Baby Tenda also, meaning Intercom always one, and set for one direction or both directions.
But normally you have to say Alexa Drop In on (whatever you named your other Echo) or you can set a group, like Kitchen, Office, Bedroom, or say All Groups.

I tried turning on music to all Echo's but it didn't work because right now I have Drop In turned off.
Seems you have to have Drop In turned on for Alexa to recognize the words Drop In.

Since Debi has a Schmartz-Fone, she can set it up so she can Drop In on an Echo to listen to see if there is a noise or anything that shouldn't be there or to ask if I'm alive, hi hi. If she does connect, it will flash red and ring once.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

All that Alexa functionality reminds me of cell phones. The mic is live on them ALL THE TIME even when you turn off the device. You must remove the battery in order to kill it altogether. So it surprises me that an old conspiracy theorist like you would think Alexa isn't listening and recording everything all the time. LOL

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

I guess it could be, but I'm alone in my office all day, not talking to anyone, except telling telemarketers where to go in such a nice way they should enjoy the trip.
Can you imagine the amount of storage space it would require to record everyone with the device everywhere?
I'm actually pretty boring so I doubt even if they are listening, they would ever find anything worth listening for, hi hi.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

First of all people should not be listening to my private conversations. While I can't verify it absolutely, the always-on mic was some kind of concession to law enforcement, but hackers also learned how to tap into it. It requires downloading of some specific software to enable because it's not a factory installed feature as I recall. Just because you have a boring and uneventful life with nothing to hide, that should not grant anybody the right to invade your privacy clandestinely. The "I have nothing to hide" argument is often heard from people not caring what Facebook is up to. Like Facebook, nobody would be inclined to give up their cell phone in the name of privacy. That is exactly what they are counting on.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

I never put a cell phone number on Farcebook or anywhere else for that matter.
I won't even use it when one is needed to set up a device of some type.

Everything I've learned about these Echo devices is that the listening for the wake up word is an internal function.
I know that because I can say Alexa and the device responds, but if I ask it to do something, it will say it is not connected.
My new Access Point came yesterday it was just plug n go, no set up required. But I did go into set up and make a few changes. Besides the setting for security being turned up and the firewall enabled. I also set the timer so it turns off after 10pm and doesn't come back on until 8am.
I forgot about that when I got up to my office early and asked Alexa for a weather report. She responded with I'm not connected to the Internet. A couple of seconds after 8am when the Access Point turned on Alexa gave the weather report, so she didn't forget I had asked for that. So that's a setting I need to check on now too, hi hi.

Although both of our Echo's are on the same Router, apparently by using an Access Point they cannot connect to each other as an intercom or for drop in messages. But I've not had time to look further into this. I don't see why it would matter since they are both using the same router, just different WiFi passwords. After all, if it can call a landline or cell phone, it surely should be able to call itself, hi hi.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

It seems as if you did change the default password which is something a lot of people miss when buying a plug-and-go device. This is particularly true for televisions. If you feel comfortable with Alexa, then who am I to try and break up your relationship? LOL I know computers can do peer to peer communications through a LAN router, but there is software behind that capability. It's possible that Alexa has all the hardware to be an intercom, but it may be lacking software. Or, it most likely is an add-on that you can purchase.

My Google Assistant gives me a weather report at night when I dock her for recharging. She tells me all about what's going to happen tomorrow.

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Kellemora
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by Kellemora »

Supposedly it can be set by using the setup program in the frau's Schmartz-Fone.

Today I lost a few good hours learning more about that DS109NAS, even downloaded and installed the upgraded software for it. Apparently there are some features missing in it, because everything the instructions tell me to do, those items are not in it.
I've also not been able to find the true pathname to it.
I can open it and use it using the networking file browser with no problem.
But cannot SSH into it. And YES I did go in and turn on SSH, and a few other things, which broke it's smb connection for the network, so had to undo a few things I've tried.
I spent over 3 hours trying to figure out how to connect to it using SSH and it failed every time.
And everyone says doing it using SSH is the easiest way, hi hi.
I can connect to my other computers via SSH but not the NAS, not even with the firewall turned off, strange very strange.
I really do think it is because I may not have guessed at the right pathname to it.
And I've tried every combination I could possibly think of too, hi hi.

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yogi
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Re: Peppermint Linux

Post by yogi »

The only way I communicated directly with that NAS was via telnet using the IP address of the box. A lot depends on the service you are using, and I know nothing about SSH, but you can even address it by using the broadcast name you give it. The network should resolve that down to an IP address. As far as determining the path name goes, I'd be surprised if Linux doesn't have network software that would tell you that. Windows does. Also, somewhere in the bowels of Linux is a config file that lets the system know what is connected and how. All you have to do if find it. LOL Then again, would the 'mount' command do what you need to do?

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