Using wcid instead of NetworkManager on Ubuntu 8.10

This post came about due to an issue with NetworkManager connecting to our wpa-enterprise authenticated network at work, but demonstrates that there is more than one choice when it comes to almost everything on Linux. It’s not too fiddly, and I’ll hopefully have a rebuild of Ubuntu incorporating these changes within 24 hours. First off, […]

New laptop

On Sunday I finally got round to replacing my dead desktop computer. As planned, I ditched the idea of buying another desktop, and decided to get something that would replace both the dead PC and my slowly dying 5 year old laptop. I ended up with a Sony Vaio laptop that is far more powerful […]


This week I’ve been looking at ways of setting up alerts that only actually happen when I’m sitting in front of my computer to read them. This has lead to me using xmessage. For example: xmessage -center Hello! This is a message created using xmessage & This would give me a message popping up with […]

How to make a totally up to date bootable USB version of Ubuntu

I’ve written these instructions (371.6 KB PDF) for work, but think they might be useful in all sorts of other situations. Basically it boils down to: Use Ubuntu Customization Kit to update all the packages in Ubuntu and add/remove packages as required. Use the USB creating tool in Ubuntu 8.10 to transfer your newly created […]


I’ve now (finally) got two-way OpenID support built into this installation of wordpress. What this means is: I can log into sites like Livejournal using my account from Not that useful, but fairly impressive. Anyone who has an account with Livejournal, or a Gmail account, or one of a number of other things can […]