posted by James Pryor on Thu 25th Mar 2004 19:40 UTC
IconOn Saturday March 20, I spent my lazy Saturday morning browsing the web for Linux news. I surfed over to & read the latest happenings in regards to Linux distributions. I read a news blurb on latest release of dyne:bolic 1.2. dyne:bolic is self described as a free multimedia studio in a GNU/Linux live CD. I was intrigued by the prospect of playing with a multimedia studio on live CD that won't interfere with my PC's current setup. I downloaded the ISO via Azureus Java bittorrent client. I burned it to CDR using K3B and booted my DAW off the dyne:bolic CD.

Before I continue, I must mention a bit about myself and my equipement. I am a amateur/hobbist musician and have rather extensive experience with PCs, OSs, and networks and have used Unix since 1994 and Linux since 1996. By myself I tend to write spacey techno/electronica music and when I am teamed up with my brothers we make hard rock & prog rock.

Digital Audio Workstation
Name: micro1
Shuttle SS51G XPC small form-factor system
Intel Pentium 4 2.66 GHz (533 MHz FSB)
One - 512 MB PC2700 RAM
Seagate Barracuda ATA/100 40GB HD
Samsung CDRW/DVD SM-332B combo drive
Sapphire ATI Radeon 9800 Pro 128MB with VGA & DVI
M-Audio Audiophile 2496 PCI sound card
Two - Hitachi SuperScan 751 19" monitors
Windows XP SP1 dual boot with Gentoo

File Server
Name: dualcrush
Running Gentoo and samba to serve up files & printers

Other Software & Hardware
Cakewalk Sonar 3.1.1 Producer Edition
Sonic Foundry (now Sony Pictures Media) Acid 4.0 Pro and Sound Forge 6.0
Cheap/free good quality VSTi & effects from K-v-R Audio Plugin Resources
M-Audio Radium 61-key MIDI keyboard
Behringer Eurorack UB1622FX-PRO Mixer
Line 6 PODxt
Line 6 FBV Floor Board
Fender Hot Rod DeVille 212 guitar amplifier
a cheap Fender Strat clone
a cheap Les Paul clone
Ibanez SRX300 bass guitar
Taylor 6-string acoustic guitar
Pacific Drums 5-piece drum kit with Zildjian A Custom series cymbals

Screen Shot of boot logo
The CD boots with a ASCII text logo & menu with choices accessed using the Function keys. I hit enter to have it load automatically & it loaded the kernel and I noticed it using a initrd to load the kernel modules. It detected the CDRW/DVD, HD, and ethernet network.

Screenshot of boot process
From the screen shot we can see that it loaded USB kernel drivers, ALSA driver for onboard sound, ALSA driver for the pro sound card, firewire IEEE1394, and also detected my video card. It backgrounded the DHCP request, started exim as a MTA for email routing, loaded additional IEEE1394 hardware drivers, launched opensshd in the background and started CUPSd.

Next, it began to run the X Window System, but it failed to run with the error:
(EE) No devices detected
Fatal server error:
No screens found
Screenshot of X Failed

Next it displayed a message that X will run using the framebuffer (fbdev) driver and it mentioned that I would be limited to 800x600x16bit. It started up with Window Maker as the window manager, displayed a splash screen & it played a "boot-up" type sound which I later found located at /usr/share/dynebolic/dixan-splashjingle.ogg. The dyne:bolic desktop is running the Window Maker dock and GKrellM. The dock has HD icons and a USB logo icon. Clicking on the first HD icons opens up Xfe (a GUI file manager similar to windows explorer) and is viewing /vol/hd1 which I discovered is my Windows XP C: partition. The USB logo opens up Xfe to the root / of the filesystem. Some exploring in Xfe shows me that my $home directory is /home and that it has mounted all the partitions under /vol. and and is and is monitoring date & time, CPU, Memory, Disk, and eth0 (ethernet) access.

Screenshot of X Started
The splash screen functions as both a welcome screen and as an informative overview to running dyne:bolic. The "Getting started" tab mentioned that it had mounted the local partitions in /vol, the /home directory is mounted in a RAM filesystem, and that samba is sharing the /home/shared directory with both read and write permissions. Just like the splash screen suggested, I right clicked on the desktop & out popped a menu. The menu is arranged similar to more common GUI program menus such as ones found in MS Windows, KDE, or GNOME. The splash screen is the first entry in the menu and is named "VERSION 1.2" while an X-term is a handy second entry. I opened the X-term and ran # free -mt and it showed that it was using a swap partition. It seems that the boot up process discovered the swap partition from my Gentoo install and it was activated for usage.

Since I am not much a fan of the default desktop background and the color scheme with it's red windows frames, I choose APPEARANCE, THEMES, Checker. I discovered that I disliked my new choice even more than the default so instead I chose DyneBaby. I then went to APPEARANCE, STYLES, BlueDawn and found that I had made a great first choice.
Screenshot of theme change

Table of contents
  1. "dyne:bolic, Page 1/3"
  2. "dyne:bolic, Page 2/3"
  3. "dyne:bolic, Page 3/3"
e p (0)    25 Comment(s)

Technology White Papers

See More