At this point I decided that I had explored enough of the audio tools for one day and I moved on to the other tools. I used mplayer to play season 4 episode 22 "Home" of the TV show "Angel". I also experimented with xaos which a fractal viewer & zoomer which makes great trippy graphics. I tried to figure out how to use cinelerra but video editing is not my forte and I failed to get beyond the main screen. Instead I ran the FreeJ program from VIDEO, VEEJAY, FreeJ. FreeJ is to trippy & glitchy graphics as terminatorX is to trippy & glitchy audio mixes and is written by the creator of this dyne:bolic distribution. I opened up one of my screen caps for this article and added an effect and made this trippy dynamic image.
Screenshot of MPlayer
Screenshot of FreeJ
Once I took the time to explorer the menu, I found that dyne:bolic includes a collection of free software programs to allow the user to get some work done. I found familar programs such as LinNeighborhood to access files on my samba server. I used gaim to stay in contact with some friends & family, firebird to browse the web, abiword to write this article, xmms to listen to music, played frozenbubble for my bubble addiction :), used gimp for screen shots & image editing, and xsg for screen caps of programs that I could not capture using the gimp.
While writing this review, I remembered that dyne:bolic had mounted my Windows XP partition as /vol/hd1. In an X-term I ran the command # touch foobar and found that it successfully created a file called foobar. This means that it mounted the XP partition with full read write capability and not read only as how Knoppix mounts the hard drive. I prefer the Knoppix method of mounting as it will prevent the user from accidentally losing data.
I thought about perhaps burning a CD but I realized that on this DAW I only have 1 optical drive and dyne:bolic was using it. Then I remembered that the boot menu mentioned an option for CD burner, so shut down dyne:bolic on my DAW and booted up another PC that has both a CDROM drive and a CDRW drive. The boot menu explained I would have to boot the CD using the command Linux hdd=ide-scsi which will tell the Linux kernel to load the ide-scsi kernel module to enable SCSI emulation for the IDE CDRW drive at /dev/hdd. I entered the command and about 1 minute later was greeted by the dyne:bolic splash screen. First I opened a X-term and ran gcombust, a GTK+ GUI frontend to the widely used cdrecord and other CDR tools. I ran LinNeighborhood so that I might be able to access the dualcrush server and perhaps burn some files to CD. I added some mp3s and TV shows in MPEG format to the file listing and successfully wrote them to the CD.
Screenshot of gcombust
dyne:bolic includes a plethora of great applications such as frozenbubble for gaming, vnc & rdesktop for remote desktop connectivity, network tools such as ethereal and kismet for network analysis, openMosix for high performance clustering, icecast for audio streaming, bluefish for HTML editing, and blender for 3D modeling. Even though dyne:bolic seems have everything including the kitchen sink, I did notice that it does not include Ardour or Rosegarden which are multi track digital audio workstation applications similar to Cakewalk Sonar or Steinberg Cubase.Conclusion
I would recommend dyne:bolic 1.2 to anyone involved in media creation as long as they are aware that it will require learning & patience to become adept in using dyne:bolic and it's fine assortment of applications. I have found dyne:bolic 1.2 to be a great niche linux distribution and congratulations to the dyne:bolic team for this latest release.
Dyne:bolic 1.2 - free multimedia studio in a GNU/Linux live CD.
Dyne:bolic GNU/Linux User's Guide (a work in progress.)
- Autodetected all my hardware.
- Live CD that doesn't require installation on a hard drive
- Great collection of media tools.
- Familiar programs such as xmms, gaim & firebird.
- Freely distributable
- Requires patience before one can fully use the media creation tools
- Hydrogen crashed & vanished without any warning or error
- It mounted my partitions as read/write & not read only
- Forced to use frame buffer at 800x600x16bit
About the author:
James Pryor is employed by Computer Associates Intl. and has a BS in Information Technology from Rochester Institute of Technology with concentrations in System Administration & Networking. He lives in Long Island, NY. He loves cooking, friends & family, and has a real passion for Free/Libre/Open Source Software. His web site is here.