Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Notes on upgrade from Slackware 13.1 to 13.37

I recently upgraded from Slackware 13.1 to 13.37. 13.37 is not the latest version (14.0 is), but by only upgrading one release at a time I'm less likely to have problems.

I downloaded the files with

wget --no-parent -nH --cut-dirs=3 -r -nc (path)

Options mean
--no-parent - Don't download linked files above the directory in the given path
-nH - Don't create local directory called etc.
--cut-dirs - Don't create local directories based on first 3 directories in path.
-nc - Don't download existing files - useful if wget is interrupted.

I had to download and compile the ndiswrapper Slackbuild. I had problems compiling it - I think I ought to have compiled it before installing all the new Slackware packages.

I found the screen went blank when I rebooted! It turned out that the brightness on my laptop screen was only turned down. (See I haven't fixed this yet; all I do is use the laptop function keys to turn the brightness up.)

The instructions for creating an initrd were unclear: I found I had to run

mkinitrd -c -k -m ext3

(I was missing the "-smp" part.)

I had some problems with X11. My mouse pointer wouldn't move. I had to delete /etc/X11/xorg.conf. The keyboard was in US mode now, and I had to copy a keyboard layout file (90-keyboard-layout.conf) to /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d.

I found "xset m" would no longer set the pointer speed for my Synaptics touchpad. I had to use a program called "synclient" instead. I copied a settings file to "/etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf". There was some subtle and annoying behaviour such as taps taking too long to be recognized and sometimes getting middle clicks, which I fixed with adding the following lines to 50-synaptics.conf:

        Option "FastTaps" "on"
        Option "MinSpeed" "0.5"
        Option "MaxSpeed" "10"
        Option "AccelFactor" "0.05"
        Option "EmulateTwoFingerMinZ" "1000"
        Option "EmulateTwoFingerMinW" "1000"

I had some broken behaviour with fvwm. Apparently Unicode locales are broken in versions (2.4.*) (even though it worked before.) It could have been something to do with the fonts changing as well.

The new version of Thunderbird would no longer highlight folders with new messages. I managed to get something acceptable by changing "~/.thunderbird/h0eadjtl.default/chrome/userChrome.css" to:

 * Do not remove the @namespace line -- it's required for correct functioning
@namespace url(""); /* set default namespace to XUL */

treechildren::-moz-tree-cell-text(folderNameCol, newMessages-true) {
  color: red !important; }

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