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Old 06-10-2012, 04:58 AM   #1
dwmolyneux
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New System recommendations?


Hi all. After several months of strugle with trying to get Gentoo installed and /or LFS, I have finally successfully got the Gentoo base system installed.

Not sure where to start with doing a search before installing the additional features, I was in hopes that I might be able to get some input.

I have installed Gentoo 2012.1 using the genkernel AMD64 AMD Athelon 64 cpu, Raideon 9200 graphics card, and (as I'm on a different computer at the time of this post) I don't remember my sound card.

I know what I want to be able to do with the final outcome but not sure what is needed to get there.

Apps that I know that I want:
  • Rakarrack (I play guitar and use my computer as a practice Amp plus recording studio)
  • PCSX (I have a bunch of older psx games that I have started to play again since the move to Linux from windows)

Things that I would like to be able to do:
  • DVD Movies in Fullscreen (I want to be able to watch DVD's in fullscreen without the slideshow effect and have the audio nsync)
  • Videos via YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, etc... (The same as the DVD's)
  • Edit or create Videos/DVD's
  • Desktop recording (I would like to make videos of things on my Desktop including sound. I have also been wanting to record my game play with the PCSX to show off)
  • Webdesign (Be able to create web sites while learning PHP, MySQL, etc...)
  • Broadcast Video/Audio live ( I do have a cheap Logitech Web cam, I am going to be configuring a Network Server but don't have it up yet)
  • Windows Apps and Games ( I have games such as Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto Vice City, Need for Speed Most Wanted, Need for Speed Carbon, and Final Fantasy VII that I would like to be able to play on my Linux Machine)

There are a few other things that I know will come up but that is the list of known.

The unknown that I've seen videos on YouTube of and would like:
Code:
The link is a Youtube video that shows an example
 http://youtu.be/PAM8ei9cm9k
with my video card being an older one, I don't know if I can do like the video but I would like to have a similur setup.
I like the layout and the effects.

I know that everyone will have their own opinion but the purpose of this thread is just to get some input that I can go on in deciding what to do.

Thank you in advance.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 03:21 AM   #2
qlue
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
  • DVD Movies in Fullscreen (I want to be able to watch DVD's in fullscreen without the slideshow effect and have the audio nsync)
  • Videos via YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, etc... (The same as the DVD's)
  • Edit or create Videos/DVD's
  • Desktop recording (I would like to make videos of things on my Desktop including sound. I have also been wanting to record my game play with the PCSX to show off)
  • Webdesign (Be able to create web sites while learning PHP, MySQL, etc...)
  • Broadcast Video/Audio live ( I do have a cheap Logitech Web cam, I am going to be configuring a Network Server but don't have it up yet)
  • Windows Apps and Games ( I have games such as Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto Vice City, Need for Speed Most Wanted, Need for Speed Carbon, and Final Fantasy VII that I would like to be able to play on my Linux Machine)
For videos, DVD and even the odd mp3 I recommend vlc.
Your choice of browser eith the needed plugins for You Tube etc.
I have no experience with video editing, so I'll leave that to someone else to answer.
RecordMyDesktop has worked for me in the past, however, it records sound from the soundcard's capture input. (i.e. microphone) To get it to record the sound output, I used a patch cord between the mic and ear sockets.
For website design, install Apache server and php. There are various options for learning although I'm partial to the w3c tutorials.
For video streaming, use an rtsp server.
For Windows software, you have two options, playonlinux or Crossover. With playonlinux, it's free, with Crossover, it's a commercial product.
Although I prefer to use Windows for Windows Games.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 04:08 AM   #3
i92guboj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
I know what I want to be able to do with the final outcome but not sure what is needed to get there.

Apps that I know that I want:
  • Rakarrack (I play guitar and use my computer as a practice Amp plus recording studio)
  • PCSX (I have a bunch of older psx games that I have started to play again since the move to Linux from windows)
For the former, you will need as low latency as your sound hardware is capable of. Investigate the jack audio connection kit, which is aimed precisely for this kind of task. Depending on your concrete hardware and needs you might need to patch your kernel with the real time patchset, though I think that nowadays that shouldn't be strictly necessary.

For the later, it's been long since I used pcsx or any other ps emulator, but they usually work well enough even in older hardware, provided that you have correctly setup your graphics system and you are using the right driver.

Quote:
DVD Movies in Fullscreen (I want to be able to watch DVD's in fullscreen without the slideshow effect and have the audio nsync)
Usually just a matter of having the right video driver as well. vlc or mplayer should serve you well. Xine is not that well maintained nowadays (if at all).

Quote:
[*]Videos via YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, etc... (The same as the DVD's)
Some pages might require the flash plugin for that, so, the only thing you need to care about if you are going to require flash, is that you will probably be better with a 32 bits installation, or at least, a multilib OS, so you can run the 32 bits plugin. Some people do not experience problems with the 64 bits plugin, but some others do, so, to be on the safe side...

Quote:
[*]Edit or create Videos/DVD's
There are some non-linear video editors for linux, like this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...iting_software

You also have some simpler video editors, like avidemux or devede. The mplayer suite also brings mencoder, which can do some simple operations like combining streams, cut portions of video and convert between formats. There are lots of small tools that allow similar things in the command line.

Quote:
[*]Desktop recording (I would like to make videos of things on my Desktop including sound. I have also been wanting to record my game play with the PCSX to show off)
There's a program called, unsurprisingly, "recordmydesktop". I don't do this kind of stuff so I am not sure how well it works. I've used it a couple times in the past. I have no idea if it can also capture sound. You might need to capture that with some other tool and then combine the audio and video streams into a contained using avidemux or mencoder.

Quote:
[*]Webdesign (Be able to create web sites while learning PHP, MySQL, etc...)
All you need for that is to setup your local server, then open a text editor that you like, and start programming

There are guides about setting a lamp server, for example this one:
http://library.linode.com/lamp-guides/gentoo

Quote:
Broadcast Video/Audio live ( I do have a cheap Logitech Web cam, I am going to be configuring a Network Server but don't have it up yet)
vlc can do streaming, check that you emerge it with the needed USE flags.

Quote:
Windows Apps and Games ( I have games such as Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto Vice City, Need for Speed Most Wanted, Need for Speed Carbon, and Final Fantasy VII that I would like to be able to play on my Linux Machine)
You should check the winehq web site, and see if they are in the list of supported games. I am not a gamer so I can't really comment on any of these, but from what I remember, those games do have their age, so there's a good chance that they will work well under wine. But, it usually requires some amount of work to get them working. In any case, check their web site, you can usually find instructions, and solutions for any problem that might arise when installing those games.

Quote:
The unknown that I've seen videos on YouTube of and would like:
Code:
The link is a Youtube video that shows an example
 http://youtu.be/PAM8ei9cm9k
with my video card being an older one, I don't know if I can do like the video but I would like to have a similur setup.
I like the layout and the effects.
I really know not much about the current status of desktop effects, I don't use them. But that video has its age as well. AIGLX is no longer something that you need to care about, its functionality has been integrated into the x server. The effects manager is probably beryl, which diverged from the original compiz codebase long ago. But bery doesn't exist any longer, it was merged back into the new compiz codebase, which was renamed to compiz-fusion. I have no idea about what's the current status of compiz-fusion, but all I know is that it has been recently masked in portage, and it is going to be removed soon. That's probably because upstream no longer maintains it. It has always been buggy anyway.

Modern desktops, like gnome and kde, do offer their own set of desktop effects, so I would go into that direction. They are maintained, and bugs get fixed sooner or later. But, as said, I don't really know what their capabilities are because I am not into that kind of shiny stuff.

Regarding your hardware, the only thing that really matters to be able to play desktop effects is the opengl capabilities of your graphics system. That involves your hardware, but it involves more your driver. I'd use the radeon open source driver, make sure that kms is enabled in your kernel, and leave it do autoconfiguration. Make sure that you select the gallium opengl backend, which is safer and faster.

For that, you need to make sure that you emerge the mesa libraries with USE="gallium -classic", make also sure that you have this in your make.conf file

Code:
VIDEO_CARDS="radeon r600"
That is, if your video card is r600 based. I am not 100% sure right now. lspci will probably give you a hint about that. Otherwise, you might need to use an unstable mesa ebuild from the x11 overlay which might have support for newer cards.

After that, you can use "eselect mesa list" to make sure everything is ok.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 05:17 AM   #4
414N
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
  • PCSX (I have a bunch of older psx games that I have started to play again since the move to Linux from windows)
PCSX is unmaintained since 2003 and is not 64 bit compilable IIRC. I guess its ebuild will compile it for 32 bit execution and it won't be a problem if you chose to build a 64 bit multilib system.
There are at least a couple of other psx emulators for Linux out there though: pSX and epsxe.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
DVD Movies in Fullscreen (I want to be able to watch DVD's in fullscreen without the slideshow effect and have the audio nsync)
This shouldn't be a problem with your system. Make sure to install the opensource graphics drivers (xf86-video-ati, mesa etc.) and you should be good with xv acceleration.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
Videos via YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, etc... (The same as the DVD's)
These videos heavily exploit Adobe's Flash Player, which is a kinda heavy processor load on an "ancient" system like yours. On my system (an Athlon 64 FX55 + Radeon X800) I discovered that Flash was sluggish as hell with KDE's desktop effects activated, so I had to turn them off for the time being in order to properly see Flash content. I guess this also answers your question about fancy desktop effects
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
Edit or create Videos/DVD's
Here your GPU is useless, as all the required processing happens in the CPU. I guess you can do all the video editing you want provided you're a patient guy
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
Windows Apps and Games ( I have games such as Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto Vice City, Need for Speed Most Wanted, Need for Speed Carbon, and Final Fantasy VII that I would like to be able to play on my Linux Machine)
You'll need wine to try running those games. You could use PlayOnLinux which is just a front-end which simplifies programs installation and configuration, but you'll have to look if your games/programs are supported first in PlayOnLinux list, then on wine's appdb site.
Keep in mind that performance, generally, won't be the same as that on Windows.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 05:25 AM   #5
i92guboj
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Desktop effects are indeed a game of luck. Some of them won't perform ok on your system (like that fireburning thing in the video you linked). Basic ones should work fine though, but some programs might suffer from a really high penalty when compositing is enabled, as 414N very well said above. wine will be one of those. Video playback should be fine these days, but it can depend on the codecs involved and the video quality. Some formats need loads of cpu to be decoded and this can be a problem when using some desktop effects.

KDE lets you instantly switch them on/off with a key combo (something involvind f12, don't really remember...), probably you can achieve similar results in other desktops with a bit of work.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 06:11 AM   #6
dwmolyneux
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i92guboj View Post
Modern desktops, like gnome and kde, do offer their own set of desktop effects, so I would go into that direction. They are maintained, and bugs get fixed sooner or later. But, as said, I don't really know what their capabilities are because I am not into that kind of shiny stuff.
Normally I'm all about performance over "Digital Bling" but have just hit a point that I would like to have something I can just show off. As a kid growing up I never had anything to even brag about let alone show off. Now I have said NO to Microsoft and turned to Linux, I'd like to find a balance. On my computers, anyway, I have boycotted all Microsoft products, but my roommate still loves his Windows XP Professional
 
Old 06-11-2012, 06:29 AM   #7
414N
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwmolyneux View Post
Normally I'm all about performance over "Digital Bling" but have just hit a point that I would like to have something I can just show off. As a kid growing up I never had anything to even brag about let alone show off. Now I have said NO to Microsoft and turned to Linux, I'd like to find a balance. On my computers, anyway, I have boycotted all Microsoft products, but my roommate still loves his Windows XP Professional
If your desire for fancy desktop is only for demonstrating how a system running Linux can be fancy, than you can install whatever desktop environment you want and show those effects to an admiring audience, but for your daily use I suggest to turn those effects off or switch to a different, lighter, desktop environment altogether.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 06:41 AM   #8
dwmolyneux
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On Gentoo, can both gnome and Xfce, be installed at the same time, giving the option to choose which one at the time of login, without anytype of conflict or problems?

I know that on other distros, you can but all I really know about Gentoo, is what I have read on here, the Gentoo site, and seen on Youtube.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 09:52 AM   #9
i92guboj
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Yes. They all can live together.
 
Old 06-11-2012, 10:11 PM   #10
dwmolyneux
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Having Display issues my post for it can be found here
 
  


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