Sunday, June 03, 2007

Fedora 7 in operation

Fedora 7 was released May 31 US time, that means Jun 1 at this part of earth. Downloaded & installed it & here is my checklist on what works & what not.

1. nVidia proprietary driver from freshrpms does not work. nVidia proprietary driver from livna works flawlessly though.

yum install kmod-nvidia

2. java

follow instructions from

java plugin for firefox 2.0 does not work. Updating firefox to fixed that.

3. gaim renamed to Pidgin & works.

4. skype for fedora core 5 works fine in fedora 7

5. mplayer from freshrpms works.
(my mplayer essential codec from 20061022 does not play real media, copying windows-essential codec from 20060611 to /usr/lib/win32 fixed that.)

6. Realplayer works following installation instructions from

7. Citrix ICA client works

Download Citrix ICAClient-10.0-2.i386.rpm from

8. Azureus(fedora distro) works

9. DVD media with Chinese characters in label/filesnames ejects when eject button on DVD is pressed. (Hell, it does not work in FC6, I had to do a right-click & eject from the desktop to
eject a DVD)

10. SCIM installed by default, to be activated by

System --> Preferences --> Personal --> Input Method

change to 'use custome input method SCIM'

Relogin needed to have the option activated.

11. "Invisible mouse pointer" bug from nVidia driver for 6150 onboard VGA card

This is not a new problem. It was first discovered in Aug 2006 with FC5. nVidia linux driver for 6150 chipset somehow repeat this problem again in FC7. The following was excerpt from my blog in Aug 2006 on solving this very same problem. And it still works today.
From time to time, I will encounter a strange issue at X, where the mouse pointer becomes invisible. The mouse is obviously still working & it's movement can still be seen when it moves over menu or items on the desktop. It's just invisible.

A search on the net found this bug 182517 filed at redhat. The problem traced back to the nVidia driver. The problem is still unsolved even with nVidia graphic driver release 1.0-8762.

The problem can be patched by adding

Option "HWCursor" "off"

to the VGA driver section at /etc/X11/xorg.conf

Hopefully, it will be resolved in the next nVidia driver release.
My xorg.conf looks like this now:

Section "Device"
Identifier "Videocard0"
Driver "nvidia"
Option "AddARGBGLXVisuals" "True"
Option "DisableGLXRootClipping" "True"
Option "HWCursor" "off"

12. Recording from mic for use with Skype in Linux

(Excerpt from my blog dated December 2006)
After many months of full conversion to linux. I was disappointed yet again with a terrible bug in alsa mixer.

Firstly, I noticed that Skype cannot capture any sound from my mic, despite I can hear my own voice from the mic very clearly.

The first & most down to earth solution was run the followings at command promt:

a. alsamixer
(select capture by pressing 'tab')
(move to mic and press 'space bar' to select capture from mic)
b. for Sound blaster live users, you need to make sure 'AC97' tab volume is not zero.
(move to AC97 & push up-arrove to raise volume close to 90%)
c. /usr/sbin/alsactl store

Now, the method above surely works but it posted another problem. The setting of alsamixer is always reset upon every reboot & it just never remember to 'record from mic'.

Found the methods from the sites below but they just don't work somehow.

After all attempts to set alsamixer settings permanently failed, my friend suggested to create a simple script to set the mixer settings to capture from the mic.

Finally it's done as follow :

a. Create a script file like 'Record_From_Mic' with the content below

amixer sset Mic,0 80%,80% unmute cap

b. At command prompt, do

chmod +x Record_From_Mic

c. From Gnome's menu, goto 'System.Preference.Personal.Sessions'
At 'Startup Program tab', click new & add 'Record_From_Mic' as startup script.

Finally, the settings is overriden at every reboot with the little script above. Thanks to
My Record_From_Mic is as follow:

amixer sset Mic,0 75%,75% unmute cap
amixer sset PCM,0 95%,95%
amixer sset Master,0 80%,80%
amixer sset AC97 Capture, 0 85%,85% unmute cap
amixer sset AC97, 0 85%,85% unmute cap

13. k3b, works. Previously device buffer status not shown during DVD burning. Now everything is displayed.

14. Firewall settings
Under System-->Administration-->Firewall and SELinux
Adding port 5900 for VNC server no longer works. Root of problem unknown.
Work around:
a. vi /etc/sysconfig/iptables
b. add the following line for port 5900

-A RH-Firewall-1-INPUT -m state --state NEW -m tcp -p tcp --dport 5900 -j ACCEPT

c. System-->Administration-->Server settings-->Service--> Restart iptables