jlelse's Blog

Thoughts, stories and ideas

Windows

Translations: Deutsch

The best of both worlds

in 💭 Thoughts

This might sound like a post by a Microsoft fanboy, but honestly, WSL 2 on Windows 10 2004 is really great. It allows me to use Windows on my Surface Go, but at the same time use Linux (Ubuntu 20.04) on it, in a small optimized VM. For example I can run Hugo inside WSL 2 at Linux speed (fast) instead of Windows speed (slow). I just need to take care to save the Git repository with my site files inside the filesystem of the VM and not on Windows (passthrough is really slow).

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Windows Package Manager

in 🔗 Links

I didn’t believe my eyes when I saw this: Windows has an official package manager now. The lack of a package manager was the thing that annoyed me most about Windows. That’s why I always used Chocolatey on Windows, but even that has room for improvement.

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Microsoft is bringing Linux GUI apps to Windows 10

in 🔗 Links

Last year I wrote a tutorial about how it’s possible to run Linux GUI apps on Windows using the Windows Subsystem for Linux. WSL 2 (with an integrated Linux Kernel) is coming soon, but Microsoft announced they are bringing support for Linux GUI apps to Windows 10 too. While I still prefer to use Linux directly, I think it’s still a great announcement and new feature. It’s definitely the year of Linux on the desktop.

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A few months with the Surface Go

in ✍️ Posts

During the last weeks I saw a few reviews (like this one) about long time experience with the Surface Go. I have mine for a couple of months now and finally finished the first semester where it accompanied me for a couple of different tasks. I planned to use my Surface Go to take notes during the lectures to not waste paper or get too distracted using my laptop. That didn’t really work out, because the professor of two of my courses disallowed the use of tablets and computers in the lectures (or at least set high restrictions that weren’t really worth it for me) and I had to write on paper instead.

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What I like about Windows 10

in ✍️ Posts
Translations: Deutsch

Support for Windows 7 ended yesterday. Now you have to pay for future security patches. Therefore it would be advisable to stop using this operating system version and look for another alternative. A common suggestion is to switch to Linux and I agree that you should do so if you are not dependent on any Windows-exclusive programs and there are no alternatives to them. But there are also reasons to continue using Windows (but please version 10).

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Building a new Win 3.1 app in 2019

in 🔗 Links

Yeo Kheng Meng published an article about building a Slack client for the very ancient 16-bit Windows 3.1 (released in 1993) in 2019. It is very interesting to read about the challenges of developing for such an old system. To solve problems, one has to dig in books instead of doing a Google search or asking on Stack Overflow. It was a fun project, but I imagine there are still systems running in production using software as old as Windows 3.

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The Operating Systems I Use

in ✍️ Posts

I use at least eight different operating systems on a daily basis. Windows 10 on my Microsoft Surface Go Ubuntu Desktop on my latpop (Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga S1) Fedora Silverblue on my desktop PC Android on my smartphone (Xiaomi Mi A1) Tizen on my smartwatch (Samsung Galaxy Watch) Ubuntu Server on my mail server (Hetzner VPS) RancherOS on my main server (Hetzner VPS) Armbian on my home server (Odroid HC 2) That sounds like a lot and it’s probably a lot.

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Windows: Running Linux apps with Alpine WSL and VcXsrv

in 👨‍💻 Dev

If you want to use Linux applications on Windows you have multiple options. Using the Windows version of the application if it’s available, cross-compile the app, use a VM or Docker, or use the Windows Subsystem for Linux with a X Server. A small and lightweight WSL distro is Alpine, which is also quite popular in the Docker world. It’s based on musl, uses busybox and just contains the most important things to be functional.

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Linux updates are awesome

in 💭 Thoughts

I just updated my laptop (a Lenovo ThinkPad S1 Yoga) from Ubuntu 19.04 to the new Ubuntu 19.10 (beta). The last time I did a fresh install was one year ago, when I installed Ubuntu 18.10. The whole upgrade process went through within less than 30 minutes, to which I also count re-enabling disabled PPAs (they get disabled to prevent the system from breaking), removing old and obsolete packages and disabling snapd, which got automatically installed, because the native Chromium package in Ubuntu got replaced with the Chromium snap app.

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Windows: External Storages and File Systems

in ✍️ Posts

Yesterday I ordered an external SSD to have a bit more storage on the go when using my Surface Go, but also to exchange files between my devices (it has an USB C cable, so it should even work with my phone). I have a huge (4TB) external HDD already, but that needs more power than what comes out of the USB C port on the Surface, so when I want to use that, I have to use a charging cable and that’s suboptimal.

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Jan-Lukas Else