Archive for the ‘*Nix’ Category

Ultumix is comming soon to a Desktop near you!

Saturday, January 19th, 2008


LOOK OUT! Ultumix is running faster than ever thanks to the new XFCE interface. It’s running so fast with such a small RAM requirement that It does not even slow my PC down when I start it up in a Virtual Machine.

But thats not what makes Ultumix so cool. I found a Start Button on the internet that looked very similar to the XP start button. It looked so similar that I decided it needed some tweaking first. Basically it’s like an ICE version of the XP start menu button if there is such a thing. It’s a cool blue button with START in Big Red Letters across it. No more excuses to not use this OS.

Now there is one thing or make that two things that are driving me crazy. First of all I can’t edit the start menu the way I’d like too because it’s not KDE. The editor only lets me have some abilities. The second thing is that I can’t just right click on the icons in the menu and add them to the desktop.

However in XFCE there are no monitor resolution problems. This is a very good Plus.

In order to add the applications to the desktop I will need to write down the commands used to open each one. It also appears the link to writer is broken in the menu. It opens office but it does not open a document.

There is a lot of work to be done yet to make it more Windows user friendly but I’m getting there. The hardest thing yet may be to edit the GRUB and boot splash.

LiGNU Wallpapers….

Saturday, January 19th, 2008

Yes.  I figured I’d go ahead and use GIMP to make a rudimentary wallpaper.LiGNU Wallpaper image

Click the thumbnail to open a new window to see the image in all its glory.  Let me know what you think.  If anyone wants to submit an image, please feel free to let me know.  😉

Working on LiGNU…

Thursday, January 17th, 2008

Yup.  You heard it man.  I am working on LiGNU, which is PCLinuxOS with a face lift.  It is an experiment of sorts, and I hope I do a good job on it.  This may even be a good way to spring into tutorials on how to customize certain aspects of any distribution.  The system itself will have menus that are reorganized to where a user migrating from Windows-based technology can better navigate it.  In addition, important desktop shortcuts may be added.  So here is where you come in.  😀

I am also changing the default HTML documentation for all web browsers.  You know, the local page introducing you to PCLinuxOS.  The layout is fine as it is (and well done I might add… bravo).  What I need to change is the text, some links, and the big banner graphic right at the beginning.  The first two are pretty much a done deal.  I can get those myself.  What I am asking is for a banner that has the word LiGNU plastered right in the center of it.  It must be 760×141.  I am asking about this because I am not the best in the world at graphics manipulation.  If there are not any takers, I will give it a shot anyway.  However, I would like to see if anyone else is interested in showing off their creativity.  Any submissions will be copyrighted by the creator of said submissions, so fear not.  Your work remains your own, but you by submitting your work, you allow me to use it in LiGNU itself.  😉

Forgotten Word of Thanks.

Saturday, January 12th, 2008

We all forget things from time to time.  It happens to the best of us and the worst of us.  I have forgotten many things in the past several months (and some may never forgive me, but that’s life attempting to teach me a few lessons), but the one important thing that I have forgotten the most as we are now in the New Year is to give credit where credit is due.

Thank You Bob Moore

Last year was the beginning of a few interesting things for me.  One of them was the initiation of the Tux500 Project, an attempt to have Tux plastered on an Indy500 car.  Bob was the guy who started the effort to raise enough money to have that logo on a race car for millions of fans watching at the track or on television and listening on the radio.  The negative backlash is not what is important at this point.  What was important was the fact that were it not for me going through every *nix distribution on DistroWatch in an attempt to communicate with the webmasters and/or developers on those sites, I never would have stumbled upon the NimbleX site, and I never would have met Bogdan, the main developer of such an interesting distribution.  I also would not have learned the hard way that not everyone appreciates PDF attachments in their e-mail.  I was able to connect to more people because of it.  Thanks goes to Bob Moore for such an inspiring idea.

Thank You Cathy Malmrose

The CEO of ZaReason is destroying stereotypes with every passing day.  Contrary to what some may believe, women can work with technology, and as far as I am concerned, more women need to be in technology.  Many of them are able to take note of even the slightest detail.  She loves the idea of sharing software with the world and allowing others to contribute to such a positive undertaking.   Thank you Cathy for all that you do and continue to do.  Also, thanks so much for taking time out of your busy day so that I could interview you.  The experience was quite wonderful and enlightening.

Thank  You Devnet

When it came to off the wall accusations against you, I was quite surprised.  You see, I know of the concept of friends over the web, but how many of them are in regular contact on the phone?  Not very many.  You and helios have not allowed other forms of conflict to hamper your friendship, and that is a trait I truly admire.  When it came to a fellow FOSS enthusiast being accused of wrong-doing, you were fair about the whole ordeal and did not allow bias to skew your judgment.  That is quite commendable.

Thank You helios

Were it not for your blog entry on changing an entire company over to a *nix platform in defiance of the Business Software Alliance, I never would have encountered you.  I was doing a story on the dark side of Microsoft when I stumbled upon that entry.  I was reading, and was quite interested.  You are one of the few people in life who has shown a great amount of patience, and I am one of the most annoying people on the face of the planet.  Thanks so much for not screaming at me ever and for being such a powerful comrade in the fight for software freedom.  There is quite a ways to go yet, but were it not for efforts such as yours, we would not be in the position we are in right now.

And Finally, Thank You Justin Breithaupt

I was doing a show on TruthNet Radio Network.  It was a live show via Skype and I was of course promoting Tux500, which I believe is how I first encountered you.  It was incredible.  I was floundering really badly.  You called in to the show and made the rest of it great.  You sold me an excellent notebook after doing hour after hour of research into what would be the best for the lowest price.  You under-charged me.  😉

Thanks everyone, and may this year be the start of all of us taking the initiative to further promote freedom from Microsoft.  Stay tuned, for I am going to announce a project that will be independent and help other projects at the same time.  🙂

NimbleX Needs You!

Friday, January 11th, 2008

For those of you who haven’t checked it out yet, go to the NimbleX site and check out this *nix distro. It’s quite interesting, but not as interesting as the Custom NimbleX creation utility on the web. It allows you to create your own custom LiveCD. In other words, you have a choice of applications and in some cases, drivers. You can also set your wallpaper and sounds (startup and shutdown). It’s a pretty cool idea if you ask me.

I will warn you however, that the Custom NimbleX page that Bogdan created consumes quite a bit of bandwidth and storage space. Therefore, he is going to need all the help he can get. The widget below will allow you to donate whatever you can to him. If you’re strapped for cash at the moment, there is another way to help out: click the “copy” tab, then the “copy” button. Then paste the code into your blog, site, MySpace, etc…. In other words, spread the word.

A Working Environment….

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

This’ll be short and sweet folks. I would like to set up both of my computers so that I can continue doing blogging effectively and other things on this website (which I should have been nagged at by now, but luckily, I was not).

So, what ideas do you have? What productivity software should I have? Just let me know, and I’ll take it all into consideration. Thanks. Oh, and by the way. If you haven’t checked out NimbleX by now, feel free to do so, and please donate whatever you can to the developer as well. They’re doing original things with a *nix distro. 😉

FOSS Blogging Has its Perils

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Oh yeah.  This post is going to be biggie.  Not as in a big deal, but as in the size of said post.  I will not be talking of blogging alone, but blogging FOSS.  FOSS blogging can be quite fun.  Sharing the excitement of having tested another distribution of *nix (or sharing disappointment of wasting said time… depends on the experience) or sharing an opinion on the happenings of FOSS today can be an interesting experience to say the least.  However, blogging is not always without peril.

In the past, I stated how I would not promote my own writings on LXer due to being ripped to pieces over an entry that I eventually wound up deleting.  So why did I come out of my exile of sorts with a blog post that made the front page of that news site?  It was inspiration of sorts, which I will go into first.  The second part of this post will take into account Bruce Byfield’s follow up entry to his prior writing on his blog.  Shall we begin?

Flushing Fear Down the Toilet

I will be the first to admit that I do not like being told when I am wrong in any way shape or form.  Who does?  When I spewed a few choice words out of my keyboard concerning James Burgett and the trouble he was having with a state organization, even he criticized me in his own blog over my entry, and rightly so.  Not only that, but I was slammed pretty hard by another reader on LXer.  Then I read the comments concerning Justin Briethaupt’s follow-up on the situation with Newegg…

Before I go on any further, you may want to read this first.  It explains how this blog has multiple authors.  Each author will of course have a different style.  As of right now, there are two active authors: Justin and myself.

I read the comments concerning his consumer report, and my mind began to race.  Then I read this entry from Bruce Byefield that I wholeheartedly disagreed with, which resulted in my previous entry.  I began to think to myself, “You know…. it takes courage to endure all those comments against what was posted.”  It was those two moments combined that caused me to realize what an intellectual coward I have been.  Scott Ruecker of LXer said it best concerning Justin’s follow-up…

“In order to think critically about something and stand a chance of coming to a accurate decision or stance on an issue or issues you have to be presented with and have access to information that you agree and disagree with.”

I could not have said it better myself.  After all, Justin was trying to do something that I myself was only willing to dream up and talk about for eternity and getting reamed over and over again by the same people, and yet I was too scared to expose myself to criticism from a few readers who can have a different mood at different times?  Intellectual cowardice indeed….

So yes, I am coming out of exile of sorts concerning LXer.  I am limiting myself if I choose not to do so at this point.  The time to hide from everybody’s criticism is over.  Even if I only posted on this blog, it is one thing I will not be able to escape, because unlike other bloggers out there, I don’t axe legitimate comments (ones that are spam however are treated appropriately).   So next up is my response to Byfield’s follow-up post in response to the feedback that others have provided to his writing concerning conspiracy theorists in FOSS.  Prepare to be surprised.

Open Hand to Bruce Byfield

 “With all the people baying for my blood – some of whom, frankly, sound disingenuous in their demands for proof – the entry could easily take over my life, so in the last couple of days, I’ve withdrawn from active discussion of it.”

Bruce,  I certainly hope that you did not perceive me as wanting your hide or anything of that nature.  I was confused when you were making the broad statements in your previous blog entry.  To me, it was like lighting a barn on fire and walking away from it, thus forcing everyone else to deal with said fire.  Perhaps my humor was misplaced or of the wrong variety when I asked those two very sarcastic questions of mine earlier.  Perhaps it was nothing more than an insult.  Either way, my apologies.

Now let us take a look at another tidbit of what Byfield wrote.

“To start with, I notice that Brian Profitt’s suggestion that I was lashing out at some negative criticism I received has been seized on by some commenters as a reason to dismiss what I said.”

Hopefully, I was not one of those individuals who was perceived as having said that.  Also, in my opinion, to suggest that Profitt of was suggesting that you were lashing out goes a bit far.  Here is a sample from what Profitt wrote:

“Byfield, who I think is an excellent writer, by the way, may be projecting a little bit of his own defensiveness in this entry. I know he’s been on the receiving end of some harsh criticisms in the past, and I know from personal experience it’s pretty disheartening.”

I know the feeling to a degree myself.  I believe there is a difference between lashing out and being defensive, since lashing out implies (to me) that one is on the offensive.

That’s not to say that I don’t find people’s reactions fascinating – and more than a little intellectually distressing, since I’m an ex-university instructor who once spend his days trying to help people develop their abilities to argue coherently.

Here is another tidbit of opinion from me on the subject of debate and arguing.  There are traditional academic methods and methods that are considered unorthodox and unacceptable.  It reminds me of the beginnings of the Revolutionary War in America, in which the standard rules of war was not followed by the Minutemen who would pick off soldiers from the British army one by one while hiding behind rocks and trees.  During that time, it was considered inappropriate and uncivilized to fight in such a manner.  Suffice it to say that declaring that a position of prestige was once held is not going to sway me very much.  Read on further to understand why.

“But I think my favorite response was from a commenter who assumed the responsibility of giving me elementary advice about how to write. I’m always willing to learn, but, considering that last year I sold roughly a quarter million words about free software, now I know the spirit in which Lauren Bacall responded a few years ago on hearing that she had been voted one of the sexiest elderly women in film. ‘That will certainly pep up my career,’ she said (or something to that effect). ‘I can’t wait to tell my agent.'”

Look man, I could care less if you were on the New York Times best seller list.  When it comes to blogging about anything, including FOSS and discussion of technology in general, all the titles of prestige, all the accomplishments of the past, no matter how great, are stripped away.  At that point, the only thing left is people talking to one another (and in some cases, at another).

“No more working out of ideas publicly for me – from now on, I need to make sure that I state my assumptions clearly, and address opposing views in more detail, and not publish on certain subjects until my ideas are fully developed.”

On the other half, it would help.  However, not working out an idea publicly is something I disagree with to a degree.  While Justin Breithaupt’s consistent stream of criticism was the ignition switch for my mind, it was your situation that cranked my mind over, thus causing me to realize that I should not be so afraid of criticism from others.  Listen.  There is a way to work out ideas publicly.  In the title or at the beginning of a blog entry, indicate that it is a rough draft of sorts (or a brainstorming session).  I believe that WordPress also allows the creation of categories, so things can be tagged under something such as “brain storms” or “sand box.”  Whatever tag labels you want are up to you.   Of course what I am saying are merely suggestions as well.

I disagree with closing things down in a sense.  Why not open up a bit more instead?  To me, that is an excellent way of learning from each other, and if there is that constant nagging person who constantly annoys the dickens out of you, then you always have the option to ignore them at that point.

Overall, I would like to thank you for acknowledging a lesson that I am still learning today.  When it comes to blogging, you are never going to be without feedback, even if it comes in the form of a spam-bot or an individual who vehemently  disagrees with you.  I know that I do not know enough about you, but I still want to share my views with you.  So please, keep sharing yours with me and everyone else.

Opinion: FOSS Supporters Need to Think for Themselves.

Monday, January 7th, 2008

I’m sure everyone who is reading this is quite curious by the title of this blog post.  Don’t FOSS users already think for themselves?  After all, they use operating systems that utilize some variation of the Linux kernel.  Many utilize Firefox (or Iceweasel) and (or Abiword and Gnumeric).  Many of those who utilize free and open source software read related news sites and blogs pertaining to events, news, opinions, and more.  As of late, I have become slightly disappointed to say the least.

Half of the disappointment concerns a popular FOSS news site, and the other is an individual who believes that Microsoft bashing needs to come to a halt and that anyone who essentially disagrees will be seen as nothing more than a conspiracy theorist.  So, who is up first?

A Portion of the LXer Readership

Yes, I am somewhat disappointed by some of the LXer readership, particularly after reading this forum post here.  For starters, an assumption is made that Justin Breithaupt was angry with Newegg.  That is not the case.  He was simply asked to post any updates with interactions with the Newegg representative.  Nothing more, nothing less.  But this tidbit by remi troubled me…

We get that you’re upset, but please respect the LXer readers and calm down and try to make better distinctions between what is and is not news worthy. I’ve read the blog posts. I’ve read the comments here and there. There’s nothing news worthy about any of it. This belongs on a personal blog, not on the front page for all to see. Yeah, I’m sure you’ll rant on about free speech or something and that’s wonderful … that’s not what I’m saying. You can speak freely, but are you responsible enough to be given the power to speak at a pulpit that all the world hears *without* abusing that power by announcing your *personal* troubles to the world?

The problem is not so much the other comments, but the idea that somebody doesn’t like to see a company they like being criticized.  Alright.  I can understand that.  It’s easy to jump in when a popular distribution such as Ubuntu gets criticized because it happens to be a favorite of the one defending it against the criticism, even if said criticism was constructive, but the idea of blaming the editors for not preventing other readers from thinking for themselves goes a bit far in my view.  What happened to thinking and coming to one’s own conclusions?

Here’s an example.  Quite a while ago, I went on a big rant concerning James Burgett when he was having issues with state environmental regulations.  I let my emotions get the best of me.  Was I censored by the editors?  Oh no.  I was torn to shreds by the readers.  It caused me to change my position and rethink how I was going about with blog posting and writing a full-blown article.  Now that’s the type of thinking I’m looking for, not, “This is bad, so we shouldn’t have to see it.”  Well, don’t read it then.  It’s not that hard.  When reading FOSS-related sites/blogs, there is bound to be something that any reader is going to disagree with, and they said reader should simply get over it and move on (and of course voice their opinion, but expect a response countering what they are saying).

So here’s a few tips of my own, which are opinion based, so feel free to disagree:

  1. While it is understandable that a blog author may make assumptions based on opinions of other experts and/or other individuals, don’t counter with an assumption of your own.  This is the world wide web of course, and with such things, except with say, Skype and other programs, it is virtually impossible to interpret the true emotions of the person posting.
  2. It’s perfectly alright to disagree with a blog post or a website article.  A site and blog operate off of different principles (one being automated, and another not-so-automated).  However, don’t assume that something isn’t newsworthy.  As they say, one person’s junk is another’s treasure.  In other words, think for yourself and allow others to do the same.
  3. LXer wasn’t made for the editors: it was made for everyone who reads the site.  If something is commonly interpreted as completely garbage, and I dare say, insane, you bet there will be readers who will jump at the chance to prove the person wrong and come up with points of their own.

So in short, please don’t assume how a particular author of any article or blog post feels, and definitely allow others the opportunity to think for themselves.  The fact that editors offer the opportunity to other readers to decide for themselves what is deemed worthy of discussion is an indication that they may believe that the readers are intelligent.  Finally, don’t pretend to be speaking for an entire group.  No individual ever does.

Next Up, Bruce Byfield

Oh yes.  I put this off for quite some time, as LXer readers have commented on one of his articles in which he stated that it was time to get over Microsoft.  I read it.  I also read his blog post in which he suggests that not everyone who uses alternatives are Microsoft haters.  Such a blog post is certainly understandable.  After all, there are those who simply use the alternatives because they fit their needs better than Microsoft-based solutions.

However, when he posted his opinion on what he believed were the characteristics of conspiracy theorists, a couple of very important questions came to mind.  Bruce, what are you smoking, and more importantly, what are you snorting?  In other words, are you on drugs?

That was a bit of humor on my part, in which you stated that “Don’t expect a sense of humor, either – that’s usually lost with the self-reflection. If they call you a ‘Microsoft shill’ and you ask, ‘Where can I send an invoice?’ they’ll assume you’ve just revealed your true allegiance, not that you’re making a joke.”  Yes, so called conspiracy theorists do have a sense of humor and more than likely will know a joke when they see one, especially since they are capable of making jokes themselves.  Let us now examine a brief portion of his blog post concerning alleged conspiracy theorists:

However, you should also bear in mind that you can’t win. Try to refute a conspiracy theorist, and you simply prove to them that you’re the enemy. In the end, the best thing you can do for yourself – to say nothing of free software – is to stop responding to the conspiracy theorist as soon as you realize the type of person you’re dealing with. The time you spend dealing with a conspiracy theorist will be put to much better use writing code, persuading a friend to try free software or dealing with the real threats to the community instead of the imaginary ones.

First of all, it is not about winning.  It never is.  it is about learning from a different point of view.  If one can not read and understand a different point of view despite disagreement, then they have intellectual limitations.  Such a thing is true no matter what subject is discussed, whether it be software itself or religion.  Let us examine another tidbit from Byfield’s blog.

disregard for the rules of evidence: The wise pundit looks for evidence that would hold up in a court of law – that is, establish a point beyond a reasonable doubt. By contrast, conspiracy theorists have no such restraint. For instance, if a company has hired a former Microsoft executive, that is proof that the company is controlled by Microsoft. Never mind that Microsoft is so large that any North American company has a good chance of hiring a former Microsoft executive – the one tenuous connection is enough to establish proof for a conspiracy theorist. Key phrase: “Can it be coincidence that . . . ?” (Sometimes, yes)

Yes, Microsoft is a large corporation, which also has plenty of influence on U.S. politics, or have you forgotten about thatHow about the influence on world leaders?  Yes, the President of China visited Bill Gates himself way before giving George W. Bush the time of day.  Think about that for a moment.  Of course, other interesting tidbits can be picked up in an article that I wrote myself, but then again, I am quite certain that you know most of what I cite.  Additionally, I wrote about an individual who once worked for Microsoft.  In order to avoid retaliation of any sort, they chose not to have their name revealed.  So I suppose that not all former Microsoft employees are bent on “world domination.”

Of course when a group of concerned individuals begin voicing their views on Novell and Microsoft, can one blame them, especially after the other things that the Redmond Giant has pulled in the past?  I think “The Beez” had it right on this one. He said that, “If you do not win a discussion you may be defeated but that doesn’t mean you have to be a loser.”  Right on.

Who else has added to the discussion?  Why the Boycott Novell group of course.   They have also countered Byfield with this post as well.  Brian Proffitt of LinuxToday has also added a balanced perspective to this debate.  So what’s the point of all of this?

Returning to Byfield’s blog, I noticed a comment from Patrick, a reader of the blog.  He said, “Well, put your cards on the table. Where is the proof of your contentions. Who is showing the signs you are talking about? A few url’s please.”  It’s fair enough to ask for evidence as one reader of this blog has asked Justin to do in a prior post.  What does Byefield give to Patrick?  Here is his response to Patrick quoted below:

“I said at the start of the blog entry that I wasn’t going to specify who I was talking about. I won’t give them the attention, and I don’t have the time or inclination to start what seems likely to be an endless discussion.

And if that’s not good enough for you — well, you are reading a blog entry. It’s an expression of opinion.

However, if anyone else wants to suggest a candidate for discussion, please go ahead. But I’m not going to participate in the discussion much.”

So Bruce.  Why broach the subject in the first place if you are not going to offer information to support your claim.  I would certainly like to know who has been wild eyed lately, so that I can potentially learn from their mistakes.  However, you have opted not to do so.  You lit a fire and walked away.  This is but a blog, but I myself tend to link to plenty of other resources that support what I am saying.  Those resources also link to yet more resources that may have views that I do not agree with.  That is fine with me.


The whole point of this blog post is to argue one thing: think for yourself.  Even if it means you will read something you do not like.

To the readers of LXer, please keep thinking for yourselves.  If you want to shred what I wrote to pieces, feel free to do so.  In fact, I beg you to do so as I will learn from the end result of it.

Users of FOSS need to think for themselves, rather than be led by one person or another on the Internet.  That especially includes myself, the author of this blog post.  It is not about the freebie part of FOSS that is the most rewarding: it is the potential of raising the level of the mind. Consumer Report.

Saturday, January 5th, 2008 Consumer Report.

Well about a month ago I submitted a story to suggesting that we boycott The original story is below.


“Should the Linux community boycott

I’m beginning to wonder myself. My uncle bought a $1200.00 laptop that didn’t work right brand new and wanted to return it for a refund in under 30 days. In the US its illegal not to refund someone’s money for a defective product or a product that is not as described and everyone has the right to return something that is new.

“Desktop PC, Notebook, and Tablet PC Return Policy
Return for refund within: non-refundable
Return for replacement within: 30 days (defective items only)

This is our Detailed Desktop PC, Notebook and Tablet PC Return Policy. Under this policy all Desktop PCs/Notebooks/Tablet PCs are non-refundable, and this supersedes all other return policies. There are NO EXCEPTIONS to this policy. Any Desktop PCs/Notebook/Tablet PC that is deemed defective may be returned for a replacement within 30 days only, but a request for refund will not be granted. If a Desktop PC/Notebook/Tablet PC is returned for a replacement, but no problems are found, the Desktop PC/Notebook/Tablet PC will be returned at your (the buyer’s) expense. You should be certain in your decision to purchase a Desktop PC/Notebook/Tablet PC and must agree to this policy before completing your order. By confirming your order, you indicate your agreement to this policy.

A defective Desktop PC, Notebook, or Tablet PC that is returned for a replacement may be repaired or replaced at’s discretion, unless otherwise required by law. We strive to uphold our standard RMA processing time for these types of items; however, in some situations the item must be sent to the manufacturer for repairs. Unfortunately Newegg cannot expedite the RMA repair process in these situations, as we must abide by the manufacturer’s established processing time. If you have a question regarding a Desktop PC, Notebook, or Tablet PC RMA, please contact our Customer Service Department.” is not obeying the law and has you agreeing that they can break it with every purchase of a Laptop, Desktop, and Tablet PC. This to me sounds like a Microsoft agreement. They don’t trust the customers. I myself have purchased thousands of dollars of their products over the last year for my customers. I know that they are convenient and low cost. However if they don’t trust us why should we trust them? They won’t listen to their customer feedback. I think that the only way to get Newegg to listen is to do the following:

1.Kindly send them letters from everyone in the community stating that we want them to change their return policy before we boycott them.

2.Get the Linux community to decide on a date that we will all boycott and boycott them for at least a month. If we all do this their sales will drop dramatically and they will look into their consumer feedback. It might take them a while if it’s backed up.

3.Resend our letters.

4.If they don’t comply repeat steps 2 – 3 and let all your friends and family know as well as any computer businesses in your area.

5.If they do comply then everyone should send them a letter of thanks but be careful as they can change their policy at any time.

If you think this is what we need to do please comment here. Thanks.”

What shocked me was that after all the calls that I had made to resulting in negative responses someone from contacted me here on The messages you will see below are direct quotes except for the names used and account information.’s responces and comments will be in BOLD.

“Dear usacomputertec,

We Sincerely apologize for any inconvenience you may of had, and Thank you for your informative review. At your earliest convenience please contact me at [] or at ——– ext ——- with your order information so I may make this right for you as we truly care about each and every customer like family here at Newegg and really hate to hear any negative feedback or bad experiences as we try to make every customer’s purchase a positive enjoyable one.

Thank you


Newegg Support”

“Dear, John Doe

This is usacomputertec / Justin Breithaupt from

I purchase thousands of dollars of hardware from you every year and resell it to my customers. I also recommend you to some of my customers and other resellers. I figured that should have counted for something and even mentioned that on the phone to the representatives. All they said was that they had to follow their return policy which is not legal in the US.

Original Product Invoice.

Order Information

Invoice # Order # Order Date Order total CustomerPoNumber  ----- 11/9/2007 1:40:24 AM $1,213.98     Shipping Information  To From Date Method  -----  11/9/2007 11:19:37 AM  UPS Ground   Payment Information Cardholder's Name Card Type Card # Exp. Date  -----        Products   Qty. Product Description Total Price  Item(s) shipped from CA       Tracking Number: ----- Track  1 ASUS A8 Series A8SC-B1 Intel Core 2 Duo T7250(2.00GHz) 14"  Wide XGA 2GB 160GB DVD Super Multi NVIDIA GeForce 8400M G NoteBook -  Retail Item #: N82E16834220225  Return Policy: Desktop PC, Notebook, and Tablet PC Return Policy For Asus Tech Support, Please Call 502-995-0883 or  $1,198.99    Subtotal: $1,198.99  Tax: $0.00  Shipping: $14.99  Amount Paid:  $1,213.98   Special ordered items are not refundable. All items come with  manufacturers warranty only. Open box items come with 15-day warranty only. All  refunds require 15% restocking fee. Do not remove any labels from any  parts or it will result in your  warranty being void. Any wrong or  damaged item must be reported within 7 days. No refund after 30 days, NO CPU  REFUND AFTER 7 DAYS, no exceptions.  PLEASE NOTE:   - If you need to return an item to Newegg, please obtain an RMA by  contacting Customer Service at (800) 390-1119 or clicking "My Account" on  our web page.  - Please save all packaging and accessories. All original equipment,  components, manuals, cables, documents and packaging must be returned  with your item in order for to process your RMA.  Return Policy Text  Desktop PC, Notebook, and Tablet PC Return Policy  Summary   Return for refund within: non-refundable  Return for replacement within: 30 days (defective items only) Detail  This is our Detailed Desktop PC, Notebook and Tablet PC Return Policy.  Under this policy all Desktop  PCs/Notebooks/Tablet PCs are  non-refundable, and this supersedes all other return policies. There are NO  EXCEPTIONS to this policy. Any Desktop PCs/Notebook/Tablet PC that is deemed  defective may be returned for a replacement within 30 days only, but a  request for refund will not be granted. If a Desktop PC/Notebook/Tablet  PC is returned for a replacement, but no problems are found, the  Desktop PC/Notebook/Tablet PC will be returned at your (the buyer's) expense.  You should be certain in your decision to purchase a Desktop  PC/Notebook/Tablet PC and must agree to this policy before completing your  order. By confirming your order, you indicate your agreement to this policy.  A defective Desktop PC, Notebook, or Tablet PC that is returned for a  replacement may be repaired or replaced at's discretion,  unless otherwise required by law. We strive to  uphold our standard RMA  processing time for these types of items; however, in some situations the  item must be sent to the manufacturer for repairs. Unfortunately Newegg  cannot expedite the RMA repair process in these situations, as we must  abide by the manufacturer's established processing time. If you have a  question regarding a Desktop PC, Notebook, or Tablet PC RMA, please  contact our Customer Service Department.  

Policy & Agreement | Privacy Policy | 2000-2007 Newegg Inc.

My customer/uncle who received the laptop is content to keep it now because of all the hassle but we still both believe that return policy is a joke. I’ve even talked it over with people that use to work for the Government that told me it is against the law. So now it’s not a matter of getting a better laptop or getting our money back but just to get to realize that having a no return policy even under 30 days for a return does not comply with US Laws. And even if there is some loop hole where online sales can escape US Law that does not mean that we should be taken advantage of.

With a reputable company like I figure that when I agree to terms and conditions that these terms and conditions are within the laws passed in the US. I’ve had no problem in the past returning items that were DOA or just completely not as described like a USB wireless card that didn’t work right in Window$ or Linux. I felt that that case was handled very well. This laptop that we ordered was described as being very high quality and having a large LCD screen. When we got it not only was the screen smaller than it looked in the picture due to the fact that the manufacturer had put the screen in a tapered hole to make it look bigger but there were numerous other problems that were most likely manufacturer related. The Ethernet didn’t work at first. I installed Linux and left Vista Home Premium on for the customer as well as he requested. (He really wants to become independent of Vista) When we booted Linux it would not recognize the Ethernet connection and when we booted Vista the entire computer would lock up after opening Internet Exploder 7 on the first boot. In order to turn the computer off we had to hold down the power button. 3 reboots later we got Internet Exploder 7 to go directly to and it corrected the problem. I also had to reconfigure Linux to accept the Ethernet card as well. This was very unexpected because the Linux drivers for Ethernet work on any Ethernet device. So you can see how with Vista crashing when trying to access the Internet and not even bringing up a page and Linux not connecting that we thought the Ethernet was broken. Of course that was just the beginning of our fun. The laptop has 2GBs of RAM, a 128MB NVIDIA video card, and a dual core Intel processor and it still runs slower than Mozes with Vista like it is an 800Mhz PC with 128 Mbs of RAM and I know for a fact that cheaper Laptops with the same specs run much faster with Vista on them. To me this hunk of junk should not have been priced at $1,200.00 and been described as being the elite laptop that it was intended to be. We should have been able to send it back and get that $700.00 Gateway laptop that had much better hardware. It was under 30 days.

To be realistic here lets think about this bogus return policy. You walk into a store in the US and you buy a Laptop in the US and you get it home and it does not work. You take it back and they give you your money back and you go somewhere else. Thats the American way and it’s the law. What makes that any different than shopping online?

Thats why I made that comment about signing for something like a package and finding out that you just agreed to sell yourself to a sweat shop in a foreign country and are contracted to work for them for 4 years. That would be signing your rights away to a company. Rights that American citizens have been given by the Government can’t be taken away by contracts or agreements. And Like I said before even if there is some loop hole for selling online that I’m not aware of it’s not right to exploit it in this manner.

The best example of this is the Window$ Vista agreement that gives them the right to invade your privacy, control your computer, deactivate your computer, and you sign away your ownership of any previous Window$ licenses that you used on that computer. Thats like saying that by buying this cell phone from me you no longer own your old phone and will not be credited any money back for your old phone. Of course here is where it gets really good. You can recover from Micro$oft and its suppliers only direct damages up to the amount you paid for the software. You cannot recover any other damages, including consequential, lost profits, special, indirect or incidental damages. (Translation Micro$oft is not responsible for any problems with the software that may cause you loss of money or property unless that value is less than the cost of the software) It also applies even if repair, replacement or a refund for the software does not fully compensate you for any losses; or Micro$oft knew or should have known about the possibility of the damages. So Micro$oft gets to be legally negligent with your permission.

So you can see why someone like me or the other Linux users might react the way I did to your return Policy.

Also for your information

Also I have a few suggestions on how to make more Linux Buyer Friendly like adding a rating for how Linux compatible an item is and if the user had to use a Window$ driver to make the device (like a wireless card) work or if they had to install a Linux driver or if it just worked out of the box. You should also have something that says what percentage of the components were made in the USA if any and where it was assembled. It matters to some of my customers and it matters to me.

Anyway in conclusion I don’t believe that is practicing fair and just business practices. If can’t change their policy to be considered fair business practice then I will buy locally instead of online as some suggest despite the higher prices. The fact that you pay attention to gives me some faith that you will do what is right.”

“Dear Mr. Breithaupt,

Thank you for contacting Newegg.

I’d like to start by once again sincerely apologizing for any inconvenience, I understand your point and totally agree with the things you have explained in this email. Please give me the chance to make this whole ordeal right. I have went ahead and automatically credited your account in good faith for this inconvenience $200.00, please allow 3-5 business days for this credit to post in your credit card. Also, I would love to speak to you by telephone to talk further about this issue if possible, you may contact me at —- at ext —–. Anytime you have any other issues and or concerns please accept my personal offer to become your personnel agent here at Newegg by contacting me directly and if the issue needs an exception I would give it 110% to doing just that. We here at Newegg try for only the best customer service and hope this one issue doesn’t detour you from shopping with us again and I personally will make sure your shopping expirience with us from here on out goes as smoothly as possible.

Thank you,

John Doe

Customer Service Professional

Eggxpert Moderator”

“I am sending this message to my uncle because you have refunded the money to his account as far as I understand and I am sure he will appreciate this gesture greatly.

If you want me to call you on the phone please let me know what the best time is to reach you.

You will be rewarded for your actions when I post the results on as many are curious as to what is going on between you and me.

Some have suggested that I ask you about Linux vendors (such as myself) being able to sell computers on as well as the name brand companies that sell Vista computers primarily. In fact I’ve even thought of a system that would benefit even more.

Because some Linux vendors like me buy our parts from and resell our computers it might be easier if we saved time by advertising our computers on your site and listing the parts (as a group or kit) that are in the computer. Then Linux users could simply buy the kit from and the vendor that is responsible for the hardware being compatible would get commission off of the sales. And further more the buyer could request that the vendor such as myself could build the Kit for them for an extra fee.

I’m sure there are more ways that can attract more customers from the Linux community. I want to help out in any way that I can.”

“Dear Mr. Breithaupt,


Thank you so much for your reply. If possible, can you please put together an email and send it to me with all your information and what you would like us to do so I may pass it on and see what we can do on our end, since we do usually deal with only vendors in that regard. With you sending that email out to me I will be able to further assist you in this matter. If you would like you can contact my via phone at —- ext —– from 8-5 PST.

Thank you,

John Doe

Customer Service Professional

Eggxpert Moderator”

“The vendor thing was just an idea. Mainly I was thinking of other Linux Vendors that have been in the business longer than I have and have more impressive web sites.

Justin Breithaupt
PO Box —
1-2———— Customer number: ------”

“Dear Mr. Breithaupt,

Oh I see, let me ask you this. Is there anything else I may assist you with, or do you have any further questions or concerns ? I want to make sure everything is good and you are a happy Newegg Customer 🙂

Thank you,

John Doe

Customer Service Professional

Eggxpert Moderator”

“The only question I have for you is this.

Are you going to change your policies? Thats what it boils down to.”

“Dear Mr. Breithaupt,


Unfortunately, we have policies Sir and we are unable to change these policies but are more than willing to make exceptions when need be to assist our customers. Also, we are working with our vendors to do what we can to make any possible changes that will benefit you the customer. I understand your point in regards to our policies but they are legal Sir. We will be monitoring the Lxer sight just in case anyone has any issues or concerns and if able we will be more than happy to help them out. I would love to talk to you via phone if you can Sir, you may contact me anytime within 8-5 PST. If you have any further questions or concerns please feel free to contact me personally.


Thank you,

John Doe

Customer Service Professional

Eggxpert Moderator”

Conclusion: I recommend my uncle buy a laptop from My uncle buys it and we are not satisfied with it’s performance or quality. informs me that they have a zero return policy. I complain on Customer Service Professional Eggxpert Moderator contacts me. gives me $200.00 in good faith and tells me they completely agree with everything I said including the part about their return policy being illegal. asks me if I’m happy and if I have any more questions. My last question was if they would change their return policy to comply with US laws. They said no but apparently if you complain here they will be monitoring this site and may make an exception. In the last message it says “in regards to our policies but they are legal Sir” after saying that he agreed 100% with what I said in my first reply to him.

Result: I won’t be buying anything threw unless I can’t find it anywhere else or I need it in a pinch. You can look at this however you want to. I’m trying to be as positive as possible and still retain the facts without being biased.

Is PCLinuxOS Going Backwards? I’m Concerned.

Saturday, December 29th, 2007

Is PCLinuxOS Going Backwards? I’m Concerned. (this is a non-biased post)

I am very concerned for the PCLinuxOS community. A year ago they had a great Linux distribution that any Windows user would gladly switch from. Now however if you try to update PCLinuxOS 2007 (and the new xorg and kernel) it usually won’t continue to boot up. The latest release of PCLinuxOS is Gnome based and as everyone knows Gnome uses an interface and menu that is not recognized by the common Windows User. Of course the official release of PCLinuxOS 2008 will have KDE but there are several mistakes that need to be solved before puttiong out the 2008 Version.

First of all needing to reboot in order to partition your Hard Drive is just wierd.

Second of all you should be able to update the Kernel without a major system melt down.

Third they need all of the Hardware Support that Ubuntu, Mint, and other distros have for the new Laptops and Desktops.

Finally they need to find a way to be more open to their users.

I think maybe the reason that the updates that cause PCLinuxOS to not boot all the way may be a result of configuring the new packages for the Gnome version of PCLinuxOS instead. I am glad the PCLinuxOS community is finally releasing another version after a hole year.

There is a company that followed a similar pattern in development but for a different reason I believe.

First they put out a very solid OS that people enjoyed from 2001 to 2006. Then they tried to replace it with a “better” OS. The problem was no one liked their better OS so they tried to stick with the older one. Now the updates for that OS are causing decreased functionality. This could be because they only design drivers, programs, and updates for their newer OS or it could be because they don’t want people using the old OS. This company is Micro$oft in case you can’t tell. Like PCLinuxOS using Gnome, Mico$oft uses a new interface that confuses people too. It has a strange start menu. They also did away with a lot of the programs in Vista but I hope that has no comparison with the new PCLinuxOS.

Now just for fun why don’t I compare Microsoft to the movie iRobot?

In iRobot you have a story where everyone has a personal robot to care for them that’s 3 laws safe.

  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

But USR (that makes the robots) decides it’s time to upgrade to their latest model. They even offer free trade ins. The new Robots are directly linked to Vickie. An AI mainframe that has access to everything. Vickie comes to the conclusion that she can’t trust humans to take care of themselves because of violence and wars. So she bypasses the 3 laws after numerous updates that she gives the robots remotely. Then the robots start imposing curfews and restrictions on humans.

Micro$oft has done the same thing except they charge us to do it. However they haven’t replaced all of the old XP computers with new better Vista computers yet. They need to figure that part out first. Vista has the ability to be controlled directly by Microsoft both legally and physically. XP can’t be controlled legally without consent but it’s still controlled despite the law. Microsoft has started imposing restrictions on what we can do with our computers. Their new user agreement gives them the Legal rite to add or remove access, programs, or files at will without your permission because you already gave it to them to start using Vista. So it’s a matter of time until Micro$oft will control all of their customers. They have already started doing this to colleges. Colleges who pay rent for Vista have their laptops disabled every 3 months for disconnecting from the Internet. They must call and reactivate their PCs.

The XBOX 360 violates the FCC’s Laws. Their wireless remotes and consoles disable all wireless devices within a given radius of over 100 feet. Just plugging one in will give off enough radiation to disable an entire Wall Mart. A Cisco expert said that his tests proved that the XBOX 360 uses all 12 channels of WiFi which is clearly illegal. The amount of radiation coming from the device is dangerous and can cause cancer. I would not want anyone to be within 20 feet of the thing when it is on let alone the wireless remote control.

The difference between the story of iRobot and Micro$oft is that our Government (if following the current trends and history) will condone everything Micro$oft has done. Another example of FCC violations are high power lines. They put out too much radiation and walking directly under them is bad for you. The FCC discovered this but it would cost too much for the Power Company to put a fence between the poles on both sides and to make a protective tunnel underneath. So we have High Power Lines right out in the open.