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Submission + - Playing XCOM on Steam 1

RudyHartmann writes: My main computer that I'm using is an HP xw8600 Workstation. Here is how it's configured:

Dual 3Ghz Quad Core Xeons CPU's
32Gb DRAM Memory
2Tb 7,200 RPM SATA Drive
Nvidia GT520 2Gb Graphics card
Dell 32 Inch 2560 x 1600 Monitor
Logitech MK320 Wireless Keyboard/Mouse

I have Windows 7 Pro 64 bit and Linux Mint KDE 16 64 bit installed with a dual boot option. I have the Steam client installed on Windows and Linux.

There's a sale going on at Valve via their Steam gaming client. I downloaded a few games, but the one in particular I'm playing with is XCOM Enemy Unknown. This game comes in both a Windows and Linux version. I bought it once and it installed on both OS platforms. I struggled trying to get the Windows version working properly. I have all the latest driver updates for Windows. Windows guessed wrong on my hardware. I manually tried to modify the configuration in every way I could think of for 2 hours. When installing it also had to download some other files which included DirectX all over again. It assumed that I was running a gamepad. I am not. The game skipped miserably and often halted for a period. After editing the settings multiple times, there was little improvement. I tried to run it initially at a resolution far lower than what my monitor and card are capable of. No joy ever. It runs terribly.

After rebooting into Linux Mint I fired up Steam. It installed XCOM smoothly without requiring any extra files to be installed. Once Steam told me the game was ready to play, I just clicked it. It ran perfectly the first time with no modifications required.

This is just astounding. I'm so impressed. Linux has become a BETTER gaming platform than Windows. Wow.

Submission + - Refurbished Hardware 1

RudyHartmann writes: My New (Refurbished) HP Monster with Mint 16 KDE

Here is how I bought a great refurbished computer to run Linux. I would also like to make it clear that I have no interest in any of these companies.

I had a Pentium 4 computer for a few years that I had built for myself with an Intel D915GAG motherboard. It proved to be a faithful workhorse but was getting a little old. The motherboard cannot access more than 4G of DRAM and the single core 3 Ghz CPU also needed help. So I decided to upgrade to a newer computer.

But being on a limited budget, I needed to try to get the most bang for the buck as possible. So I noticed on eBay that there were a bunch of used and refurbished Hewlett Packard (HP) xw8600 workstations. These computers have 2 sockets for Intel Xeon processors. So I bought one of them from a company in Minnesota called Server Worlds. They had some refurbished ones at a great price listed on eBay, but they were willing to negotiate with me for a lower price when I called them.

Serverworlds Inc.
17100 Medina Rd. Suite 500
Plymouth, MN 55447 U.S.A.
(763) 557-1181

I bought an xw8600 with a single quad core 3Ghz Xeon for $290. It came with 4G of DDR2 memory, an ATI Radeon Card and a 250 GB SATA drive. They also shipped it with a keyboard and mouse, but no operating system. I called them and asked if they had another Xeon CPU they could install. That CPU with the HP fan cost an extra $75. I couldn't wait to get my hands on it.

When it came in, I pulled the nVidia card out of my old PC and put it in my xw8600. The card has an nVidia GT520 chip with 2G of video memory. I also took the 2TB Seagate Barracuda SATA drive out of the old PC and put it in the xw8600.

The xw8600 is refurbished by Server Worlds. It is clean and looks practically new. Then I bought 32GB of DDR2-667, PC2-5300, Fully Buffered, ECC, 1.8V, 240-pin, memory modules. There are 8 memory slots in the xw8600, so they are in 4GB modules. These are not the regular commodity modules most PC's com with because they have error checking built in. The xw8600 can be expanded to a monstrous 128GB of DRAM memory with special riser cards too. In order to get the proper specifications for memory, you can go to the Micron website. Micron is a US maker of memory chips. After you get a part number and exact specifications you can shop eBay for lots a cheap memory. Here is the website for memory specifications:


Then I installed Mint 16 KDE 64-bit and did all the updates. My PC now can directly access 32G of DRAM with 8 Xeon cores running! I actually only use Windows for work. I much prefer Linux.

I used the entire 2TB drive. Then I booted with a Linux Mint 16 KDE 64-bit DVD. I then downloaded and installed all the latest Linux patches. After this I installed the latest nVidia driver that came with the Mint DVD.

Once I had my computer running properly, I added the Edgers PPA and the latest KDE release from the Kubuntu website. By upgrading Mint Linux 16, you will get a recent modern Linux kernel and nVidia driver 331.38. Go into a terminal and type these commands in to upgrade your drivers and kernel:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xorg-edgers/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

After you have done these steps, reboot and enter another terminal session. We will now upgrade KDE:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:kubuntu-ppa/backports
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

After having done all this, I also installed Windows XP Pro and Windows 7 each in separate virtual machines using VirtualBox. I assigned 4G of RAM to Windows 7 and 2G of RAM to the XP VM.

This is the fastest and most solid computer I have ever had. I could not be happier. For all the specs on my refurbished xw8600, you can get all that from HP's website at:


Submission + - Playing Games Using Linux (pcworld.com)

RudyHartmann writes: "If you are running Linux and are also a gamer, it is getting much easier to get your Windows games to run under Linux. But and even better option is to install native Linux versions of PC games. I have used many of the tricks listed on this website URL below. They work great, but NOTHING works flawlessly. Not all Windows games play flawlessly on Windows and you can expect the same from Linux. I would also encourage you to make sure you have selected the best hardware to run your games with Linux. Though other graphics options have seen improvement, Nvidia is still the Linux Gold Standard for Linux graphics performance and compatibility."

Submission + - Nuclear Fusion Reactors (prometheusfusionperfection.com)

RudyHartmann writes: "While government has been useful in the implementation of huge project developments, they often miss many significant small developments bubbling to the surface. In the energy research field, the Manhattan Project changed the world. But using the same approach for nuclear fusion reactors using tokamaks is probably a dead end government "make work" project. Billions have been spent on tokamaks without success.

There are small research projects which may actually offer the breakthoughs that government behemoth projects may never fulfill.

One of them is the current work to harness nuclear fusion through polywell fusors.

In the 1920's an American farmboy by the name of Philo T. Farnsworth invented the television. Another invention he created was a means of creating nuclear fusion through a device known as a fusor. The fusor has been a good source of neutrons for research, but it has never achieved a greater energy output than the energy required to create the reaction. This may sound crazy, but its all true. Really.

This may all change soon. A variation of the Farnsworth fusor was pioneered recently by Robert Bussard. Although Bussard died, his research is being carried on by many small scale research facilities in many places. They may have a good chance at a "civilization changing" breakthrough.

I encourage you to view these sites to see what may be happening in this interesting energy research field.




Submission + - Flash Must Die, Long Live HTML5! (html5video.org)

RudyHartmann writes: Flash Must Die, Long Live HTML5!

I have read quite a few posts regarding Flash and trying to get it to work. I guess there are more issues with the 64 bit version of Mint and Flash. That is why the Flash video in my Mint 13 KDE is 32 bit. But, Adobe has said they are not going to continue with a Flashplayer for Linux. I have also seen work on LightSpark, which is a FOSS Flash clone in development.


But my son in law is a software engineer and he is just getting into Linux on my advice. He's been a strict MS guy, but I advised him to broaden his horizons. BTW, another friend and developer told me that Linux guys are offered higher salaries than Windows guys lately. Anyway, in a conversation with my son in law, he said HTML5 video playback ability has been in Firefox and some other browsers for a few versions. So, I thought I would try play some. I went to this site:


Wow, works good for me! Anyway, Didn't Microsoft abandon Silverlight too? I know that POS is probably why I can't play Netflix in Linux. Is this true? If so, then what does Netflix plan to do? What about Youtube, Hulu and more?


Submission + - Reflective LCD Technology 2

RudyHartmann writes: "Dr. R. A. Munson from Caltech University has recently discovered a commonly overlooked property of LCD’s. Many of the LCD flat panel monitors today are capable of turning each tiny pixel into a reflective mirror. This technology effectively turns most modern LCD monitors into a large and fairly good reflective mirror. Though the technology is not perfect, it is easy to demonstrate.

The viewable angle on many LCD monitors is limited, so be sure to position yourself squarely in front before you attempt this technology demo. The settings to do this work very quickly, so get ready..Just go to the link below to test it out. You’ll be amazed and like it!


Submission + - Liquid Fluorine Thorium Reactors

RudyHartmann writes: Nuclear reactors are a green, safe and an economical way of producing energy. France produces 80% of it's electricity from nuclear reactors. But, Uranium/Plutonium reactors have their draw backs. The fuel is expensive to process and reprocess. They can have dangerous accidents also. There is a cheap and safer alternative on the horizon. The Liquid Fluorine Thorium Reactor. Thorium is more abundant than Uranium. All of it can be used for fuel also. Only Uranium 235 can be used for fuel. It is only .7% of the Uranium found in nature that can be used for fuel. Plutonium can also be used. It is a nuclear byproduct of Uranium reactors. But Uranium 235 and Plutonium 239 can be used to create nuclear weapons. The byproducts of an LFTR (Liquid Fluorine Thorium Reactor) cannot be used to create nuclear weapons or have a meltdown. Additionally, it costs about $60,000,000 to fuel a reactor to create a gigawatt/year of energy. Thorium could cost as little as $10,000 per gigawatt/year. This would create energy so cheap, that oil, coal, gas, and any other current means of energy production would become irrelevant. LFTR's are what fusion proponents have spent billions to build. They still don't work. You could also burn the accumulated nuclear waste in an LFTR. Don't believe me?



This will transform human civilization. This is not a pie in the sky. Some of them have already been built.


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