Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Ubuntu 12.04 First Thoughts and synergy fix.

As I am rather an impulsive sort of person I thought that I would give an opinion on Ubuntu 12.04 only a few days after upgrading my server machine. (Server as in I keep my important files that I share with other machines, not as in I server apache websites!)

So my first thought? Well I was really excited by the idea of the HUD - not just because it seems like a term from a gaming interface, but also because the idea means we can escape EVER bringing a space hogging ribbon bar over to ubuntu (result!!). However, to note that Libre office (a default Ubuntu app) does not support this beast makes me want to cry in my cornflakes. ;-( However, the dream is there for future releases.

So the next thing I looked at was the black background that it gave me? Why? I had used one of the default wallpapers in the previous release of Ubuntu. A lovely autumnal walkway reminiscent of a parisienne path. However, on the new update, my favorite wallpaper has sadly been extinguished! With no real replacement amongst the defaults (and the fear of losing it again next release) I decided to use a picture. At least that is easy in Ubuntu!

Now today, and the reason for sharing this article, I'd had enough of clicking ctrl, stopping synergy, starting synergy and then going through the whole process next time i need the ctrl, shift or alt keys. Apparently the latest version of Ubuntu is incompatible with the stable release of synergy.

Google to the rescue and it appears that the Beta is fine. So I installed direct from the website on the Linux machine. At this point it must be noted that I am a moron, especially as when I tried to run it I nearly threw the cat across the room (a plan foiled due only to a lack of feline in the flat) when it still did not work. Then the moment of eureka when I remembered that the Windows machine would most probably need updating too.

Now as updates to beta versions of products go, I am yet to find anything that I do not like and particularly on the Windows version of Synergy. User interface is easier than going deaf in a night club and I was back up and running in no time. What's more, the ctrl button works!!!

So, what do I think of Ubuntu 12.04? For me it has caused numerous, small headaches. However, I LOVE Ubuntu. I was talking to collegue in the office the other day who said that he could not wait to get home to work on Ubuntu again (the office is nearly all Windows 7/XP). He could not stop thinking about it! Whilst he might just be the saddest person I know, I share his sentiments about using Linux in general and the rush that it gives you. Furthermore, the user base and community (aside from bearded zealots) are superb and what's more, IT'S FREE!

So the big question is, will I ever do all of my work on Ubuntu? hmmmn, probably not anytime soon, C# is still mainly a Visual Studio beast, despite the advancements of Mono. Although, given time and incentive (this mainly means when Windows 8 is released and I can't take any more metro, ribbon bar in the explorer, which is by the way a complete break of Microsoft's own usage terms for the Ribbon bar and HUGE BUTTONS that are useless not on a mobile device after being hit with a hammer on the fingers.......) I might just move over to the lovely Linux for good. Here's to the future!


  1. I've been researching the synergy problem for a few days and yours is the first page that mentions synergy beta as the quick-fix! Thanks for curing my migraine!

    1. No problems. I think the beta may be in release now? I haven't updated yet, from fear mainly but I'm glad that you have it fixed now.