Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

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JerryF
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by JerryF » Tue May 29, 2018 8:31 am

EvilTim,

I would start at the beginning.

When you downloaded the ISO to burn, did you Verify the download to see if it was ok before burning it? https://linuxmint.com/verify.php
Is there an updated BIOS version for the laptop?

Try Xfce instead of MATE. I find Xfce to be lighter on resources than MATE.
IF your problem has been solved, please edit your original post and add [SOLVED] to the beginning of the Subject Line. It helps other members.

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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by JerryF » Tue May 29, 2018 8:33 am

Spearmint2 wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 7:26 pm
What jumped out at me immediately was the 3GB of RAM. Typically that's in even numbers like 2, 4, 8 etc. I suspect you have mismatched RAM chips. You'd be better off pulling the 1GB of RAM, then running the memtest from a LIVE DVD on the remaining 2Gb RAM chip.
According to the OP's inxi report, it has 2GB of RAM, with 1 GB being used.

Code: Select all

Info:      Processes: 172 Uptime: 37 days Memory: 1017.2/1985.0MB Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Gcc sys: 5.4.0
           Client: Shell (bash 4.3.481) inxi: 2.2.35
P.S. Having 3 GB of RAM is not too unusual. There are RAM chips that are 1.5 GB, so there are some systems with dual 1.5 GB RAM.
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Evil Tim » Wed May 30, 2018 8:27 am

Update 30/5/18
The Teamviewer issue is resolved; My mothers ISP was blocking access to the Teamviewer servers ("because remote access is frequently used by scammers"). I seem to recall that the error message from Update Manager said the PPA was "broken" rather than "unavailable", but I may be mistaken on that.

I've lengthened the time between clicks to produce a double-click, so she can be sure she did double-click. But the occasional delays in starting some programs (even when the PC is idle) and lack of visual feedback (spinner/hourglass/splash screen) means that she still sometimes starts a second instance.

Individual acknowledgements:
Thank you to all who have commented. No offence is intended in my responses
.
- Moem: Either Linux Mint is perfect for end-users out of the box, or it's not. If not, and it's intended to be usable by people with little knowledge, then either the defaults should be fixed or an official "To Do/To Consider" list should be referenced. My preference would be for the first!
- absque fenestris: I was careful to highlight the word "seems", as your post apparently disagreed with me on the other other UI concerns ;-)
Yes, the ability to remove selected font packages certainly makes it much easier. My question was why they are included in the first place.
- pendrifter: The hardware may have issues, causing the crashes/freezing. Sorry, that doesn't address my other concerns.
- JerryF - The hashes were correct, and I used the same USB drive/image to install Mint on my N100 as well as the laptop I was giving to my mother. One interesting thing - the installers "verify" option before you start the install failed. I retried it, and it failed at an earlier point. Tried a new download & USB drive, which also failed. Tried it on my N100, which also failed.
I carried on with the installation anyway (no loss if I trashed the PC), and it completed on both PCs without errors.
I haven't considered updating the BIOS recently or experimenting with Xfce. Performance is generally OK.

To reiterate, the inxi report was from my (lower spec) Lenovo N100 PC rather than the one in question. Now that I can access my mothers PC remotely I could get the info and logs off it, but this thread is now more about the UI and philosophy of the distro than troubleshooting one PC. If I can't figure individual issues out, I'll start another question to ask about those.

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Moem
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Moem » Wed May 30, 2018 9:33 am

Evil Tim wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 8:27 am
- Moem: Either Linux Mint is perfect for end-users out of the box, or it's not. If not, and it's intended to be usable by people with little knowledge, then either the defaults should be fixed or an official "To Do/To Consider" list should be referenced. My preference would be for the first!
Sure. Everything that is imperfect (and all OSses are imperfect, as we all know) should be improved. That's pretty much the definition of imperfect.
No one here will argue that Linux Mint is perfect for end-users out of the box. I personally consider it imperfect but very usable and very good, and my mother (who is not a power user by far) agrees.
Image

If your issue is solved, kindly indicate that by editing the first post in the topic, and adding [SOLVED] to the title. Thanks!

Evil Tim
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Evil Tim » Wed May 30, 2018 2:14 pm

Thank you, Moem - Please look at it this way, I'm suggesting some things that I think could be improved (and some ways in which they could be improved)
I appreciate the work the Linux Mint community do. I'm not here to waste your valuable time or even argue. But I do feel the need to respond to others who I feel are missing the point.

Let's take another statement I made, regarding data backups - Something we would all agree that end-users need to be as simple and robust as possible: "mintbackup uses a tar file, so can't back up more than 4.3 GB. No, the option that's supposed to be there to do a "normal" backup doesn't exist." No-one here has addressed it yet.
The 4.3 GB might be a target device filesystem limitation, or one of `tar` itself. Easy enough to diagnose. And it would be cool if mintbackup could detect that in advance and provide a friendly error message rather than just relay `tar` messages.
The missing "normal" backup option - The documentation suggests it exists, but it's not in the version I installed with Mint 18.3 MATE. Am I being blind, or is the MATE version different?

I attach the version of the backup script I wrote. Basic, but it checks for a target device, checks for space, deletes old backups if desired, does incremental backups and rotates the archive monthly.
It would be nicer if the -u and -b options to cp worked together (Only copy the file if SOURCE is newer than DEST, but make a backup of DEST in that case).
Also, there's an oddity where it backs up some files that have not been modified - Possibly it's using the access time as well as the modification time. No matter, the incremental backup takes seconds (a full monthly backup takes about 15 minutes).
Of course, there's no restore script. The backup directories are fairly easy to navigate, but finding the right version of a file from all the archives could be made nicer.

Code: Select all

#!/bin/bash
#
# MEDIA= must be edited to configure the device
MEDIA="/media/$USER/Cruzer"
BACKUPDIR="$MEDIA/Backups"
# Uncomment for testing
#MEDIA="/home/Cruzer"
#BACKUPDIR="$MEDIA/Backups"

exec > >(tee -ia ~/backup.log)
exec 2>&1

echo "---Begin---" 
date 
echo "" 

# Create config file at first run? Or just prompt to edit $MEDIA?
# No need, the next section will effectively do that

# Check the USB drive is inserted and mounted 
if [ ! -d  $MEDIA ]
then
    echo "$MEDIA not found - Check the USB drive is inserted and mounted" 
    df -k
    read -p "Press Return to exit " RESPONSE
    echo ""
    echo "---End---"
    date
    echo ""
    exit
fi

# Test for free space OR ancient backups?
# space - df
# ancient - find, but only on the top level dirs
AGE=90
if [ `df -k $BACKUPDIR|tail -1|awk '{print $5}'|tr -d %` -gt 80 ]
then 
    OKTODELETE="Check"
    while [ ! $OKTODELETE = "OK" ]
    do
        echo "Make room!" 
        find $BACKUPDIR/* -prune  -mtime +$AGE -exec ls -ld {} \;
        echo "OK to delete these backups over $AGE days?" 
        echo "Your files will not be deleted, just the backups." 
        read -p "[Type Y, N or a new 'age' limit] " RESPONSE
echo "response was $RESPONSE" 
        case $RESPONSE in
            y|Y) OKTODELETE="OK";;
            n|N) echo "We'll try to continue, but may run out of space - watch for errors";break;;
            [0-9][0-9]|[0-9][0-9][0-9]) if [ $RESPONSE -gt $AGE ] ;then AGE=$RESPONSE;fi; echo "New age limit is $AGE";;
            *) echo "Sorry, I didn't understand that. Please retry";;
        esac
    done

    if [ $OKTODELETE = "OK" ]
    then
        echo "find $BACKUPDIR/* -prune  -mtime +$AGE -exec rm -r {} \;"
        # Uncomment ONLY when testing complete
        find $BACKUPDIR/* -prune  -mtime +$AGE -exec rm -r {} \;
    fi
fi

#exit # without doing anything while testing

# Exclude Downloads & other junk?
# Include My Fonts
DIREXCLUDE=".cache|Downloads|VirtualBox VMs"
DIRLIST=`ls -a ~|egrep -v "^\.$|^\.\.$|$DIREXCLUDE"`
#echo $DIRLIST

mkdir -p $BACKUPDIR/`date +%Y-%m`
cd ~
#echo "cp -rpubv `echo $DIRLIST` $BACKUPDIR/`date +%Y-%m`"
echo "Backing up files in" ~
cp -rpuv $DIRLIST $BACKUPDIR/`date +%Y-%m`
echo ""

if [ $? -eq 0 ]
then 
    echo "Success!"
else
    echo "Errors occurred - You may need to use the option to clear some space"
fi

umount $MEDIA

echo "OK to remove USB drive"
read -p "Press Return to exit " RESPONSE
echo ""
echo "---End---"
date
echo ""

Evil Tim
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Evil Tim » Wed May 30, 2018 2:30 pm

Correction - I don't know why I thought cp -ub wasn't working. I can't reproduce it now.

Code: Select all

cp -rpubv --backup=number $DIRLIST $BACKUPDIR/`date +%Y-%m`
is perfect

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Moem
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Moem » Wed May 30, 2018 3:07 pm

Evil Tim wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 2:14 pm
Thank you, Moem - Please look at it this way, I'm suggesting some things that I think could be improved (and some ways in which they could be improved)
Right, but firstly, you're talking to the users here, not the developers. We can't make those changes even if we wanted to.
And secondly, you're mentioning a lot of problems that most of us have never even encountered.

Have you checked your harddisk for bad sectors? Frequent freezes could point in that direction. They are certainly not normal.
Image

If your issue is solved, kindly indicate that by editing the first post in the topic, and adding [SOLVED] to the title. Thanks!

Evil Tim
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Re: Multiple, basic issues with Mint 18

Post by Evil Tim » Wed May 30, 2018 8:14 pm

Goedenavond, Moem - You're not "just" users, you're the official Linux Mint community. Who is more trusted to filter feedback and influence developers? Of course, if I can't convince you, then maybe my feedback isn't useful. Ah well, I tried.

Please, forget the system errors. Let's focus on one thing for now - mintbackup under Mint 18.3 MATE for user data backups. The missing "Preserve structure" option. Using tar, but not even using the tar --update option, and doing a full backup each time. Not zipping the tar file to save space. Backing up to ~/Documents/Backups, and not saving changes to the output location. Having to click "Forward" several times (Comically, a duplicate exclusion for Documents/Backups gets added to the exclude list each time). Restore only giving you the option to restore an entire archive (good luck finding the archive you actually want).


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