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lxrandr new dual screen options

One new update in Lubuntu 15.04 that hasn't got much attention is there was an update in lxrandr to 0.3.0 Has improved multiple montior support with quick options to allow you to show different screens either above or to the right of the primary monitor or a simple checkbox to for example select only show external monitor if you plug laptop into a new monitor with a much higher resolution, for example , 1920x1080 than a 1366x768 screen built into my aging over 5 year old laptop. For previous or even more complicated setups previously I had used the heavier resource wise arandr which is a quite nice application for setting up dual screen displays but written in python2 and gtk2. I remember being at ubucon at scale in 2014 and tihnking hmm it would be easier if the presenter was using arandr to setup the multiple monitor setup. Although even among people that love arandr if you install it there is also an unxrandr command that gives your current screen configuration and outputs how to recreate it with xrandr which If you bind it to a key for a multiple monitor setup could be conbient. This function needs the functionality of arandr and cannot easily be released as a standalone program.

This makes it a lot easier to set up mulitple monitors or even have just use the external one if it is much bigger and multiple monitors of different sizes doesn't appeal to you.

This is a view of a simple screenshot of this new interface. Although the manual test for lxrandr never got updated I think I started on work on that but never finished.

Linkrot and not being updated leads to less than useful documentation.

Linkrot is not just a problem in Wikipedia or any other site with links to other sites but in documenation that link can mean understanding how to use a piece of software or not. One thing I have noticed myself and reported a few bugs on is when upstream moves to a new hosting site sometimes there are links left to a dead project that isn't used anymore. If you want to fight this kind of link rot which lists the packages homepage I find synaptic package manager with the click to the project homepage and being able to scroll down even though it is old and have even done submitted a few simple patches to upstream so everyone gets the correct upstream link. Also more places will move with the coming googlecode shutdown but at least these seem to redirect to the new sites. I also find linkrot in wikis and often new features or really useful features don't get added. It does not take someone that long to make links work on a wiki but the hard part is testing the links. With moinmoin on ubuntu community wiki or ubuntu wiki one crucial thing I remember that frustrates me is remembering when pressing preview to open the link in a new tab as not to hit preview check the links works then lose my edit.

More help on documentation is needed

I also found a few other links that I pointed to thinks that should work now to stop the linkrot and new features and things get forgotten. I have one clear expirence of a youtube review of lubuntu did not have the shortcuts of super plus an arrow key to snap a window to that half of the screen documented until I took the initiative to fix it actually had a favorable review of lubuntu list not have this a problem in quidsup review of 14.04 on youtube. Someone corrected him in a comment and in his next review he corrected this statement. However as I saw this I knew about the feature but I looked back to the wiki page where keyboard shortcuts on lubuntu are documented as and noticied this shortcut was missing. I ended up asking the team lead for wiki and docs at the time and added it in as it makes sense. The lesson here is people may not know about features that help them get their work done and will help with adoption if you do not document them. Even people that like any flavor could end up not promoting as much because they don't know every feature which in turn could lead to a cycle of more contributors and users if they have a good expirence. As a more knowledgeable user I should go back and look at documenation as it is not that easy for new people and also keep in mind what is easy for you may not be easy for soemone else.

A retrospective look on how I started with Lubuntu

How I started with Lubuntu. First of going through my history of computers I had my brother seem more interested when I was in high school actually and he bought a dell that got a discout from my mom's work. At this time it was an old dell with dimesntion 3000 with integrated intel extreme graphics. These were not good for playing games even though they were only as intensive as 2005 games were. I then ended up using this machine in high school and throughout that time. However I got all A's in high school but my handwriting is really bad so I thought I should get a laptop for when I go to UCLA. I ended up doing my first real research into computers and hardware here and ended up choosing an hp pavilaion dv6 1230 us in around september of 2009 that came preloaded with windows vista a core 2 duo 4 GB of ram and a big 12 cell battery and 13666x768 screen. It however came with a free as in beer upgrade to windows 7.

My brother actually installed Kubuntu and ubuntu for some time before me but I have since surpassed him I was worried about voiding the warranty on my laptop at this point. I continued to use Windows not really that happy with the really slow updates long boot times and wierd update process. I was actaully not using many programs exclusive to windows at this point. I was using mainly chrome and openoffice and I think acrobat reader but I didn't know of other alternatives. I did use windows media player but mostly out of ignorance of better ones existing like audicaous or vlc or smplayer. But the thing is windows with all of its updates was slow and not the best. I mean taking several minutes to even to suspend made it a bit hard and have people wait for me to pack up after leaving lecture to type notes. I took 1 C++ programming class in my sophmore year.

I continued to trudge on despite the slowness. I didn't quite think of switching in my sophmeore and junior years. I wasn't really one to care for the fancy effects of windows 7 and ended up turning window transparency and compositing off in windows. I took a class in urban and regional economics that discussed network externalities and other things. I still did not like the way how seeming biggest network is important and brought my mind into network externalites and knowledge spillovers and reading The Economy of Cities by Jane Jacobs. I still slogged on trhough windows 7 and all of the updates and then signed up for a second C++ programming class in my final quarter of my senior year at UCLA. I ended up having to make sure my code compiled in visual studio which were mostly console application using the defualt ugly windows command line font that I really don't care what it was called. My brother had an install of ubuntu on a lapotp left in house and I like that and thought wow this has much better command line fonts and ediotr fonts. I ended up thinking you know what I think I may want to switch. I had enough frustratoins with taking a really long time to supsend boot and upgrade while I was leaving class or setting it up in the library.

The choice of when to switch

Seeing as it was the middle of a 10 week quarter of my last time at UCLA I thought I probably shoudn't do this with midterms and finals as I need uptime and had started using irc some and used kvirc quassel notepad++ anda other things. I also didn't want to have too big of an interface shock either and didn't really like unity at the time. I also had the old dell dimension 3000 sitting around but it had a bad hard drive at this point. I began thinking if I do switch there are different distributions of linux which should I switch too. I didn't really like unity as I thought the launcher would get too crowded but I know now you can reduce icon size but not sure if you could back then in 2013. I ended up spending time looking at distrowatch to see which ones I liked. I ended up looking at screenshots to see what interface I liked and LXDE looked nice to me with how it would not be too hard to switch. I did not think switching oses in the middle would be wise and decided to put it off until after I graduated in June of 2013.

First impressions and early times in the switch

I found the switch to Lubuntu at first a bit daunting in getting my broadcom 4322 to work but everything else seemed fine. I then ended up talking to my brother who told me I needed to plug it in and download the proprietary broadcom driver. I ended up liking how it worked and everything seemed a bit faster. I ended up going on irc early on and actually at first to lurk and learn some things. I quickly ended up learning enough to help people out.

The best regret when switching to Lubuntu

Switching to Lubuntu I had actually set up my laptop to dual boot with windows 7. After a few weeks I found myself very rarely booting into windows and wished I had given lubuntu more space in the partition as I had only allocated 40 GB. I actually got Lubuntu 13.04 raring ringtail installed and working. I did not want to destroy my windows install at this point in case I did not like it. I also had problems at first getting my broadcom 4322 wireless to work until I relaized I needed to plug it into ethernet and then download the unfortanely proprietary driver for this chip. After I got that working I seemed to really like it. I actually wanted to learn the command line but had an approch of thinking of it as a new way of doing things and that I would not instantly master it. Thinking back of a talk from Scale 13x similar now by Jenn Greenway building a better brain I also took to liking certain things in ncurses and don't want a computer without htop. I would really not like to end up using windows again. I am definetly wanting to stay on something based on linux for the forseeable future.

How I started contributing

I did not know much at the very begining but I started to go onto #lubuntu on freenode. From there I learned and quite a lot and started helping people by December I was ending up testing and filing bugs and reporting problems against 14.04 ealry in its development to try and find bugs. I have done so much testing and like my contributions and am happy I made the switch even if it has not even been 2 years. I started out with just a few bug reports and kept doing more and more testcases while continuing to be on irc a lot. I ended up joining the quality team in Novemember and have conitued to test and report a lot of bugs and I hope find more that get fixed. I like the feeling of getting an email from launchpad that a bug is confirmed or even better gets fixed it is a nice feeling.