The upgrade to Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid

Well I recently decided to go ahead and upgrade to the latest version even though it is not a Long Term Support (LTS) version. The upgrade itself took me about 3 hours since my internet connection isn't that great and I ran in to a few problems once it booted into the new version.

The first major problem was a flickering screen. My laptops screen seemed to flicker really fast between the actual screen and a black screen. It also moved the mouse to the upper left every time it did this. That made doing anything via UI almost impossible. The first thing I tried was booting into recovery mode and selecting the "xfix" option which will give you a default xorg.conf file. This seemed to fix the problem but then a few minutes later I realized it had just slowed down the flicker. Things were more managable but still extremely annoying. I thought this could possibly be an issue with the driver but switching between open source ATI driver and the proprietary one did not seem to improve/worsen the issue. Then it occured to be it could be the refresh rate acting up.To fxi this you can create a ModeLine to specify your monitors abilities. Mine supports 1680x1050 @ 60Hz so using this XFree86 Modeline generator I came up with the following and put it in my monitor section:

ModeLine   "1680x1050" 149.0 1680 1760 1944 2280 1050 1050 1052 1089

I then needed to tell xorg to use that line by adding the following to my screen section:

SubSection "Display"
    Depth     24
    Modes    "1680x1050"

After a quick ctrl+alt+backspace to restart X everything seemed to work much better. Now the screen flickering is gone, however, my themes and Compizfusion were not.

In order to solve this problem, I simply right click on the desktop then selected Choose Desktop Background. In the Visual Effects tab I just needed to select the Extra option. Unfortunately, none of my settings were saved so I did have to manually reconfigure Compiz to do what I wanted. I also needed to change the window decorator to Emerald in order to get all of my eye candy working again.

Avant Window Manager or AWN had disappeared and needed to be reinstalled. I needed to reinstall it with the following:

sudo apt-get install avant-window-navigator

After that I had realized none of the applets were installed. This was sort of a pain in 8.04 since they were not included in the repositories. Luckily in 8.10 they were added but you need to install a bunch of packages to get them all working. To get the default applets working you need to type the following:

sudo apt-get install awn-applets-c-core awn-applets-c-extras awn-applets-python-core awn-applets-python-extras libawn-extras-dev libawn-extras0 python-awn-extras python-awnlib

Note that you will need the Universe repository enabled in order to install the applets.

Other Issues

Besides the more important issues I found on first upgrade, VMware Workstation 6.05 does not work anymore. I will have to try upgrading to 6.5 and see if that will work. Also my colection database for Amarok ahd to be rebuilt. This was pretty annoying as I have a large database but not exactly a life threatening issue. I'll be updating this with any other issues I find from the upgrade.

UPDATE: VMware Workstation 6.5 works nicely in 8.10 but does cause some weird keyboard mappings. The arrow keys do not work and there's all kinds of weird stuff going on with the numberpad. This isn't that big of a deal in most cases though.