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Messages - Rich J

Linux Support / Re: Mint won't update - out of memory?
August 29, 2021, 08:04:03 AM
Quote from: chrissymac234 on August 28, 2021, 09:25:34 PM
Hi Rich

Thank you for your help. I have followed all your steps but I'm not yet sure if the problem is sorted. When I refreshed the Update Manager, I got this message:

"Could not download all repository indexes

The repository may no longer be available or could not be contacted because of network problems. If available, an older version of the failed index will be used. Otherwise, the repository will be ignored. Check your network connection and ensure the repository address is correct in 'Repositories' under 'Settings'."

Then it goes on to say I'm up to date. Again, I don't know what this means. Perhaps I'll need to wait until an update is needed?

Thanks again.


You're welcome!

It looks like it's worked as it states you are now up to date.  The error message refers to a repository that it has tried to contact but has failed for some reason.  Either the software stored there has been ignored for the time being or it has found it somewhere else and installed from there.

Try this - Go to Menu/Administration/Synaptic Package Manager. (This is what Update Manager actually does for you when you fire it up  ;))

Key in your password and authenticate.  You now have Superuser privileges. 

Click on Edit and look down the list for 'Fix broken packages'.  Click on that.  Look at the very bottom of the box and the message "Successfully fixed dependency problems!" should appear.

Then click Edit again and click on "Reload Package Information".  When that finishes, close Synaptic.

Hopefully the error message should disappear.

Edit:  Also - click on Update Manager and hit 'Refresh'.  If a tick appears, you are good to go.

Linux Support / Re: Mint won't update - out of memory?
August 28, 2021, 08:17:46 PM
Hi - and welcome to the forum.  This has also happened to me in the past and can be scary!  It's possible that Mint has run out of storage space to install the updated software, hence the error message.  One solution may be the following -

When you get notifications of updates (via the Update Manager - the shield icon), have you ever noticed 'new kernels' in the list?  They appear now and then in amongst the other, general stuff.  It's important that these kernels are installed as they are literally the heart of the system and ensure that security is kept up to date.  Now Mint, for some reason known only to the developers, retains all of the old kernels and stores them on your system and eventually the partition they are on becomes full.  It's then up to you, the user to remove them. Other OS's, I believe, don't do this and remove older, redundant kernels automatically.  It's pretty straightforward to do but..... YOU HAVE TO BE CAREFUL!

If you wish to try, follow the method below that I use periodically but please read it through fully before beginning!

Click on the shield icon to open Update Manager, then on 'View/Linux Kernels.  Read the warning notice then hit Continue.

The top line tells you which kernel you are currently using.  Make a note of this. 

Click on the relevant kernel series in the left-hand column. (Mine is currently 4.15) 

You should see that your current kernel is marked 'Active' with the others as 'Installed' and 'Superseded'. (Click on the other series numbers and you will see that some will be marked 'End of Life') 

Any kernel not 'Active' is safe to remove - HOWEVER - it is good practice to keep a couple of kernels in reserve just in case your current one plays up.

To do this, click on the button 'Remove old kernels'.  All of that range will be checked for removal and are listed in descending order, oldest to newest. (Your 'Active' one should NOT be on the list but if it is - UNCHECK IT)  Also, uncheck the bottom 2 in the list - i.e the nearest ones to your current number.

When you are happy with your selection, click on 'Remove old kernels' and leave the system to do it's thing (it may take a while if there are a lot of them to remove).  When Update Manager box reappears, repeat the process for the other kernel series, especially those listed as 'End of Life'.  If no check box appears, they have been removed.

To test all is ok, restart the computer, click on Update Manager then 'Refresh' and ok any updates that appear.  If they install alright, you have cured the issue.

Hope this helps,


Security / Re: Linux in Between
August 27, 2021, 08:18:07 AM
Quote from: IanG on August 26, 2021, 10:14:41 PM
HI Keith,
Thanks for your welcome and advice.

I had (almost) convinced myself the way to go is Linux but, as an aged soul, wonder if I would be biting off more than I could chew.

Anyway, I have a redundant Toshiba laptop available, so might just take the plunge this weekend and see where it takes me.

Thanks again,

And a welcome from me too!

As a (very) silver surfer myself.......  I took the plunge years ago and have never looked back!  In all that time, only on a couple of occasions have I 'needed' Windows, and that because of the device criteria involved, not the shortcomings of Linux!  ;)  If it's any help, my other half, who is as technophobe as you will ever find, uses Linux every day without a worry as to what is going on underneath.  She asks me constantly how to do things, of course, but she did that with Windows so no change there!  The point being, the result is the same as makes no difference between the two systems, it's the way Linux is constructed and works 'under the hood' that is different, and is much more secure and stable than Windows.

With your spare Toshiba, you are in the fortunate position to be able to try out Linux without affecting your main computer.  There, you can learn Linux at your own pace, make mistakes, (as you certainly will), but will be able to (with help) redress any errors you might make - what's not to like?  And for free too........ ;)

If you can post your Toshiba specs and general computing requirements it will give responders a chance to advise on which distro would likely suit you best and how to install and run it successfully.

Hope this helps,

Linux Support / Re: Booting Linux mint
August 26, 2021, 08:25:51 PM
Quote from: Trenchcoat on August 26, 2021, 06:45:54 PM
Yes, it is 146. My mistake. Total memory 1024MB.
It ran Vista Home Premium.  Then it should run 'most' Linux distros ok, albeit the 'heavier' ones may run a little slower (but all will be faster than Vista ever was!)  The governing factor is RAM - the more you have, the faster it runs
My plan is to download the most appropriate Linux programme onto a 64bit memory stick along with Rufus to make it bootable then try to install that in the USB MEMORY option (which appears to me to be the only one of the five options for booting from an external source currently on the machine?) Yes, that's another way to do it but if it will, then the option to install from disk most certainly will be in the menu somewhere, if a DVD player is installed, that is.
A couple of things occur to me:
1, On machines with Windows already installed do you have to completely de-install Windows to make room for Linux and if so how do you do that? No, you can run both alongside each other - it's called 'dual-booting - the Linux installer will automatically allocate the space required.   However........ Windows is notoriously 'bloated' and when installed will take over the whole drive so Linux will 'shrink' the partition that Windows sits on to make room for itself.
Would having two take up double the space?  No, see above. For info - Linux generally has a much smaller footprint than Windows I actually thought that as part of the installation process you were given the option to delete or de-install Windows?  Yes, you do have that option
2, The point you make about 34 bit Cinnamon being time limited quite surprises me. I am motivated to switch from Windows because it is too time limited and persistently requires updates which I have no control over and which I am certain is harvesting data for third parties. You seem to be saying that Cinnamon is time limited too?  No, you misunderstand.  It is 32bit (not 34...) software that is being phased out.  All computers are now 64bit capable and have been for several years. 32bit software will still run on 64bit machines but there will no longer be any development or updating of it.  Simply put, it is now redundant so no point in working on it further.  Also, Linux has regular updates but these are more of refinement and further bolstering an already very secure system.
3, Which version of Linux would be most functional and easiest to install on the Equium l300 - 146 and which would you recommend for me?  Most Linux installs are pretty straightforward these days and it depends on your requirements and what your machine capability is as to version. Even the lightest and most basic of distros have good functionality and a great advantage of Linux is there's a mass of free software available that you can add if you wish.  ;) 

Linux Support / Re: Booting Linux mint
August 24, 2021, 08:58:15 AM
Quote from: Trenchcoat on August 23, 2021, 07:40:45 PM
My Toshiba Equium l300-140 which ran Windows Vista home premium has no option in BIOS 1.50 to boot a cd/dvd which I have bought to install Linux mint cinnamon 34 bit. The cd dvd optical drive appears to be built in Toshiba only with no option to boot from my own disc or usb. Can I make this machine bootable from a dvd?

Firstly, can you access the BIOS on start-up?  Toshiba's have various methods, depending on model - you may have to press F2, F8 or F12 to access the menu. Once that opens, there should be a menu available to allow you to boot from a disk.  Try Googling "Toshiba Equium l300-140 bios menu" and try out the various methods listed.

Just for info:  Mint Cinnamon is is quite a 'heavyweight' in the Mint family of distros and your laptop may struggle a bit, depending on the RAM installed.  Also, 32bit is now being gradually phased out in favour of 64bit software - worth checking to see if yours is 64bit capable.  If it is 32bit only, there are other, lighter, versions of Mint (or alternatives to) that will do the job just as well without the 'bells and whistles' of Cinnamon - it depends on your own requirements as to usage.

Hope this helps,


Quote from: MattC on July 24, 2021, 06:24:24 AM

I have an old laptop (Samsung NP-N110) which uses a 1.6GHz Atom N270, 1GB Ram and a 60GB HDD.  I've install a couple of different Linux OSs (currently running is Mint) but all of them seem to be very slow to do anything.  It used to run WinXP (which I know is an older OS compared to the current Linux OSs), but it was very fast with that.  In fact, most of the computers that I install Linux OSs on (even the more modern ones) seem to be very slow at running up the system and apps.  I was always very happy with using the Samsung, but since XP was dropped, I was hoping to install a Linux OS in its place.  Are there any suggestions as to what OS I might run on this?  It needs to be easy to install (I've noticed some Linux OSs are quite complicated); reasonably safe and secure; and will boot up, open and run apps with reasonable speed.  I don't expect the earth, but knowing how the system worked originally, I was hoping for something similar.


Don't give up on Mint!  Take a look here  - https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/p/speed-mint.html  and try out the recommendations.

Failing that you might look here for an alternative - https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/best-lightweight-linux-distro   ;)
Quote from: peejay on July 20, 2021, 04:46:59 PM
I'm trying to learn Linux and have installed it on an old Dell laptop. All OK except for the wifi adaptor.

I got the Peppermint Linux in a disc with Linux User magazine; running the OS from the CD as a trial run the adaptor (a USB TP-LINK plug-in) worked straight off, found the local networks, connected to the router and broadband and ran the internet fine.

So then I installed said Peppermint Linux. The adaptor will now see the available networks but will not attach to my home hub.

Any helpful suggestions, please?

It may be that the onboard Dell wireless card is conflicting with the plug-in?  And being 'old', is unable to handle modern wi-fi..... just guessing here....  Try disabling wifi on the Dell, then plug in the adaptor and see if it works ok.  It's possible that, when in 'try-out' mode on the disc, the onboard card was not activated, thus allowing the plug-in to work.  Failing that, you might have to physically disconnect the onboard card to get the plug-in to work - from memory Dell's are often sited under a plate containing the memory sticks also. Remember to reinstate wifi too.  ;)

Quote from: Keith on July 08, 2021, 09:23:52 AM

How do you rate Brother printers compared with HP? In particular, does yours print photos well?   
My HP 7612 has just died (probably due to me using a non-HP cartridge that bunged up the works) so I need another printer. 


Can't compare like-for-like as I've not had an HP printer in many years nor can I vouch for photos as the Brother is mono only.  We do very little printing these days, more docs for the wife's duties at the golf club.  Photo printing was always a nightmare, in fact, it's far cheaper and convenient to get it done at our local Morrisons on an ad hoc basis.  That said, compared to the Samsung, the Brother works very well - straight out of the box.

You might find a look at this site would be helpful - https://www.urefilltoner.co.uk/

I found these guys some years ago and, as I'm very much a 'make do and mend' sort of person, decided to go the refill route rather than keep paying through the nose for consumables.  That's when I discovered the Samsung was a pig to work with!  The Brother is a doddle in comparison!

They run extensive tests on all sorts of printers to see if their toner works ok so at least it's worth taking a look at their recommendations, whether you decide to buy from them, or not.  ;)

Hope this helps,

I used to have a Samsung laser that gave similar issues so you might try this solution provided to me by Mark in 2014 -

Open a terminal and enter the commands one at a time.  The unified driver 'should' work with most models - if it doesn't you may have to manually search for your specific model on the Samsung site.

My experience with Samsung was not  a happy one.  I bought the printer without doing proper research and had issues both with installation and when the time came to renew consumables so eventually switched to a Brother printer.  The Samsung needed a new 'chip' every time the cartridge ran out, the Brother doesn't. 
Linux Support / Re: Ads in Firefox vs Google Chrome
June 28, 2021, 08:50:00 PM
I use uBlock Origin, Privacy Badger and HTTPS Everywhere and get no ads or lag in Firefox. 

It may be a memory 'thing' - as in lack of - or possibly a case of tweaking FF to help it along.

Check this out for ways to speed it up - https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/p/speed-mint.html

Look through the list for the FF tweaks - they're safe to implement and are easily reversible if you don't want them.

The site itself is aimed at Mint users but Mint is based on Ubuntu so the tweaks should apply just the same.  ;)

Edit:  Just noticed - there's a separate page for Ubuntu users too   ;)
You might try this - https://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?t=150579

Copy and paste the instructions, in turn, into terminal.

(found by googling your scanner model)

Quote from: FezzanM on May 02, 2021, 04:22:45 PM
I am using arch Linux with the kde-plasma desktop environment.

When installing packages using pamac (package manager) I reach download speeds of around 25 mib/s but when using a web browser such as fire fox I reach download speeds of about 2 mib/s.

Why is this happening?

Try a different browser such as Chromium and see if the speeds differ.  If so, consider 'cleaning up' Firefox (see here - https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/p/speed-mint.html) section 6 onwards.  When testing, remember to use the same utility (e.g: http://www.speedtest.net/) and the same destination to maintain integrity of results.
Quote from: ClearIce on April 23, 2021, 08:26:22 PM
I entered the command:
sudo apt install nvidia-cuda-toolkit libnvidia-encode1

After restarting linux, it got stuck on:
Listening on load/save rf switch status /dev/rfkill watch
I waited a long time and forcibly restarted it

Linux startup now stops at:
Started GNOME Display Manager

Linux Debian

Have you tried removing the offending software?  Boot with the installation medium, if you have it and open a Terminal.  Try entering "sudo apt remove nvidia-cuda-toolkit libnvidia-encode1" and then restart.  Does the system boot then?
Printing problems are not confined to Linux - try 'googling' printer problems in Windows......... ;)

Keith is correct.  Manufacturers generally don't support Linux very well so it's down to the community to provide driver software, which they do, for free......  On top of that, there are so many different models by so many manufactures that require specific drivers per model so it's not surprising that some types slip through the net and give problems.  A good rule of thumb before purchase, is to research makes and models with specific reference to Linux then most issues can be avoided.  I speak from experience!  I blind bought a Samsung colour laser that played up constantly and was also a devil to refill with toner (a particular bugbear of mine) before switching to a Brother laser - much more user-friendly and worked straight out of the box.  A little forethought on my part would have saved me years of hassle and lots of cash!  ;)

As for Linux - I too am into it over 10yrs and counting and, while there have been glitches (mostly of my own, ham-fisted making), my issues have been very few and far between.  I did the rounds of distro's before settling on Mint which I find suits my needs perfectly.  I am by no stretch a 'boffin', just an average user who gives thanks that there are 'boffins' out there who generously give of their time and expertise to provide a remarkable, safe and secure operating system that has cost me nothing at all.  Any quirks I might encounter are a small price to pay, weighed against that.  Not having a go, just my opinion .....