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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » Linux as a music workstation
Ubuntu Studio
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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Sat May 26, 2007 6:26 am    Post subject: Ubuntu Studio Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Package List

This is a distro specifically tailored as a multimedia workstation. Thought it might be interesting.

I'm loading it on one of my systems now for a test drive. It looks like it has a fairly comprehensive set of tools, more so than either of the other platforms I am running (although my Mac is pretty stable, probably because I paid so much for the software)...

Anyway, enjoy.

Oh yeah you can get it here.

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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2007 5:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I spent a rainy bank holiday weekend playing with this Ubuntu Studio.

A few notes for anybody else who's thinking of using this.

- the install is not highly intuitive. In my case, I wanted it to wipe a Mandriva installation but leave a Windows partition alone. This was not intuitive at all. And at the end of the install on the first boot, the new partition was corrupted and I had to fsck it by hand in single user mode. Not exactly a slick install.

- Once the install was done however, this has turned out to be the most multimedia friendly Linux distro I have ever used. Out of the box, of course, it couldn't play anything, but the second I tried to click on an mp3 it offered to go out to find codecs, and gave me some choices. Within 10 minutes I had all of the major video and audio codecs installed, which frankly beats the pants off of the Mandriva Spring PowerPack which I was just reviewing.

- I installed this on a Sony laptop. This Sony has never been terribly friendly to Linux, despite me having some distro or another on it since I bought the laptop. Particularly, power management has been a problem, the SonyPI stuff isn't particularly well documented for Linux and Mandriva wasn't even remotely good at managing the CPU. Lots of overheats until I shut off acpid. Well on Ubuntu, power management seems fine. That's very nice.

- It's the realtime kernel. You get 4 options actually, the realtime kernel and realtime "recovery mode", and the non realtime kernel and recovery mode.

- The distro comes with all sorts of toys to play with. The AC97 sound on board the craptop was found, configured, and ran more or less flawlessly. However I had to go figure out how to get sound to reliably work with Rosegarden, and Jack. Clocking and buffering in the real time kernel work differently. I haven't figured out what the advantage of the real time kernel actually is, since it doesn't appear that the soft synths take any advantage of it.

- Tons of soft synths. I had to go out hunting for soundfonts as none of the synths came with so much as a patch set, let alone any samples or libraries. Not a big deal, just had to do some downloading.

- Network support is superb, I was pulling stuff off both my Mac and PC (needed some samples and SF2 files)... I pulled some MIDI files over too so I had something to import. Which brings me to...

- hooking up a MIDI controller was a bit of a pain. I took my Midisport 2x2 and plugged it into the USB, nothing at all appeared to happen. Some judicious Google searching and I found the microcode patches for the Midisport, but I had to also find fxload (which curiously didn't install as part of the standard set of utilities), and after about a half hour of fiddling around I got the microcode into the 2x2 and it lit up. Then I unplugged it, and it went dark again. lsusb showed that it changed device names and I had to load the microcode. There's some discussion about hotplug out on the internet, which would fix this, why Ubuntu doesn't make use of it seems very curious. In any case I was able to get MIDI in, and via Jack was able to patch a Roland PC-160A controller onto Qsynth with a GM soundfont. Very little latency too.

- My 2.4GHz laptop couldn't really play a Bach midifile on QSynth if I fired up Firefox at the same time. I did mess around with clock sources and buffering, that made it a bit more tolerant, but I think these soft synths are quite CPU hoggy, and Rosegarden seems a bit sensitive to that.

- I also tried Wired, which seems sort of like a Reason-ish soft workstation, but I think I like Rosegarden better. None of them are as polished as DP5 on my Mac, but then again, none of them cost me anything either.

So I think I'm going to spend more time with this. There's all sorts of stuff on here that I haven't barely explored yet. But that's first impressions. Smile

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jksuperstar



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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2007 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I am downloading and will be oplaying with this over the next few days. I also have a Sony laptop (SZ120P), and Ubuntu is one of the few distro's that works well, in fact I have dual video cards on this laptop, and ubuntu plays well with both. I haven't had the same luck with Studio64 yet.

Thanks for posting this. I have been waiting for it since last fall. We'll see how well the kernels are tuned for realtime & dual core. But since it's ubuntu, there should be lots of users tuning things out there.
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jwm



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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2007 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'm thinking of trying Ubuntu Studio. Been using Debian stable for... too long, compiling all sorts of libs, a real mess. Need to find somewhere which will sell CD/DVD of U.Studio.
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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 12:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

jwm wrote:
I'm thinking of trying Ubuntu Studio. Been using Debian stable for... too long, compiling all sorts of libs, a real mess. Need to find somewhere which will sell CD/DVD of U.Studio.


Sell? Shocked Is it that you can't burn a DVD? I have the ISO downloaded, I could probably burn you one and post it to you, and I wouldn't take money for it.

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Pehr



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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 2:45 am    Post subject: Re: Ubuntu Studio Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

EdisonRex wrote:
Package List

This is a distro specifically tailored as a multimedia workstation. Thought it might be interesting.

I'm loading it on one of my systems now for a test drive. It looks like it has a fairly comprehensive set of tools, more so than either of the other platforms I am running (although my Mac is pretty stable, probably because I paid so much for the software)...

Anyway, enjoy.

Oh yeah you can get it here.


Wow, never heard of ubuntu before Smile Free OS is always welcome, since I've grown tired of WinXP... I wonder if ubuntu works on my dell laptop Rolling Eyes Is it stupid to format c and only install ubuntu? Confused Are there any other good and free OS (except linux)?

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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Pehr wrote:

I wonder if ubuntu works on my dell laptop.. Is it stupid to format c and only install ubuntu? Are there any other good and free OS (except linux)?


It has a pretty good chance of running on a Dell, if it runs on my Sony. You can save your FAT32 or NTFS partition, resize it to give enough storage for Linux. It doesn't really need that much and there is now better support for writing to NTFS or FAT32 from Linux.

Other than Linux, there is always FreeBSD. Although for a music workstation that'd be hard to deal with. You can also get Solaris 10, again, as a music workstation it wouldn't be very appropriate. I understand if you have an old Alpha kicking around you could get OpenVMS on a free hobbyist's license, but I never could get any decent music software running on it. I did once get a band line printer to play some tunes, long ago.

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Parker: Like, old and outdated.


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jwm



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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 4:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

EdisonRex wrote:
jwm wrote:
I'm thinking of trying Ubuntu Studio. Been using Debian stable for... too long, compiling all sorts of libs, a real mess. Need to find somewhere which will sell CD/DVD of U.Studio.


Sell? Shocked Is it that you can't burn a DVD? I have the ISO downloaded, I could probably burn you one and post it to you, and I wouldn't take money for it.


No can't burn DVD never need to, but it's more that I don't have broadband to download an ISO.

That would be excellent if you could post one to me Cool

Shall I PM you with my address then?
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jwm



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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 4:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

What's ubuntu studio like for stripping away the crap (gnome/kde) from? Or does the tailoring mean I don't need to? I tried the Agnula DeMuDi (coverdisc) a couple of years ago, that was excellent, minimal desktop (fluxbox), minimal background daemons, everything worked. Shame it's not active anymore.
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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 6:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

jwm wrote:
What's ubuntu studio like for stripping away the crap (gnome/kde) from? Or does the tailoring mean I don't need to? I tried the Agnula DeMuDi (coverdisc) a couple of years ago, that was excellent, minimal desktop (fluxbox), minimal background daemons, everything worked. Shame it's not active anymore.


Yeah, just PM your snail mail to me, I'll pop it in the post tomorrow. DVD in an envelope is cheap enough even for Royal Mail.

There is no KDE, only Gnome, and even that is minimalist. The default application set is almost entirely music/video/graphics orientated.

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EGM: What does retro mean to you?
Parker: Like, old and outdated.


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jwm



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2007 2:37 pm    Post subject: ubuntu studio install Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I did not have any problems with the Ubuntu Studio installer the first time around. I used the manual disk partition option as I've several partitions and hard-drives and need to keep data safe. No problem as it's the same as Debian.

I installed ubuntu on a spare 8gb partition, sharing home, boot, and swap partitions with Debian 3 (sarge).

The install went smoothly. Don't remember having to dig around in configuration files to get anything to work, everything worked.

The software selection was based on a choice of four different tasks, audio, video, something, and something else. I opted for them all.

The desktop was quite attractive, nice dark theme which, for a Gnome desktop, I liked.

I was glad to see ardour2 amongst the audio software, it is the first chance I've had to use it. Fired up the jackd server via qjackctl and started ardour2. With a new empty session, I decided to look at the mixer view and ardour2 immediately froze dead.

Tried doing this and that and then the whole system froze.
Hard reboot...

... Fired up ardour2 again. This time recorded some audio from zynaddsubfx before visiting ardour's mixer view. No problems this time. Checked out the LADSPA plugins available, a good selection, a few new to me. Played around for a while with other audio software.

I was disappointed by the selection of softsynths available. However this could be due to not having an internet connection (a number of reasons - I'll not go into them) available for linux to use. Ubuntu irritated me with its continual reminders of this.

The new Debian version 4.0 arrived the same day and so I installed that next but something went wrong: I could boot neither into Debian, nor Ubuntu.

Installed Debian again, this time formatting the boot partition and all hope of booting into Ubuntu.

The debian install worked this time. So I decided to install Ubuntu Studio over it Smile

This time I decided I try and get Ubuntu Studio to be more like what I wanted. Wanted to install a bare system and slowly build it up to my requirements. Selected none of the software tasks to install. Even so, I found myself with that shiny polished sleek dark Gnome Desktop and large apps like OpenOfficeOrg.

No chance of a minimal install then. Decided to then remove Gnome, GDM, etc, to get back to a minimal desktop environment. Ah, slight problem, there are no other display managers besides GDM, not even XDM (which I normally use). startx worked, however, not having a window manager made it rather stupid.

Tried adding the new Debian discs using "apt-cdrom add", which did not work. Should have taken notice of the error messsages from apt-cdrom. Gave up with Ubuntu Studio and installed Debian over it.

When the linux distrubutions realise that not everyone can connect to the internet, that access to a large collection of software via other methods (ie DVDs) is required, then I might consider moving away from Debian (which now occupies 3 DVDs).
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jksuperstar



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2007 3:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I think the fact that Ubuntu Studio was released on DVD has 2 points to it:
1.) They have not optimized the install CD, hence it is 850MB, *just* too big for a cd.

2.) either this will be optimized, and a CD will become available, or the DVD will be populated with more software from the repositories, and it'll be 2GB or something like that.

Obviously, I think you want it to be #2.

I haven't had a bunch of luck with ubuntu studio yet, but I think it's mostly due to my dual-video card laptop. Drives most systems, including windows, crazy.
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jwm



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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Don't get me wrong, Ubuntu Studio IS good, but not right for what I want. If you have a super PC then you'll not be too bothered about the software perhaps not been optimally compiled for the CPU, or you'll not be concerned about the footprint of gnome.

It's not so much that I want to install LOTS of software, but have a lot of choice in which software to install, and to not have to keep downloading obscure libs from the internet.

One other thing I forgot to mention was my surprise at the rather old version of the MuSe sequencer included. There's been some quite major releases since that one.

jksuperstar: have you tried looking for help at linuxquestions about your dual video card?
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algorhythm



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2007 3:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Ubuntu Studio Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Pehr wrote:
... I wonder if ubuntu works on my dell laptop ... ?


Dell offers computers with Ubuntu for about $80 less than with Vista basic OS.
http://www.dell.com/content/topics/segtopic.aspx/linux_3x?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs

I built a computer for my wife with UbuntuStudio. The install was fairly easy, mostly click "Yes" about 20 times. The MadWifi restricted drivers were included with the distribution so the wifi worked out of the box!

I replaced the open office word processor with AbiWord and Gnumeric, and installed the Gnome games and GNU Solfege not included with the distribution.

Overall I am pleased with the installation, the included applications compare favorably with the PlanetCCRMA installation, while apps like Chuck, STK and Supercollider are not included in the UbuntuStudio distro, they are available from the Ubuntu repositories.

Last edited by algorhythm on Thu Jul 05, 2007 4:30 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Consul



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PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2007 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well, not only am I disappointed with Ubuntu Studio because I couldn't get it to properly format a partition on my hard drive (I have an SATA drive, which was never a problem for regular Ubuntu) but it trashed my MBR, which required a great deal of work to fix. That's too bad because I wanted to really check out the distro, but it appears that I can't install it on this, my only machine.

I'll go whine to the Ubuntu Studio folks and see if there's a solution, but I have a feeling that didn't have dual-booting in mind at all.

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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2007 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Consul wrote:
Well, not only am I disappointed with Ubuntu Studio because I couldn't get it to properly format a partition on my hard drive (I have an SATA drive, which was never a problem for regular Ubuntu) but it trashed my MBR, which required a great deal of work to fix. That's too bad because I wanted to really check out the distro, but it appears that I can't install it on this, my only machine.

I'll go whine to the Ubuntu Studio folks and see if there's a solution, but I have a feeling that didn't have dual-booting in mind at all.


Hm. I'm dual booting Ubuntu Studio on a Sony laptop. I can't say I had NO trouble, I had a hard time figuring out how to do the partitioning right, but I got it to do what I wanted it to do eventually.

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Consul



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2007 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I found their IRC channel, so hopefully someone will help me. I don't feel like trashing my NTFS partition again. And this is coming from a former linux sysadmin, so you'd think I wouldn't be afraid of a dual-boot scenario, but I really did waste a lot of time fixing my Windows install, so I'll see if someone there has any ideas.
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Lippi



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:21 pm    Post subject: Ubuntu Studio
Subject description: New Version 8.04 Hardy
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Hello!

A new version of Ubuntu-Studio will be available in three days. You can download a Releace Candidate with all the coming updates at:

http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/ubuntustudio/releases/hardy/rc/

Hope you like it.

All the best
Lippi
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Stochastic



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2008 10:21 am    Post subject: Re: Ubuntu Studio
Subject description: New Version 8.04 Hardy
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Lippi wrote:
A new version of Ubuntu-Studio will be available in three days. You can download a Releace Candidate...


Next time you might consider giving a link that won't die in two days: http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/ubuntustudio/releases/hardy/release/ and at the same time directing people to the finished software product rather than a temporary release candidate. I know, it's exciting and difficult to contain your excitement about Hardy (such great software!!) but it's worth it in the long run. Only those in the know should try release candidates anyway.
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EdisonRex
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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 1:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Speaking of which, I did an in-place online upgrade to 8.03 a couple of nights ago, and the upgrade went flawlessly. The last time I did an upgrade in place, things didn't work out as well. So I think they've been improving.

The new version is slicker than the last, and I think they've improved the power management some more. My laptop's CPU fan isn't working as hard as it used to.

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Parker: Like, old and outdated.


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megasycophant



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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2009 3:05 pm    Post subject: Ubuntu Studio on ASUS Eee PC1000 Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Just picked up an ASUS Eee PC1000, planning to use it for a (experimental) Linux music workstation. Xandros is definitely teh suck, so switching to Ubuntu. I can't seem to find out whether Ubuntu Studio is a good idea, though. Anyone tried it on the Eees?
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