Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bordeaux for OpenSolaris 1.8.2 Released

Bordeaux for OpenSolaris 1.8.2 was released with support for Microsoft Office 97, 2000, 2003, Visio 2003, Project 2003, Internet Explorer 6, Adobe Image Ready 3, Adobe Photoshop 7, Adobe Image Ready 3, QuickTime Player 6.5.2 and IrfanView 4.25 (Image support only at this time). There has also been many small bug fixes and tweaks on the backend to improve the speed and reliablity of all the supported applications.

Supported Applications/Games:
  • Microsoft Office 2003
  • Microsoft Office 2000
  • Microsoft Office 97
  • Microsoft Office Visio 2003
  • Microsoft Office Project 2003
  • Adobe Photoshop 6
  • Adobe Image Ready 3
  • Adobe Photoshop 7
  • Adobe Image Ready 7
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6
  • Apple's QuickTime 6.5.2 Player
  • IrfanView 4.25 (Image files only)
  • Winetricks support
Version 1.8.2 New Features:
  • Added QuickTime 6.5.2 Player support
  • Added IrfanView 4.25 support
  • Bundle cabextract, wget and unzip support
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Apple QuickTime 6.5.2 Player with Bordeaux

IrfanView 4.25 with Bordeaux

Steam on OpenSolaris with Bordeaux

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

MegaTux to run 1 million copies on Wine to simulate the Internet

The Dell Thunderbird supercomputer, named MegaTux, has 4,480 Intel microprocessors running Linux virtual machines with Wine, making it possible to run 1 million copies of a Windows environment without paying licensing fees to Microsoft.

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, Calif., are creating what is in effect a vast digital petri dish able to hold one million operating systems at once in an effort to study the behavior of rogue programs known as botnets.

Botnets are used extensively by malicious computer hackers to steal computing power from Internet-connected computers. The hackers harness the stolen resources into a scattered but powerful computer that can be used to send spam, execute phishing scams or steal digital information. These remote-controlled “distributed computers” are difficult to observe and track.
Botnets may take over parts of tens of thousands or in some cases even millions of computers, making them among the world’s most powerful computers for some applications.
“When a forest is on fire you can fly over it, but with a cyberattack you have no clear idea of what it looks like,” said Ron Minnich, a Sandia scientist who specializes in computer security. “It’s an extremely difficult task to get a global picture.”

To stalk the botnets, Mr. Minnich and his colleague Don Rudish have converted a Dell supercomputer to simulate a mini-Internet of one million computers.
The researchers said they hoped to be able to infect their digital petri dish with a botnet in October and then gather data on how the system behaves. One of the challenges will be in tricking the botnet components into believing they are running in the open Internet.
Some botnet makers have designed their programs to detect so-called honey pots, programs that pretend to be computers that can be taken over but which instead are used to capture and observe botnet clients.

Typically, supercomputers have been designed with the goal of reaching absolute computing performance, and used for complex scientific or engineering tasks like modeling the earth’s climate, protein folding or simulating nuclear weapons explosions.
The Sandia computer, which the researchers have named MegaTux, in a reference to Tux, the penguin character that is the official mascot of the Linux operating system, is an example of a new kind of computational science, in which computers are used to simulate scientific instruments that were once used in physical world laboratories. For example, Microsoft researchers have created a vast visualization database they call the world wide telescope.

“One of the advantages of such a system is that we can stop the simulation at any point and look for patterns,” Mr. Rudish said. “It’s one of the neat things you can do when you crash a simulation of a 747 on a supercomputer.”
In the past, the researchers said, no one has tried to program a computer to simulate more than tens of thousands of operating systems.

The Dell Thunderbird supercomputer used for the Sandia project has 4,480 Intel microprocessors, far fewer than the million operating systems the researchers sought to simulate. But they used “virtual machine” software technology to get each microprocessor to simultaneously run many instances of a Linux-based component called a kernel — a basic component of an operating system that manages communications between software and hardware.

Because most botnets are written for the Windows operating system, the researchers are planning to use an open source program called Wine, making it possible to run Windows-based programs without actually having the complete Windows operating system. They said they were not using Windows itself because of the licensing costs of purchasing one million copies of Windows.

Besides simulating the Internet, Keith Vanderveen, manager of scaleable computing research at Sandia, said the system would be valuable for exploring the design of future supercomputers that might have millions rather than thousands of processors. It will also be invaluable for researchers who are hoping to design new, more secure protocols for the Internet.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Bordeaux 1.8.0 for Linux review


Bordeaux is a Wine GUI configuration manager that runs winelib applications. It also supports installation of third party utilities, installation of applications and games, and the ability to use custom configurations. Bordeaux is written in GTK and requires GTK 2.10 or higher to be installed on a given system. Bordeaux also uses wget and cabextract extensively and they should be installed for Bordeaux to operate correctly.

Getting Bordeuax 1.8.0

Bordeaux is a commercial product which is currently available only as a download and cost from ($20.00) to ($25.00) depending on your architecture A DVD version is planned for the 2.x release and will cost a little extra for the media.

Their is no free demo of Bordeaux available at this time, this will also change with the 2.x release but instead of a time restricted demo Bordeaux 2.x will have a free non restricted limited version that will install a couple standard applications and let the user get a feel for the application. Then if they choose they can purchase the full version and have access to all the supported applications and support.

Installing Bordeaux 1.8.0
  • Their is a .sh installer for Linux, Free-BSD and Solaris
  • Their is also .deb and .rpm packages for Linux
  • Their is a .pbi package for PC-BSD
  • Their is a .dmg package in a tar.gz for Mac
To install Bordeaux I became root and used the following command:

dpkg -i bordeaux-linux.x86.deb

Supported Platforms

Bordeaux 1.8.0 is built for Linux, BSD, Solaris and a Mac beta is currently available. The product has been tested on:
  • Ubuntu 8.04 and higher, Fedora, OpenSuse, Mandrake, and Gentoo
  • FreeBSD 7.1, 7.2
  • PC-BSD 7.1
  • Opensolaris 2008.11, 2009.06
  • Mac OSX 10.5.7 and higher
Bordeuax should run on all current Linux distributions

Supported Software

Bordeaux 1.8.0 currently supports
  • Microsoft Office 2007
  • Microsoft Office 2003
  • Microsoft Office 2000
  • Microsoft Office 97
  • Microsoft Office Visio 2003
  • Microsoft Office Project 2003
  • Adobe Photoshop 6
  • Adobe Image Ready 3
  • Adobe Photoshop 7
  • Adobe Image Ready 7
  • Adobe Photoshop CS
  • Adobe Photoshop CS2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6
  • Steam and Steam based Games
Please note Office 2007 isn't supported on Solaris at this time.

Installing Software with Bordeaux

For this review I have installed three applications that I have that Bordeaux supports. IE 6 which is a free download, Adobe (PhotoShop 7) I know its a little behind the times but it's the latest version I own. And I also have Microsoft Office 2007.

To install a application in Bordeaux just go to your Applications menu then Bordeaux and select "Install Windows Applications" and Bordeaux will start up.

Once Bordeaux is running just double click on Application you want to install and their scripts will install any needed libraries for you.

The install of IE 6 is simple, I just started Bordeaux and double clicked IE 6 and the install proceeded without and problems. All I had to do was follow the install and answer a couple installation related questions.

PhotoShop 7 was just as easy as IE 6, I just double clicked PhotoShop 7 and the install started. After Bordeaux installed some needed libraries a dialog came up and ask me to browse to the install media. I then browsed to my PhotoShop 7 CD and and selected setup.exe and the install proceeded. After the install completed I had short cuts for PhotoShop 7 and Image Ready 7 in my Applications menu under Wine > Programs.

To run PhotoShop 7 all I had to do was go to Applications > Wine and click on the shortcut and PhotoShop started up and ran as expected.

Microsoft Office 2007 installation goes just like IE 6 and PhotShop 7 just double click the field in Bordeaux and the install starts and runs with any problems. The main difference in the install is when the install reaches about 75% it seems to slow down, I can see that its still working in the background and after about a 10 minute wait the install successfully completed.

Shortcuts for Office 2007 were also added under Applications > Wine > Programs Word, Excel and PowerPoint 2007 are supported and run at virtually native windows speed on my Ubuntu system. With the limited testing ive done so far the only problem ive ran into is sometimes the equation editor doesn't display fonts as expected, other then that everything has worked as expected.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Sims 3 with PlayOnLinux

The Sims 3 runs fairly well with WINE. My test rig (E6550, 8800 GTS, 2 GB RAM) performs good on medium-high settings.

Since the installation process can be quite hard with Vanilla WINE, a PlayOnLinux script has been created by NSLW, that makes the installation very easy. I thought I just create a short guide on how to install The Sims 3 with PlayOnLinux.

First of all, you need the latest PlayOnLinux. Go to PlayOnLinux downloads and download the latest version. Install PlayOnLinux and start it from the start menu or with the command 'playonlinux'. Select 'Install' -> 'Games' -> 'The Sims 3' and follow the installation script.

The script will install some dependencies and the game and you will then be prompted to enter your graphics card Video RAM size.

Since the copy protection doesn't work with WINE, you'll have to download a NO-CD patch and replace the original files with the cracked ones. You will find the fake Windows folder in /home/USERNAME/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/TheSims3/drive_c/. I will of course not provide you with any information on where to get these files.

Here is a gameplay video: