Knoppix ready for the Desktop

I maintain a website that is used to rehome unwanted cats.
Normally I would have used windows:

  • Paintshop Pro
  • AceFTP
  • Firefox

in my course of updting pictures and text to the site.

Due to a recent hard drive failure I have yet to reinstall Paintshop pro and decided to give Knoppix a go.

The stack:

  • GIMP
  • FTP
  • Mozilla

was perfectly adequate for the job. It took a while to get used to using GIMP, but it is far more powerful than PSP 5 that I had been using.

I thought that I had a problem with accessing the photos from my camara until I found that the USB cable was not plugged into the PC.

I am amazed with how well Knoppix configures a basic PC.
It recognises and configures my soundcard automatically – something that Windows 2000 cannot do.

Performance of dynamic sql

You would expect that dynamic sql, that is a string constructed in a stored procedure and then executed would be slower than the equivalent as a stored procedure. However I was surprised to find that an application become 7 times faster by removing this.

The dynamic sql allowed the database to be accessed to be specific at call time. However at any given time only one other database was being used. By replacing the appropriate stored procedures at change over time we obtain a substantial performance benefit.

Linux equivalents to Longhorn pillars

Longhorn (the long awaited next version of windows) includes various pillars.
The major areas are:

  • WinFX – Managed OO replacement for the Win32 api
  • Avalon – vector graphics based UI expressable in XAML
  • Indigo – communication stack (web services, remoting and some COM+)
  • WinFS – The really long awaited meta-data aware filesystem

In the same timeframe the linux world has

  • Mono – Open source implemnetation of .NET Framework
  • Cairo – SVG based graphics ui
  • Beagle – personal search tool to provide the benfits of WinFS

Mono is trying to investigate implementing Indigo. However this may have licencing issues.

C# Constructors

The C# constructor syntax is odd.

MyClass : MyAncestor
    public MyClass(int Foo) : base(Foo + 1)
       // implementation ommited

You can’t directly call the ancestor.
However you are allowed to make manipulations on the data.
You can even invoke static methods on the class that you are creating:

MyClass : MyAncestor
    public MyClass(int Foo) : base(Bar(Foo))
       // implementation ommited

    static int Bar(int Foo)
       return Foo + 1

This does allow a certain amount of flexibility.
However since static methods cannot be virtual you can’t quite reach the flexibility of Delphi.
Delphi would allow a virtual method to be called that can set values before the inherited constructor is called. This can be very useful in some situations.For example if the ancestor is creating a font you could have a descendant choose whether the font is bold.