Ubuntu Server – Changing Screen Resolution with GRUB2

Recently I drug out my old Dell dinosaur (Dimension) from the closet and decided to try installing Ubuntu server onto it.

Well, all went well until I also attempted to add the Xubuntu-Desktop package, so I could better run around and do things in there. A quick update for an nVidia graphics driver froze the computer directly after login, and all the stuff I found in the forums didn’t really help that much, except for possibly uninstalling all the packages that xubuntu-desktop stuck in there. Since there wasn’t a lot on there (except for maybe the neat desktop backgrounds that seem to change with every version of any Ubuntu release), I figured a fresh install would be best.

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Faster Internet is (at least for now) better

We’ve just gone live with our newly activated ADSL connection. As of 5:00 this evening, I was able to plug in the aforementioned modem that we bought on Friday and successfully connect to first Qwest’s initial login page, then, well, everywhere else! Of course, everybody’s test to see if they’re connected is Google. Well, not everybody. The modem and the Qwest disc would rather you connect to their homepage, but it’s still essentially the same thing.

I had to spend a little time figuring out the best configuration, and I decided to go with the transparent bridge setup, where the modem simply acts as DSL-to-Ethernet translator and all other router functions are disabled. In the same manner, I am able to put in all of the primary internet login information directly into the Wi-Fi router and everything works like a charm.

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My Router-Modem Setup

Here’s what I’ve figured out with my router/modem setup.

The router has two sets of plugs in it. One set is the regular ethernet ports to hook in single computers to. However, there is a single yellow port known as the WAN or Internet port. What really is the difference here? I’ve figured it out. The WAN port actually is the interface to a second half of the router. Just as the router communicates with computers so that the computers can communicate each other, all pieces being in a single “network” the WAN port on the router functions in exactly the same way with the though, though the modem now acts as a DHCP server and the router functions as a regular old client computer on the MODEM’S little LAN, known by the router as the WAN. From there, the MODEM creates a WAN network with Qwest…and who cares what THEY do? The configuration for the modem’s LAN is an interface ONLY for the router, and the configuration for the router’s WAN accesses the same exact interface, only from the other side.

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DSL and Networking

I’ve always hated self-help books you find at B&N or the library on how to set up your own home network. In short, they always would assume that you had high-speed internet coming into your house and that you could create a standard configuration. However, up until about 30 minutes ago, we were using dialup for our main internet connection.

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Idea for New Computer

So we’re having this BIG thing at church where a group of probably seven to ten guys are going down to Argentina in about a month or so. They’re trying to set it up so that the Tuesday when we’re meeting and they are gone, they’ll Skype us during service and we’ll be able to put it up and talk with them live. I think this is pretty cool. However, we were running into a few security bugs last week when we tested (security locked me out of being able to open Skype up). We’ll be testing it again tomorrow night, and I think the IT guy at church fixed it. Anyway, he said he’d look into it this last week.

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On Speaking

Wow. That was a ‘profound’ title. However, I just got out of speech class so my blood pressure is spiked..or it was about ten minutes ago and it’s been slowly decompressing. Today we got in what they call ‘impromptu speeches.’ Here was the format: Think of a one-sentence topic that matches the following sentence of “If you could ________.” Then hand your idea in and then grab a different one from the bag.

That’s about as impromptu as I could think of. When I walked in, I thought, “Huh, I’m going to do something like ‘If you could do any extreme sport, what would it be,’ and my answer would be ‘I would go in a hot-air balloon’ and then tell them of how I turned my dad down when he offered to get me on the Remax balloon when I was four.” But then she said we were going to trade topics so I really stressed out. Turns out my question was “If you could buy anything what would it be?”

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Malware

Ugh..so I just about killed my computer. I picked up malware sometime yesterday at the library and managed to run it at home. Well, it installed itself, force rebooted the computer and loaded under the virus scanner and disabled it.

Then it proceeded to lock me out of any other scanning software, my modem and a bunch of other things got super-slow. So I reinstalled windows..or tried to. My internal cd player is dead, so I had to use my external one, but my computer won’t boot off of that without help,so I ended up wiping and installing Ubuntu. Unfortunately, I can’t get it to recognise my modem, nor does Grub (the bootloader) recognise cd boots. So I asked Dad to bring home the floppy drive and I’ll hopefully force the Windows install disc to load that way. I hope.

Oh. And we’re having wings and pizza for supper. on a good note ;).