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Ask Slashdot: An Open Source PC Music Studio?

fredc97 Re:for open source, add, don't create. Mac != iOS (299 comments)

I think the person asking the question wasn't looking at Macs due to a cost issue, not necessarily because of iOS

Actually he was not ruling out Macs, nor Windows "I have no preference between open- and closed-source software as an end-user; I just care about the quality of the product."

also "I'm more than willing to do, but I'm not so sure I want Windows 8 and I'm just not sure I can afford to go with a Mac on top of the $600 for Finale."

From what i have just checked you can get a refurbished Macbook Air for 849$ in Canada, add 200$ for Logic and while this is not a bargain laptop it is a decent price for the most portable DAW. He can also get a used Macbook Air or Pro for a lot less.

In music production the laptop is probably not the most expensive equipment: synths, mics, mixers, audio interfaces can all go from a few hundreds to a few grands when you add them all together to get a basic setup.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: An Open Source PC Music Studio?

fredc97 OSes versions and general hardware tips (299 comments)

Yes Gearslutz.com is the place to go, many great discussions. Also on the topic, be afraid of the latest and greatest version of any OS, Windows 8.x, OSX 10.9.x as the music companies that produce the DAWs as well as hardware audio interfaces tend to support these versions after a while. I guess they must work hard on debugging their product compared to say game companies which tend to release ASAP then just keep patching them as bugs creep along. A DAW is not a game after all and you probably don't want to rerecord your last day because of a software crash/bug/glitch.

With OSX stick with 10.8.x, with Windows stick with Win7. On the hardware front prefer SSD over HDD if you plan to do a lot of tracks and/or use libraries of samples. Plus invest in RAM, swapping is your enemy to low latency oh and all the crapware and background tasks too. If you want to do music, make it a dedicated music computer.

When you start working in the DAW, just unplug the network because you don't want Symantec updating its definitions or any background process happening when you record that once in a lifetime track.

Read reviews and make note of the hardware setup of the reviewer, prefer tried and tested and supported over latest and greatest but buggy. Try demo versions of the DAW you plan to purchase and make sure you get the concept, each one has a learning curve and some are quite daunting.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: An Open Source PC Music Studio?

fredc97 Re:for open source, add, don't create. Mac != iOS (299 comments)

Actually for some great synths look no further than the iPad: Nave, the Yamaha Synth & Pad, Korg iMS-20, iPolysix, iElectribe, Arturia iSEM, iMini and many others. The best with this is that you can drive it using a combo of an ipad USB interface with a Roland UM-ONE (MIDI) interface, this way you can use any synth with a MIDI out to drive the iPad, or if you prefer you can drive it with a MIDI sequencer or a DAW.

You then simply record the audio back into your DAW. It may be not the simplest of setups, but the great music companies of the MIDI era (think 80s, 90s) are creating/recreating many synths on the iPad these days and they sound great (some purists will say they don't but then again, you can't buy any hardware synth for a mere 5-10$ nor can you get decent sound fonts/samples for such a low price).

To be honest i do have some vintage gear: D110, K4r, AX73, D550 and some Proteus' but the iPad is great to try some ideas and if you like the sound, then record it in your DAW!

The sound is the point, how it was created is pointless (but the road to its creation can be fun and rewarding too, but that's another topic).

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Should a Unix Fan Look For In a Windows Expert?

fredc97 Re:knowledge... (454 comments)

I'd have him sit in front of a Windows machine and tell him: check what's running on that remote server at startup which is not a service and let him demonstrate how he'd use regedit for that.

I'd have him write a GPO that assigns specific computers to a WSUS server with dynamic groups.

Make him read a powershell script and tell you what each line does and for bonus points find the errors placed in the script.

more than 2 years ago
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Schmidt: Google Once Considered Issuing Currency

fredc97 Google Citizenship (189 comments)

With the new EULA they will probably introduce a Google Citizenship somewhere in there. This way you could simply sign in to Google+ at the various borders to prove your identity and the border patrol would in return Google your browsing history to see if you pose any threat to national security.

As for Google Bucks well they already have the Google shares which you can buy for their weight in gold and some more.

more than 2 years ago
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Smallest space my belongings could fit (unbroken):

fredc97 Physical media takes a lot of room (312 comments)

Add a thousand CDs, two thousand DVDs and you start to fill a room with boxes full of air pretty quickly. Luckily I hope we do get a high density storage system in the future where you can put 1 inch UV ray disks with self scanning rfid tags with inhouse geo location. That would make finding physical media much easier. And for those that say go digital I just ask where do you put your backups ?

more than 2 years ago
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Devices on my home network (less modem):

fredc97 Re:Nice attempt at recon! (374 comments)

What? Do you mean you are not patching and hardening all your devices ?

about 3 years ago
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Devices on my home network (less modem):

fredc97 Do VM count toward that number? (374 comments)

Here we have :
2 x iPhone 4
2 x Ipad 2
2 x Laptops (MB Air) one is running Parallels Desktop with Ubuntu and Chrome OS
2 x PSPs (Go and 2000)
4 x game consoles (PS3 Slim, Fat, 360, Wii)
1 x TV (LG Smart TV)
1 x Receiver (Onkyo TX-NR)
2 x Skype Phones (one wired, one wifi)
1 x Vonage Device
5 x Wireless Routers (Airport, Airport Express, 2x Dlink, Time Capsule) They are being used as a 802.11N bridge between 2 GigE LANs
1 x Cisco Switch
1 x PIX Firewall
2 x Dumb switches
3 x Desktops (2x AMD Phenom 2, AMD K6, running XP and Win 7)
1 x Media center PC (Win 7)
2 x Network Printers (HP BW and HP Colour)
1 x Apple TV 1st Gen
1 x Chumby 2nd Gen
10 x VMs (only about 4-5 running at at time) running on a Win 2008 Enterprise with VMWare Server 2 running Ubuntu (for DEV), Win 2003 DC, Win 2008 DC, SuSE and OpenBSD plus more Linux & BSD VMs powered every now and then

about 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Good Gigabit 802.11N Home Router?

fredc97 If money is not a problem: use 2 devices (398 comments)

I personally am using a DLink DGL-4300 for Internet routing and the fifth gen Airport Express as an AP, this way I get both more network options on the Wan side AND great Wifi perfs. The DGL-4300 is pretty much impossible to find these day so go with an OpenWRT based router for your routing and use the Airport Extreme 5th Gen in bridge mode (they really improved the power and stability in the 5th gen), plus you get the added benefit of positioning the AP higher (on top of a wooden shelf or on the wall) for increased range.

I live in a downtown area and my neighbours have about 70+ wifi routers I can see (which also interfere), the 2.4 Ghz band is pretty useless nowadays, there is always a clown configuring his 2.4 Ghz on channels like 7, 3 or 9, the 802-11N 5 Ghz range is much less populated and highly recommended in an apartment configuration. Do a proper wifi inventory of your neighbour's use of channels and try to use those which cause less interference, and if all your devices support N just turn off the 2.4 Ghz antenna.

more than 3 years ago
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Competition Aims To Make Cybergeeks Cool

fredc97 Re:Einstein Stamps (134 comments)

Actually a lot of countries did put out Einstein stamps, even the US did at least twice according to my quick Cyber Googling, 8 and 15 cents. Mickey Mouse probably has more lobbying clout in Washington nowadays, it's either this or somebody has a cyber string theory agenda.

more than 3 years ago
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Chrome Is the Third Double-Digit Browser

fredc97 Re:I switched back to Firefox from Chrome. (299 comments)

Bookmarks ? Seriously, is anyone still using bookmarks ? Pardon my tone but after a quick survey of my fellow workers the only bookmarks we have are the one that come by default. Search history is a far more reliable source when paired with auto complete.

more than 3 years ago
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PC Virus Turns 25

fredc97 Re:Attack Toolkits (86 comments)

Attack toolkits are about as old as viruses, the MtE (Mutation Engine) was released in 1991. Before that all you needed was debug, edlin and a copy of Ralph Brown's book, oh and Elk Cloner was on Apple II in 1981. Make that 30 years for other 'personal computers'.

more than 3 years ago
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PC Virus Turns 25

fredc97 Re:get rid of adds (86 comments)

Man this is going Viriial, its like viriises have taken over /.

more than 3 years ago
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Disempowering the Singular Sysadmin?

fredc97 Re:There is a well tested method for that (433 comments)

Well I can tell you from experience no amount of change documentation and preparation can help a Sysadmin doing work after hours (meaning after a full day of work and then some) not to make some stupid mistake like popping the wrong drive out, overworked anyone ?

I've had some worse experience where on IBM ServeRAID controlers when you put in a replacement drive while the array is in 'degraded' mode some awful engineer at IBM decided that if the new drive were to fail while rebuilding the array to a consistent state that they should fail the whole array instead of just warning that the rebuild failed and asking for another replacement (a good one, yeah it seems they sometime ship failed drives as replacement, another IBM genius I would guess). Now everytime I replace drives on IBM servers i'm allways anticipating server rebuilds, but that never gets to the managers or else like it was said earlier in the thread they would have me do this 'maintenance' on christmas eve or some other crazy maintenance window.

BTW: For consistency's sake you can actually boot a floppy to reenable a 'failed' IBM harddrive and set its status to ONL(ine) although this is hardly documented anywhere and thus save yourself from a complete bare metal disaster recovery on IBM servers.

more than 3 years ago
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Ontario School Bans Wi-Fi

fredc97 Re:ignorance is too common (287 comments)

Have you tried not looking directly at the sun ? Also I sincerely hope you are not using a microwave for popcorn if you are electro sensitive...

about 4 years ago
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Ontario School Bans Wi-Fi

fredc97 Re:Irrational beliefs (287 comments)

Fan death, that is really cool ! I'm a big fan of fan death !

about 4 years ago
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Ontario School Bans Wi-Fi

fredc97 Re:It's not the energy (287 comments)

Actually I am surprised they are not banning use of microwave ovens before they ban Wifi. The signal strength of the average microwave oven is usually stronger than most access point even with the 'shielding' they have.

about 4 years ago
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Internal Costs Per Gigabyte — What Do You Pay?

fredc97 Re:$40 (420 comments)

40$ per Gigabyte is not that bad if you don't have to pay to acquire 15K RPM SAN drives which can easily run into 2500$ for a 600 GB drive with dual path fibre channel. Fibre channel HBA will run into the 1000$ a piece (twice for redundancy) plus all the SAN switches needed to connect your SAN to your server, again very expensive costs to front for an IT dept. Oh and you get to pay also for nice 24/7 maintenance contracts plus all that support staff with their big salaries because no janitor can build a SAN infrastructure after all, and if he can he will charge you big bucks anyway.

You can't expect 24/7 99.99% reliability out of consumer hardware, and as for the commenter that said that for 300 000$ he'd buy 100 servers that he would host at 100 different sites and replicate all that data, hum well good luck with that and that thing won't get implemented before a year of running around the country and bandwidth costs will probably double the operating budget.

Good and efficient IT operations are like race car teams, they cost a lot, can do trivial operations in seconds and can plan for the worst and still come out ahead. Other cheap solutions ? Go the Google way and let the advertisement pay for it all, other than that put everything on your cheap 1TB pc hard drive and hope it never fails or gets flooded, or stolen, after all how long does it take a human to fill 1TB of actual work data on average ? Multiply that by the hourly costs of such employees and soon you'll discover that HR costs are much higher than typical IT costs.

more than 4 years ago
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Proximity Sensor Presents Latest iPhone 4 Issue

fredc97 Re:And mass unjustified mass hysteria spreads... (446 comments)

Wow you are the lucky one, I got a 3G with a 3 year contract (the only option in Canada besides importing a 1000$ unlocked phone) and so I had to skip the 3GS.

As far as the iPad go it's fast but then again it's not running iOS4, the day of that upgrade i'll be reading the Apple forums BEFORE i push that ''upgrade'' button.

If Hell had such ''upgrade'' buttons I suspect they would be far more enjoyable than the iOS4 3G experience. My iPhone 3G has been Vistaized and there is no way of going back.

Oh and yeah i'm typing this on a Macbook, but i picked because it was the less overpriced mac availlable out there, pop in a decent HDD and upgrade the ram and you now have a computer that is decent and you have spare parts too in the process.

more than 4 years ago

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