So many Linux’s for Windows, so little time. Microsoft Linux subsystem?

Get started with the Windows Subsystem for Linux

How many flavors of Unix can co-exist on a Windows system?  I have been using the CYGWin version of Linux on my Windows system, for quite a few years, to get my daily Linux fix.  When I installed GIT for version control I got another Linux in the form of the GIT BASH command.  I use MobaXterm to do 95% of my network connections and management and it has a Terminal environment which is yet another Linux command line.  Now comes the “Reborn Microsoft” with the Linux subsystem for Linux (WSL) where you can pick from a couple of the standard Linux distro’s, including Ubuntu to run in your Windows 10 system.

This Get started with the Windows Subsystem for Linux article from InfoWorld is a good introduction to the process.  Can any of these Linux on Windows environment be a replacement for an actual Linux platform? No, not really but they can help keep a mixed environment shop (Windows, Mac, Linux) be more productive, with no additional hardware or virtualization.

I’ll be taking WSL for a test drive and will publish a video on my YouTube channel in the near future.  GeekMustHave YouTube





Boxes -Spice up boring Bash or Powershell scripts

boxes.pngBoxes is a text filter which can draw any kind of box around its input text. Box design choices range from simple boxes to complex ASCII art.  Boxes come with a good collection of ASCII art to start with.  I’m a sucker for boxes, they spice up what would be boring script files.  Boxes were always available on Linux, and now it’s available under Windows.  That’s if you can find them.

This little ditty is a reminder for myself of how to install this on a Windows machine so it is available from everywhere.

Boxes are from Thomas Jensen, download them from this link and save yourself a headache using google to find either boxes, Linux or combinations.  Version 1.2 has been released and has a few extra little goodies.

Getting it installed so you can use it any Powershell script on your system is a little difficult but worth the effort.

Part of my setup for every Windows system I use is to create a directory under the C:\ root to store the commands that are mine.  These are mostly portable applications but include little utilities like Boxes.  I call this directory C:\myCommands.   When I add this directory to the PATH statement it makes all those commands I added to the directory, available from any directory on the computer.


Adding the path is done by editing the environment variable for your account, not the system account.  Look for the Path variable and Edit it.


Then add the special place you created for your stuff.  In my case (C:\myCommands).


When you unzip the BOXES.ZIP program from this link, it is just 2 files.  The EXE which does the work and the CFG which has the ASCII artwork in it.  I unzip them both into the (c:\myCommands) directory.


The last step to getting boxes everywhere is to add a new environment variable to your account.  Start with looking for environment variables.


The name of the new environment variable is BOXES.  The value is your special place (C:\myCommands).


Verify that the new environment variable has been created.


To have all of this stuff to start working you will need to reboot.  

Now open up the PowerShell window and type:

write-output "GeekMustHave rocks!" | boxes -a hc -d ian_jones

The (ian_jones) is one my favorite ASCII art frames.  There are plenty more art frames in the CFG file.


I also have a YouTube Channel (GeekMustHave) no spaces or your get the makeup ladies.

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Powershell 5.0 on Windows 10

power01.jpgPowerShell version 5 is installed by default on Windows 10 systems.  However, if you had a previous version, say version 1.0 installed, the new version 5.0 gets installed beside it.  Having both PowerShell version installed can be a problem.  The key is know where each version installed and how to verify which version you are actually running.  Now that PowerShell is available “Everywhere” it may become more of a candidate for managing all systems across Windows, Linux and Mac.

Determine Version

To determine the PowerShell version you must open PowerShell and run the following command


If you are running Version 5.0 of PowerShell you should see something along the lines of the screen below, anything else is probably not Version 5.0.



Where is Version 5.0

Version 5.0 is now located in this directory


Since most of the stuff you do with PowerShell is admin work you may want to set the shortcut to run in admin mode automatically.

This is what the non-admin version of PowerShell looks like


So go to wherever your shortcut is located and right-click and get to the “Properties”.


Click on Advanced button to get to the super-admin stuff.


The check the Run as administrator, with great power comes great responsibility.



Now when you click on the PowerShell you will be prompted with a Windows pop-up asking you to confirm your new power.  After you accept the responsibility PowerShell will look like.


You may want to consider giving the PowerShell ISE some of that Spidy Admin love as well.  I do most of my work in the ISE so it makes sense to give it the “power” too.


Microsoft and Linux Developers in the same sentence?



Crazy Talk!


Bash on Windows, Microsoft & Linux and uproarious applause at Microsoft conference, these are things I expect to happen when pigs fly.  Well, cover your heads and look up because…Microsoft is reaching out to Linux developers in a way that the company never has before. “The Bash shell is coming to Windows. Yes, the real Bash is coming to Windows,” said Microsoft’s Kevin Gallo on stage at today’s Build 2016 keynote. The announcement received an uproarious applause from the crowd. The new functionality will be enabled as part of this summer’s Anniversary Update to Windows 10.

“This is not a VM. This is not cross-compiled tools. This is native,” he said. “We’ve partnered with Canonical to offer this great experience, which you’ll be able to download right from the Windows Store.” Third-party tools have enabled this sort of thing for years, but a direct partnership between Microsoft and Canonical should offer even more flexibility and convenience for developers who prefer using these binaries and tools.

Special thanks to Verge for this article.

Teradata Command Line Tool for Linux


Been looking for a simple Command line (Terminal) tool for Teradata SQL?  Look no further, this is an option, this article shows the TDSQL tool in use and has the GITHUB Link to it.  It supports Standard Input and Standard Output; it can be used in scripting languages like Bash to automate some tasks.  TDSQL is written in Perl and it also relies on the DBD::Teradata module available here.  There is a little Linux voodoo required here but it is manageable.


How to install LibreOffice 4.4 in Ubuntu; LinuxMint; ElementaryOS

libreoffice_logoLibreOffice is a free and open source office suite which was forked from OpenOffice in 2010. LibreOffice 4.4 was released last week by The Document Foundation and you can read about it in this post LibreOffice 4.4 Released With Improved UI.


LibreOffice 4.4 is the 9th major release of the free office suite with improved UI, improved Interoperability with OOXML file formats, improved source code and a significant list of other improvements.

UI Improvements in LibreOffice 4.4

  • Redesigned Menu bars, Tool bars & Status bars
  • Redesigned Context Menus
  • Redesigned Ruler
  • New Color Selector
  • Improved Sidebar that Integrate Smoothly with Menus
  • Improved Status Bar

LibreOffice 4.4 also features an improved right-click menu that features ‘Cut, Copy & Paste’ at the top. The right-click menu now also features a new ‘Paste Special‘ option that allows the user to paste copied text as Unformatted text and also has more advanced options.

Download & Install

LibreOffice 4.4 (not even 4.3) is not yet available in the Official Ubuntu repositories. The latest version of LibreOffice available in the Official Ubuntu repository is 4.2.

So if you want LibreOffice 4.4, you can install it via a PPA. A PPA is just a third-party repository maintained by an individual or a team. In this case, the LibreOffice PPA is maintained by the LibreOffice team.

Here are the steps to download & install LibreOffice 4.4 in Ubuntu / LinuxMint / ElementaryOS.

Ubuntu / Linux Mint / Elementary OS

First we have to add the LibreOffice 4.4 PPA by running the following command,

After adding the PPA, we have to update the system running the following command,

Before installing LibreOffice 4.4, lets upgrade the system so that all the latest packages are downloaded & installed.

Now we can install LibreOffice 4.4 by running the following command,

Special Thanks to

How to install Cinnamon as replacement for Unity on Ubuntu

If there’s one area of Linux that gets more scrutiny than any other, it’s the desktop. From every corner, the haters and detractors abound. Nearly every publication that offers any focus on the Linux desktop at some point posts a piece about getting rid of the default Ubuntu desktop. Cinnamon is one of the primary replacement contenders.

Cinnamon is the default desktop for Linux Mint and, quite frankly, it’s one of the main reasons why Mint has gained so much popularity. Why? Because it has the user-friendliness of Ubuntu and a desktop that dares to harken back to nineties-era Linux — with a few modern touches.

With that said, let’s install Cinnamon on your Ubuntu 14.04 desktop and find out if it’s a worthy replacement for the metaphor defying Ubuntu Unity.


Note: This installation shouldn’t break Unity. I have successfully installed Cinnamon and retained full use of Unity.

To install Cinnamon, open up a terminal window and enter the following commands:

When the installation completes, log out of Unity, select Cinnamon from the desktop selector (to the right of the username in the login window), enter your password, and hit Enter. When the desktop finally appears, congrats — you’ll be using Cinnamon.

 The question

Is Cinnamon a worthy replacement for Unity?

In my opinion as a Windows, MAC and Linux user…. YES!

Special Thanks to

Joli OS – Go figure


Yep just as I start to use something and get a little used to it, then it’s time to change it.   Not really complaining but looks like the Joli-Folks want the JoliCloud I installed on my Asus 701 and a IBM Thinkpad T41 to not be confused with their cutesy Joli-Book  netbook.   Soon there will be a Joli-Droid and everything will be Joli-good.

Joli-OS version 1.2 will be out soon and will support Firefox 4, Safari and experimental HTML 5 port for the iPad.  Since I’ve been part of the Joli-program since the beginning I will Joli-update and post an update.

Someones watching me

Am I just paranoid?  I have no privacy….  If you’re on the Internet it’s true.  If you work in a corporate environment count on it.  Use Facebook or twitter and your stuff is just out there hanging for everyone to see.

Use TrueCrypt to encrypt your drive (Thanks Dan). Free open-source disk encryption software for Windows 7/Vista/XP, Mac OS X, and Linux.  Initially takes a long time to encrypt but if you loose you notebook everything is cool.  “Provides plausible deniability, in case an adversary forces you to reveal the password”

The Music Video is one that I loved.  Rockwell with Micheal Jackson as the chorus and a storyboard is just too bizarre.


Moops – Combo of Joy


Whoever invented this game you are evil pure and simple.  I had finally broken my game playing days after hours at Angry Birds now this comes along.   Idea is to use combo shots to make your score jump higher.  Uses some basic physic principles.  Nice introduction and training set.  As you go through the world of Moops there are bunch of different shapes that behave differently and power ups.

To annoy me even more it works on my Android EVO phone and the Archos 101 Android tablet so I can play it anywhere.  Doesn’t work on my iPad or iPhone because Moops don’t like Apple products any more than I do and they use Flash.   Take that “Cut the Rope”.