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3 years and counting…

On a 15th September, 3 years ago, I got my Ubuntu Membership.

There’s only thing I can say about it: it’s been the most wonderful and awesome 3 years I could have. I would’ve never thought that I would find such welcoming and amazing community.

Even though I may have not worked with you directly, thank you. You all are what makes the community awesome – I wouldn’t imagine it without one of you. We are all building the future, so let’s continue!

As I said on the title, I hope that it’s not only 3 years. I’ll keep on counting!

FOSSETCON in two weeks – See you there!

A while ago I posted about FOSSETCON (Free and Open Source Software Expo and Technology Conference), but now the time has come. In less than two weeks the conference will be taking place, and I cannot wait to fly over there!

FOSSETCON will start on Thursday, September 11th with day 0. We will have an Ubucon the whole day! Panels, workshops, make sure you don’t miss it. I’ll be flying during that day and hope I can get there at least for the last session.

During the 12th and 13th there will be an expo hall, as well as several talks! I will be with the Ubuntu Florida LoCo Team in the Ubuntu booth. Make sure to visit us there if you want to take a look at the Ubuntu phones and tablets, and maybe get some swag? Who knows.

On the other hand, I will be hosting a 40-minute Juju Charm School during day 1 (September 12th) at 10:30am local time. Make sure to attend if you wanna get a glimpse of what’s up with Juju and all the things you can do with it, including a bit of development.

In case you’re wondering. Yes, I will have the so-loved Orange Box! If you want to see it in action or just give it a hug, make sure to go to FOSSETCON!

You can buy your tickets for FOSSETCON by clicking here. There are three ticket options: the Training Pass, the Conference Pass and the Supporter Pass. You can find more information about each ticket type on the link.

Also, if you have already got your copy of the Official Ubuntu Book, 8th edition and want me to sign it for you, I will be more than happy to.

Don’t be shy and say hi, maybe we can grab a coffee after conference hours. See you all there!

Juju’ing with t1.micro instances on AWS

Since February, when I decided I didn’t want to use the local provider with Juju because my internet connection has a download speed of 400KBps, I opened an AWS account. This gave me 750 hours per month to use on t1.micro instances, which are awesome for Juju testing… until you hit some problems.

Main problem with the t1.micro instances is that they only have 613MB RAM. This is good for testing charms which do not require a lot of memory, but there are some (as nova-cloud-controller) which do require some more memory to run properly. Even worst, they require memory to finish installing.

I should note that, in general, my experience with t1.micro instances and the AWS free tier has been awesome, but in this cases there is no other solution than getting a bigger instance. If you are testing in cloud and you see a weird error you don’t understand, it may be that the machine has ran out of memory to allocate, so try in a bigger instance. If it doesn’t solve it, go ahead and report a bug. If it’s something on a charm’s code, we’ll look into it.

Happy deploying!

FOSSETCON in Florida – Coming Next September!

Next September, from the 11th to the 13th, FOSSETCON will be held in the Rosen Plaza, in Orlando, Florida.

FOSSETCON stands for Free and Open Source Software Expo and Technology Conference. Organized by the awesome Bryan Smith, it will have a variety of workshops, talks, certifications, and a HUGE Expo Hall, where even the Ubuntu community will be featured! If you want your company to be featured during the conference, this is the perfect place to apply to be a sponsor. On the other hand, if you want to see many awesome things with regards to the Free and Open Source world and it’s close to you, then it’s the right place for you! Plus, attendees get a special discount in their tickets for Universal Studios parks, and more deals coming ;)

Best thing about it is that in Day 0 (11th September) there will be an Ubucon! That’s correct, a whole day dedicated to Ubuntu and the state of the art! What else could one ask for in a conference? Beer? I’m sure they will have some.

If you are planning to be around make sure to visit the Ubuntu booth, there’s still plenty of time to plan your trip!

Juju: Multiple environments with just one account

Today, I was checking some charming as usual, and found myself in a problem. I wanted to have different environments for automated testing and manual code testing, but I only had one AWS account. I thought I needed an account in another cloud, or another AWS account, but after thinking for a while I decided it wasn’t worth it, leaving those thoughts in the past. But suddenly I asked myself if it was possible to just clone my information on my environments.yaml file and set up another environment with the same credentials. Indeed, it was.

The only thing I did here was:

  • Open my environments.yaml file.
  • Copy the exact same information I had for my old EC2 environment.
  • Give a new name to the environment I was creating.
  • Change the name of the storage bucket (as it has to be unique).
  • Save the changes, close the file, and bootstrap the new environment.

Easy enough, right? That way you can just have multiple environments and execute different things on each one with just one account. I am not sure how this will work for other providers, but at least for AWS it works this way. This just adds more awesome-ness to Juju than it already has. Now, let’s play with this environments!

Need help rooting or flashing your Nexus device? The solution is here!

A couple days ago, Android 4.4.3 was released. I have a Nexus device, so I was waiting for the OTA update. I had the 4.4.2 update on the queue, though, so I decided to go ahead and apply it. But my recovery partition had the TeamWin Recovery installed, which didn’t like the upgrade. So, I asked a friend of mine and he ended up giving me a simple solution for my flashing and rooting problems: Nexulockr.

Nexulockr is a program written by Ian Santopietro, which makes the task of managing your Nexus device (in terms of the previously mentioned stuff) way too easy. So, I went ahead and downloaded the Android 4.4.3 factory image for my device, and patiently waited. Well, I couldn’t expect to download it quickly with this 400 KB/s connection. While I did, the new Nexulockr version finished uploading, and I was getting ready to add the PPA to my machine. Doing it is as simple as executing the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nexulockr-dev/nexulockr-beta
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nexulockr

That, after another bit of waiting, installed Nexulockr into my machine. And I was ready to go! I opened the program and this magic screen appeared (with all my device info, of course):

Screenshot from 2014-06-04 21:54:36

The process of flashing the image was super quick and easy. I just clicked on the right button, and this other window appeared:

Screenshot from 2014-06-04 21:58:53

In the factory image I downloaded, I got lots of .img files compressed into one gzip. Problem is, sometimes you don’t know what image to flash first or last. Nexulockr solves this problem by having the buttons in the order the images need to be flashed. I went ahead and started flashing the images. No additional efforts were needed on my side, just selecting the image and clicking that automagic button while my phone was connected.

The next day, I found out my root had disappeared (for obvious reasons), so I had to root my phone again. Guess what – Nexulockr also helped me with that. I went ahead, connected my phone, and clicked the “Root” button. I selected “Root device” and I just had to do one press on my phone to confirm the root. And that was it. No tedious command line interaction!

The developer states that Nexulockr may work with some other devices, but this is not guaranteed. Still, for all those of you with Nexus devices, this may come in handy at some point. As I am writing this, a build for the beta package is ongoing. So, why not give it a try after it’s done?

ownCloud Charm Updated!

A couple days ago, Canonical announced that the Ubuntu One File and Music Services were being shut down. I was checking some of the alternatives that were presented for migrating files, and found ownCloud as one of them. I had never used it, but knew a Juju Charm was in the Charm Store. So, as I’m still enjoying the benefits of Amazon EC2’s free tier, I decided to give it a shot and see how it was.

Once the service was deployed, I checked everything was running good, but noticed the version was not the latest. I decided to go ahead and fix it, but in the road, while working with Charles Butler, I found several problems, including a broken upgrade-charm hook, and some bugs on ownCloud’s side. But everything seems to be running good now, and you should be able to do a new ownCloud deployment or upgrade your current one to the newest version without any errors!

Be aware that we are working on several other bugs for this charm, including the version lock we currently have. Make sure to report any other bugs you find on the Launchpad project, and we’ll take a look at it. Now, go and play with ownCloud!

Push notifications on ZNC?! Really?!

A couple days ago I did a post about going to school, and it in-between the lines it had the words “I’m deatached from my ZNC it has got push notifications on” hidden. One person did notice, and asked about how this feature worked and mentioned some tedious points in the process. But let’s get to it!

If you use ZNC, you should already know that ZNC supports the use of modules. Some of them are already built-in with the packaged system, but some others can be compiled manually. If you host your own ZNC, this may be of your interest.

The module for this is called ‘push’ (a bit obvious, huh?) and is hosted on Github, right here. In order to be able to compile and grab the module, first execute:

sudo apt-get install git znc-dev

Then, pull the git code, make the module and install it:

git clone https://github.com/jreese/znc-push.git
cd znc-push
znc-buildmod push.cpp
make install

And, finally, load the module on your ZNC by executing the following on your ZNC:

/msg *status loadmod push

In general, there are two services I have checked are good and work: Pushbullet (for Android) and Airgram (for iOS). Each service has some specific configuration options. In the case of Pushbullet, which I use, you need to execute the following on your ZNC:

/msg *push set service pushbullet
/msg *push set secret [secretgoeshere]
/msg *push set target [targetgoeshere]

To find this values, register on Pushbullet and login to your account. Once the device is added, click on your email address and then on ‘Account Settings’. It should explicitly give you the secret. Then, go back to your inbox and click on the device you want to send the notifications to, even if it’s already selected. Now, from the address bar, copy the ‘device_iden’ value – that should be the target. And you’re good to go!

There are many other configuration options, which can be found here. I hope this is useful for many of you who want to stick with ZNC 24/7 :)

Taking The Next Step In Life

Goodbye March, hello April. This first three months of the year went pretty quickly, and that also means that my ‘vacation’ is over. No more going to bed at 4:30am and waking up at 11am, because now I need to go to university.

Yep, for those who didn’t know yet, I am starting university tomorrow, on April the 2nd. I was actually supposed to start classes today, but unfortunately my schedule doesn’t have any classes on Tuesday, but classes on Saturdays. That means I will be starting my A/V Production major in University of Lima tomorrow. Usually, majors in Peru take 5 years, so this is a long adventure I have ahead.

I am expecting to have some fun and hard times, homework and projects may take time from me, but still, I will not be leaving the Ubuntu community for any reason. Even though I may take some time to adapt to my new (and awful) schedule, I will make sure to try and keep up with the community as much as I can. Of course, this means I will not be available 20+ hours a day, like I was for the last couple months.

Still, if you want to contact me, make sure to email me or ping me on IRC, even if I’m deatached from my ZNC it has got push notifications on – I will be totally contactable.

I can’t wait to start this new adventure and see what’s ahead on the road.

App Dev School in Lima!

IMG_2155On the 25th of January, the Ubuntu Peru LoCo Team hosted the first Ubuntu App Dev School. We contacted the National Engineering University, and they offered their help in order to host the event at their premises.

After some planning, we showed up that morning. I was a bit rushed with everything as the connection on my PC was not good and I had to run an Ubuntu User Days session just before the event started, so I ended up running it from my phone. At 10:00 am, around 45 to 50 people joined us in the newly-opened auditorium, where we presented Ubuntu Touch to the community and explained how it all worked – from the foundations to app development. This was the first time the community had showed a device with Ubuntu Touch, and as I got my own Nexus 4 I decided to give it a try, and show it to the rest of the community.

Everything starting by showing the phone with the OS installed, and then we proceeded to explain how the system worked, the concepts inside the system, how edges work, and many more things that are featured on the phone. After this, we had a break, where we distributed some swag and DVDs/CDs we got from Canonical, as we are a verified team. We invited some people from the press, but as they didn’t show up we ended up having more time for the next part of the event. We continued by explaining how foundations and applications work, and we gave some tips on how to install Ubuntu on a machine or use a VM, install Ubuntu Touch on a phone or tablet, and terminal tips and tricks. We also explained the process of creating and publishing applications to the Ubuntu Click Store.

We encouraged people to write their own applications, whether they are in QML or HTML5. I had a couple spare YubiKeys from when I went to UDS-R (literally, a couple), so I decided to raffle them to the assistants. We got a bunch of numbered tickets and started giving them out to assistants, and then we raffled them as we kept the other side of the ticket (works great if you decide to do a raffle in your LoCo Team!). We hoped this was an incentive in order to increase security in their accounts and discovering what else can be done with Ubuntu.

Aaaand, that was basically it. Everyone ended up super happy, and knowing what the future of convergence is.

If you want to organize an App Dev School in your LoCo Team, it’s quite easy! Just make sure to read this page to have a general idea. Daniel Holbach and David Planella will be hosting two sessions at Ubuntu on Air! to answer all your questions about App Dev Schools – both organizational and technical. The first one is on the 26th of March at 9:00 UTC, and the second one is on the 27th of March at 18:00 UTC. Make sure you’re there if you want to ask anything about App Dev Schools. Also, if you want to use the slides I used for the presentation, they are on my people.ubuntu.com page, and fully translated to Spanish. The original slides can be found at Daniel’s people.canonical.com page, including also a VM with Ubuntu and the Ubuntu SDK installed. Now, I leave you with some photos from the event!

First YubiKey winner!

Second YubiKey winner!

People at the booth area during the break

People with their DVDs/CDs during the break

People with their DVDs/CDs during the break

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