Trans Scend Survival

Trans: Latin prefix implying "across" or "Beyond", often used in gender nonconforming situations – Scend: Archaic word describing a strong "surge" or "wave", originating with 15th century english sailors – Survival: 15th century english compound word describing an existence only worth transcending.

Page 3 of 20

Evaluating Ubuntu Pop OS: Dual Boot Setup

Dual OS on a 2015 MacBook pro

As the costs of Apple computers continue to skyrocket and the price of useable amounts of storage zoom past a neighboring galaxy (for a college student at least), I am always on on the hunt for cost effective solutions to house and process big projects and large data.

Pop OS (a neatly wrapped Ubuntu) is the in-house OS from System76.  After looking through their catalog of incredible computers and servers, I thought it would be a good time to see how far I can go with an Ubuntu daily driver.  Of course, there are many major and do-not-pass-go downsides- see the below list:

  • Logic Pro X → There is no replacement 🙁   A killer DAW with fantastic AU libraries. I am versed with Reaper and Bitwig, but neither is as complete as Logic Pro.  I will be evaluating POP with an installation of Reaper, but with so few plugins (I own very few third party sets) this is not a fair replacement.
  • Adobe PS and LR:  I do not like Adobe, but these programs are… …kind of crucial for most project of mine that involve 2d, raster graphics.  I continue to use Inkscape for many tasks, but it is irrelevant when it comes to pixel-based work and photo management / bulk operations.
  • AutoCAD / Fusion 360 / Sketchup:  I like FreeCAD a lot, but it is not at all like the other programs.  Not worse or better, but these are all very different animals for different uses.
  • Apple notes and other apple-y things:  OSX is extremely refined. Inter-device solutions are superb.  I have gotten myself used to Google Keep, but it is not quite at the in-house Apple level.
  • XCode and IOS Simulator environments:  I do use Expo, but frankly to make products for Apple you need a Mac.

Dual Boot (OSX and Pop Ubuntu) Installation on a 2015 MBP:

This process is quite simple, and only calls for a small handful of post-installation tweaks.  My intent is to create a small sandbox with minimal use of “extras” (no extra boot managers or anything like that)

Steps:

Partition separate “boot”, “home”, and other drives

  • I am using a 256gb micro sd partitioned in half for OSX and Pop_OS (Sandisk extreme, “v3” speed rating version card via a BaseQi slot adapter)

Use the partition tool in Mac disk utility.  Be sure to set these new partitions as FAT 32- we will be using ext4 and other more linux-y filesystems upon installation, so these need to be as generic as possible.

Get a copy of Pop_OS from System76.

Use Etcher (recommended) or any other image burning tool to create a boot key for Pop.  

The USB key only has one small job, in which Pop_os will be burned into a better location in your boot partition made in the previous step.  If you are coming from a hackintosh experience, fear not: everything will stay in the Macbook Pro, not extra USB safety dongles or Kexts, or Plist mods…!

BOOT INTO POP_OS:

Restart your computer and hold down the alt-option Key.  THIS IS HOW TO SWITCH from Pop_os, OSX, Bootcamp, and anything else you have in there.  You should see an “efi” option next to the default OSX. (note- at least in my case, the built-in bootloader defaults to the last used OS at each restart.)

Once you are in the Pop_OS installer, click through and select the appropriate partitions when prompted.  After this installation, you may remove the USB key and continue to select
“efi” in the bootloader.


ASSUMING ALL GOES WELL:

You are now in Pop_OS!  Using the alt/option key will become second nature… but some Pop key mappings may not.  Continue for a list of Macbook Pro – specific tweaks and notes.

First moves:

Go to the Pop Shop and get the “Tweaks” tool.  I made one or two small keymap changes, but this is likely personal preference.  

Default, important Key Mappings:

Command will act as a “control center-ish” thing.  It will not copy or paste anything for you.

Control does what Command did on OSX.  

Terminal uses Control+Shift for copy and paste, but only in Terminal:  if you pull a Control+Shift+C in Chrome, you will get the Dev tool GUI…  The Shift key thing is needed unless you are inclined to root around and change it.

Custom Boot Scripts and Services:

In an effort to make things simple, I made a shell script to house the processes I want running when I turn on the computer- this is to streamline the “.service” making process.  While it may only take marginally more time to make a new service, this way I can keep track of what is doing what from a file in my documents folder.

In terminal, go to where your services live if you want to look:

cd /etc/systemd/system

Or, cut to the chase:

sudo nano /etc/systemd/system/startsh.sh.service

Paste the following into this new file:

_____________Begin _After_This_Line____________________

[Unit]

Description=Start at Open plz

[Service]

ExecStart=/Documents/startsh.sh

[Install]

WantedBy=multi-user.target

_____________End _Above_This_Line____________________

Exit nano (saving as you go) and cd back to “/”.

cd

sudo nano /Documents/startsh.sh

Paste the following (and any scripts you may want, see the one I have commented out for odrive CLI) into this new file:

_____________Begin _After_This_Line____________________

#!/bin/bash

# Uncomment the following if you want 24/7 odrive in your system

# otherwise do whatever you want

#nohup “$HOME/.odrive-agent/bin/odriveagent” > /dev/null 2>&1 &

# end

_____________End _Above_This_Line____________________

After exiting the shell script, start it all up with the following:

sudo systemctl start startsh.sh

sudo systemctl enable startsh.sh

Cloud file management with Odrive CLI and Odrive Utilities:

Visit one of the two Odrive CLI pages- this one has linux in it:

https://forum.odrive.com/t/odrive-sync-agent-a-cli-scriptable-interface-for-odrives-progressive-sync-engine-for-linux-os-x-and-windows/499#linuxinst

Please visit this repo to get going with –recursive and other odrive utilities

https://github.com/amagliul/odrive-utilities


These are the two commands I ended up putting in a markdown file on my desktop for easy access.  Nope, not nearly as cool as it is on OSX. But it works…

Odrive sync: [-h] for help

“`

python “$HOME/.odrive-agent/bin/odrive.py” sync

“`

Odrive utilities:

“`

python “$HOME/odrive-utilities/odrivecli.py” sync –recursive

“`

Next, Get Some Apps:

Download Chrome.  Sign into Chrome to get your chrome OS apps loaded into the launcher- in my case, I needed Chrome remote desktop.  DO NOT DOWNLOAD ADDITIONAL PACKAGES for Chrome Remote Desktop, if that is your thing. They will halt all system tools (disk utils, Gnome terminal, graphical file viewer…   !!See this thread, it happened to me!! )

Stock up!  

Get Atom editor:  https://atom.io/

…Or my favorites: https://www.jetbrains.com/toolbox/app/

Rstudio:  https://www.rstudio.com/products/rstudio/download/#download

Mysql:  https://dev.mysql.com/downloads/mysql/

MySQL Workbench:  https://dev.mysql.com/downloads/workbench/

If you get stuck:  make sure you have tried installing as root ($ sudo su -) and verified passwords with ($ sudo mysql_secure_installation)  

See here to start “rooting around” MySQL issues:  https://stackoverflow.com/questions/50132282/problems-installing-mysql-in-ubuntu-18-04/50746032#50746032

Get some GIS tools:

QGIS!

sudo apt-get install qgis python-qgis qgis-plugin-grass

uGet for bulk USGS data download!

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:plushuang-tw/uget-stable

sudo apt install uget

That’s all for now- Cheers!

-Jess

Deploy Shiny R apps along Node.JS

Find the tools in action on Heroku as a node.js app!

https://kml-tools.herokuapp.com/

See the code on GitHub:

https://github.com/Jesssullivan/Shiny-Apps

After many iterations of ideas regarding deployment for a few research Shiny R apps, I am glad to say the current web-only setup is 100% free and simple to adapt.   I thought I’d go through some of the Node.JS bits I have been fussing with. 

The Current one:  

Heroku has a free tier for node.js apps.  See the pricing and limitations here: https://www.heroku.com/pricing as far as I can tell, there is little reason to read too far into a free plan; they don’t have my credit card, and thy seem to convert enough folks to paid customers to be nice enough to offer a free something to everyone.  

Shiny apps- https://www.shinyapps.io/– works straight from RStudio.  They have a free plan. Similar to Heroku, I can care too much about limitations as it is completely free.  

The reasons to use Node.JS (even if it just a jade/html wrapper) are numerous, though may not be completely obvious.  If nothing else, Heroku will serve it for free….

Using node is nice because you get all the web-layout-ux-ui stacks of stuff if you need them.  Clearly, I have not gone to many lengths to do that, but it is there.

Another big one is using node.js with Electron.  https://electronjs.org/ The idea is a desktop app framework serves up your node app to itself, via the chromium.  I had a bit of a foray with Electron- the node execa npm install execa package let me launch a shiny server from electron, wait a moment, then load a node/browser app that acts as a interface to the shiny process.  While this mostly worked, it is definitely overkill for my shiny stuff.  Good to have as a tool though.

-Jess

Recycled Personal “Cloud Computing” under NAT

As many may intuit, I like the AWS ecosystem; it is easy to navigate and usually just works.  

…However- more than 1000 dollars later, I no longer use AWS for most things….

🙁   

My goals: 

Selective sync:  I need a unsync function for projects and files due to the tiny 256 SSD on my laptop (odrive is great, just not perfect for cloud computing.

Shared file system:  access files from Windows and OSX, locally and remote

Server must be headless, rebootable, and work remotely from under a heavy enterprise NAT (College)

Needs more than 8gb ram

Runs windows desktop remotely for gis applications, (OSX on my laptop)

 

Have as much shared file space as possible: 12TB+

 

Server:  recycled, remote, works-under-enterprise-NAT:

Recycled Dell 3010 with i5: https://www.plymouth.edu/webapp/itsurplus/

– Cost: $75 (+ ~$200 in windows 10 pro, inevitable license expense) 

free spare 16gb ram laying around, local SSD and 2TB HDD upgrades

– Does Microsoft-specific GIS bidding, can leave running without hampering productivity

Resilio (bittorrent) Selective sync: https://www.resilio.com/individuals/

– Cost: $60

– p2p Data management for remote storage + desktop

– Manages school NAT and port restrictions well (remote access via relay server)

Drobo 5c:

Attached and syncs to 10TB additional drobo raid storage, repurposed for NTFS

  • Instead of EBS (or S3)

 

What I see:  front end-

Jump VNC Fluid service: https://jumpdesktop.com/

– Cost: ~$30

– Super efficient Fluid protocol, clients include chrome OS and IOS,  (with mouse support!)

– Manages heavy NAT and port restrictions well

– GUI for everything, no tunneling around a CLI

  • Instead of Workspaces, EC2

Jetbrains development suite:  https://www.jetbrains.com/ (OSX)

– Cost:  FREE as a verified GitHub student user.

– PyCharm IDE, Webstorm IDE

  • Instead of Cloud 9

 

Total (extra) spent: ~$165

(Example:  my AWS bill for only October was $262)

 

-Jess

Quick fix: 254 character limit in ESRI Story Map?

https://gis.stackexchange.com/questions/75092/maximum-length-of-text-fields-in-shapefile-and-geodatabase-formats

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GeoJSON

https://gis.stackexchange.com/questions/92885/ogr2ogr-converting-kml-to-geojson

If you happened to be working with….  KML data (or any data with large description strings) and transitioning it into the ESRI Story Map toolset, there is a very good chance  you hit the the dBase 254 character length limit with the ESRI Shapefile upload.  Shapefiles are always a terrible idea.

 

the solution:  with GDAL or QGIS (alright, even in ArcMap), one can use GeoJSON as an output format AND import into the story map system- with complete long description strings!

 

QGIS:

Merge vector layers -> save to file -> GeoJSON

arcpy:
import arcpy

import os

arcpy.env.workspace = “/desktop/arcmapstuff”

arcpy.FeaturesToJSON_conversion(os.path.join(“outgdb.gdb”, “myfeatures”), “output.json”)

GDAL:
<
ogr2ogr -f GeoJSON output.json input.kml

Github UPDATE 9.12.18:  Shiny Apps

View the tools here: http://kml.jessdev.org

 

Three of my KML tools are now stable and in Github.   These are actually displayed via the static site generator Hugo (read about the Hugo CLI here), which is sitting in the shiny server (port 3838) next to the apps.   Messy, but it will do for now.

https://github.com/Jesssullivan/Shiny-Apps

 

-Jess

« Older posts Newer posts »