Tag Archives: iTunes

The Fear of Using Windows – Part 2: Cost of Ownership

This is Part 2 of “The Fear of Using Windows.” Please read Part 1 if you have not already.

There is a lot more to owning and maintaining a PC than just picking one up from the store and plugging it into the wall. I think the overall lifetime cost of a PC should be considered when purchasing new hardware. Continue reading

The Fear of Using Windows – Part 1: The Three Types of PC Users

I’ve harped heavily here before about how Windows doesn’t work well for people who are just starting out with computers. I’d like to go into a bit more detail about thoughts I’ve had recently and give a little background to what I’m talking about.

Continue reading

iTunes 7 on Linux

As I stated before, I use iTunes to share all of our music throughout the house. Up until now, I’ve had no way to listen to my music while on Linux.

After installing an older version of iTunes in WINE, as well as a daap library through Synaptic, I am now able to natively listen to my music on the Linux desktop.

There are a few caveats, as the program isn’t very snappy, but all the functionality I need so far is taken care of. Now, I just need to work on moving my library over to the server.

WINE + iTunes 7

I am embarking on a new geeky mission, that’s an extension of an older mission that I completed, but not to the extent that I really wanted to.

Our electricity bills at home are outrageous, and I decided to start doing my part by consolidating and eliminating PCs that did not need to be running all the time. Every night, I turn off my main workstation PC, and only leave 2 on 24/7.

A few months ago, I had 2 servers, 1 Mac Mini, and two workstation PCs that were on at all times. Each one had its own purpose, and were compartmentalized so that services were not redundant between two machines. This became the first concern for me in trying to lower the electric bills for the household.

I moved the file server, development web server, and video processing to one new server, with very high specs that is able to handle the load. The music serving was then being done strictly from the Mac Mini, as it was the only Mac that had 250+gb of storage (through a mini mate).

Though the Mini doesn’t suck down as much power as the other PCs in the room, it is still on at all times for in-demand audio playback from one of the three Mac laptops we have laying around the house.

In my attempt to further consolidate things, I’ve installed iTunes 7 on the main server through WINE (1.1.4), and it seems to be working just fine. Though this would be an experimental fix at first, I think that it will work out just fine in the future.

The only thing left to do is export all of my music to the main server, restore all of the album artwork, and setup the podcasts that I listen to through that install of iTunes. The main issue I see here is whether or not I will be able to use iTunes to manage my iPod. Now, that’s not that big of a deal, as there are many other ways under Linux to manage an iPod, and I might have to go down one of those routes anyway.

Though consolidating all services to two servers hasn’t really made much of a dent in the electricity bill, I can sleep better at night knowing that I’m not the sole cause of the carbon emissions that are a direct result of our electricity use.

Dev Server

All of the components of my new development server have finally arrived. This server will be serving (no pun intended) more than one purpose in my office.

Before this equipment got here, I had quite a few different computers running 24/7. Along with providing a more reliable dev server (one that won’t melt down for a long time), I will also be setting this server up with an iTunes share, my (legal) torrent downloads, and my file storage. This used to be four separate computers performing this task, and all four were on 24/7. In the future, these computers will be strictly used on an as-needed basis.

The timing of all of this is really fortunate. After being able to move all of the processes around, I will be turning off those computers. And, since it is the end of the month, I will be able to see what kind of impact this has on our electricity bill. I would imagine that it would have a decent impact, but we’re going to find out for sure.

If only there were a way for me to subtract this from our gas bill :)

Server Specs:

  • AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Black Edition
  • 4 GB DDR2 800 RAM
  • ASUS M3A-H/HDMI Motherboard
  • Rosewill RX750-D-B 750W Power Supply
  • CyberPower 900W UPS
  • Highpoint RocketRaid133 PCI IDE Card
  • 120Gb Primary Hard Drive
  • 4 x 250Gb LVM Hard Drives (1 Tb of Storage)

I have named it Omnius. All of the (Windows or Linux) computers on my network have been named after Dune Universe names. First was Caladan, then Arrakis, Corrin, Bela (Tegeuse), Highliner (my Toshiba laptop), and Kaitain (Dad’s computer). I know it’s kind of a dorky thing, but you have to have a good theme so that you can easily remember the network names of your computers.

So, over the next two or three days, I will be completing these tasks in the background while programming.