Linux Special Interest Group
of the Westchester PC Users Group

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Our next meeting will be on Wednesday, 10/15/2014 at Stepinac High School

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday October 15, 2014 at the Stepinac High School. The meeting will begin at 7 pm in room G1 (Basement).


Notes from the June 2014 meeting at John's house.

Hello Linux Group People:

I am having the Linux group meeting for june 18 at my home instead of Stepinac.  The topic for this month is "Linux with DIY CNC Router" (

The Abstract says:
So you decided to build you very own CNC (Computer Numeric Control) router.  Now you need software to control the CNC.  You need a design program to create your master pieces.  You need to convert your master piece for the CNC control software.  Linux comes to the rescue.  Come along for an interesting walk through wood working Linux style.

Since I am having this at my home it will be by invite only.  So if you are interested in attending please send an email to "John Moore <> and I will send you the address as an invite.
I am doing it this way since I do not want to publish my home address on the group web site or my web page.  The reason I am having it here is I have a new DIY CNC that we will see work at the end of the talk.
Please feel free to forward this to anyone you know who might be interested, I can easily handle 25 - 30 people, but I would like to know who is invited.  

Thanks John Moore

Our May 2014 meeting was about microcontrollers (part 4) presented by John Moore.

We have learned to work with the Arduino Nano to make some interesting circuits. Now let’s have a look at a different type of microcontroller board the Raspberry Pi. We will look at how a computer reads and writes analog signals, and how power is measured. Then we will put it all together. Please see John’s presentation by clicking here.

Notes from the 03/19/2013 meeting:

"We have been focusing our attention on the Ubuntu version of linux. But there are other Linux distributions. One such distribution is Arch Linux, which is focused on simplicity and gives a lot of control to the user. We will take a closer look at this distribution, and it’s differences from Ubuntu."

Notes from the 12/15/2013 meeting:

John Moore led the meeting by exploring micro controllers (part 3).Now that we understand resistors, capacitors, bread boards, and other peripherals for our microcontroller it is time to jump into using one of the boards. At the meeting we are going to explore making use of the Arduino Nano.” Please see John’s presentation by clicking here.

Notes from the 10/16/2013 meeting:

John Moore's October 2013 presentation was, "Many of us work in the Windows OS during the day, but go home and use Ubuntu, or another version of Linux in the evening. Even though both use folders, and directories, there are some differences which can be confusing, or liberating." In this talk I will list a number of differences and point out the value to the change. Some of the changes are based on different perspectives on how the computer works. Some of simply variations on a theme. and some are simply examples of the engineering principle NIH (Not Invented Here)."

Notes from the June 2013 meeting:

This month we will have a discussion on the components used with microcontrollers. Before we can start to create our first microcontroller project, we need to understand a few basic components, and how to read a circuit diagram. Join us to explore resistors, capacitors, inductors, multimeters, oscilloscopes, and circuit diagrams, the building block for DIY microcontroller projects. If you would like to read up on this topic before the meeting, please click here.

Notes from the May 2013 meeting:

The meeting was on Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 7pm in the basement level (entering from the rear parking go down the stairs and turn right).  The meeting featured how to install the Ubuntu version 13.04 and 12.10 operating systems. We ran an "Install-a-thon" where about ten people brought their PCs and where shown how Ubuntu 13.04 operated on it using the "Live Installation" feature (before actually installing it).

We hope to see you at the "Ubuntu Install-a-thon"!

Notes from the April 2013 meeting:

This will be the kick-off meeting for 2013 as we were hibernating for the winter! We are going to watch and discuss the movie "Revolution OS" that describes the background behind Open Source, the Free Software Movement, and of course Linux. Please see John's notes and presentation by clicking here.

For our November 2012 meeting we will have a Linux beginners discussion on LFS and Backup for Linux. The Linux system follows an organized structure known as Linux File System (LFS) which defines where programs, libraries, and configuration files live. We will explore this structure and discuss how to optimize the layout for your next installation, as well as where to find programs. The LFS will naturally lead to a discussion of how to backup your Linux system for recovery. We will discuss what to back up and what not to backup. Finally we will look at backup tools and how to make your own."

Notes from the October meeting:

The October 2012 meeting was about "Networking in Linux". Our presenter John Moore discussed how to network and troubleshoot Linux. Here is the abstract: Networking in Linux is something we all use, but do we understand what is needed to make it work? Do we understand how to troubleshoot it when it doesn’t work? What happens when you only have a command line interface? I will attempt to give you both a mini course in networking and how to troubleshoot it in the process. Roll up your sleeves this talk is going to cover lots of details necessary for your Linux chops. The presentation can be viewed at:

Notes from the September 2012 meeting:

Welcome back from the summer! The first Linux Sig meeting of the Westchester PC Users group is this Wednesday night at 7pm. John Moore has graciously prepared a presentation about the latest release of Ubuntu version 12.04. His presentation (best viewed in Firefox) may be viewed at: "Ubuntu 12.04 is out and contains a new look. But for those of us who are familiar with the old look it can be confusing. So we are going to have a look at the default windowing interface Unity as well as it's base Gnome 3."

Sneak preview of the October 2012 meeting will be "Networking in Linux". This "work in process" presentation can be viewed at:

Notes from the Feb 2012 meeting:

Our presenter this month will be John Moore and his topic will be Ubuntu Apps of Interest. "We have talked about Ubuntu, but most of us spend more time using the
application, not the operating system.  So for this talk I choose some applications to explore, Firefox and some music players."

Notes from the Jan 2012 meeting:

Our presenter was John Moore who spoke about the "Command Line" used in most operating systems. This is how one really "gets under the covers" with the operating system.

Notes from the Dec 2011 meeting:

John Moore discussed the graphical user interface or GUI. Notes from John's presentation can be found at

Notes from the Nov 2011 meeting:

Our November 16th meeting at Stepinac School in White Plains was cancelled.

Click here for more details about the newest Ubuntu release. You can even "Try it" on line, please click here to be redirected to the Ubuntu "Cloud" and check out Ubuntu 2011.10.

Notes from the Oct 2011 meeting:

Unfortunately we had to cancel the meeting - see you in November!

Notes from the September 2011 meeting:

Our presenter was John Moore who gave a talk on "New to Ubuntu, what now"? John discussed how to start configuring your new Ubuntu install/computer to make it your own.  He discussed updates, security, backup, configuration of common applications.

Notes from the June 2011 meeting:

Unfortunately we had to cancel the meeting - see you in September!

Notes from the May 2011 meeting:

Joe Bruno discussed and showed the group the most recent release of Ubuntu 2011.04 as both a live install and full install. We also discussed the new features and the hardware level needed to run this version that was released in late April 2011.

Notes from the March 2011 meeting:

Our presenter John Moore discussed the use and programming of Arduino devices (micro controllers). John demonstrated a few devices, Linux based Arduino compilers to program the devices and some source code showing the steps needed to create the application and program the device. Class notes can be found by clicking here.

Notes from the February 2011 meeting:

John's presentation was about "Linux from scratch". To view the class notes, please click here.

Notes from the January 2011 meeting:

At this class, John Moore discussed creating a home web. Did you miss the class? Click here for a copy of John's presentation!

Notes from the December 2010 meeting:

This was an advanced level user meeting where John Moore was discussing how to build a Linux distribution using only the features wanted as opposed to a common distribution where many programs may not be wanted or used resulting in a small distribution. John discussed "Linux Core tools and what applications are needed outside the kernal to have a usable Linux. He showed small distros, discussed the boot process and touched on shell scripting which is used to build many automation tools.

Notes from the November 2010 meeting:

We had an all levels meeting with Joe Bruno as our presenter who discussed Ubuntu 10.10. One of the topics discussed was how to fix "broken packages". This was a needed topic to learn because sometimes packages fail and Joe explained a few ways how to fix the problem!

Notes from the September 2010 meeting:

The September 2010 meeting was on the 22nd at 7pm in the basement level (entering from the rear parking go down the stairs and turn right). This meeting was a beginner and intermediate user level session discussing the use and operations of the Linux Operating System. Currently our favorite distribution has been the Ubuntu "flavor" which is in release 10.04 also known as Lucid Lynx. This is a long term release meaning that it will be supported for a two year term.

At this upcoming meeting, "John Moore talked about Linux distributions for Netbooks. He currently has 7 operating systems on his Netbook. It was not be an exhaustive look at Linux on Netbooks but  rather it was an overview showing the highlights, features and benefits of each distribution. Please see the "Lessons in Linux" notes that John has created for this lesson and all the other lessons that he has presented. The link to the notes can be found at the top of this page.

Do you have questions about Linux and Ubuntu, please bring those questions to any of our meetings. Also, bring your laptop and try out a demo of Ubuntu 10.04 and see how it operates (fully) on your machine without actually installing this free operating system on your hard drive!

Notes from the June 2010 meeting:

The June meeting presentation was Part 2 of "Building your own Linux distribution"

June 2010 was our second "Advanced user" month where John Moore continued with part two of creating your own Linux Distribution. This was another session where we "looked under the covers" to see how Linux works and how to build a distribution that has the programs and features that we want to include in our special mix. Don't forget to visit the "Linux from scratch" site (click here) to see how others have created their own Linux version. So what did we name this creation anyway?

Ubuntu User magazine is about to release edition 5 which should be on newstands in early June. Click here [best viewed in Firefox] to read the Table of Contents.

See you at the June meeting!

Notes from the May 2010 meeting:

Joe Bruno was our presenter discussing the newest Ubuntu distribution - version 10.04 also known as Lucid Lynx. Joe showed participants some of the new features and improvements made to this "LTR" or Long Term Release operating system. There was a brief discussion after the main presentation about where "Grub" resides in a multi-boot / multi-drive setup. A "Science Experiment" will be done and possibly shown at the June meeting of the outcome of the experiment.

Lucid Lynx has been customized to attract users who want not only a very stable product, but one that now contains more messaging and interaction with Social sites such as FaceBook and Twitter. You can download (and use for free) the CD image at Save the file as an ISO on your PC and then create a CD with version 10.04 LTS on it. Leave the CD in your unit, reboot the machine and take 10.04 for a test ride by using the operating system in a "Live mode" - meaning it runs in memory and draws files from the CD. This way you can see how the new system operates, how it "looks and feels" on your PC before actually installing it to your hard drive! At the June meeting we will continue with building our own Linux distribution. Our presenter will be John Moore.

Want to see more Ubuntu 10.04 features? Click here to go to Ubuntu's "features" page!

Notes from the April 2010 meeting:

John Moore started a review of what it will take to make our own Linux distribution. The group experienced the steps necessary to select and create this distribution. Sub topics such as the desk environment, packages needed and whether or not to try and "compile" your own code enhancements. The next "advanced class" will be held at the June 2010 meeting. At the May 2010 meeting, we will review the newest release of Ubuntu - version 10.04.

At the March 2010 meeting, John Moore discussed a bunch of Linux topics and what we are going to do for future meetings. It was decided to have meetings where the "even months" will be for advanced Linux user topics and the "odd months" will be for beginner and intermediate user topics. For the first "even month", John will introduce the group to what it takes to make our own Linux Distribution. Keep in mind that each Linux distribution is a set of favorite Linux programs and desktop accessories. So, bring your thoughts (and maybe a snazzy name for your new distro) for that perfect Linux distribution to the next meeting! Here is a link to Linux From Scratch - a website on how to build your own Linux distribution. Click here to see the "Linux From Scratch" website.

Linux From Scratch | Your Distro, Your Rules


What is Ubuntu? Ubuntu is a community developed operating system that is perfect for laptops, desktops and servers. Whether you use it at home, at school or at work Ubuntu contains all the applications you'll ever need, from word processing and email applications, to web server software and programming tools.

Ubuntu is and always will be free of charge. You do not pay any licensing fees. You can download, use and share Ubuntu with your friends, family, school or business for absolutely nothing. The most recent version of Ubuntu is 9.10 (also called Karmic Koala
) The next version of Ubuntu will be released on April 29, 2010. It will be called version 10.4 (long term version) and have the code name of "Lucid Lynx".

   Please click here for more details about Ubuntu.

Has the Ubuntu bug bitten you yet? Check out some of these pubs:

Would you like to read Ubuntu User for
free? Click here to read (or download a 43 mb PDF file) the first issue of Ubuntu User!

Ubuntu User magazine has now published three issues, click here for more information.


Full Circle Magazine is now up to issue 32, please click here for more information.

For those who are into Amateur "Ham" Radio, The January 2010 edition of "Linux Journal" discusses Linux and Amateur Radio. You say potato, I say potahto, you say ham, I say amateur... you see where I'm going with this? Ok, maybe not, Amateur Radio, that's where and that's what this month's issue focus is. What you might ask is the connection between Amateur Radio and Linux? Well Linux may be the only O/S out there with an AX.25 packet radio protocol driver, and it's had it since forever. So blow the dust off your license and start reading.

If Ham's not your favorite food, don't despair there are plenty of other articles in this month's issue including, but not limited to, Firewall Builder, Cucumber, Vimperator, port knocking with knockd, building appliances with Linux and Xen, and using Twitter from the command line.

Want to try out Ubuntu before coming to the meeting? Then click here to download a **Free** CD disc image of Ubuntu (about 690 megs). The download page will explain the  three simple steps of trying (live working demo) or installing Ubuntu. Your Windows machine can first download the image and then make a bootable CD (you do have a CD burner and not just a player on your PC?) on your "Windows" machine. After the CD has been created, then reboot your machine with the newly made CD in the player to try out Ubuntu. When the start screen displays, click on English and then "
Live Mode" which is usually the first line choice. Run "Firefox" to surf the Web and "Open Office" to play with documents. Do you have any Microsoft Word documents on your Windows PC now? The Ubuntu "Live Mode" disc will be able to "read" your hard drive and retrieve those files with "Open Office".

Do you want to try out "Open Office" and see how it handles Microsoft Office documents? This is also a **Free** download and user license. Both the Windows and Linux versions are available for you to use. Please click here to download - 100 million users can't be wrong! Select your language and then locate the column that says "Linux 32-bit DEB" or click here for the version that will operate under Ubuntu.



For directions to the school click here. For other news, check out the WPCUG site at:
Webmaster: Peter Johnson - Peter at weca dot org. Last update was on Monday October 13, 2014.

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