LWDW 286: Zombie 3DFX & Rented Windows

System76 is giving away a $10,000 PC! 3DFX threatens to return from the dead, KDE tackles HiDPI on X11, Windows as a service is now a thing, and official SATA support for the Raspberry Pi.



00:00 Intro
08:21 System76 $10K PC Giveaway
12:16 Better HiDPI for KDE
15:11 Pulseaudio 15
19:36 Github offers DMCA legal help
23:16 Purism woes
29:21 3DFX is back?
37:06 Renting Windows
50:06 SATA comes to the Pi
54:06 Emails

Woodbox contest 


  • This is not an ad, just a heads up. 
  • System76 has a $10,000 marketing budget for Aug-Sep.
  • Configuration total $8,954.00.
  • And that’s for a 24-core TR system that I would use here in the studio. 
  • No TR Pro options, I am disappoint. 


3DFX is BACK!?


  • A new account @3dfxofficial posted something that can only be described as an epic troll, clever marketing, or a bold claim.
  • I don’t expect anything from the announcement but hey, it’s fun to speculate. 
  • 3DFX is back via Jansen investment company who have acquired the assets. 
  • They will return this winter with new graphics cards, smartphones, TVs, and soundsystems. 
  • I had the Voodoo 1 and rode the 3DFX train all the way into the 5500 station. 
  • Why? Because they had official Linux support back in the 90s. 
  • I wanted this to be a nostalgia grab from Nvidia but they let the trademark lapse. 
  • I still use and love my Voodoo1 and 2 in my old machines.
  • And this Voodoo3 from 1999 is still in box!
  • I want more competition, but I’m not sure a boutique GPU from 20 years ago is exactly what I had in mind.


KiDPI (RTheren)


  • It pains me that we are struggling with hidpi in 2021. 
  • Lots of paper cuts have been fixed, including the system tray highlight line is now at the top of the panel for the selected applet.
  • There’s many teeny tiny elements in KDE that all need to be made DPI aware.
  • ISOs are still seen as 3D model files by Dolphin, so the mimetype issue is still very much present.
  • Pinning down the notification slider now actually makes things stay pinned, rather than closing at random·


Pulse Audio 15


  • Lots of new hardware support including the SteelSeries Arctis 9 USB gaming headsets.
  • I have this headset and it used one of the rare sound chipsets that wasn’t supported on Linux until now.
  • And support for the Sennheiser GSX 1000 and 1200 PRO USB DACs for gaming.
  • No longer depends on X modules to work in wayland.
  • Autoloads Jack modules when Jack starts
  • And you can load alsa configs from $HOME


Github legal support


  • Member when YouTube did this?
  • Just on the heels of the youtube-dl fiasco.
  • Way to go Github and Microsoft!
  • This is huge, and one of the largest projects in the world to support open source developers with legal counsel.
  • Youtube-dl and re3 were two very prominent projects which got taken down spuriously.
  • Re3 more than youtube-dl, but they were both taken down by people who don’t really understand what they were and Github has drawn the ire of a part of its community.
  • The same part that was still on shaky ground after the Microsoft take over.
  • I can see why they’d be trying to appease the ever increasing amount of voices calling them “as bad as youtube”.
  • And those two were the only ones I know about, I’m sure there’s more!


Purism woes 



  • Purism made the thread private. 
  • That has never worked out well in the history of ever since it comes across as an admission of guilt. 
  • Anytime I mention Purism someone pops up with a personal story, never a good one.  
  • I notice the xpost was removed from /r/linux as well. 
  • The Purism dumpster fire!
  • I know several people in the Linux community who paid lots of money 4 years ago in the Librem 5 crowdfunding campaign for a phone that was never sent.
    • We have at least one in our discord.
  • October, good luck.
  • I think at this point Pine64 has eaten their lunch.
  • Just make sure to double check those Pine phones that were sent to New Zealand “by mistake” before you assume they’re secure.


Windows as a service


  • $20 a month to have a remote Windows VM kicking about. 
  • Can’t say I have a use for that.
  • As we predicted on LWDW back in 2018 that Windows was moving to a desktop-as-a-service is completely here now.
  • Say hello to Adobe apps on Linux!
  • This could lead to more adoption on Linux.
  • But it looks like you will have to pay a lot for it, ouch.
  • Something tells me work might find this cheaper than ordering a bunch of laptops and paying for several enterprise licenses.
    • Microsoft didn’t acquire Beam because they wanted to get into game streaming. 
    • Just in case anyone didn’t pick that up by how quickly they nuked it. 
    • They wanted the tech.
    • If you can stream games, desktops are easy. 
  • Moral of the story, yall getting Chromebooks. 

Slice of Pi



  • It uses up the PCIe X1 hole, booo! 
  • Not really a problem but my dreams of a portable RME Jackbox have been dashed. 
  • You can make your PiNAS with a load of SATA drives natively, if you have the Pi Module 4 and the baseboard.
  • You can’t boot the Pi from a SATA drive yet, but I am sure that is coming!


Audio routing


  • That guide begins with “this is how you compile a kernel”
  • Followed by a spreadsheet of system changes needed for RT audio. 
  • Then we need to have a chat about learning how to use a DAW… and possibly netjack.
  • Did I mention the second PC? 

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