Friday, April 13, 2012

Virtualbox, Apple, Julia and Wacom Bamboo fun

I had an idea last week to run Linuxmint on my mac-mini, I made some research and found many people installing various Linux flavour on their mac using either bootcamp or rEFIt - there's real benefits of course to install physically, but I thought having a linux installed in a virtual machine would be simplier.

Because then I don't have to partition the mac-mini HD and install a new bootloader.
That would be cleaner, and if anything goes wrong, no worry it's in a virtual machine box - what can possibly go wrong ?! 

Well ... where can I start ?
(I won't talk about my attempt of installing LMDE that end up as a total fiasco - it was my fault, I stupidly updated the system and it installed Gnome3, my bad ...)

Anyway, I create a vm installed LinuxMint Julia in it - made the updates, installed the Guest Additions software inside the box (otherwise the resolution is 800x600), everything looked good ... except the Bamboo Fun Wacom tablet was acting as a stupid mouse pointer (no pen pressure, completely useless)

The setup is :
Host : OS X 10.5.8 on a mac-mini
guest : Linuxmint Julia

VBoxManage return : 
VendorId: 0x056a (056A)
ProductId: 0x0017 (0017)
Revision: 1.22 (0122)
Manufacturer: Wacom Co.,Ltd.
Product: CTE-450
Current State: Unavailable
Obviously not a good start.
also at the bottom right of the virtualbox screen the wacom appears greyed

And then I made some research 
To get a normally plug and play device to work:
1. Shut down the guest machine.
2. Highlight the guest machine in the VirtualBox panel.
3. Plug your usb device.
4. Click on blue USB category.
5. Click the green plus icon to add your device.
6. Your usb device should now be visible, click to add that.
7. Done.
Do this for each of your plug and play usb device.
Start your guest machine and your usb device will be installed.
Actually ... you also have to physically unplug the usb device, enter the guest OS box and the plug back the device, the right usb icon will blink and then the Wacom will be recognized inside the guest OS, but to be able to use it you have to capture it (press +I) 

VendorId:           0x056a (056A)
ProductId:          0x0017 (0017)
Revision:           1.22 (0122)
Manufacturer:       Wacom Co.,Ltd.
Product:            CTE-450
Address:            p=0x0017;v=0x056a;s=0x00000272fe04bfa3;l=0x5d120000
Current State:      Captured
Hurray... sure then it works, is it user friendly ?! not sure.

My conclusion so far, is that Virtualbox on the mac platform isn't a steady solution yet.
Now I'm considering the other route which is installing Linux physically on the mac, but I'll have to cool off a bit first.

The Murphy's Law was pretty good on that one!

The Call Centre Glossary - CallCentreVoice:
Murphy's Law. If anything can go wrong, it will.

The Call Centre Glossary - CallCentreVoice:
Best in Class. A benchmarking term to identify organizations that outperform all others in a specified category.

... And I should be drawing ...

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