Time lapse (or stop-motion) video is really cool, and this post explains how to make a simple time lapse style video in Linux using entirely free open source software.
There is more than one way to skin a cat and when I was searching for how to do this I came across many different methods and suggestions but not really anything that suited what I wanted. Andrew Wells suggests making a movie and then processing it with ffmpeg to only store 1 in every n frames. That seems a neat solution but I wanted to take a series of still shots and string those together into a movie. Tim Nugent published a teaser of some nice looking time lapse software he wrote but as yet there is no published source or binary. There were various other suggestions dotted around the web but each one I tried had some problem or other. So here’s how I did it.
This guide will help you through all the steps necessary for installing Fedora 10 on a MacBook Santa Rosa. This guide is currently aimed at Fedora 10 x86_64 but will also work on i386 version (adjust as necessary). Most of the steps equally apply to pre-Santa Rosa models too.
These instructions will work with the MacBook 3,1 (Late 2007) and newer but will NOT work with the new aluminium MacBooks since they have different hardware (especially the graphics card). These instructions are not suitable for the MacBook Pro either!!
This guide is based largely around my previous guide for Fedora 8, and again much credit goes to the people who created the original Ubuntu wiki guide.
What works and what doesn’t?
There are a few things that need fixing (covered in detail below) but the following all work “out of the box” with Fedora 10: video/graphics, compiz effects, firewire, CD/DVD reading and writing, function keys (brightness, volume etc), sound, and ethernet. Even the new “plymouth” graphical boot screen works fine once activated.
I have yet to try the infrared or connecting an external monitor. Everything else works with the tweaks described below, except for suspend and hibernate which seem generally pretty broken in F10 (as it was in F9 too). Update 7 November 2008: Suspend and hibernate are fixed with 220.127.116.11-134 kernel and newer. See bug report.
A few useful linux commands and their explanations.
This guide shows how to use FUSE and CurlFtpFs to mount an FTP filesystem on Yellow Dog Linux 6. This guide presumes that you have already built and installed your own FUSE capable kernel for YDL 6.
This guide explains how to build and install a custom kernel RPM with FUSE support on Yellow Dog Linux 6. The guide is written based on my experience with YDL on an Apple XServe G4 using kernel-2.6.23-9 on ppc architecture. If your system is different then adjust the guide as required.
There are many tools available to help backup Linux systems to Amazon S3 but finding the right one to use can be difficult. Jeremy Zawodny made a good list of various S3 backup tools which is very helpful, if a little outdated. I experimented with a few tools, including some of the standard scripts published by Amazon but I found each had their own shortcomings.
One tool that is very simple to use is s3cmd which is a linux command line tool to upload, retrieve, and manage data in Amazon S3. The tool is written in python so should install and run on pretty much any modern linux distro and I have found it works very nicely and seems to be an ideal tool to use if you want to write a basic backup script.
I occasionally need to convert a mysql database to UTF-8. This can be a painful process and if it goes wrong can result in a nightmare of character-set collisions. Some digging around on the lazyweb led me to a nice solution I found over at oscarm.org that shows you how to quickly convert the actual data, but I wanted to convert the database too.
Following on from my previous post, I have been making some RPM packages available for Fedora 8 and the MacBook 3,1 Santa Rosa.
The kernel packages are not needed now since Fedora 8 kernel 18.104.22.168-50 (and newer) already contains the MacBook specific fixes. However, at the time of writing the gstreamer packages are still required if you want to use gstreamer based applications with the MacBook iSight camera.
Before downloading, please take care of my bandwidth. If you don’t need the package, please don’t download it.
You can download the packages here.
There is also this thread at fedoraforum.org which may be helpful.
If you find any problems or have any suggestions please let me know.
The MacBook is great, but OS X is not really my cup of tea and I choose not to use Windows. Luckily Fedora 8 works like a charm on the MacBook and with a bit of configuring you can get all the hardware working properly.
I couldn’t find any information on the lazyweb about installing Fedora 8 on a MacBook so I recorded what I did and made a detailed how-to which is posted in the wiki over at mactel-linux.org. The guide shows you step-by-step how to install and configure Fedora 8 x86_64 on the MacBook and works with both MacBook version 3,1 (from late 2007) or version 4,1 (from early 2008).
Big up to the guys at Fedora who gave in to my relentless nagging and integrated some of the mactel-linux patches into the latest Fedora kernels. Without them I’d still be spending my weekends rolling kernels!
If you find the guide useful or have any comments or suggestions then let me know.