April 01, 2014, 12:13 PM — VLC is definitely one of the best media player applications available for any platform. I make it a point to keep it on all of my computers. OMG! Ubuntu! reports that VLC is about to get even better with the addition of an add-ons manager in version 2.2.
At present, installing an add-on in VLC requires finding it, downloading it, extracting it and moving it into the relevant extensions folder of the app on your system. Then it has to be enabled.
In 2.2 it’s as simple as opening the dialog and hitting ‘install’. By getting the player to handle all of the hassle, users will be far more likely to make use of extensions, spurring on developers to create new ones.
You can see a list of available add-ons for VLC at VLC-Addons.org. No doubt we'll see a lot more add-ons in the future. VLC users have some good times ahead.
Install Linux Mint on a Windows XP computer
Yesterday I included a story that advocated Linux Mint as a replacement for Windows XP. Today the same author offers advice on how to install Linux Mint on your Windows XP computer.
Installing Linux Mint on a Windows 8.x PC with Secure Boot on can be a pain, but on an XP system it's easy. So, if you're considering switching out XP for Linux Mint, here's how you'd go about it.
Image credit: ZDNet
Don't forget that you can also opt to use VirtualBox to try Linux Mint out in a virtual machine on your Windows XP system. VirtualBox is free and open source, so it won't cost you a dime to use it.
The death of Windows XP could be bad for Linux users
The VAR Guy notes that the end of Windows XP could be bad for certain Linux users who have come to depend on it in VirtualBox.
That's why my Ubuntu PC always has VirtualBox installed, and Windows XP configured to run inside it as a virtual machine. I don't boot up the Windows instance very often, but it is handy when I need to run Microsoft Office—which is, I'm sorry to say, the office suite I resort to when working on a book manuscript, since LibreOffice appears hopelessly buggy when handling very large documents—or when I want to blast back to the carefree days of yore and play Age of Kings.
I can certainly do those things with Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8, too. But unlike Windows XP, those more recent editions of Windows suck up pretty significant chunks of memory and CPU time when running in a virtual environment, which makes them much more difficult to run seamlessly on top of a Linux desktop.
I always like to take the attitude that when life gives you a lemon, you try to turn it into lemonade. In this case the end of Windows XP might be a good opportunity to find Linux alternatives to Windows applications, or even to learn to run them with Wine instead of Windows itself.
What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.
The opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of ITworld.