Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Building Firefox - Part 1

So the first big problem with building Firefox is that it take a long time... or so I'm told. What I've looked up makes me think that it won't be that slow, but I'm not taking chances. Linux is faster than Windows, so I have to install Linux. Fedora has all the latest and greatest stuff and its supported by Seneca College so I'll go with that. My first big snag is that my main drive (120 GB SSD) has only one partition and even still, it doesn't have as much room as I would like. Although I have lots of space on some older hard drives, solid state drive are so much faster, and repartitioning my drives may take a long time, I'm willing to get another 120 GB SSD (Intel SATA 3) drive which is on sale for $100.

Now I've got my drive installed and I've downloaded Fedora's 64-bit disc image and burned it to CD. First I tried to install Fedora using the new Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) as opposed to a BIOS install, but after the installation finished and I tried to restart, I couldn't get back into Linux. I was seeing some sort of "GRUB:" prompt. It apparently was some partition problem even thought I gave Fedora the whole new drive to use. Instead I just reinstalled it using BIOS. That worked. Once in I got the latest updates, which was very easy in Fedora (Activities > Applications > Software Updates).

At this point I only have one problem to solve before I could continue. Well it was more of a preference. I have two monitors and Fedora wasn't handling them properly. Apparently it uses an free open source video drive for Nvidia cards from Xorg called Nouveau. I didn't really look into it. I found a good guild on how to used Nvidia's drivers. I followed the instruction and now I have the full power of my new GTX 660 ... probably.

Now that that's all done I can get on with compiling Firefox in the next part.

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