Monday, May 28, 2018

New Hangouts Meet Features -- Worth a Blog Post!

Every now and then (quite often really) Google adds a game changing feature to G Suite. Recently, Google announced Hangouts Meet for their Basic and Business customers would now provide a dial-in number for all Meetings. G Suite Enterprise customers already had this feature.
This development makes Hangouts Meet a viable competitor to just about every other video/teleconferencing provider on the planet! But, what makes this even more amazing is that it's now included in every version of G Suite at no
additional cost AND integration with other G Suite products is built-in.

More recently, Google added a dial-out functionality to Hangouts Meet. Now if you decide mid-meeting that another person’s participation is required -- call them! Right from within the Hangouts Meet interface.

Now just schedule a meeting in Google Calendar and choose to “Add conferencing” as an option. A Hangouts Meet meeting will be automatically provisioned and all invitees will be provided a link to the online Hangout AND a “dial-in” telephone number. This special "dial-in" telephone number will be good for your meeting only. Or, start a new Meeting at any time at while you're signed into your G Suite account. This new feature provides an option for invitees to attend even when they can’t use the Hangouts Meet online tools for whatever reason. Hangouts Meet is suddenly a direct competitor to products such as GoToMeeting AND its included with your existing G Suite subscription at no additional cost!

The official announcement is at this post - G Suite Basic and Business customers can now create Hangouts Meet meetings with dial-in phone numbers

Detailed instructions for using Hangouts Meet can be found in the ​G Suite Learning Center

This is a huge development! Google is constantly adding functionality to the G Suite​ suite of applications. If you want to take your G Suite subscription to the next level let me know. We have training and consulting options that meet every need. If your business is not using G Suite you owe it to yourself (and your employees) to take a close look.

SC-Geeks.Com is a Google Cloud Partner specializing in the deployment, training and integration of G Suite for small businesses.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Switching Static IP Addresses in LInux (Manjaro Gnome) with NetworkManager

Sometimes changing static IP addresses via the GUI alone on your Linux computer can be frustrating. You change the static IP in the GUI but it doesn't actually change.  This can be frustrating especially in the situation where you are troubleshooting an issue and need to quickly change IP addresses.

Here's a method, or a series of steps, that works for me.  The sequence is:
  • Flush the current static IP address using the "ip" utility
  • Assign the new IP address using either GUI or command line (GUI in this post)
  • Restart NetworkManager
First "flush" any previous static IP configuration by issuing the "flush" command:

 sudo ip address flush dev enp0s20f0u2u1 

Substitute your device name for enp0s20f0u2u1 in the previous command.  You can find your device name by issuing the "ip link show" command:

 ip link show  

Assign a new IP address to the device.  In this case using the GUI to expedite the assignment of IP, Subnet Mask and Gateway.  In the Gnome desktop navigate to Settings>Network (or WiFi if applicable) and enter the desired IP address.

Finally to apply the settings issue the command "systemctl restart NetworkMangaer".

 sudo systemctl restart NetworkManager  

That should do it!  To change the static IP again, repeat the steps.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Dell XPS13 Developer's Edition - Finally Real Stability with Manjaro 17.1 Gnome

Dell Developer Edition laptops are designed and integrated for Linux.  Ordered directly from Dell, Developer Edition laptops come pre-loaded with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (currently).

I ordered the Dell XPS13 DE 9350 over a year ago.  My experience up until recently was this -- the laptop hardware and design -- excellent!  The Linux experience -- mediocre.  There were issues with the trackpad, the touch screen, resume from standby, occasional network issues and a disappointing HiDPI experience.  With each new kernel release things seemed to get better, a bit more stable and a lot less frustrating.  Too often, however, when you desperately need the laptop to work you instead end up spending valuable time troubleshooting.  In my business time is money

I tried Ubuntu 16.04 (kernel 4.4) and would frequently have issues with the trackpad, touch screen and resuming from suspend.  Plus the Unity desktop was not completely HiDPI friendly.  I've also installed Ubuntu 17.04 Gnome (kernel 4.9) and 17.10 Gnome (kernel 4.10).  With each upgrade the laptop would become a bit more stable but still not the level of stability desired for serious field work -- usable but certainly not ideal.

Then I installed Manjaro 17 Gnome...  Running kernel 4.14 the laptop has approach near complete stability, on a par with a MacBook Pro.  Gnome 3.26 handles HiDPI very effectively and the 4.14 kernel is rock solid on this hardware.  I haven't had any problems with the trackpad, touch screen, resume from suspend, etc..  Manjaro is a rolling release so each new major update (and they are frequent) brings with it a bit of a "pucker factor" but so far so good.  I am currently running Manjaro 17.1 Gnome (achieved through the rolling release) and kernel

If you have a Dell Developer Edition laptop and you are not satisfied with it's performance, give Manjaro 17.1 Gnome a try.  Works for me!