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Comments on What's a low-effort option for a Codidact development machine?

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What's a low-effort option for a Codidact development machine? Question

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I would like to be able to work with qpixel in a development environment so I could (try to) fix small bugs and build and test locally. I don't have a developer setup now and my OS is apparently too old for some of our tools. Changing the OS on the personal machine on which I depend is not an option.

However, I'd be perfectly happy to get another machine (presumably Linux) for this purpose, ideally one I could connect to remotely instead of needing to clear more table space for another monitor/keyboard/mouse.[1] I'm assuming that this needn't be an expensive proposition; somebody told me it could be done on a Raspberry Pi, for example.

I'm not a hardware or OS tinkerer by inclination. I'm very goal-oriented when it comes to stuff like this, and I'm willing to trade money for time and aggravation. What is the minimum reasonable "off-the-shelf" (or nearly so) hardware and Linux environment that would let me accomplish my goal of a Codidact dev environment?[2]

To clarify "nearly off-the-shelf": I'm fine with "download this thing from here and install it" level of work, but not with "figure out how to get X working at all" and "make these decisions that would require research to do". I don't need the best environment, IDE, etc; I just need something that works, and I don't want to start from bare metal with setting up an OS. Depending on the specifics, I'm probably willing to pay somebody for something that's already mostly set up.


  1. I don't see well enough to be able to just use a laptop for this purpose. ↩︎

  2. Side benefit: maybe I'll want my next personal machine to be Linux, and this seems like a good way to find out what the UI is like. I've only used Linux via ssh, not its desktop environment. ↩︎

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General comments (3 comments)
General comments
Canina‭ wrote over 1 year ago

I don't have anywhere near enough knowledge for a full answer, so I'm making this a comment, but the free VirtualBox runs on (currently) "Windows, Linux, Macintosh, and Solaris" and can run pretty much anything, including OS/2(!), inside a virtual machine. You can run a VirtualBox VM either headless (for "remote" style access) or in a window inside your normal OS GUI (for "sitting in front of the computer" style access). No extra hardware required.

Canina‭ wrote over 1 year ago · edited over 1 year ago

Regarding the note on Linux's GUI, keep in mind that there are several different desktop environments for Linux. GNOME, KDE, and Xfce are probably the more popular, but there are many more. On many of the mainstream Linux distributions, installing multiple DEs is readily supported, and most software runs equally well under any of them (may look slightly out of place in terms of graphical appearance, but nothing that is likely to affect functionality). So if you don't like one, there are others!

Trilarion‭ wrote 11 months ago

This question is hardware centered. Maybe it would be better to focus instead on different ways to setup a development instance of QPixel and the requirements. For example, I work on a Windows computer and use WSL and are quite satisfied with it. I could also use Virtual Machines, or install Rails on Windows or install a Linux side-by-side or connect to some webserver. Of course it's an open question if one could for example also develop QPixel on a RasperryPi and that really is a hardware question.

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