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Re: Running Mathematica under Linux Red Hat

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg20952] Re: Running Mathematica under Linux Red Hat
  • From: Ben Stanley <bds02 at>
  • Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1999 01:50:19 -0500 (EST)
  • Organization: University of Wollongong, Australia
  • References: <819l8o$3j9$>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

I have switched from using Mathematica 30 under Windows 95 to running Mathematica 4.0
under Linux. The result: Very Pleasant.

Yesterday I worked on a file generating 3D pictures of how to solve a puzzle. The file
got to 45Mb because it had so many complicated graphics in it. I got to 600 kernel
Inputs/outputs before I killed the Kernel. I usually run out of memory (on a mac)
before that.

Usually, I'm panick stricken that Mathematica will crash, and I feel I have to save my
notebook every 5 minutes. However, running under Linux felt much more secure. It did
seg fault on me twice - I think I was expanding a graphic both times. It was in the
front end. I also found that cell selection with the mouse goes crazy if you have
num-lock on. But, that was all. I ran nearly all day before the seg faults happened.
On the mac or Windows, I've usually had to re-start mathematica (or the system) every
hour or so, depending on what I'm doing.

Previous versions of Mathematica have had huge problems with cell editing (in my
opinion). Non-fatal bugs which caused corruption to the cell structure of the
notebook, and even to the file if saved. Even with 3.0.1 . However, I have found 4.0
to be a vast improvement in this respect.

The font scaling problems (cursor appearing in wrong place relative to the text) that
appeared regularly in 3.0 under Windows and Mac has gone.

Speed is also much improved, but I'm not comparing it on the same machine. (new: Linux
400MHz AMD K6/III, old: Macintosh PowerBook 3400c or Cyrix 6x86/120MHz running Windows

Overall, I am very impressed with the improvement in stability and usability from
3.0.1 to 4.0 . However, I am disappointed that I don't get sound. I hope Wolfram
remedies this ASAP, as I use sound to check signal processing work from time to time.
There are many uses for sound...

Ben Stanley.

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