Our Next Meeting: Wednesday 16th September
- The Ubuntu Phone and its development - Gareth

At long last we shall be able to hear all about this since in July Gareth was off sick and couldn't give it.

Gareth writes : At our next meeting we'll introduce the first phone running Ubuntu, the Aquaris E4.5 from BQ. We'll discuss the development of Ubuntu's phone/tablet OS variant, the vision of converged devices combining desktop and mobile functionality and the currently available hardware.

Our Last Technical Meeting: Wednesday 15th July

Since this meeting was hastily arranged at the last minute we decided to continue looking at Peter's dead PC and try to resurrect it since Michael had been away the previous meeting in June and agreed to check it out. Peter said the beginning of his problems started with corruption reports from Avast and using checkdisk found lots of faulty sectors, suspected virus files and corrupted cabinet files.

Michael had some weeks ago suggested using crystal disk, but by the time Peter downloaded a copy of this software the machine was in such a state that crystal disk could not even see the drive. A USB drive copy would not work as it required USB2.0, but although his machine had an added USB 2.0 card fitted the PC would not boot from it in the BIOS; so he had had to use CD files.

Unfortunately Peter had not brought a Windows XP install disk with him so it was difficult to check as Michael was not happy that the partition data which the Hiren's boot CD and the Bootmed CD were reliable enough to use to recreate the missing partition table.

Michael tried a downloaded Windows XP rescue disk, 600MB and burnt this to a CD.

Peter suggested it might be a waste of time to carry on, but Paul and Michael thought these problems were always interesting and sometimes you learnt something new. Michael used Parted Magic too and found sda1, sda2 had a boot flag but used managed flags facility to change the boot flag. sda5 - extended should contain windows. Allocated 7MB partition at start but do not know why MBR was missing.

Tried reboot but did not give any successful outcome. Michael was concerned that he could not read the partition. sda5 must be the boot partition.

The missing file message Peter had found was "hal.dll" it is the Hardware Abstraction Layer file designed to prevent too many hardware changes. Peter tried to restore it from a backup he had but this did not work.

Michael felt the only way to rescue the PC was by a reinstall. The document files Peter had copied could then be reinstated, however the applications would need to be reinstalled from scratch. (Don't you just love Windows! Ed.) Peter is now wondering if it might not be better to make the PC into an Ubuntu machine so that maybe he can still use the SCSI card etc. The hardware can't be upgraded to Windows 8 or 10 as the processor architecture won't allow it.

On a different topic John has several problems.

1) He is writing a book on the social history of his life. He recently discovered an error which had been present since 2014. He had written several chapters of his book and had one describing his cars. He had a chapter with 9 sections for his 9 cars but did not have the detail on all of them so decided to leave empty place markers of sections to be filled in later. The problem arises when he attempts to read from the front past this point or from the back past this point in that the file crashes. He took 100 pages of the document away on holiday and then discovered the problem at page 80. There is never a problem saving the file. He began to study the situation in more detail on his return and used the status view to view an outline of the document. This said that the blank sections had "no style set" and it won't read them.He sent emails to Martin Wuerthner to check whether there is an easy way to set the style retrospectively. Because otherwise the only alternative is to copy the front of the document and the back of the document and reconstruct the centre section which would be very laborious and be several hours work.

2) His Toshiba laptop boots to Windows but not to Acorn and it has been suggested that he replace the CMOS. (I don't think I have this right. Ed)

3) His third problem involves a Printer (USB) on desktop which gives error message 'drive "G" not obtainable'. He added a 4 way USB hub filled it with USB sticks to get it past "G" then removed them all but it went back to saying 'drive "G" not obtainable'. He shut down and came to the club and now it is working perfectly!

Our last Social Meeting: August 26th at the Wooden Fender Ardleigh, Colchester.

This was our second visit to the Wooden Fender having visited in January and we weren't disappointed. We had another excellent meal in very congenial surroundings. Even the bill payment process ran very smoothly.

We were pleased that Gerald was able to come, but sadly Sarah was too ill to be able to come with him. Our thoughts and best wishes go to them both.

Here are some photos to remind you all of the evening:-

and mysteriously there were two almost identical cars parked in the car park!

ICENI Future programme

Please note we have had to rejig the programme again as Michael is not in a position to give his CAT5 talk yet.

There were a few other topics considered for example software used by Radio Amateurs, Model Railways and Machine language translation. All of these need a bit more research before being included.

ICENI Future programme 2015/2016
September 16th The Ubuntu Phone and its development. Gareth
October 21st Arduino - Raspberry Pi
Developments. This may change.
Peter. Duncan and John
November 18th Slide / Video Evening All
December 16th Gadgets and Party Evening All
January 20th Winter Social Evening - Venue TBA All
February 17th Free Software All
March 16th Accounting Software Peter et al
April 20th AGM +MS Office 2016 and
OpenOffice/Libre Office
May 18th Programming All

Meetings are now on the Third Wednesday of the month unless otherwise stated.

Our meetings are held at the Bourne Vale Social Club, Halifax Road, Ipswich IP2 8RE , for a map and other details please see the website.


Membership fee currently £10, visitors free.


We are continuing our publicity for EAUG events , however their website has not been updated for a year now. So if you wish to know information please phone one of their contacts.

Meetings are at the Great Baddow Village Hall, on the second Tuesday of the month

opening at 7:30 p.m. for a start at 7:45 - 8:00 p.m.


For directions see below (note the new web addresses)

http://www.eaug.org.uk or 'phone one of the contacts on


Drinks usually available.

See the Membership page of the website for more information:


Special Notice - Insurance

"ICENI does not have any Insurance cover for computers or other equipment so please be advised that you bring machines to the club at your own risk."

However many household insurance policies will include cover away from home often with no increase in premium. (Ed.)

Our Website and Email

Our website URL is


Email to: iceni@woolridge.org.uk

I am open to suggestions on what people would like to have included in the website. If anyone would like a copy of the CD of our old newsletters this could be arranged.