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VST is an interface standard for getting piano software on a PC to work with your piano.
Originally Posted by Audetto
I have not used much VST at all: what do you actually do with it?
What do I do with it? I play the piano.

Your question has jogged my thinking. It now occurs to me that maybe ... just maybe ... I'll soon be able to dump the virtual instruments entirely.
If my soon-to-be high-bird piano sounds good on its own then I won't need the computer accoutrements after all. Yay!

Fingers crossed.

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Windows 10 for me is by far the best Windows OS so far. I have no issues with taking updates. I've also moved away from using Chrome/Firefox and use Edge instead.

I work with a variety of clients and technology and use Unix for development only. I can't imagine I would ever use it for home use.

One client I work with requires us to use a VDI running Windows 7. It's terrible!

Enjoy your new home, Mac.


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Not much personal experience with Linux, none with audio stuff in Linux. However, I've noticed despite the general progress in computing power, DPC latency issues are even getting worse in general. For a control thing where the response must be done in a ms or less, Windows sucks, and Linux with a low-latency kernel was waaay better. Though it might be that Windows would be the same if one had a comparable list of services to be killed.

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Originally Posted by pianogabe
newer player, can you give an example of information that is difficult to share from a linux platform? I often experience the exact opposite. . .I have a bunch of Powerpoint presentations that took days to create that I cannot adapt anymore because newer versions of Powerpoint won't let me save them because of incompatabilities with older Powerpoint versions... I also have files from windows programs >10 years ago that I cannot open in anything anymore. This never happened to me in any linux program. Not saying you are wrong. . .
M$ Office is the most irritating offender because it is expensive, virtually unchanged for decades, and mature. We share files with macros & formatting with many entities. Unless everyone is running the exact same versions of Office, things go downhill...fast. If Office versions don't get us, the M$ Windows version, main language, formatting... schemes will.

I don't care how many times Mr Gates tells us how great he is. . . he earned a place in the bin with zuck and the google guys.

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I think you have it wrong, np.

Gates retired from Microsoft around twenty years ago, and stopped any involvement around 2008.
Blame Steve Ballmer for taking things downhill.

Ballmer got dumped in favor of Satya Nadella.
The desktop is not a growth market, so Nadella is focused on the cloud. So don't expect great things from Windows anymore.

As for Office compatibility ... I have no problems exchanging spreadsheets, slide decks, word docs, and emails between my various work versions (ranging from Office 2016 onward) and my home version 2007.
I swear by Office, and dread having to (maybe) switch.

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One key function of Excel is the declaration of an array as a « tabular », not sure about the exact english name. This makes the display alterning the color (odd even lines), but more important, each column is named table_name[column_name].

Typing a new value just below the table makes it taller, and everything using the column names (graphs, other formulae) is updated.

With LibreOffice Calc, such a thing is possible (data/area ?), but not as handy (no visual cue, no simple way to extend the defined area).

Since I use heavily this feature, converting myself to LibreOffice would be a regression.

Last edited by Frédéric L; 10/27/20 10:06 AM.

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My piano computer is almost permanently in flight mode. I only connect to the Internet to update software licenses, or whatever else is necessary. It's never long enough for Windows to download any updates. It's a great way to use an old laptop.

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John, note that you can easily disable updates by setting all network connections to "metered". Updates will not download on a metered connection.
You'll still be notified of available updates. But they won't download and install without your say so.

But Microsoft is sneaky. The registry settings for this metered mode are locked. You have to be admin to unlock them. (So I did.)

But Microsoft is even more sneaky. They have a new update that relocks those settings and turns things back to un-metered. Sneaky ba$4erds. (It's KB4023057. Avoid it!)

Your situation (don't often need the interwebs) is uncommon, but it's just the ticket for this. Stay offline and you won't get downgraded with updates.
But I still think you should use metered mode ... because you might get updated even during a short burst of online (non-airplane mode) operation.

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I presume you're suggesting VirtualBox to allow me to run Windows and its applications?

Actually, no.

Virtual Box is handy for a great many things. I don't use it to run Windows. I use it as a software development and testing platform since if I blow something up there it's easy to just roll back to a known-good snapshot and carry on from there.

I try not to install stuff on my main computers until I know that nothing is going to explode. smile


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Thought I'd share my experience switching to, or rather trying to switch to, Linux. I'm with most of you, that it's probably not suitable for piano VST use.

Actually, I didn't do that much musically on Linux, I must have discovered quickly that it would be in vain. cool It was mostly for experimenting, to see if Linux would work for me.

I've given up on it for the most. I tried Linux Mint, Ubuntu Mate, Ubuntu Studio, and Xubuntu. I would consider myself as an intermediate user on Linux, and could use it for a lot of stuff, if I had to. Word processing, internet browsing, and email at least.

Not so sure about image processing. Video editing can be done on Linux, I just don't like it. Kdenlive is a bit cumbersome, at least compared to PowerDirector, which I love and have even gotten a subscription for. Hard to learn it, and the interface is clunky. Though it doesn't crash as often now, as it did once.

MacMacMac, is dual-booting out of the question for you? If not, I don't recommend installing Linux on the same SSD as Windows 10 sits on. An external one is all right, but internal is better if you have it. Just remember to put the GRUB on the non-Windows disk!

The biggest problem I've had with dual-boot is that Ubuntu (or whichever distro) changes the system's time. In this case, it makes no difference if Linux is on another disk, or the same one as Windows. Not a big deal maybe, but it irritated me.

I would like to install Ubuntu again some day, and Studio or Kubuntu would probably be my choice, but it isn't among my top priorities right now.

Last edited by TheodorN; 10/27/20 04:03 PM.

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Currently the computer is on at all times, so I can sit down at the piano at any time with no fiddling with the computer, other than restarting Kontakt (which it seems to need all too often).

So no dual boot. That's too annoying.

At this point I'm conceding. For all the raves over Linux ... it's still a server platform. For the desktop you still have to rely on either Windows and Mac.

Let's hope my next piano won't need virtual instruments. Then this becomes a moot point.

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I wouldn't call Linux only a server platform, but I wouldn't call it user-friendly either. I've tried to convince a few people around me to try Linux. It almost felt like I was dragging them to their own executions!

I managed to install Ubuntu Mate on a Macbook for an older man, had to because of hard disk failure. I installed it on an external SSD, so he would have a computer until he could find a new or second hand Macbook. He could use it for daily stuff, though barely.

Yes, I hope your new piano will render virtual instruments virtually useless (pun intended). They are the poor man's choice. Though some piano VSTs aren't that inexpensive, like the VSL behemoths.

Last edited by TheodorN; 10/27/20 05:58 PM.

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Originally Posted by FrankCox
I try not to install stuff on my main computers until I know that nothing is going to explode. smile

I'd be looking at portable installs where possible. Put them all in a directory that's backed up. Then it's easy to run them all on a different machine or recover from disk failure. While most VSTs come with an installer, I think you can generally copy the plugins to a common directory and use them elsewhere without installing again. I will try to make a portable Reaper+plugins directory when I have time.

Originally Posted by TheodorN
Kdenlive is a bit cumbersome

Tried Davinci Resolve? I haven't but it looks promising and supports all 3 platforms - if I move to Windows I'll mostly use apps that also run on Linux, so that it's easier to move back.

Originally Posted by TheodorN
I don't recommend installing Linux on the same SSD as Windows 10 sits on.

Yes separate drives is better, especially if using disk encryption. I tend to unplug the other drives during installation so that it can't go wrong, and use the bios's boot menu. It's nice to setup Grub though.

Originally Posted by MacMacMac
Let's hope my next piano won't need virtual instruments. Then this becomes a moot point.

Yes, there's some interesting options. NV10 or VPC1 connected to a MODX, Montage, Fantom, VIVO SX7, MPC ONE/LIVE etc. Linux could still be used for audio/midi recording if necessary. Different experience, probably a bit more limiting but maybe more fun.

You could also consider a Macbook (maybe second hand) if your main goal is avoiding Windows.

Originally Posted by MacMacMac
it's still a server platform.

I wouldn't say that, it's just that your use case isn't well supported. Windows is only easier for most people because it's pre-installed on their computer. I do think the Linux eco system is too fragmented though. There's so many distributions and ways to package software it's ridiculous. Not to mention package managers containing really old versions, forcing you to install manually anyway. There's lots to complain about with Windows too (every app basically has permission to wipe your machine for example), so I don't think one is obviously better than the other. I'm not surprised Linux still doesn't have decent desktop market share though.

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For what it's worth I finally tried Kontakt on Linux. It was not seamless but it was easier than expected, basically due to yabridge.

Ubuntu Studio is probably the easiest path. I installed Kubuntu though and then followed the instructions at:
https://ubuntustudio.org/ubuntu-studio-installer/

You really only need the low latency kernel and performance tweaks, I haven't touched Carla or Jack at all. I also did sudo apt install cpupower-gui which makes it easy to switch the CPU into performance mode.

Once that's done install yabridge (and wine) as per the instructions:
https://github.com/robbert-vdh/yabridge#automatic-setup-recommended
https://github.com/robbert-vdh/yabridge/releases

Install Native Access. It hangs at the end installing an ISO driver. I killed the process doing that and the installer completed successfully. Install Kontakt. The install crashes at the end and quits, but the install is successful. All Native plugins did this so I'd install them one by one.

A couple of older plugins (TRK-01 Bass, Yangqin) wouldn't install as Native Access downloads a weird ISO image, mounts in the background and pretends it's installing from a DVD. The downloaded files remain in the Downloads directory so it's probably possible to manually install somehow but I haven't tried.

Once Kontakt is installed convert the plugins to Linux VST with yabridge. I did something like:
Code
mkdir -p ~/.wine/drive_c/plugins/
cd ~/.wine/drive_c/plugins/
find ../Program\ Files* -type d |grep -i vst
ln -s '../Program Files/Native Instruments/VSTPlugins 64 bit' native
ln -s '../Program Files/Native Instruments/VSTPlugins 32 bit' native-32
ln -s '../Program Files/Steinberg/VSTPlugins' steinberg
ln -s '../Program Files (x86)/Steinberg/VSTPlugins' steinberg-32
ln -s '../Program Files/VstPlugins' plugins
~/.local/share/yabridge/yabridgectl add "$HOME/.wine/drive_c/plugins"
~/.local/share/yabridge/yabridgectl sync

Then add /home/mart/.wine/drive_c/plugins/ to the plugin path in Reaper, Bitwig etc.

I have the original RME Babyface and latency is similar to Windows. It's a bit annoying as I have to switch it into class compliant mode for Linux but it works fine.

iLok is also working fine. I have some Neural DSP plugins working.

My initial impression is performance is a little better on Windows, but I'm running a 10 year old desktop with an i7-3770K.

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You might be already decided on not upgrading for whatever reason, but either the new builds of windows or 3.0.18 of uviworkstation (probably the windows build, I'm on 20H2) have much improved audio drivers. Selecting audio device in settings in uvi of Windows Audio (Low Latency Mode) of 128 samples has 2.7ms latency. It's far improved from previous builds. And this pc I built in 2009. Zero dropouts.

Last edited by OzarkCDN; 06/09/21 12:18 AM.
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What instruments run under UVI ?

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Hello,

Originally Posted by MacMacMac
What instruments run under UVI ?

All of VI Labs' titles, for instance. And UVI's own virtual instruments.

I'd also love to switch to Linux and put Windows in the past, but apart from the library software, there's also the audio interface software and other crucial details to consider for compatibility...

Cheers and happy playing,

HZ

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I used to run Cygwin, which was an excellent emulation of Linux.
It would be more accurate to say that Cygwin is an emulation of the Unix user interface, which also was selected as the user interface for Linux.

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If you want a fully supported Unix laptop, just get a Mac laptop.

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I just installed UVI Workstation (the free one) and it seems to work ok. The mouse cursor was invisible at one point but clicking on a menu brought it back.

Just in case anyone tries to follow my instructions, I think Reaper doesn't like finding the Windows versions of vst3 plugins. I therefore changed to:
Code
cd ~/.wine/drive_c/
mkdir vst
ln -s '../Program Files/Native Instruments/VSTPlugins 64 bit' vst/native
ln -s '../Program Files/VstPlugins' vst/plugins
ln -s '../Program Files/Steinberg/VSTPlugins' vst/steinberg
~/.local/share/yabridge/yabridgectl add vst
~/.local/share/yabridge/yabridgectl add 'Program Files/Common Files/VST3'
~/.local/share/yabridge/yabridgectl sync

Then add ~/.vst3/ and ~/.wine/drive_c/plugins/vst/ to your DAW's plugin path in.

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