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Linux Compatibility for Sonar 8.5 Producer's

Many moons ago, I won a contest from recording.org for a copy of Sonar 8.5 Producer's edition. I have been happily running the software on a Windows 7 desktop.

That machine has gone on to a better place so now I am putting together a new desktop. I am looking into running a Linux system (but may just do a dual OS install for audio).

A look into Cakewalk's support and a general internet search has yielded not much information at all at whether or not Sonar 8.5 Producer's is compatible with any Linux OS?

*I need an audio interface too, but I will consider that separately after I find out about the software end first.

Comments

Kurt Foster Tue, 08/15/2017 - 15:09
i did a dual install and wouldn't do it again. i have been thinking about removing the Windoze install. my reasoning is a dual install dedicates a portion of your drive to either Linux or Windoze, never to be accessed by the other. unless you have gi-gundo HD this can be an issue. it seems to me like Windoze never shuts off even when i reboot to Linux and i'm feeling like it's slowing down performance in Linux. that's just an impression of mine, i really don't know if it's true.

kmetal Tue, 08/15/2017 - 15:55
Windows shouldn't be active if it's on another partition of the drive, but it wouldn't surprise me if it somehow was.

SSDs are affordable enough now for the system size drives 128gb and up, it's easy and affordable enough to run to separate OS drives. This should eliminate any windoze take-over that might exist.

Take it one step further and get a hot swap chassis and physically remove the OS drive your not using, as simply as a video game cartridge or cd.

This is very interesting to me since I'm considering Linux. Looking forward to seeing how it works out.

pcrecord Wed, 08/16/2017 - 10:47
There is some audio oriented Linux versions (distributions). If you are up to learning a new DAW, you might as well go Linux all the way.

I did try it briefly a few years ago but couldn't resolve to throw away some of the fonctionnality of Sonar on windows. You see I'm far down 20years with their products... o_O

Check these if you find something inspiring to you :
https://ubuntustudio.org/

https://www.slant.co/topics/6067/~daws-for-linux

ThirdBird Sun, 08/20/2017 - 22:40
So I built the computer. Windows 7 doesn't have built in USB support so getting that installed was a witch with a B.

I partitioned the hard drive, going to use a dual boot. Windows 7 and Ubuntu XFCE.

I am kind of scared/lazy to learn a new OS, but the philosophy and robustness of Linux will hopefully trump the familiarity and bloatedness of Windows 7. Screw Windows 8 or 10.

Rather sad that software developers of all types typically crap on Linux.

Tony Carpenter Mon, 08/21/2017 - 01:05
As someone who helped test beta versions for Linus way back.. I still consider Linux a niche nerd OS for regular use. It's brilliant widely used for server applications, but, it's not going to win awards for much else still. It's been a long time, and that still hasn't changed. Windows 10 is bloated still, but, overall stability is there. I'm an OSX man because I love core audio still far better than the API of Windoze.

My .02

DonnyThompson Mon, 08/21/2017 - 02:22
My two cents...
If you are looking at going with a new OS, regardless of whether you go Linux, Mac, or stay with Windows (and I'm not trying to talk you out of the Linux part) then I think your best bet is to get into a DAW platform that has been tested as being solid for that particular OS, and is guaranteed to work with it.
Sonar 8 is considered to be old now ( is your version even 64 bit?) and DAW technology and features have grown immensely since.
I'm not knocking Sonar 8 as being non functional... up until 2014 I was still using PE 7 on Windows XP, did many projects and albums using it...and I do get that being familiar with a program after using it for so long makes it scary to walk away from... but I think you'll find that getting into a newer platform - one that has been successfully tested to work with Linux - isn't going to be as difficult to grasp as you think.
I'm pretty sure that Harrison MixBus supports Linux OS, and has been tested as such. I wouldn't be surprised to find that other more current DAW versions have been as well, though you might want to do a search on that to find out which ones do.
Programs like Presonus S1 and Reaper are very easy to use, and if you have solid DAW experience, (and it sounds like you do) my bet is that you'd be able to get around either of them really well in just a few days, maybe even less time than that, and, that you'd probably find newer features that you liked even better than what the older PE8 has to offer.
Again, I'm not saying that Sonar PE 8 is a bad platform. I did plenty of good work for years on PE7, running Windows 32 bit XP ... but I'm suggesting that because of its age and dissipated level of support, that it might end up giving you more trouble than it's worth because of its age and possible inability to work with a newer - or different - OS, other than what it was originally designed and successfully tested to work with.
OTOH, it may work just fine on Linux. I guess the only way to find out is to try it and see.
As opposed to partioning one HDD to work with both Windows and Linux, Have you considered installing Linux on its own drive, and Windows on another?
I doubt that a newer PS with enough power outlets to run both drives would be all that expensive.
I know that SS drives have really leveled out in price, are not unaffordable, and you wouldn't need all that much storage to allocate that drive as just an OS...
I'm not nearly as computer savvy as other guys here are; but I do know from experience the frustration of trying to get things to work on systems that aren't optimal for those things.
You just have to weigh out what I like to call the "BSF" ... (the Bull Sh.it Factor) which measures the amount of hassles and crap involved in doing something versus the benefits achieved.
;)
-d.

ThirdBird Fri, 08/25/2017 - 06:33
Update:

I am foregoing windows. Microsoft shall forsake me no longer.

Installing windows was awful and ultimately unsuccesful. Windows 7 does not have native support for USB 3.0 so I couldn't install via flash drive. After having to make an installation dvd, and after about downloading 200 or so windows updates, it finally lets me know that a Windows 7 doesn't support 7th generation Intel CPU/boards. Ugh. So I figured I would upgrade to Windows 10, a glorified piece of malware, but I was having trouble with the product key so I gave up.

So Ubuntu it is, with XFCE. If I want to run audio on this computer, I shall have to find a DAW that is Linux compatible.

Even though installing things on GNU/Linux takes more tinkering, overall it feels like a much more clean and robust OS.

#freedom

DonnyThompson Fri, 08/25/2017 - 08:29
I find absolutely no fault with switching to an OS that you like. Anything that can make your work more efficient, more productive, or that gives you more stability, is certainly not a bad thing.
At this point, you just need to find a DAW you like that has been tested successfully to run on the OS.
I would assume that a list of DAWs that work well on Linux is available, simply by typing in the DAW you would like, and the phrase, "Linux compatible".
I'd be interested myself to know which platforms have been tested to run on Linux.
I'm pretty sure that MixBus does... could be mistaken, but I'm pretty sure I recall reading somewhere that it was.
You might find out that there are many modern DAW platforms that work well on Linux.

Please keep us informed about what you find out? It will help others who are maybe doing a Search on the same subject. ;)
-d.

kmetal Fri, 08/25/2017 - 08:53
ThirdBird, post: 452285, member: 33549 wrote: Update:

I am foregoing windows. Microsoft shall forsake me no longer.

Installing windows was awful and ultimately unsuccesful. Windows 7 does not have native support for USB 3.0 so I couldn't install via flash drive. After having to make an installation dvd, and after about downloading 200 or so windows updates, it finally lets me know that a Windows 7 doesn't support 7th generation Intel CPU/boards. Ugh. So I figured I would upgrade to Windows 10, a glorified piece of malware, but I was having trouble with the product key so I gave up.

So Ubuntu it is, with XFCE. If I want to run audio on this computer, I shall have to find a DAW that is Linux compatible.

Even though installing things on GNU/Linux takes more tinkering, overall it feels like a much more clean and robust OS.

#freedom

I agree Windows has bloat. And isn't simple to just buy, install and roll and rock.

That said windows 10 enterprise can get pretty streamlined, not sure which w10 you tried. I opted for w10 pro when it was on sale, for various reasons. Linux is a fascinating prospect!

Reaper is where to go imho for your linuix setup. Reaper is highly capable 'out of the box', and open source itself, has a great user community, and is downright cheap to own. It's widely accepted by pros and non pros. I found it very stable and easy on the CPU due to nice efficient coding. It's 'sound' is clean. It's stock pluggins are nothing special but useable.

Reaper will literally run off of a flash drive (mobile install option) and has versions for xp-w10, as well as the linux so it runs on a lot of stuff and in 32/64 bit.

Boswell Fri, 08/25/2017 - 09:19
I've just upgraded my Harrison Mixbus to V4, mainly because this version has VCAs. I've set it up and run some of my old tracks through it, and I have to say, it's sounding good. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles of Samplitude, which I use for some of my more complex projects, but does embody the concept of gain staging. Mixbus is simple to use and learn, is laid out well (particularly if you've had a lifetime of running analogue consoles), and the MIDI interface is a breeze when using my A+H Zed-R16 as the system controller.

From the Mixbus blurb:
Mixbus works on the three most popular desktop operating systems (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux) in both 32 bit and 64 bit versions. Industry standard audio I/O support: Mixbus uses ASIO/Directsound on Windows, CoreAudio on OSX, and ALSA/JACK on Linux.

kmetal Fri, 08/25/2017 - 11:16
ThirdBird, post: 452289, member: 33549 wrote: Thanks again for all of the help guys.

Do VST plugins work the same in Linux friendly DAWs like Reaper or Mixbus? (as compared to Sonar 8.5 in Windows 7)

ya know, that's a good question, I really don't know the answer. I would errr towards a yes they do work, but that's just based on not seeing anything blantent about the topic either way in my general reading. I'm speaking about reaper since I have no experience w mix bus.

Good question.

DonnyThompson Fri, 08/25/2017 - 12:00
Yeah, that's a good question. You may need to do a search of Linux FX that are native to that OS.
The last time I heard, VSTs like Waves and Ozone, and VSTi's like Kontakt (which is Native Instruments) will not work on Linux - BUT - it's been a few years since I read that, and those may have been re-coded to work since.
There also seems to be some doubt as to whether any plugs that require a Pace lock (ILok) will run or not, as the authorization software is only supported by Mac or Windows (- and not all of those will work, either, if they are older past a certain support point)...
I don't know about Slate ... their Raven system claims to support either Mac or Windows, it makes no mention of Linux.
Apparently, there's a Linux based program called "WINE" that enables certain Mac and Windows programs to work on a Linux OS, but I don't have any experience with it.
I suppose the best thing to do would be for you to contact Slate support (or Waves, or IK Multimedia, or any other plug manufacturers you're interested in using) and ask them.
I would think that if a particular DAW is supported by Linux, that their stock program VST's and VSTi's would run fine, because those are stock plugs, and part of the feature set of that particular DAW.
But it might be hit or miss with Third Party stuff. ;)
FWIW,
-d.

thewonders Mon, 08/28/2017 - 19:51
ThirdBird, post: 452115, member: 33549 wrote: Many moons ago, I won a contest from recording.org for a copy of Sonar 8.5 Producer's edition. I have been happily running the software on a Windows 7 desktop.
That machine has gone on to a better place so now I am putting together a new desktop. I am looking into running a Linux system (but may just do a dual OS install for audio).

A look into Cakewalk's support and a general internet search has yielded not much information at all at whether or not Sonar 8.5 Producer's is compatible with any Linux OS?

*I need an audio interface too, but I will consider that separately after I find out about the software end first.

As you probably found out, Sonar does not run on Linux. There is a program called WINE that tries to run Windows software on Linux, and I've known folks to try using that with Sonar, but I've never heard of Sonar working that way - the program needs more connection to low level hardware/software than WINE can provide.

Kurt Foster, post: 452118, member: 7836 wrote: i did a dual install and wouldn't do it again. i have been thinking about removing the Windoze install. my reasoning is a dual install dedicates a portion of your drive to either Linux or Windoze, never to be accessed by the other.
Yes, that's the way multiple partitions work, but it depends on the OS as to whether you can access one partition from another. If you partition the drive three ways, for Windows XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 (my DAW is like this) you will be able to see and access all partitions from any other partition - you would be able to move files between partitions. If one of your partitions is Linux, the Windows partition will not be able to see it but the Linux partition can access the Windows partition. If one of your partitions is Mac OS, Windows won't be able to see the Mac partition but the Mac partition can see and read from (but not write to) the Windows partition. There are also add-on programs that allow one OS to read from/write to another. But you do need to separate each OS on its own partition (or virtualize).

Kurt Foster, post: 452118, member: 7836 wrote: it seems to me like Windoze never shuts off even when i reboot to Linux and i'm feeling like it's slowing down performance in Linux. that's just an impression of mine, i really don't know if it's true.
With older or "legacy" BIOS that just wouldn't be possible. The BIOS starts the computer, activates the hardware, then prompts for the OS. Once the OS is selected, only the operating system selected is running. Even with this newer UEFI/EFI BIOS the OS needs to have direct and complete control of the hardware so it would be unlikely that Windows OS is running behind/underneath Linux.

DonnyThompson, post: 452208, member: 46114 wrote: My two cents...
If you are looking at going with a new OS, regardless of whether you go Linux, Mac, or stay with Windows (and I'm not trying to talk you out of the Linux part) then I think your best bet is to get into a DAW platform that has been tested as being solid for that particular OS, and is guaranteed to work with it.
This is really good advice, especially for beginners/noobs.

DonnyThompson, post: 452208, member: 46114 wrote: I'm pretty sure that Harrison MixBus supports Linux OS, and has been tested as such. I wouldn't be surprised to find that other more current DAW versions have been as well, though you might want to do a search on that to find out which ones do.
MixBus is just Harrison's version of Ardour, a very stable Linux DAW with tons of user support... be sure to check it out.

A Linux port of Reaper has been mentioned - last I heard it wasn't finished but if it is it would be a great place to start. Obviously decent support available.

ThirdBird, post: 452289, member: 33549 wrote: Thanks again for all of the help guys.

Do VST plugins work the same in Linux friendly DAWs like Reaper or Mixbus? (as compared to Sonar 8.5 in Windows 7)
VST is not natively supported in Linux but there are wrappers. A lot of VSTs work well with the wrapper. VSTIs are another problem - don't count your Windows VSTIs working on Linux (although some work in some situations) but there are quite a few Linux virtual instruments, many that sound great.

ThirdBird, post: 452285, member: 33549 wrote: So Ubuntu it is, with XFCE.
Ubuntu is of course a very popular distro. On the plus side, it has quite a lot of user support and it is maintained and updated often. On the down side, it has become bloated, even without KDE or the latest version of Gnome. Linux Mint or even Debian have the same base code as Ubuntu but are leaner distros. Mageia/Mandriva has been a good solid distro and Slackware has been around forever and has plenty of user support. All of these distros are used/recommended by LMMS, or Linux MultiMedia Studio. Check it out before you decide about your setup. https://lmms.io/

Makzimia, post: 452206, member: 48344 wrote: As someone who helped test beta versions for Linus way back.. I still consider Linux a niche nerd OS for regular use. It's brilliant widely used for server applications, but, it's not going to win awards for much else still. It's been a long time, and that still hasn't changed. Windows 10 is bloated still, but, overall stability is there. I'm an OSX man because I love core audio still far better than the API of Windoze.
I still look at Linux this way also. I've been using Linux since around 2000 and all that time I've endlessly heard how Linux is about to be ready for prime time at any moment. But mostly it isn't, even with a point-and-click installation like Ubuntu. As long as you need to open the command prompt to get something working (like printers or networking) it will not work for 90%+ of the personal computing world. It's a great OS - it really should be used by more people if for no other reason than to break the MS habit - but until it becomes as easy as Windows or Mac OS to install and set up, it's just going to be used by those of us nerdy enough to uname-a.
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