March 19th, 2008
Ubuntu is a free Linux based operating system that has become quite popular. I’ve been quite happy with the OS and am learning more and more as time goes by. Here’s a quick list of the Ubuntu tutorials at Tech-Recipes by seamonkey420, incursor, and myself (so far):
- Ubuntu: Optimize Font Rendering for Viewing on LCDs and Laptop
- Ubuntu: Make Your Laptop Enter Suspend or Hibernate Mode When You Close the Lid
- Ubuntu: Restore Restart and Shut Down to the Log Out Button
- Ubuntu: Restore wireless / bluetooth / battery icon back to Top Panel
- Ubuntu: Dual booting w/XP using Grub bootloader | editing bootloader in Ubuntu
- Ubuntu: Disable the Automatic Playing of CD and DVD Discs
- Ubuntu: Install the Ubuntu Studio Theme
- Ubuntu: How to Change the Computer Name
- Ubuntu: Place Trash Icon on the Desktop
- Ubuntu: Disable the Startup Sound
- Ubuntu: Installing, Removing, and Searching for Packages & Apps from Terminal
- Ubuntu: Add Applications to the Startup Programs
- Ubuntu 7.10: How to Install KDE 4.0
- Ubuntu: How to Remove a User Account
- Ubuntu: Stop sudo Commands from Prompting for a Password
- Ubuntu: How to Mount and Unmount ISO Files
- Ubuntu 7.10: How to Uninstall KDE
- Ubuntu: Install Compiz Config Settings Manager to Configure Desktop Effects
- Ubuntu: Getting KDE 4.0 to Accept Your sudo Password
- Ubuntu: Bypass Trash When Deleting a File
- Ubuntu: Disable the System Beep
- Ubuntu: Enable DVD Playback
- Ubuntu: What Version am I Running?
- Ubuntu: How To Create an ISO Image from a CD or DVD
- Ubuntu: Enable Window Grouping on the Window List
- Ubuntu: Generate a Hardware Profile for Your System
- Ubuntu: Close a Non-Responding App with xkill
- Ubuntu: Switch Between gdm and kdm Display Managers
- Ubuntu: How to Enable Automatic Login
- Ubuntu: How to View Hidden Files and Folders
- Ubuntu: Change How Often Your System Checks for Updates
- Ubuntu: Stop Display from Going to Sleep when Inactive
- Ubuntu: 4 Ways to Install Programs or Packages
March 4th, 2008
This one is for the command line junkies out there. By using cURL ( a client for getting files from servers), you can easily post your tweets to Twitter from the terminal window.
To install cURL:
- Open a terminal window.
- Execute the following Terminal command:
sudo apt-get install curl
- Input the administrative password.
With cURL installed, you can post to Twitter from the terminal window by using the following syntax:
|curl -u yourusername:yourpassword -d status=”Your Message Here” http://twitter.com/statuses/update.xml|
You will receive a response containing the XML coding for your post which acts as a confirmation that your post was submitted.
February 2nd, 2008
Since I use my Dell Latitude D410 for most of my day-to-day computing, it was the obvious choice for the experiment. I had previously been running Windows XP, so I went ahead and removed the hard drive and popped in a new one (just in case I couldn’t take it anymore, I could easily return to friendly territory). At first, I contemplated dual booting with Windows XP, but decided that it might be too much temptation to jump back to a familiar OS if things got difficult. I decided to go with a straight install and utilize VirtualBox for any future Windows needs I might encounter.
Once the OS was installed and updated with the latest and greatest, it was time to do some poking around and playing. I was quite impressed to find that all of my hardware was recognized and functioning. Even setting up the wireless connection was a painless event. I had been expecting some hiccups, but everything ran very smoothly.
First thing I noticed was that I needed to adjust the desktop a little, things were a bit too different for my first leap. I didn’t like the panels being both at the top and bottom of the screen. I removed the bottom panel and added the Window List to the top panel and enabled Window Grouping to compensate for the reduction in display space. I also found an extreme dislike for the Trash being located on a panel, the Windows user in me required moving it to the desktop.
The next step was seeing what applications I had and where my gaps were. Since I access Gmail from my cell phone, Nokia N800, and my desktop PC, I decided to not use an email client on my laptop. I instead installed cGmail to inform me when new mail had arrived in my Inbox. The application worked great, however I had to find a way to add it to my Startup Programs so I wouldn’t have to execute it each time I booted up. I also installed Twitux as my Twitter client and added it to the Startup Progs as well. The next hurdle was a bigger one. I needed a satisfactory blogging client. I tried Drivel and QTM, but wasn’t quite satisfied with the feel. I finally settled on the ScribeFire plugin for Firefox (thanks for the suggestion Davak!) as my client of choice. You can check it out for yourself here. The final hurdle for the short term seems to be that of an image editor. Try as I might, I just can’t fall in love with GIMP. I have been an avid user of Corel Photo-Paint for years, and am currently thinking about moving to Adobe Photoshop, so we’ll see what I can do from the Linux side of things.
Since I have been going on frequent trips to Seattle, I needed to get DVD playback functioning on the machine. Two terminal commands later, I was able to enjoy my movies with no problem. I will be looking into finding a solid method for ripping DVD movies to my hard drive in the near future, that’s a must have.
All things considered, I am really liking the Ubuntu experience. I realize that I am only a month into the experience, but I have little to complain about at this point. We’ll see how the OS does as I require more and more from it as time goes by.
February 1st, 2008
VirtualBox makes it easy to run virtual environments on your Ubuntu machine. You can add a launcher to your desktop to make accessing your virtual machine even easier. Here’s how:
1. Right-click your desktop and select Create Launcher from the context menu.
2. From the Create Launcher window, keep the Type as Application. In the Name textbox, input the name that will be used to label the launcher. In the Command textbox, input the following:
VBoxManage startvm your_virtual_machine_name
making sure to use the name of your Virtual Machine as it is labeled in VirtualBox.
3. Click OK.
The launcher will be placed on your desktop, giving you instant access to your virtual machine.
January 2nd, 2008
Since I’ve loaded up Ubuntu on my laptop, I needed a client to post to my WordPress blog. This is necessary since I do quite a bit of my writing offline when I can find the time. The solution to my quest turned out to be an application called Drivel.
To install Drivel on Ubuntu is quite painless, simply open up a terminal window and run the following command:
sudo apt-get install drivel
Now you need to configure Drivel to connect to your blog. Go to Applications and mouseover Internet. Select Drivel Journal Editor.
When the dialog box appears, input your username and password into the first two textboxes. For Server Type, select Movable Type from the dropdown. Now the tricky part, for the server address you will need to enter the full path to the xmlrpc.php file on the server (for example http://www.yourdomain.com/yoursubdirectory/xmlrpc.php). Check the Remember password checkbox and the Automatically login checkboxes (if desired) and click the Log In button.
If done properly, you should get no errors. If it doesn’t work, make sure the server address is accurate and double check your username and password. Now your ready to post to your blog