Archive for the ‘Ubuntu’ Category


A simple and lightweight highly Ubuntu Lucid  integrated GMail Notifier which takes advantages of  notify-osd and indicator-applet. Because of this it will not run with older Ubuntu versions.

Option  to select a sound when new incoming mail, a must-have for Gmail users.

Installing from a terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gm-notify-maintainers/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gm-notify

GM-Notify on Launchpad

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Matt Parnell has an interesting method of speeding up his apt-get downloads by utilising the axel downloader.

A shell  script appropriately called apt-fast is available from the link above.

Here is what Matt has to say about the project:

The apt-fast script I have created is a little shellscript that increases the speed of apt-get by many times. You need to have the axel download accelerator installed, which is a simple, short process, but everything else is extremely straight forward. I started out downloading the upgrades for Kubuntu, at 32kb/s. Not terrible, but not that great. When I was done with the script here, I was getting up to ~850kb/s. That is great, huh?

To do this, you first need to download and install the axel download accelerator. It is really a good drop-in replacement for wget, as it is bash based. Once installed, we are ready to setup apt-fast. On K/Ubuntu apt-get install axel should do it.

Then, either find a package somewhere (or install it from a repo if one of them has it), or just download the latest apt-fast source from the link mentioned at the top of this post. Then, just place the script somewhere (/usr/bin or /usr/sbin is ideal), rename it to apt-fast (without the .sh extension), and sudo chmod +x apt-fast.

Once done, just use it like apt-get. To install a single package, make sure your database is up to date (apt-fast update), and run apt-fast install packagenamehere. Watch it download with incredible speed, and install your requested packages. To upgrade or dist-upgrade, do the same thing. Just use apt-fast dist-upgrade or apt-fast upgrade. That’s all there is to it!

Should your download stall for any number of reasons, you’ll need to do an apt-fast clean.


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Zen Kernel

Zen Kernel needs a Zen Tux

Although there hasn’t been any time to test this rather radical approach to the Linux kernel , the zen of kernel development is worth reporting about. After my initial fore’s into kernel evolution, here and here, I stumbled across ZenKernel.

“Zen Kernel is a the result of a collaborative effort of kernel hackers to provide the best Linux kernel possible for every day systems. We include code that is not included in the mainline kernel in an attempt to create an all-around better kernel for desktops (although it can be compiled otherwise). This is done by including new features, supporting latest hardware, and including various code and optimizations to better suit desktops. Zen is a 100% community oriented project so, as a result, everybody can contribute to the project”

“Zen is almost always more up to date than your distribution’s default kernel. Zen is split up into two trees, these are stable (zen-stable.git) and unstable (zen.git). The stable tree follows Linux releases while the unstable tree follows the Linux git tree (linux-2.6.git).”

You have a choice between doing it the ZenKernel way or cheating and using the buildZen script. Remember, using scripts to build kernel’s is strictly speaking, cheating. Not recommended if you want to understand what is going on and/or contribute to development. There is also some good advice and information on the Ubuntu Wiki

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Upgrade Alsa

If you have sound issues then upgrading Alsa could be the solution.

Here is a great script for doing this

Follow the instructions

Short Alsa-Upgrade script install instructions:

1. download the script and save it somewhere
2. cd <your-download-dir>
3. tar xvf AlsaUpgrade-1.0.23-2.tar
4. sudo ./AlsaUpgrade-1.0.23-2.sh -d
5. sudo ./AlsaUpgrade-1.0.23-2.sh -c
6. sudo ./AlsaUpgrade-1.0.23-2.sh -i
7. sudo shutdown -r 0

Check the original posting on Ubuntuforums for more information and support.

If you like to do things the long way round, then check Stéphane Gaudreault’s blog, which appears to be exclusively focused on Alsa upgrades.

His latest post is upgrade-alsa-1-0-23-on-ubuntu-lucid-lynx-10-04

NOTE: After the upgrade and in order to get ALSA working properly I had to open a terminal and type alsamixer. The only levels showing were volume and input. Something was also wrong with the sound which was jerky. Pressing  F6 allowed me to select my sound card which wasn’t selected!!!  After selecting the card,  ALSA is better than it was before.  Hope this helps.

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Getting into one of these situations is not uncommon. Sometimes packages aren’t packaged properly and you end up with a broken package which refuses to fix itself.

If you try:

sudo apt-get -f install

You will get a message like this:

Unpacking replacement vlc …
dpkg: error processing /var/cache/apt/archives/vlc_1.1.0-1ubuntu1_i386.deb (–unpack):
trying to overwrite ‘/usr/lib/vlc/plugins/access/libxcb_screen_plugin.so’, which is also in package vlc-nox 1.1.0-1~ppa1~maverick
dpkg-deb: subprocess paste killed by signal (Broken pipe)
Preparing to replace vlc-nox 1.1.0-1~ppa1~maverick (using …/vlc-nox_1.1.0-1ubuntu1_i386.deb) …
Unpacking replacement vlc-nox …
dpkg: error processing /var/cache/apt/archives/vlc-nox_1.1.0-1ubuntu1_i386.deb (–unpack):
trying to overwrite ‘/usr/lib/vlc/lua/playlist/anevia_streams.luac’, which is also in package vlc 1.1.0-1~ppa1~maverick
dpkg-deb: subprocess paste killed by signal (Broken pipe)
Errors were encountered while processing:
E: Sub-process /usr/bin/dpkg returned an error code (1)

For reasons why this happens see point 7.6.1 from the debian policy manual

The fix for the problem is pretty easy if you know what to do:

sudo dpkg -i --force-overwrite <filename>

eg. sudo dpkg -i –force-overwrite /var/cache/apt/archives/vlc-nox_1.1.0-1ubuntu1_i386.deb

THANKS www.absolutelytech.com

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Limewire for Ubuntu

Limewire, a P2P file sharing application is now available for Linux. Thanks to the Khattam blog, for spotting this.

The deb can be downloaded from Official Limewire Website or Click here for Direct Download.

After downloading it, if you double click it (LimeWireLinux.deb), you may get the following error:

Error: Dependency is not satisfiable: sun-java6-jre|icedtea-java7-jre|sun-java6-jdk|icedtea-java7-jdk

This can be solved by either adding/enabling the Lucid Partner Repository for sun-java6-jre or by modifying LimeWireLinux.deb to be satisfied with openjdk-6-jre.

More instructions from Khattam

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Here is a good way to copy and share websites in your community. Remember, not everybody has unlimited and uncapped bandwidth, and we not all running the same speed either.

Sharing websites offline helps to bridge the gap.

Don’t wait until you are  so far ahead that you can’t relate to your neighbour.

Ubuntu is more than just a linux distribution, it is a philosophy about humanity.

sudo apt-get install webhttrack


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On August 1, 2010 Linus officially released the 2.6.35 kernel.

This kernel is now available in the git repository of Ubuntu 10.04 and you are able to compile your own 2.6.35 kernel for Ubuntu 10.04.

This kernel is backported from the Maverick kernel repository. Kernel Newbies has a nice overview of the new features in the 2.6.35 kernel.

Their summary: Linux 2.6.35 includes support for transparent spreading of incoming network load across CPUs, Direct-IO support for Btrfs, an new experimental journal mode for XFS, the KDB debugger UI based on top of KGDB, improvements to ‘perf’, H.264 and VC1 video acceleration in Intel G45+ chips, support for the future Intel Cougarpoint graphic chip, power management for AMD Radeon chips, a memory defragmentation mechanism, support for the Tunneling Protocol version 3 (RFC 3931), support for multiple multicast route tables, support for the CAIF protocol used by ST-Ericsson products, support for the ACPI Platform Error Interface, and many new drivers and small improvements.

If you’re interested in more details read this article

The Ubuntu kernel developers tagged the 2.6.35 kernel as Ubuntu-lts-2.6.35-14.19 in their repository.

For a step by step article to to compiling the 2.6.35 kernel follow this how to compile article.

THANKS Ubuntika for the link

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Doomed to obscurity

Great Open Source Comic

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One of my favourite games used to be Jazz Jackrabbit. Frogatto has a similar 2D look and feel but could do with an information bar instead of pop-up dialogues which I find slightly irritating. Great game though.

sudo wget -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/frogatto.list http://www.frogatto.com/apt/frogatto.list
wget -O- http://www.frogatto.com/apt/key.gpg | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install frogatto

THANKS: Ubutronics

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