Archive for the ‘Scripts’ Category

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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The totally awsome coverthumbnailer now has a ppa.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:flozz/flozz

next, update your packages list:

sudo apt-get update

and then install the cover-thumbnailer package :

sudo apt-get install cover-thumbnailer

For more information about the PPA, visit the Launchpad page .

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Shift spaces with Ubuntu

There is so much happening in the World of Ubuntu, we often forget about the tools which are assisting us. Here are some excellent pieces of browser code I have come across in my journeys across the Net. They all utilise Firefox addons and/or Greasemonkey.

ShiftSpace Project



On my wishlist:

A user script for downloading from ccMixter

A user script which will replace all proprietory links with open-source links.

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It’s taken me a while to access the full power of Nautilus. Yes, I’ve always known about the convenient “open in terminal” which appears if you install Nautilus Actions, and  adding scripts to Nautilus has always been a cinch (just drop them in the  ~/.gnome/nautilus-scripts, and chmod +x ) but have you tried some of the cooler music addons?

Get Nautilus to Play Banshee

Enqueue files in Rythmbox

Enqueue files with VLC

Enqueue in Audacious or add a similar nautilus action

Download Cover Art with Nautilus

Check out g-scripts

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Found a cool Nautilus Subversion Integration tool that allows one to execute SVN commands using Gnome scripts.

sudo apt-get install nautilus-actions

Requires Zenity and Subversion.

Link to download the scripts

Also, found the SVN Workbench  from Tigris.org – Open Source Software Engineering Tools

sudo apt-get install python-svn

sudo apt-get install svn-workbench

Also a newer beta version of Nautilussvn which imitates TortoiseSVN on Windows.

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This is the fastest “safe” fixkey method around, since it does not involve aliasing which strictly speaking should be kept for shortening or modifying commands that you already have in your shell, nor does it update software sources, which can slow down valuable time, especially if you have a lot of them.

1. Create a new file named ‘fixkey’ at ‘/usr/bin’ with your favorite text editor:

sudo gedit /usr/bin/fixkey

Then, paste this code:

#! /bin/bash
echo please input your key
read KEY
apt-key adv --recv-keys --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com $KEY

2. Give the file executable privileges with this command:

sudo chmod +x /usr/bin/fixkey

3. Start fixing keys using the command line by typing ‘fixkey’ [wait for prompt] [key]. See example below:


please input your key


5. You have just fixed a PPA key via the Linux command line!

Previous threads on this subject can be found here and here.

6. Now to fix the key for the chromium-daily ppa:


please input your key


For a more inclusive but slower method of updating keys, you might like this script from Dominic Evans, which was first noted here. If you have a lot of keys that need to be updating then I suggest you use it, at least once.

If you like my method, please let me know.

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A short while ago we announced the release of Ubuwiki for Africa. The idea is very simple. A lot of us take connectivity for granted. We also fail to take bandwidth considerations into account and the result is known as the Digital Divide. PDF is a great format for sharing books. Ogg-Theora is the open-source format for sharing music. WoaS or Wiki-on-a-Stick is “a wiki living in a self-modifying XHTML file”. We want it to become the “MP3 of Data” or in Opensource terms, the Ogg-Theora of Data.

Originally Ubuwiki, essentially a modded WoaS “containing repurposed content” was a forked development of WoaS. The two projects have now combined forces and there are plans to develop the format even further. What we want you to do, is modify Woas or Ubuwiki and to share the modified files with your friends. Create online and offline data-sharing. Encourage users to share information with those who don’t have bandwidth. Here is an example of a modification from the official WoaS forum “i use woas with this extention for tabs. i also did some dirty code modifications to use it with ie8 and embedded images. further i did some css modifications.”


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