Saturday, December 18, 2010

Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat - A Pleasant Experience

Finally, 2 months after the release of Maverick Meerkat, I ventured to install it on my laptop. After using it for the past two days, I found it to be extremely user friendly. The User Interface is very elegant. Hardware detection is
excellent. All the much-hyped features are no exaggeration. They make the user experience a very pleasant one. However, there still are certain rough edges that mar the overall effect. Nothing serious though!

My first gripe is that I am unable to add Facebook to gwibber, the new social networking app. It seems to be a well-documented and hitherto unresolved bug. It doesn't matter much really, but I wish this bug would disappear so that the experience would become more pleasant.

The next irritant is a more serious one. The synaptics bug relating to two-touch gesture issue still persists and calls for an ugly work around! It still requires a script involving xinput to be executed each time I log in to make multi-touch work with synaptics. Ok, but the greater problem is, that I have to execute the script each time I log in, resume from suspend or resume from hibernation, which I often do. I wish something is done in this regards as well.

Besides these two irritants the others are minor and can be easily ignored. Overall I am having a nice time using Ubuntu 10.10.

Friday, November 12, 2010

To Make A Self-Reading Text File!

To make a text file self-read, add the following line at the beginning of the file -
then make the file executable -
$ chmod +x
The file can be executed as
$ ./filename.txt

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Finding the type of a file!

Sometimes it so happens that you want to determine the type of a particular file. I found the following command useful when I was converting the format of certain audio files.

$ file

This outputs the type of the file

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Unmount a busy external drive!

It so happens that sometimes when you try to umount your pendrive, the system reports -

umount: /media/xyz : device is busy

It is clear that some process is using the drive. It would be nice to quickly find out the errant process so that necessary action can be taken.

We can find out which process is using the drive by fuser command -

#fuser -m /dev/sdx

where /dev/sdx is mounted on /media/xyz

Let us say that the output of the above command is

/dev/sdx: 538


#ps -aux|grep 538

reveals the name of the errant programme, in my case rhythmbox :-)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

To change the GDM login background in Ubuntu Karmic Koala

I found to my utter consternation that one cannot change the login background in Ubuntu Karmic Koala (or Linux Mint 8, for that matter) from gdmsetup.

I found this solution after a bit of googling -
  1. Firstly, we log out of the current session and return to the GDM login screen.
  2. At this point, pressing Ctrl-Alt-F1 throws up the terminal.
  3. Login to this terminal with your username and password.
  4. Then issue the following command -
    $export DISPLAY=:0.0
  5. followed by -
    $sudo -u gdm gnome-control-center.
  6. At this point, pressing Alt-F7 brings us back to the GDM login screen with gnome-control-center
  7. Selecting Appearance from gnome-control-center and making the appropriate changes to the background, font.
  8. Closing the gnome-control-center window reveals the login screen with the new background.