Category archives: Ubuntu

Fixing Windows / Screen Tearing on Intel Graphic Card – Linux

I had some mild / serious screen and window tearing problems when moving windows, scrolling through the browser and the general KDE Plasma UI could be a bit laggy. The problem was reduced if I switched my rendering backend from OpenGL 2.0((Hardware rendering  – the default) to Xrender (Software rendering).

The system is a work laptop – a Thinkpad E550-. It comes with an Intel Broadwell Chip. Running lspci -c video spit out this following: Read more

Encode and sync music to your portable music player in linux

Ok so today turned out to be a not so good day for me, and like all not so good days I try do something which would distract me, something i love doing. Hence this post. Nope I don’t want to talk about it.

So some months ago I got me an E71 Nokia phone, among other things I was hoping to use it as a music device so I slammed in an 8gb memory card, and was all set but for one factor: 60% of my music collection are in ogg format and nokia default music player does recognize ogg. Sure there are some 3rd party music apps for E71 which can play ogg files out of the box but they all lack the kind of integration which you get with the Nokia default music player. While in confused mode I decided to call up a friend nucco and he gave me the tip about .is_audio_player.
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The Ultimate Blogging Client for Linux

How it all started

Ever since i started a blog i had always wanted a wanted a application which would allow me do my blogging (preferably offline ) without having to use the web browser. One of the reasons for this was because i (as at then) did not have a stable Internet connection and had to go to Internet cafe to do my blogging which wasn’t really convenient. I wanted a way to do my blogging offline and then upload later. Even when i had a stable Internet connection i still prefer to having to use a browser for blogging. Unfortunately for me most of the blogging applications ( Drivel BloGTK KBlogger gnome-blog) i tried on Linux just didn’t cut it, some didn’t work with wordpress and the once that did weren’t powerful enough or were buggy or just too basic.

I gave up and resigned my self to the web for blogging. This was until recently when (I Cant quite remember how it happened) i found about about Bilbo Blogger and Beng. Read more

Get Thunderbird to minimizing to tray instead of closing

One of the first set of things i do when i install a fresh (k)ubuntu is change the default email client. Both evolution (ubuntu) and kmail (kubuntu) don’t just cut it for me, they always seem bloated and buggy. I am a KISS guy -not that kiss (fine am that kiss too but the kiss i refer here is the Keep It Simple Stupid kind of kiss 😀 ) hence i find thunderbird to be the email client that just suits my needs. It doesn’t try to take over the world or make dinner for me. Its first and foremost an email client and its keeps with the Unix philosophy of do one thing and do it well.

However one thing i have always wish it had was the ability to run in the background so that if i close thunderbird i want it to minimize to the system-tray/notification area and inform me real time when i have a new mail. Read more

How to use Your Mobile Phone as Remote for your Linux Media Player

One of the Accessories that comes shipped with my Dell M1330 laptop is a media Remote control which allows the laptop media player to be controlled remotely. Unfortunately Dell in their wisdom left this cool accessory out of the default configuration of the M1330 that ships with Ubuntu pre-installed. Thankfully there is an even better tool available which is much more useful than the XPS media remote, Its is called Remuco

Remuco is a duplex remote control system for Linux media players and mobile devices equipped with Bluetooth or WiFi.

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Ubuntu Jaunty Jackalope on Dell XPS M1330

So Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex turned out to be a bad experience on my dell m1330. Many things that worked out of the box with Hardy heron got broken on Ibex. Things like Finger print reader, bluetooth, Graphic Display, Audio, all had one problem or the other. I was able to walk around most of the issues, although some were just unfix-able (like the screen corruption that i get when i enable compositing metacity or compiz) could not be fixed.

When Jaunty alpha6 was announced with many folks on identica claiming it to be very stable i decided to make the switch. I have since been running Ubuntu jaunty jackalope on my laptop. People say that the grass on the other side is always greener,well that was how running jaunty on my dell m1330 turned out. It wasn’t perfect and although i noticed many improvements from intrepid ibex like faster boot, better notification system, better support for suspense and hibernation, they were also some huge show spoiler like the Intel graphic regression which seem to affect the Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 0c) graphic chipset the most, causing the system to hard freeze requiring me to have to manually power down the machine. This issue got really bad that i had to downgrade to ubuntu hardy heron (which ran perfectly on my system) while i waited for walk rounds to the problem.
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My Views on UbuntuOne

I have always tried to focus my blog posts on Guides and Howtos as they relate to my experiences in free and open source software. Today however i take an Exception and i will like to speak let out on my opinion about the Ubuntu One issue.

First to set some things straight. Am not saying that canonical should not make proprietary software i have never complained about launchpad or Landscape
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Login Graphically to A Computer in a Remote Location

The ability to login graphically into any computer from a remote location has a number of uses. In my case it allows me to create a setup where students in my school can easily login graphically into the universities computer lab and use many of the applications which are installed there (like Matlab which is only licensed to run on our lab computers) It also allows me to log into my work computer from home. To create this setup we would need a tool called Freenx.
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An easy way to Spilt or Merge PDF Files in Linux

I work as  the IT guy of a school that runs free software on all our computers. So far majority of our computing needs has been  met by free software. ( all of them if we exclude matlab and some freedom hating multimedia  codecs.) One area that has been quite shaky is a good tool that can be used for merging different pdf files into one. There is a tool called pdftk but its command-line and while i don’t have a problem using it,  its hardly the tool i want to recommend for our  staffs and students,  so when this morning i saw a dent on identi.ca about a tool called PDF-Shuffler which among other things provide an easy way to merge PDF files i decided to to Investigate.

PDF-Shuffler is a small python-gtk application, which helps the user to merge or split PDF documents. You can also rotate, crop and rearrange their pages using an interactive and intuitive graphical interface.

Source: Softpedia
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Give Ubuntu Jaunty An Apple Flavour

So this month i decide to give my laptop an apple flavor, God knows how much i hate Macs and some element of their interface, like  the lack of right click-right out of the box (i initially stated that right clicks doesn’t work out of the box because the mac mini we have at work doesn’t do right-clicks but i have been informed that right-clicking on the mac does work if you have the right mouse), most of all the lack of freedom and ownership it and every other proprietary Operating system makes me feel.
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