Saving Battery Life in Ubuntu

21 06 2007

This post is available at my new blog The IT Report:


Search GMail From The Deskbar

18 06 2007

I swear by the Deskbar applet. I swear by GMail. So lets put two and two together. Deskbar allows you to add “handlers” which are 3rd party extensions to this wonderful search utility. Here is a handler to allow Deskbar to search your GMail from within Ubuntu. Just save this script in your /home/.gnome2/deskbar-applet/handlers/ directory and it will automatically appear in your Deskbar Preferences. The script requires a little tweaking – you will need to hardcode your GMail username and password in order for it to work. At the top of the script there is a section:


Which will require your attention. For a list of additional handlers click here. Another favorite Deskbar trick of mine is to integrate it with live Tracker search results. Deskbar is one of those utilities that make my daily computing, a little bit easier.

Kiba Dock – OS X Style Dock Bar For Linux

18 06 2007

I don’t know why this is, but it seems everyone who has made the switch from Windows to Linux has this fascination with the OS X dock. I too am guilty of this, and have found a very good dock, called Kiba which has the same features as the OS X dock, except it includes a physics engine. What’s a physics engine? Instead of going into details check out the video below:

Eye-candy. Bragging rights. Now in order to run Kiba Dock note that you must have a compositing window manager, like Beryl, active or else the dock will look very ugly with no transparencies or masks. Lets get to the install though (Ubuntu 7.04):

1. Press Alt+F2 and enter the following command:

gksu gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

This is the list of repositories Synaptic can download from.

2. Add the following lines to the end:

deb feisty eyecandy
deb-src feisty eyecandy

This tells Synaptic the above repositories will be added

3. Add the key for the repositories

wget -O- | sudo apt-key add -

This line authenticates a repository with a key, so you can ensure it is a trusted source.

4. Open the Synaptic Package Manager, and mark the following packages for installation:

kiba-dock, kiba-dock-dev, kiba-plugins

Kiba-Dock should appear under Applications > Accessories. If you’re anything like me, you will spend 15 minutes of your day bouncing icons off of the edges of your screen.


Ubuntu Performance Tip – Preload

14 06 2007

This post is now available on my new blog The IT Report:—preload

Listen – The GNOME Amarok

11 06 2007

I recently discovered Listen, a GNOME music manager that outclasses Rhythmbox which comes standard in Ubuntu. I like Listen because it is very similar to Amarok but without the KDE. I can browse lyrics, get album art, and even get suggestions from Audioscrobbler. Oh yeah, it organizes my music too =).


Listen is available in the universe. Load up your terminal and enter:

“sudo apt-get install listen”

HOW TO: Write to NTFS Drives in Ubuntu

8 06 2007

Ubuntu by default can mount NTFS drives but does not support writing to them. However, there is a driver in the universal repositories called ntfs-3g which allows you to mount NTFS drives as well as write to them – making dual-booting Windows even sweeter:

“sudo apt-get install ntfs-3g ntfs-config”

ntfs-3g is the driver that lets you write to NTFS drives, where ntfs-config is the GUI tool which should appear under Applications > System Tools > NTFS Configuration Tool that allows you to select if you want an internal or external device to be writeable.


Enable Tracker Live Search in Ubuntu

30 05 2007

With the advent of Feisty Fawn, we now have Tracker which does a much better job of finding files than the standard GNOME search utility. One thing that bothered me about Tracker was that I was never able to get it to integrate with my trusty Deskbar applet – until now:

“sudo apt-get install libdeskbar-tracker”

Not only does it enable the Deskbar to search using Tracker, but it does a live update of the search results a-la Google Desktop Search.