Friday, August 31, 2007

KDE The Other Blue Meat

I never talk about the other major Ubuntu distro, Kubuntu. I wish I had the time to cover Kubuntu, but I don't. The good thing is that just just because I run Ubuntu doesn't mean I can't use some of Kubuntu's best applications.

Kubuntu is an official derivative of the Ubuntu operating system using the KDE environment instead of GNOME. KDE enviroment is quite similair and has advantages and disadvantages over GNOME. I will not get into specifics here but I can attest that the following KDE applications I will be recommending are fantastic and many of you might like them more than the GNOME equivalents.


Best music jukebox for any operating system. Amarok serves many functions rather than just playing music files. For example, Amarok can be used to organize a library of music into folders according to genre, artist, and album, can edit tags attached to most music formats, associate album art, attach lyrics, and automatically "score" music as you play it. But even under an environment like GNOME Amarok retains all of its functionality. It's biggest features is it integration, media player support, cover manager and ability to synch the ipod and use many of each features.

To download Amarok, ipod support and mp3 support
sudo apt-get install amarok ipodslave libxine1-ffmpeg

Provides a graphical user interface to perform most CD/DVD burning tasks like creating an Audio CD from a set of audio files or copying a CD/DVD, as well as more advanced tasks such as burning eMoviX CD/DVDs. It can also perform direct disc-to-disc copies. The program has many default settings which can be customized by more experienced users. The actual disc recording in K3b is done by the command line utilities cdrecord or wodim, cdrdao, and growisofs. As of version 1.0, K3b features a built-in DVD ripper.

sudo apt-get install k3b
sudo apt-get install libk3b2-mp3 for mp3 decoder plugin (allows you to burn mp3s to CD)

It is generally seen as the Linux equivalent of the Windows-based DVD Shrink, as it shrinks a DVD-9 DVD down to a DVD-5 DVD, allowing for movies on dual layer DVDs to be shrunk down in order to fit on a single layer DVD. The program allows the user to have the shrunken down DVD written to the hard drive as an ISO image which can then be burned to a DVD recordable by using a CD/DVD burning program such as K3b. Like DVD Shrink, k9copy is also useful for circumventing copy protection that normally leads to an "input/output error".

sudo apt-get install k9copy

KControl is the graphic tweaking system for the KDE enviroment. It has a modular architecture, the window is split into two parts: the left side displays the list of available modules (also known as applets), and the right side displays the current module. Applications can install their own KControl modules (an example being Konqueror), although most applications prefer to use their own, independent settings managers. This means you can use kcontrol to tweak the look and feel of these kde based programs to fit better into your ubuntu/gnome enviroment.

sudo apt-get install kcontrol
edited by pHreaksYcle

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Compiz Fusion Upgrade Problems (Trevino's Repo)

A couple people have approached me about Compiz Fusion not working 100% after updating when using my Compiz Fusion in Feisty with Xgl guide and more specifically when using Trevino's Repository. Good news is that the updates are not broken, Compiz Fusion just needs to be reset. If you are experience problems with transparent cube or 3D windows simply launch CompizConfig Settings Manager.

If you don't know where to find CompizConfig Settings Manager (System>Preferences) or don't have an entry in your menu you can launch it by firing up a terminal and typing in: ccsm

Select the preference option (in red)

Select the Reset to Defaults option (in red)

Now Compiz Fusion will reset and everything will work again. You may have to reconfigure you settings again.

If you wonder how my setup looks you can download my compiz-fusion setting profile here.
edited by pHreaksYcle

Saturday, August 18, 2007

iPod in Ubuntu Main Page

What You'll need to get started

Howto Convert Videos for Your iPod

Using gtkpod with your iPod Coming Soon

Using Amarok with your iPod Coming Soon

Using GPixPod with your iPod Coming Soon

F.A.Q. Coming Soon
edited by pHreaksYcle

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Codec Cheatsheet

redDEAD's version of Automatix
This simple howto installs the most common restricted codecs. Allowing you to play mp3, aac, DVD, mp4, avi, wmv and many more formats & rip mp3 using the lame encoder.

For Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn
in a terminal type:
sudo apt-get install gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly-multiverse gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad-multiverse gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg libxine1-ffmpeg gstreamer0.8-lame gstreamer0.8-faac gstreamer0.8-faad libdvdread3 libk3b2-mp3

To play encrypted DVDs you need libdvdcss2. You need to install the Medibuntu Repositories to do this. My how to can be found here


For more, check out Randall Munroe site at
edited by pHreaksYcle

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Compiz Fusion in Feisty with Xgl

This is the guide everyone has been waiting for, this not only works for the Dell Inspiron 1501 but works for any computer running an ATI card using Xgl.

Check ATI Driver
In a terminal type:

You should see this output in your terminal window:
display: :0.0 screen: 0
OpenGL vendor string: ATI Technologies Inc.
OpenGL renderer string: RADEON XPRESS Series
OpenGL version string: 2.0.6334 (8.34.8)

If you get something different make sure you enable the proprietary ATI driver via the Restricted Driver Manager. You can find it in the top left menu bar under S
ystem>Administration>Restricted Drivers.
(This is what you get when using the Dell Inspiron 1501, other users can check for enabled 3D by using the command
glxgears, you should see spinning gears)

Install Xgl

In a terminal type:
sudo apt-get install xserver-xgl

Setting Up XGL
In a terminal type:
sudo gedit /usr/local/bin/

and this to the file:
Xgl :1 -fullscreen -ac -accel xv:pbuffer -accel glx:pbuffer &
cookie="$(xauth -i nextract - :0 | cut -d ' ' -f 9)"
xauth -i add :1 . "$cookie"
exec dbus-launch --exit-with-session gnome-session
save and close file

Then make the xgl script executable by entering this into a terminal:
sudo chmod a+x /usr/local/bin/

Creating a XGL Login

Make the script, by typing this into a terminal:
sudo gedit /usr/share/xsessions/xgl.desktop

add this text to the file:
[Desktop Entry]
Comment=Start an Xgl Session
save and close file

Remove Compiz & Desktop Effects
sudo apt-get remove compiz-core desktop-effects

If you have Beryl Installed Remove Beryl Too
In a terminal type:
sudo apt-get remove beryl-ubuntu beryl-manager emerald

If you want to use emerald as your decorator for Compiz Fusion do not remove the emerald package.

Add the Compiz Fusion Repository

In a terminal type:
sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

Add this to the end of your your source list:
deb feisty eyecandy
deb-src feisty eyecandy
save and close file

Add the tuxfamily Repository Key
In a terminal type:
sudo wget -O- | sudo apt-key add -

Update Your System
In a terminal type:
sudo apt-get update

Install Compiz Fusion

In a terminal type:
sudo apt-get install compiz compizconfig-settings-manager compiz-plugins compiz-gnome compiz-fusion-plugins-extra compiz-fusion-plugins-unofficial libcompizconfig-backend-gconf

Now you just have to log off, log into your Xgl session and run Compiz Fusion.

To run Compiz Fusion:
compiz --replace

To run the Compiz Setting Manager:

I find Compiz Fusion to be faster and more responsive then Beryl. I don't use Beryl's window manger, Emerald. If you want to use Emerald with Compiz Fusion, it's as easy as sudo apt-get emerald and to launch it's emerald --replace. I didn't mention it in my guide because I prefer Compiz's gtk-window-decorator, and don't want to put up with the hassle of people asking my questions about software I don't use.


Q: Compiz Fusion doesn't load/work?
A: Make sure you are you logged onto your Xgl session. Select it at startup from sessions.

Q: I don't have windows decorations.
A: Did you run ccsm (compiz setting manager) and enable Window Decorations

Q: I don't have a cube.
A: Did you run ccsm (compiz setting manager) and enable 3D cube

Q: I get error: E: Couldn't find package ******, can you help?
A: You have to add the repository correctly and then update it. Do those steps over again.

Q: How do I get Compiz Fusion to load when I log in?
A: You have to add compiz --replace to your startup session. First, go to System>Preferences>Session. Then click on the New button on the right hand side of the menu. Add compiz --replace to your startup.

Hope you guys like the guide.
edited by pHreaksYcle