Have your mouse clicks stopped working?

In case your mouse click have stopped working (not very unsual in Ubuntu), you can try to use the workarounds suggested here.

How to install support for Flash and other multimedia on Ubuntu

This guy has a neat tutorial for installing support for Flash and other multimedia on Ubuntu. Give it a try.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 9.10 “Karmic Koala”

Only 1 day is left until the release of the new version of Ubuntu, Karmic Koala. Wanna know how to upgrade to Koala? Give this link or this link a shot.

Ubuntu- How to add a path to your path list in terminal (.bashrc file)

Suppose you would like to have access to a particular path from within terminal. For example, if you have your executables in a folder called ~/my_program/bin you may want to have access to the executables from everywhere within terminal. One way to achieve this is to add that particular path to your path list in the “.bashrc” file. So, how to do that?

First launch a file browser and go to your home folder. You need then to edit the “.bashrc” file which is a hidden file in your home folder. You would therefore first need to make Ubuntu show your hidden files. In the menu bar on the top of the file browser window, select “View/Show Hidden Files” and check the mark . Here is a graphic for your reference:

View_hidden_ files

Then find the file “.bashrc” file and open it with the text editor. You would then need to append a line or two to the file. For example, if you would like to add the path~/my_program/bin, you would need to add the following line to the file:


Ubuntu- Geany: a good C++ IDE for Ubuntu (Linux)

In case you have been looking for a good C++ IDE for Linux, I have a very good suggestion:


Here is the description of Geany from its official website (http://www.geany.org/):

Geany is a text editor using the GTK2 toolkit with basic features of an integrated development environment. It was developed to provide a small and fast IDE, which has only a few dependencies from other packages. It supports many filetypes and has some nice features.

Some basic features of Geany:

* Syntax highlighting
* Code folding
* Symbol name auto-completion
* Construct completion/snippets
* Auto-closing of XML and HTML tags
* Call tips
* Many supported filetypes including C, Java, PHP, HTML, Python, Perl, Pascal (full list)
* Symbol lists
* Code navigation
* Build system to compile and execute your code
* Simple project management
* Plugin interface (see Plugins)

To install Geany in Ubuntu just issue the following command in a terminal:

sudo apt-get install geany

Geany also works under Windows and the Windows binaries can be downloaded from the Geany webiste as well.

Ubuntu- get rid of blank screen in MATLAB installed within Ubuntu

There is sometimes a problem with the MATLAB in Ubuntu. The problem is that after installing MATLAB, you might get just a blank screen (blank GUI window) without any option menu, command line, etc. To solve this problem, find the file “environment” (the path is: /etc/environment). Add the following line to the file and try again:

export AWT_TOOLKIT=”MToolkit”

The problem should have been solved. If not, try restarting your computer.

Ubuntu- How to unrar rar files with ubuntu?

If you have got a rar file (or other file formats not naively supported by Ubuntu’s archive manager- such as arj, 7zip, etc), you need to install extra packages so that Archive Manager can handle these file formats. For example, if you would like to unrar a file in Ubuntu, you need to install the package unrar.  Open a terminal (command window) and simply issue this command:

sudo apt-get install unrar-free

for a non-free option, you can use:

sudo apt-get install unrar

You might be asked to give your password and then the package is downloaded and installed. After the package is installed, you can use the usual Archive Manager to unrar files.

Archive Manager (File Roller)- Taken from Ubuntu documentation- thanks to the contributors to the Ubuntu wiki

Archive Manager (File Roller)- Taken from Ubuntu documentation- thanks to the contributors to the Ubuntu wiki

In general, following file formats are supported by the Archive Manager by default (from Ubuntu documentation- thanks to the contributors to the Ubuntu documentation wiki):


File extension





.tar.gz, .tgz, .gz

Compressed .tar or compressed single file


.tar.bz, .tbz, .bz

Compressed .tar or compressed single file


.tar.bz2, .tbz2, .bz2

Compressed .tar or compressed single file


.tar.lzma, .lzma

Compressed .tar or compressed single file




.jar, .ear, .war

CD images



These file formats are not supported by default and require additional packages to be supported (from Ubuntu documentation again): In the following table, it is mentioned that which package needs to be installed so that the Archie Manager can handle extra file formats.


File extension




Needs the p7zip package, which doesn’t provide multi-volume support. To support password-protected archives, needs the p7zip-full package


.Z, .tar.Z, .taz

Needs the ncompress package



Needs the sharutils package


.lzo, .tar.lzo, .tzo

Needs the lzop package


.lzh, .lha

Needs the lha package



Needs the arj package



Needs the unace package, providing read-only support



Needs the unrar (non-free) or unrar-free package to extract .rar archives.
Needs shareware rar package to create .rar archives

Ubuntu- Quickly opening a shell terminal in any given place

I have been always wondering why this feature is not pre-loaded into Ubuntu. Often times, one is in a particular location (path) within the file system (while using GUI file browser)  and would like to open a terminal with the path defaulted to that particular location. I have been always thinking that this should have been as easy as right clicking and opting to open a terminal. Unlike some other Linux distros, it is not the case in ubuntu. But there is a work around for this problem. Just type:

sudo aptitude install nautilus-open-terminal

and the reuiqred package will be downloaded and installed. You probably would need to restart your computer before you can see the option. After restarting, open a GUI file browser and right-click. You should be able to see the option of opening a terminal in that particular path.


The challenge of bringing Open Source to the masses

One of the most important aims of the Open Source movement has always been to involve the masses in the movement. Until very recently, this aim has been too much like wishful-thinking. These days, however, there are some reasons to believe that we are close to reach, at least partially, this aim. In this post, I am trying to answer the important question that ‘how can we get closer to involve the big masses in the Open Source movement?’

I think the practical ways to popularization of Open Source can be categorized as either ‘positive push’ or ‘negative push’. The positive push ways are the ways of promoting the Open Source stuff by enhancing the products or the ways they interact with the masses. The negative push ways are the ways of demoting the most important trend rivaling the Open Source movement: proprietary/non-free softwares. I discuss either way in a separate section.

Positive push
There are three different things which can positively influence the impact of the Open Source movement. It appears to me that the Open Source community must concentrate on these three issues while trying to bring the Open Source stuff to the masses.

The first thing is “Plug and Play“. I don’t have any doubt that one of the features that has made the Windows XP overwhelmingly dominant OS is its rather good plug and play features. Many drivers are automatically installed at the very moment you connect a new device to your computer while a number of other hardwares are just a few clicks away from being installed. Most importantly, you can (still) find the XP drivers for virtually any single hardware in the market. That is one of the things that makes XP ‘The Standard’. I don’t like it just like (many of) you guys do, but it is true. Therefore, FOSS guys must invest a lot on Plug and Play feature. It is not sufficient that the things CAN be got done at the end; a non-tech-savy grandpa should be just as positive as you geeky guys are.

The second thing is Wine. Being able to run your favorite application seamlessly from within your Linux distro is what that eliminates the huge advantage of Windows that many applications are designed for it and are not available for Linux. Currently, Wine is not working as well as it must. Many applications fail to run with Wine at all let alone run easily and seamlessly . I believe that as many developers as possible should heavily work on Wine to make it as powerful as possible. What we really need is a plug and play Wine: grab a disk containing a native Windows application and you are just a few clicks aways from running it from within your Linux distro.

The third trick is monetizing the Open Source projects. Any Open Source project can sustain only if it can be somehow monetized by the developers. Of course, the worst thing is trying to sell the program just like the proprietary ones. The best way is to monetize the program while keeping it free for the consumers. Google’s model is an excellent one. If you prefer a more tangible example, take FireFox. It is Open Source. It is free. It is lovely. It generates revenue and simply gets the work done. Remember! they would let you play only if you are big enough to be seen while sitting around the table.

Negative push
Aside from making the FOSS products appealing, it is important to make the rival look just as ugly as they really are. Most important thing in this regard is to push for kind of legislation against bundling the softwares with the new computers. Most of the computers sold these days have so many proprietary softwares, including the OS, preloaded. The customers have little chance of selecting the OS they want and are in most cases forced to pay the software companies for the software they might finally through away. The Open Source community must push for such legislation. That is, in my opinion, one of the key points in bringing the Open Source to the masses.

Open Source and Linux events in 2008

This is meant to be a reference post. You can always find this post in the left sidebar under the title “Reference Posts”. I will keep updating this post to cover as many Open Source events as possible. An RSS feed with possibility of importing the events as ICAL and VCAL is available. But, please check the calender as it is still in its alpha state.

Open Source Meets Business, January 22-24, Nuremberg, Germany
Australia’s Annual Linux Conference (linux.conf.au), January 28 to February 2, Melbourne, Australia

Australia’s Annual Linux Conference (linux.conf.au), January 28 to February 2, Melbourne, Australia
Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE), February 8-10, Los Angeles, California, United States
Florida Linux Show 2008, February 11, Jacksonville, Florida, United States
LinuxDays 2008, February 19-20, Luxembourg
Free and Open Source Software Developers’ European Meeting (FOSDEM 08), February 23-24, Brussels, Belgium
The 6th Linux Audio Conference 2008, Feb 28 to March 2, Cologne, Germany

The 6th Linux Audio Conference 2008, Feb 28 to March 2, Cologne, Germany
Eclipse Technical and User Conference (EclipseCon), March 17-20, Santa Clara, California
Open Source Business Conference (OSBC)-InfoWorld Events, March 25-26, Palace Hotel, San Francisco, California, United States
The UK’s Unix & Open Systems User Group (UKUUG) Spring Conference, March 31 to April 2, Birmingham, United Kingdom

The UK’s Unix & Open Systems User Group (UKUUG) Spring Conference, March 31 to April 2, Birmingham, United Kingdom
ApacheCon Europe 2008
, April 7-11, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
MySQL Conference and Expo 2008, April 15-18, Santa Clara, California, United States

The Open Source Strategy Conference, May 20-22, Sydney, Australia
LinuxTag, May 28-31, Berlin, Germany

Ubuntu Live, July 20-22, Portland, Oregon, United States
O’Reilly Open Source Convention (OSCON), July 21-25, Portland, Oregon, United States

LinuxWorld Conference and Expo, August 4(5)-7, San Francisco, California, United States
DebConf8, August 10-16, Mar del Plata, Argentina

The 4th International Conference on Open Source Systems, September 7-10, Milan, Italy
The Linux Plumbers Conference, September 17-19, Portland, Oregon, United States


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