Ubuntu

Ekiga SVN Snapshots are back

I guess a year has gone since Ekiga offered packaged SVN Snapshots of the upcoming Ekiga 3.

Today Ekiga project leader Damien Sandras announced the availability of new Snapshots.

In order to add these to your Ubuntu Hardy install, you just need to add the Ubuntu repository to your sources list, make sure Ubuntu multiverse is enabled also :

Import the Ekiga signing key

gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 3596ED6E
gpg --export --armor 3596ED6E | sudo apt-key add -

In order to install the Ekiga snapshot, just run:

sudo apt-get install ekiga-snapshot libpt-snapshot-plugins-v4l libpt-snapshot-plugins-avc libpt-snapshot-plugins-dc libopal-snapshot-plugins-h264

Enjoy a much improved Ekiga 3!

Installing Ubuntu Netbook Remix on Ubuntu Hardy 8.04

You may have heard of "Ubuntu Netbook Remix", a special edition of Ubuntu for so called "netbooks", which was showcased by Canonical at Computex.

A quick search revealed, that at this time it seems there isn't any kind of installation ISO or VirtualBox image of Netbook Remix available.

Fortunately, the Ubuntu Netbook Remix Team offers a Personal Package Archive (PPA) of their great work.

A word of warning about installation: The Ubuntu Netbook Remix packages change a lot of settings on Ubuntu Hardy, including session files and Nautilus setup. So DO NOT install the packages on your regular desktop. It might be a good idea to install a Ubuntu Hardy VirtualBox image and use it to add Ubuntu Netbook Remix package to the default desktop.

After you prepared a virtual machine, installation if fairly easy:

1) Add the PPA to your sources list:

2) Update your system and install Ubuntu Netbook Remix:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install go-home-applet human-netbook-theme maximus ume-launcher window-picker-applet

3) After installation, you need to restart gdm:

sudo /etc/init.d/gdm restart

You should now see a running UME-Launcher

If your theme didn't change automatically, please check your appearance settings. There's a new "human netbook theme" available.

There are still some graphical issues with the Netbook desktop, but it's usable right now.

More screenshots are available at Flickr.com.

It seems code for Netbook Remix is available at Launchpad.net.

I guess Netbook Remix will come with it's own installation ISO's and a lot of changes regarding the boot process and software selection, compared to the "common" Ubuntu Hardy Heron. But the Netbook Remix PPA offers a glimpse at current development.

Flash 10 and Opera 9.5b2 on Ubuntu Hardy

While testing Flash 10 installation success, I remembered having problems with Flash on Opera. It constantly showed some grey boxes and teiling me to "click to activate" which didn't work at all.

Canonical offers a special "partner repository", which contains Opera 9.27. Unfortunately, Opera seems to have some issues with Ubuntu's Flash version (and any newer one, too).

The solution is quite simple: Just update to Opera 2.50b2.

Flash 10 Beta on Ubuntu Hardy

Since a few weeks I'm testing Flash 10 Beta and I'm really happy with it. There are some bugs with online games from time to time, but the overall performance is great. There's better (faster) fullscreen support and it seems Adobe worked really hard on Ubuntu compatibility and the sound issues.

I experienced very few Firefox crashes, even if I'm using the browser up to 16 hours a day, constantly playing at least one flash video.

I recently presented a few workarounds for the annoying Flash bug in Ubuntu Hardy. Since none of the workarounds really solved the issue, I decided to stop using the nspluginwrapper workaround with Flash 9 and keep using the Flash 10 beta. Fortunately, Flash doesn't seem to need libflashsupport any longer, even if your hardware doesn't support hardware mixing.

To make installation of the Flash beta more comfortable, I decided to modify the flashplugin-nonfree package to a flashplugin-nonfreebeta package. Since Flash 10 still crashes with libflashsupport installed, the package will remove it before installing the Flash beta.

I'm neither a Flash nor a packaging guru, if you're willing to give it a try, add the following line to your sources list:

Update the sources and install the package flashplugin-nonfreebeta. Due to Bug #125103 of the Launchpad service, you'll notice a message stating that this is an unsigned package.

I couldn't test the package on amd64 and lpia. Please report any installation issues to the comments, any Flash bugs to Adobe's bug tracker.

Lotus Notes 8.5 Public Beta on Ubuntu Hardy

I love Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino. Even if it's not free and open source software, it's a highly integrated groupware without comparable software solutions on the market.

With Lotus Notes 8.5, IBM offers -for the first time ever- Debian installation packages. According to IBM, Ubuntu will be fully supported for the release of 8.5.

Thanks to the new DEB-packages, installation is really easy. Right now, there are some minor issues with fonts selection.

1) Register an IBM ID.

2) Download the installation packages archive.

Install all packages:

tar xf notes85_notes_linux_deb_prod.tar
cd notes85_notes_linux_deb_prod
sudo dpkg -i *.deb

After you've successfully installed Lotus Notes, check out OpenNTF, which is a great source for some really useful FOSS Lotus Notes databases.

The availability of Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino is a substantial progress for the Ubuntu Project. There are thousands of business applications available for Lotus Notes. This eases migration from Microsoft Windows and offers a great value to Linux on the desktop.

I'm still missing the Lotus Notes Designer. Keep on working IBM!

[Thanks to Volker Weber for providing the relevant link]

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