FAQ

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This page lists possible solution to problems when using Gnu/Linux -

Edit Menu in Gnome or KDE desktop environment

Problem description:

> I am using RHEL 5 and I have a problem again. I wonder if anyone can
> help me. I downloaded a program for linux i.e, a .tar.gz file. i
> untared it and now I run the executable file. The program ran well but
> my problem is how to put the executable file in the application
> menu( meaning Start menu of Linux). Please tell me the process.


Problem solution:

You need to perform the following steps:

Step 1. Open a gnome terminal from the main menu and change to root user

   Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal
   $ su
   Password:

Step 2. Create a new desktop file in /usr/share/applications

   $ gedit /usr/share/applications/test.desktop (or any other filename)

Step 3. Insert the following lines (between ---) into the new file (Please note that I have taken the example of xchat.desktop file here):

 
---
[Desktop Entry]
Encoding=UTF-8
Name=XChat IRC
Comment=IRC Client
Exec=xchat
Icon=xchat.png
Terminal=false
Type=Application
Categories=Application;Network; 
---

You need to replace the values for Name, Comment, Exec, Icon, etc. And note that the value of 'Exec' should point to your executable file.

Step 4. Save the edited file Step 5. Come out of root

   $ exit

Step 6. Refresh the GNOME panel (if it's gnome i.e.)

   $ killall gnome-panel

Step 7. To open the application from the main menu,

   Applications -> Internet -> XChat IRC (Just an example for xchat)

OR (the easier way :-))

Step 1. If it's Gnome, right-click the Menu button and "Edit Menus" and follow it from there.

Step 2. If it's KDE, unlock the panel first and then right-click the Menu button and "Edit Menus". In KDE, don't forget to save the Menu Layout, you create.


Open files of different kind in browser using different application

Using mozplugger, files from internet can be opened using different program (e.g., kpdf instead of acroread) inside/outside the web browser. Another way to achieve the same effect is by associating the files mime type in the settings.

I've found Mozplugger extremely helpful. Everything from viewing video in mplayer to reading pdf file in evince within the browser.


Debian (any) http://packages.debian.org/search?keywords=mozplugger&searchon=names&suite=all&section=all

Ubuntu (any) http://packages.ubuntu.com/cgi-bin/search_packages.pl?keywords=mozplugger&searchon=names&subword=1&version=all&release=a$

Fedora (Core 6) http://www.icewalkers.com/rpm/mozplugger/fedora-core-6/download/mozplugger-2724.html

Search mozplugger

$ apt-cache search mozplugger; (for debian-like)
$ yum search mozplugger; (for fedora-like)

After getting mozplugger edit mozpluggerrc file found in these locations -

(personal)

           $HOME/.netscape/
           $HOME/.mozilla/
           $HOME/.opera/

(depend on env variable)

           $MOZILLA_HOME/
           $OPERA_HOME/

(system-wide)

           /usr/local/netscape/
           /etc/
           /usr/local/mozilla/
           /usr/local/netscape/

</pre> </code> Edit the file mozpluggerrc (find / -name "mozpluggerrc") in the above directory and add relevent section - For e.g., to open pdf file in evince, do these -

application/pdf:pdf:PDF file
	repeat noisy swallow(evince) fill: evince "$file"
application/x-pdf:pdf:PDF file
	repeat noisy swallow(evince) fill: evince "$file"
text/pdf:pdf:PDF file
	repeat noisy swallow(evince) fill: evince "$file"
text/x-pdf:pdf:PDF file
	#ACROREAD() #this is a comment
	repeat noisy swallow(evince) fill: evince "$file"
	repeat noisy swallow(kpdf) fill: kpdf "$file"
	repeat noisy swallow(Xpdf) fill: xpdf -g +9000+9000 "$file"
	GV()

To open real media -

audio/x-pn-realaudio-plugin:rpm:RealPlayer Plugin Metafile
audio/x-pn-realaudio:ra,rm,ram:Realaudio-plugin resource locator
audio/x-realaudio:ra,rm,ram:RealAudio file
application/vnd.rn-realmedia:rm:RealMedia file
application/smil:smi:RealPlayer
audio/vnd.rn-realaudio:ra,ram:RealAudio file
audio/vnd.rn-realvideo:rv:RealVideo file
	nokill stream: hxplay "$file"
        nokill stream: realplay "$file"

Enjoy! :)

I've got to learn Linux!

Lots of Linux ebooks and resources are listed at -

Kernel resources -

Distro related -

General information -


Open lot types of archives (gzip, zip, 7zip, rar)

To open lot of types archives using one graphical interface, you can use file-roller application.

(For Debian-like)

$ apt-get install file-roller ark unrar zip p7zip-full;

e.g.,
$ file-roller somearchive.tar.gz;


Create CD/DVD using command line

$ apt-get install k3b cdrdao wodim ffmpeg vcdimager transcode;

Now follow http://gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_Create_a_VCD_or_SVCD and http://gentoo-wiki.com/HOWTO_DVD_to_VCD

Email software

There are vast amount of email software to read from your Gmail,Yahoo account (using POP/IMAP) or from your ISP. A very good one is Mozilla Thunderbird (http://download.mozilla.org/?product=thunderbird-2.0.0.9&os=linux&lang=en-US) lot of user use it.

(On apt based system)

$ apt-get install mozilla-thunderbird;

There are non-graphical ones available called mutt (http://www.mutt.org) and another graphical ones called KMail (http://kontact.kde.org/kmail)

$ apt-get install mutt;
$ apt-get install kmail;


How to update/upgrade Ubuntu/Debian based systems

To get latest updates in easiest fashion, use update-manager. If you prefer command line non-graphical, use apt;

$ gksu 'update-manager -c -d'; (graphical using gtk)

Change your /etc/apt/sources.list file to point to latest release you want to download and then do.

$ sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get -c dist-upgrade;

You can get more information on editing sources.list via 'man sources.list'. :D

I need a good media player for linux

There are numerous media players for linux. Some of them that have been around for a while and considered very solid in terms of stability are xmms, amarok, vlc, mplayer, xine and kaffeine.

You can find them just via apt -

$ apt-get install xmms amarok vlc mplayer xine-ui kaffeine w32codecs;

Why is my hard disk or CPU is going crazy

As pointed by Jwalanta http://groups.google.com/group/foss-nepal/browse_thread/thread/9ca16e11518f4fa6#a11e176273ebb5a1 could be one of the reason.

If your hard disk is spinning constantly, it could mean that your Linux distribution is doing some intensive I/O bound task (such as cron scheduler, updating locate database) or it could mean that the applications in your system are using more memory than is available to your system (thrashing) and swapping with the swap partition/file.

In such case, you could use -

  • top (process manager)
    • Press ">" and "<" to move from one column to another
    • Get to the section called "%CPU", press "R" (i.e., SHIFT+R)
    • Check the value isn't 99%
    • Go to "RES" section and press "R". Check the resident memory an application is using.
    • Kill the application if you want by pressing "K" and then type the PID (process id) of that process there.
    • If the application doesn't like to be killed then press "Q" (quiet) and in your terminal issue -
      • $ sudo kill -9 <pid_of_that_nasty_process>
    • While inside the top, press "?" to get more help.

More info on the "-9" is available via 'man signal'. If thrashing remains constant in your system, consider buying more RAM and then double the space available to your swap partition/file (rule of thumb is 2xRAM= swap partition/file) :-)

Note that, same applies if your application/process is going crazy and you can't do anything. In that case, the application is taking up all the CPU time so you have to kill it using the same procedure. This could be some race condition in the application you are using.

I need to run Microsoft Office/My windows games

We recommend you to try running wine on your linux/bsd box to do these.

The latest version of wine can be downloaded from this web site http://www.winehq.org/site/download and depending on your operating system, you can install. https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Microsoft_Office has a nice documentation on it. For further information consult #winehq or #foss-nepal

Run a USB CDMA modem in Linux

This is a short Guide that i have compiled to connect to internet using a USB CDMA Phone. Hopefully it is useful and gets you connected to the internet.

The first step is to insert your USB modem and then issue the command "dmesg" in your console to see if your USB controller have been found and registered for use or not. In latest distributions like Ubuntu 7.10, Fedora 8, the module used for the phone is almost always loaded automatically. Now if your modem's module is loaded automatically then you will hopefully see three lines or so describing a USB ACM device". You should also see "ttyACM0" or something similar - this is your modem's location =97> /dev/ttyACM0.

If the module is not automatically loaded then you will need to load the module manually. This can be done by issuing the command "modprobe cdc-acm" or "modprobe acm". After issuing each of these commands check to see your 'dmesg' for the same three lines that i described earlier and note the one that works. Now, to make sure that the driver is loaded always and that you don't have to load them manually everytime, you can add the one that works in the /etc/modules.conf. To make sure that the module is loaded you can issue the command "cat /proc/modules | grep 'acm'", if this returns the acm or cdc-acm then the module is loaded.

Now for the second part, lets try an easier way out first so that you don't get confused. After making sure that your module is loaded go to the console and issue the command "wvdialconf". This will search for all the locations in the computer for a modem and configure the default dialer to use it. After this, one last step before you start enjoying the internet is to edit the file "/etc/wvdial.conf". To do that issue the command "nano /etc/wvdial.conf", in there edit your username and password. Next make sure that the line starting with Modem in the file has the location of your modem. Press Ctrl-X to save the file. Now issue the command 'wvdial' and get connected to the internet. If this easy way of dialing doesnot work for you, write back with the step where you got the error and we can hopefully guide you through for some work around.

Let us know if this guide works or not.


This is the sample of wvdial.conf that i found in the net for a USB CDMA modem

[Dialer Defaults]
Modem =3D /dev/ttyACM0
Baud =3D 460800
Init1 =3D ATZ
Init2 =3D ATQ0 V1 E1 S0=3D0 &C1 &D2 +FCLASS=3D0
ISDN =3D 0
Modem Name =3D CDMA
Modem Type =3D USB Modem
Phone =3D #777
Username =3D vwireless@ptcl.com
Password =3D ptcl
Stupid Mode =3D 1
PPPD Options =3D crtcts multilink usepeerdns lock defaultroute