Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Your Ubuntu Tweaks

It seems that tweaking Ubuntu is a popular past time. Something I hadn't realized until just now.

The fact that I tweak Ubuntu myself should have been a clue.

So I am going to talk about my personal Ubuntu experience.

The first thing I do once Ubuntu has been installed is run a script I made some time ago. This script gets my most used apps installed, along with Wine, Flash, and a lot of codecs for my audio.

Here is my script:

sudo apt-get install mc moc irssi links htop ubuntu-restricted-extras wine mplayer cheese gftp synaptic unetbootin terminator ubuntu-restricted-addons audacity lame stellarium kompozer gimp gftp cheese alacarte cowsay leafpad openbox obmenu tint2 feh gmrun thunar lxappearance gkrellm gkrellweather xfce4-panel

Breaking down my script, this is what it does for me:

First it installs my CLI (Command Line Interface) applications. mc is a file manager, moc is my default music player, irssi is a irc client, links is a web browser, htop is a process viewer/terminator, and mplayer is another media player I use for watching videos and also for playing shoutcast audio streams.

Next is Wine, because there is a few apps that specifically need it, and I need them. (I.E., the Watchtower Library).

Then I install flash and codecs with the ubuntu-restricted-extras and ubuntu-restricted-addons packages.

Following that I install synaptic because i find it to be much better than the Ubuntu Software Center.

Cheese is a webcam picture taker.
Gimp is an image editor.
GFtp is a ftp client.

Stellarium is a very nice "view from earth" planetarium program. (Don't forget to set the location, unless you do live in Paris, France.)

Kompozer is the best html editor for Ubuntu, in my opinion.
Leafpad is my favorite text editor, very simple and quick to load.

Cowsay is a goofy, fun program I use to entertain my nephews with. It prints to screen a ascii cow with a talk bubble, with your message in it.

Alacarte lets me make changes to the unity and gnome based menus (which i use for xfce4-panel)

Terminator is the best terminal emulator on the planet.

Audacity and lame together give me the opportunity to cut audio how I see fit, and then turn that audio into open mp3's.

UNetBootIn allows me to put Linux based distros on usb key drives. (Very useful!)

Then there is my favorite window manager, Openbox, and the software I like to run with Openbox.

Openbox is what I use instead of Unity. obmenu is a menu editor for openbox.

Tint2 is a very handy task bar, with clock and a place for indicator applets like nm-applet.

Feh changes my background for me at start up (without feh, and a properly set up openbox autostart file, you will only have a grey blank desktop with openbox).

Gmrun is my favorite "run box" or "run dialogue box" program.

Thunar is my preferred file manager, minimalistic footprint and fast but yet full featured.

LXappearance is needed with openbox sometimes because you will have no icons in programs like thunar without it.

Gkrellm with Gkrellweather I use for the current weather conditions and to check my gmail.

Xfce4-panel I use because I forget the names of applications from time to time, and/or because I forget the proper cli command to launch them.

Then I copy over my backed up Openbox files, and then I switch to Openbox.

My openbox files have terminator tied to control alt t, and gmrun tied to alt-f2.

If you are interested in my Openbox set up, I have a more detailed article here:

Here is a look at my setup:

Click to enlarge picture
Ok, so you have now heard me go on and on about my setup, lets hear about your setup/tweaks to Ubuntu!

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