James Selvakumar’s Blog

November 23, 2008

Is Ubuntu for you?

Filed under: ubuntu,unix-linux — James @ 9:11 am
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I stumbled across this great picture today and thought of sharing with you all.

You can find the original image from http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/29948/Ubuntuforyou.jpg. In the mean while, have you decided whether Ubuntu is for you?


November 21, 2008

Visual History of Ubuntu

Filed under: ubuntu,unix-linux — James @ 3:45 pm
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I happened to stumble upon a wonderful collection of screenshots explaining the history of Ubuntu. I have used Ubuntu (casually) right from Ubuntu-7.10 aka Feisty Fawn and have become a serious user with Ubuntu-8.10.

If you are a Ubuntu fan, these screenshots might amuse you as well. Here it is:

History of Ubuntu, from Warthog to Ibex

November 17, 2008

Good news for Google Talk users on Linux

Yesterday I asked my wife to chat with her mother using my new Ubuntu 8.10 and she happily accepted it. She quickly picked up pidgin and started chatting. But then she asked me, ” I want to speak to my mother, how can I go about?”. I told her that with pidgin you can only do text chat and voice chat facilities are not supported in pidgin. When she asked me, “Why don’t you just install Google Talk?”, I replied her, “Google Talk is not yet available for Linux”. She just went to her Windows XP notebook. Looks like I missed a major oppurtunity to convert my wife to Ubuntu.

I too love Google Talk and I miss it whenever I use Ubuntu. Most of my friends have google talk account but I was able to only chat with them by sending text messages from either Pidgin or Gmail. Though many Google products like Google Earth, Picasa are now available in Linux, Google Talk is not yet there and many Linux users like me need it very badly.

Read the rest of the post from SolitaryGeek.

November 15, 2008

Customizing Ubuntu to provide stunning looks

This blog is intended to help those who are new to the linux world (like me). So if you are a long time linux user, you might perhaps know/used the concepts explained here, but you can help me by providing your valuable comments and suggestions.

I recently installed Ubuntu 8.10 in my notebook using Wubi. As a result I started using Ubuntu regularly at home and Windows XP at office. But as I used my Ubuntu more and more, I felt the pain of living with Ubuntu’s default font rendering, especially when I browse using firefox. I tried all the options available under the “fonts” section in “Appearance Preferences” with no fruitful result.

Then when I started looking around for solutions, I came to know from this nice article that certain “font rendering features” were turned off in Ubuntu by default due to some legal reasons. The article went ahead and suggested a solution, which I successfully implemented in my Ubuntu. So, if you are struggling with fonts in your Ubuntu, please follow the steps mentioned in the article “Enable Smooth fonts on Ubuntu Linux“.

Ok, now my fonts look great and the web pages I surf looks the same as it use to be in Windows. But I don’t like the default brown theme of my Ubuntu. So I looked for other options in the “Appearance Preferences” window but none could satisfy me. So I started surfing around to find some alternatives.

But luckily I came across a great site called “www.art.gnome.org” which contains tons of themes for the gnome desktop. There is a section called “Desktop Themes” which contains so many options. I quickly found out that there are so many things you configure in your desktop like “Application” or “Control”, “Window Border”, “Icons”, “Login Manager”, “GTK Engines” etc. By making use of these themes you can customize the look and feel of your Ubuntu desktop much like how you configure firefox with various themes.

Read the rest of this post from SolitaryGeek.

November 11, 2008

WUBI – A wonderful little gem that helps Windows users to try Ubuntu

Filed under: ubuntu,unix-linux — James @ 5:02 am
Tags: , , ,

Traditionally, windows users (including myself) are afraid of installing linux in their machine because of a fear that if something goes wrong, linux might spoil their machine or render it unusable. Not anymore.

I’m a long time windows user and in the past 2 years, linux has caught my attention.Thanks to VirtualBox, I have tried various linux distributions successfully, ranging from Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSuse, PCLinuxOS and even Solaris, a great unix distro.

Using VirtualBox is definitely the easiest way to try linux without disturbing windows, from my experience. Otherwise as a new lad to the linux world, I couldn’t have installed, used, uninstalled so many linux distros.

But I had few problems:
1. The notebook I have is pretty old and not powerful enough. (1GB RAM, 1.6 GHz Intel Centrino Processor, 60 GB harddisk). As a result, I cannot boot one host OS and run a guest OS virtually on top of it.
2. I bought a new dell vostro notebook with good configuration but my better half is owning it now post marriage. 🙂

I actually tried the above mentioned linux distros via virtualbox in my new notebook but not anymore. As a result, I was forced with 2 options (again):
1. Install linux in an usb drive (or an external harddisk)
2. Install linux directly in my (old) notebook with windows as my primary OS (Sorry buddy, but I MUST use windows in my office)

To be honest, I was luring the first option mentioned above as it would never ever disturb my primary OS (windows). I almost went ahead to implement that option but changed my mind after stumbling a review about WUBI. (Acutally, WUBI stands for Windows based UBuntu Installer)


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