Linux is very flexible, but the amount of power it puts at your disposal can sometimes be overwhelming. These quick tricks for your Linux desktop will give you something you can put to use immediately.
The Ubuntu Software Center is a solid, user-friendly application, but sometimes you need more power. The Synaptic package manager – previously included with Ubuntu by default – can do many things the Ubuntu Software Center can’t.
Ubuntu, like many other Linux distributions, is a community-developed operating system. In addition to getting involved and submitting patches, there are a variety of ways you can provide useful feedback and suggest features to Ubuntu.
While Ubuntu One might seem like a Ubuntu-only file synchronization service, it’s more than that – you can use Ubuntu One on Windows, Android, iOS, and from the web. Ubuntu One offers 5GB of free storage space to everyone.
You may have seen instructions that tell you to “uncomment” or “comment out” lines in a configuration or source code file. This is a simple process, but may not be self-explanatory to people that don’t understand the file’s structure.
AppArmor locks down programs on your Ubuntu system, allowing them only the permissions they require in normal use – particularly useful for server software that may become compromised. AppArmor includes simple tools you can use to lock down other applications.
Earlier this week we asked you to share your favorite Windows customization tricks and now we’re back to highlight some of the tips, tricks, and tweaks you shared.
Ubuntu and Linux Mint come with a “Guest Session” account, which anyone can log into from the login screen – no password required. If you’d rather restrict access to your computer, you can disable the guest account.
Ubuntu’s Update Manager keeps your packages at the latest version, but occasionally a new package version may not work properly. You can downgrade an installed package and lock it at a specific version to prevent it from being updated.
Linux logs a large amount of events to the disk, where they’re mostly stored in the /var/log directory in plain text. Most log entries go through the system logging daemon, syslogd, and are written to the system log.
This past month we covered topics such as why you only have to wipe a disk once to erase it, what RSS is and how you can benefit from using it, how websites are tracking you online, and more. Join us as we look back at the best articles for June.
There are several ways to change your default applications on Ubuntu. Whether you’re changing the default application for a particular task, file type, or a system-level application like your default text editor, there’s a different place to go.
If you’re using Linux, you don’t need VirtualBox or VMware to create virtual machines. You can use KVM – the kernel-based virtual machine – to run both Windows and Linux in virtual machines.
The Nautilus file manager included with Ubuntu includes some useful features you may not notice unless you go looking for them. You can create saved searches, mount remote file systems, use tabs in your file manager, and more.
VLC includes a web interface, which you can enable to access your VLC player from a web browser, controlling playback from another device – particularly useful for a media center PC. VLC also offers a mobile web interface for smartphones.
Ubuntu One, Ubuntu’s built-in cloud file storage service, allows you to make files publically available online or share them privately with others. You can share files over the Internet right from Ubuntu’s file browser.
Like CCleaner on Windows, BleachBit frees space by deleting unimportant files and helps maintain your privacy by deleting sensitive data. And, just like CCleaner, there’s more you can do with BleachBit than just clicking a single button.
Use Nautilus-Actions to easily and graphically create custom context menu options for Ubuntu’s Nautilus file manager. If you don’t want to create your own, you can install Nautilus-Actions-Extra to get a package of particularly useful user-created tools.
Like most things on Linux, the sudo command is very configurable. You can have sudo run specific commands without asking for a password, restrict specific users to only approved commands, log commands run with sudo, and more.
Ubuntu doesn’t use a separate /home partition by default, although many Linux users prefer one. Using a separate home partition allows you to reinstall Ubuntu without losing your personal files and settings.
If you have a single wired Internet connection – say, in a hotel room – you can create an ad-hoc wireless network with Ubuntu and share the Internet connection among multiple devices. Ubuntu includes an easy, graphical setup tool.
You’ve probably noticed that Ubuntu comes with a Public folder in your home directory. This folder isn’t shared by default, but you can easily set up several different types of file-sharing to easily share files on your local network.
Access an encrypted home directory when you’re not logged in – say, from a live CD – and all you’ll see is a README file. You’ll need a terminal command to recover your encrypted files.
Is your desktop so cluttered you can’t find anything? Is your Start menu so long you have to scroll to see what programs are there? If so, you probably need an application launcher to organize your desktop and make your life easier.
Ubuntu offers to encrypt your home directory during installation. The encryption has some drawbacks – there’s a performance penalty and recovering your files is more difficult. If you change your mind later, you can remove the encryption without reinstalling Ubuntu.