May 18, 2015

Experiences With Ubuntu 14.04

Hi all,

I finally managed to install Ubuntu 14.04, when 15.* is out there in the market, thanks to the unsuccessful upgrade I tried on 10.04 (Stone Age as mentioned in my previous post).

I wanted to reinstall Chrome because it constantly showed some Gmail  Ceritficate issue. The Delete button for the Gmail certificate was unavailable, which could have been easier for me removing and adding, if it were available.

I accidentally "Completely removed" Chrome, and was unable to install it later, as the dependencies were unavailable and hard to find. That called for a system upgrade.

I may have removed important repositories while trying to fix the Chrome issue. The upgrade wasn't successful and the Synaptic Package Manager constantly showed broken packages. Since the correct repositories weren't there, I couldn't fix it. So, the next option was to reinstall the current version or the next highest stable version. I decided to go for 14.04 and downloaded the ISO for 32-bit system. A live CD would have been easier, but as a work around, I burned it on my 2GB USB drive.

After booting the live Ubuntu 14.04, I found it different. It gave a pop-up with a list of keyboard shortcuts. Then, obviously there was a side panel, Synaptic Package Manager was now Ubuntu Software Centre, there was an Ubuntu icon triggered with the Windows key on the keyboard, etc. I noticed the Windows drives were easily mounted. Firefox was pre-installed.

I decided to go in for installation. But I thoughtfully checked the available disk partitions before starting the installation to be sure where to install it.

The installation guide was very easy and user friendly unlike the earlier versions I had used. After the language selection, it gives you the option of upgrading the current version without affecting your data, a fresh installation of Ubuntu 14.04 after erasing your Ubuntu data, and a complete erase of the total disk before installation. I decided I would go for a fresh 14.04 installation and erase all the data in my Linux partitions.

The next steps asked me to choose my timezone, keyboard layout, and login and password details. When I clicked on Next, it prepared my system for the installation and erased my data. After a timezone selection and , it took me right to a screen with the installation progress bar. The installer is now clever enough. Unlike earlier versions where you had to make partitions and select your Linux partition, the 10.04 installer skipped all the hassle and went straight to the installation. After a reboot, I got the purple Grub menu which was very neat.

Ok, now that 14.04 has been installed, let me share my experiences with this version. After 1 day of installation, I was constantly getting a pop-up message System program problem detected. I browsed through a few forums and youtube videos, and came across the following solution.

1. Open a terminal, and type at your prompt.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ cd /var/crash/
varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ ls -l
varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo rm *.crash

This removes the old crash reports.

2. Again type the following command.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo editor /etc/default/apport

Alter enabled = 0 to enabled = 1. Save and exit. Press Ctrl + X. It gives you the option of entering Y or N. Type Y and press enter when it prompts you for the file name. Just press enter without making any changes to the filename. After a reboot, you should be good to go.

This is not really a very desirable solution, as you are asking the OS not to give you any crash reports. But you are saving yourself annoying crash report pop-ups.

October 17, 2014

Mounting SD Card From Android Phone To Ubuntu Via USB Cable

For quite a few days, I wasn't able to figure out why my Ubuntu 10.04 (I know I am living in the Stone Age :( ) wasn't able to mount my SD Card on connecting my Android phone with a USB cable. Actually, it did show the storage device under Computer, but it wasn't accessible.

I tried a few mount commands, and tried to find out if fdisk and df list my storage device.

1.  varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 320.1 GB, 320072933376 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 38913 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x85efe600

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1               1         995     7990272   27  Unknown
/dev/sda2   *         995        1008      102400    7  HPFS/NTFS
Partition 2 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda3            1008        8841    62914904    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda4            8841       38914   241560577    f  W95 Ext'd (LBA)
/dev/sda5            8841       28470   157673472    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda6           28470       33450    39999488   83  Linux
/dev/sda7           33450       38430    39999488   83  Linux
/dev/sda8           38430       38914     3885056   82  Linux swap / Solaris

Disk /dev/sdb: 1000.2 GB, 1000204886016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 121601 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x0057434e

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1   *           1      121601   976760000    c  W95 FAT32 (LBA)

2. varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ df
Filesystem           1K-blocks      Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev/sda6             39371384   6950168  30421244  19% /
none                   1462988       344   1462644   1% /dev
none                   1467232       764   1466468   1% /dev/shm
none                   1467232       236   1466996   1% /var/run
none                   1467232         0   1467232   0% /var/lock
none                   1467232         0   1467232   0% /lib/init/rw
/dev/sda7             39371384  20018336  17353076  54% /home
/dev/sdb1            976521568 528405952 448115616  55% /media/Transcend
/dev/sda5            157673468  65527264  92146204  42% /media/84A2A2ADA2A2A362
/dev/sda2               102396     25700     76696  26% /media/System Reserved
/dev/sdb1            976521568 528405952 448115616  55% /media/sdcard

As you can see above, it is quite difficult to tell which my SD card is. I went through a lot of Ubuntu blogs and forums; yet no outcome.

Finally, thanks to, I came across the package mtp-tools. I installed it using the command - 

sudo apt-get install mtp-tools

My phone was already connected. So, I unplugged the cable from the USB port, and connected it again. Then from Computer, I clicked on my phone name. Then, finally to my pleasant surprise, the browser led me into the directory with a view to all the files and folders on the SD Card. I tried copying files to and fro, and it worked like charm! Make sure it is connected as a USB storage, and copying files to/from the computer is turned on.

March 17, 2011

Solving Blank Screen Of Death In Windows7

This is not a Linux-related problem and not my department in actual, but I happened to solve a problem on a Windows 7 machine of a college junior. She got the Blank Screen of Death after login, which was due to a wrong value in a registry key. So, here it goes.

1. I found a forum:

2. I tried many of the solutions listed there, but only one, two actually, came to aid.

i) Press Alt+Ctrl+Del and start the Task Manager. Create a new task and write explorer.exe. You get your desktop back.

ii) Obviously you do not want to do this every time you start your computer. For this, from the Start menu, click on Run or start the Task Manager, and type regedit. When prompted, give Administrative permission, to fiddle with the registry entries. Next, go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon in the left pane. Click on the folder Winlogon, and you can see a list of Registries on the right pane. Double click on Shell. It's default value must be Explorer.exe. Set to this value if there's something else.

3. Logoff or restart after making the necessary changes, and on login, hope you get your desktop without having to do any extra efforts next time.

February 7, 2011

Mukti'11 Comes To An End

One more year and one more Mukti passes by. This was yet another wonderful fest, but unfortunately our last Mukti in college. Nevertheless, the zeal was no less. We had exciting events and awesome workshops by eminent FOSS personalities from Red Hat and KDE. Here is a briefing of our last FOSS Festival of NITDGP.

Day 1:

After not much ado, our fest kick-started, with a small inauguration ceremony at the Lords arena, graced by our new Director Prof. T.K. Sinha, Dean of Administration Prof. A.K.Mitra, Dean of Students' Welfare Prof. G.Sanyal, the GLUG faculty advisors Prof. A. Dutta and S. Nandi and many other professors. Soon later, we had an RPM Packaging Workshop by Rahul Sundaram from Red Hat. Followed the Python Workshop by Kushal Das, Red Hat, and then Hack The Code Prelims in the arena. End of Day 1.

Day 2:

Day 2 started off with Hack The Code Finals, with 10 finalists. Soon followed System Programming Using Python Workshop by Kushal Das. Later we had GUI Programming Using Python Workshop. An over night event FreePL followed up much later.

Day 3:

Day 3 was the most amusing and frivolous day of our three-day fest. During the on-going Creating Fluid User Interface Using QML Workshop by Shantanu Tushar Jha from KDE, we also had an unplanned Photography Workshop by Kushal Das, who is also a professional photographer for many magazines, in the arena. We had tremendous fun, clicking almost everything we could lay our eyes on in the arena.

The idea of having a small DJ Nite by Shreyank Gupta of Red Hat, by a few of our crew members, filled us all with thrill. Shreyank Gupta soon joined in. Being a pass-out of this college, and a GLUG member, he was forced into DJing. He installed the necessary software and started his practice session. Next was his workshop on Ruby On Rails. After it got over, a Valedictory Ceremony followed in the arena.

After the Valedictory Ceremony, Shreyank Gupta was forced onto the stage, where he tried in vain to talk us out of the DJ idea by singing a song, but none would give in. Finally, we had our very own DJ Shrink, although the DJ Nite didn't last for long. All the crew members went frenzy with the dancing and the GPLs and the photography.

Finally, our final Mukti in this college comes to an end.

January 17, 2011

Mukti'11- The FOSS Festival Of NIT Durgapur

The GNU/Linux Users' Group of NIT Durgapur brings to you once again a three-day FOSStertainment, Mukti'11, from 4th-6th February 2011, with numerous events, where you can participate and enjoy working on Open Source platform.

Mukti, last year was a huge success, and we hope, this year too, we'll be able to fulfill all the expectations you FOSS-lovers have.

Just register yourselves and prepare to bag as many prizes as possible.

A brief overview of the various events we have, is as follows:

1. CodeCracker- online coding competition

2. Freemex- online stock market simulation

3. ImaGIMP- online designing contest

4. Quizzing

5. Rush Hour- the gaming contest

6. Open Project- have wonderful FOSS ideas to showcase? Then this is the chance!

7. Brainmesh- website designing contest

8. Hack the Code- debug and rewrite the code

9. InCanity- develop knowledge in C

10. Konfigure- system administration contest

11. Online Treasure Hunt- go explore

12. N-Core- event for core branches

13. Free-PL- go play!

In addition to the already mentioned exciting events, we also bring to you wonderful and interesting workshops by well-known FOSS enthusiasts, Rahul Sundaram, Kushal Das, Shantanu Tushar Jha, Shreyank Gupta, Shilp Gupta.

Everyone, not just NITDGPers, is invited to take part.

We are available at:

IRC: Network FreeNode, channel #nitdgplug

December 14, 2010

Installing Hamachi/gHamachi On Ubuntu 10.04

Enable IP Tunneling

1. varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo modprobe tun

2. Add tun to the list of modules.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo gedit /etc/modules

3. Add tun to the list on a new line.

4. To verify that we have a valid tunneling node,

i) varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ ls /dev/net/tun
ii) varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ /dev/net/tun

Install Hamachi

1. Download Hamachi from here.

2. Extract the file.

3. cd into the extracted folder.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ cd Software/hamachi-

4. Install Hamachi.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~/Software/hamachi-$ sudo make install

Set User Permissions

1. Create group hamachi.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo groupadd hamachi

2. Add your user and root to the group hamachi. (My user is varsha.)
i) varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo gpasswd -a varsha hamachi
ii) varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo gpasswd -a root hamachi

3. Change the socket permissions.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo chmod 760 /var/run/tuncfg.sock

4. Change the group of the file.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo chgrp hamachi /var/run/tuncfg.sock

Start Hamachi

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo tuncfg

1. Set the initial configuration.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ hamachi-init -c /etc/hamachi

2. Start Hamachi.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo hamachi -c /etc/hamachi start

3. Set your nick.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ hamachi -c /etc/hamachi set-nick nickname.

Replace nickname with the desired nick.

4. Log into Hamachi.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo hamachi -c /etc/hamachi login

Use Hamachi

1. To create your own network,

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo hamachi -c /etc/hamachi create network password

Replace network and password with the desired network name and password.

2. To join an existing network,

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo hamachi -c /etc/hamachi join network password

3. Go online on the network, you just created.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ sudo hamachi -c /etc/hamachi go-online network

Install gHamachi

1. Download the file from here.

2. Extract the file.

3. Run the executable file ghamachi.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ ./ghamachi


November 7, 2010

A Trick In Nokia

Most of you like downloading applications for your mobile phone, but in my case I can't do that due to some subscription problem. So, what I generally do is download the applications on my laptop and then transfer to my phone. But I am extremely particular about the location of the application- I don't want it to be just anywhere, but in the Applications menu, which is not really possible, whether you use Bluetooth or data cable.

This is a trick I tried out in my Nokia 2700 mobile phone. I am not sure for how many of you this will work. I presume you use Linux (my distro Ubuntu). Create a folder called Applications beforehand inside Gallery. Via Bluetooth, browse and open the Gallery on your phone, and copy the application files into the folder you created. On your phone, open the folder- it will be empty (even though you copied the application files into it). Now go to Applications menu from the main menu, and hopefully you'll find the application there.

It worked for me.

Note: This works via Bluetooth, and not data cable.