April 13, 2009

System Proxy In Ubuntu- A Bug?

I faced a problem with Epiphany. After setting the home page as Google, I tried using Epiphany. But, except the home page and a few other sites like Twitter, no other page opened. It showed 'redirecting' for sometime, then showed the following error.

Rangeen Basu helped me out of this thing. He asked me to type about:config in the address bar of the browser. Then I typed network.proxy.ssl in the filter bar. It showed the value 8080, and definitely, this wasn't the correct port, as per the proxy settings of my college. Finally, what we did was uncheck 'Use the same proxy for all protocols', and typed in the proxy for all the boxes shown.

Then I tried opening Gmail and other sites. All were opening! :)

Now, on typing about:config, and (filter) network.proxy.ssl, I get the following screen.

April 11, 2009

Downloading Videos From Youtube

Downloading videos from Youtube becomes necessary at times. There are a number of ways of doing this.

Using UTube Ripper

Please check it out yourselves : Shainky's Blog: UTube Ripper.

Click here to see how to use UTube Ripper.

When I tried using it, the download did take place, but the file was not being saved where it was supposed to be. After downloading, clicking Open Directory button, copying the file from there to some other location, say /home (if necessary) and then converting it into a .flv file by browsing for the file and clicking Convert would have been enough.

I faced many problems:

1. Utube Ripper got hanged for sometime.

2. The downloaded video was not to be found under Open Directory.

If you still want to try, then click this link.

Using DownThemAll

This is actually an addon for Firefox. All you have to do is install it, and right click the URL of the video you want to download, and select one of the two options- Save form target with DownThemAll! and Start saving form target with dTa OneClick! I installed it, to see whether it works or not. I tried both, but in either case, the entire webpage was getting saved on my computer.

Using Keepvid

So, after this, I tried Keepvid. But this did not yield any result. No download!

Using Youtube-dl

Then I came to know about youtube-dl. Thanks to Roshan Singh. I installed it using the sudo apt-get command. Then, for downloading any video,

youtube-dl URL of the video on youtube

For example, for downloading the video from this URL, all you have to do is, open the command prompt, and type:

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ youtube-dl http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkNxbyp6thM&eurl

[1] 20403
[2] 20404
varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ Retrieving video webpage... done.
Extracting URL "t" parameter... done.
Requesting video file... done.
Video data found at http://v22.lscache5.googlevideo.com/videoplayback?id=9243716

Retrieving video data: 100.0% ( 2.20M of 2.20M) at 23.95k/s ETA 00:00 done.
Video data saved to kkNxbyp6thM.flv

This really works! It'll take a few minutes, and there you are!


Copy-Paste From Directory /tmp

I got yet another solution, which requires just a simple copy-paste. Click the following link, and enlarge the picture, to have a closer look.

But make sure you buffer the video first.

Conversion Between OpenOffice.org Document Formats

We sometimes need to convert one format of OpenOffice.org to
another. This isn't a very tedious
job, when you have a proper
convertor. One such useful tool is
Unoconv. You can install it from
System-> Administration-> Synaptic Manager
. I tried
downloading the package from:


This package can also be installed from Synaptic Package Manager.
After you have installed, you
can start converting between different
file formats, using the command given below:

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ unoconv -f pdf some-document.odt

You can replace the given formats with the formats you want to

For more information on how to use this conversion tool, refer the
following URLs.

1. http://dag.wieers.com/home-made/unoconv/

2. http://svn.rpmforge.net/svn/trunk/tools/unoconv/docs/unoconv.1.txt

Conversion From One Audio Format To Another Using Mencoder

There are certain problems while playing certain audio file formats. Or, in other words many of us, including me, prefer mp3 file format generally. Otherwise it is ok, as long as the file plays well.

Well, now coming to conversion from one format to another, there is a convertor, so to say, named Mencoder. In Ubuntu, you can install this package using the sudo apt-get command.

After installing, conversion from, for example, .mp3 to .mp4 can be done as:

mencoder input_file.mp3 -ovc frameno -oac mp3lame -of rawaudio -lameopts cbr:br=128 -o output_file.mp4

Replace your input_file and output_file by the name of the file you are going to convert and the name for the new file.

Here, basically I needed to do this conversion for playing a .rm video file, the video of which wasn't supported in any of the players I have- VLC, MPlayer, Movie Player, etc.. (although, even after conversion, the video did not work, and I have to find a solution for it).

I used the same command, replacing the extensions (.mp3 and .mp4 as given above) of the input and output filenames with .rm and mp3 respectively.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ mencoder mit-6.002-lec-mit-10250-09sep2003-0000-220k.rm -ovc frameno -oac mp3lame
-of rawaudio -lameopts cbr:br=128 -o mit-6.002-lec-mit-10250-09sep2003-0000-220k.mp3

Now, I have the same file in three different formats, .rm, .mp3 and .mp4.

Looking Up IPs

We sometimes face the problem of not knowing the IP of a certain hub, for may be, using DC++. I always face this problem. There is a command for this. Just type it in the terminal, and you will get the required IP. I got the following result when I typed in the command:

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ nmblookup rc983
querying rc983 on rc983<00>

Here, is the IP of the hub rc983, and is the Broadcast Address.

You can also use nmblookup -b rc983. In this case, the query is sent to the given broadcast address, although the output is the same.

varsha@varsha-laptop:~$ nmblookup -b rc983
querying rc983 on rc983<00>

April 10, 2009

Full Screen Mode In Mozilla

I had been facing this problem since long. Don't know how, but the Mozilla title bar vanished, and whenever I started the browser, the two panels in Ubuntu 8.1 also disappeared. I tried upgrading the browser, but it was of no use. Then, as usual, I started having problems with my computer (don't know whether it has any problems with two OS :P).

I keep on installing and reinstalling Windows and Linux on my computer. It has actually become a routine job, I have to do every month. Ok, leave that apart. Finally I reinstalled Ubuntu 8.1, which was really a pleasant surprise for me :). My data was somewhat safe as I had deleted the root partition from Windows Disk Management before reinstallation of my valuable OS Linux :), but I had to install many software again.

I found that my Mozilla still had the same problem. By this time I had decided to try another browser, until my Firefox starts behaving normally :P. Since I faced this problem earlier too, I had installed Opera which wasn't a pleasant experience. Now, I decided to use Epiphany, which is a simple yet powerful GNOME web browser targeted at non-technical users. You would find it under Applications-> Add/Remove. But this too wasn't much of a good experience, as many of the web pages were not opening up.

Then a LUG senior named Shreyank Gupta of CSE Final Year(2009), helped me out. He asked me whether I had by any chance taken Firefox into full screen mode. But as far as I remember, I didn't. I pressed F11 twice to get back my panels and the title bar of the browser window. Thank God (Oops! Sorry, Shreyank Gupta). By the way, pressing the F11 key once will suffice.

But, I have to keep doing F11 every time I start the Firefox browser. Nevertheless, I had at least the title bar and the Ubuntu panels visible and the browser working fine. Otherwise, earlier I had to quit the browser window, either by Ctrl+W or from File-> Quit, in order to use other applications, and opening other windows.