Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.

Official GNOME Shell Extensions, Weather, System Monitor, MediaPlayer And GPaste Available For GNOME Shell 3.4 [PPA - Ubuntu 12.04]

GNOME Shell 3.4

A quick update for Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin users running GNOME Shell: I've updated some of the extensions available in the WebUpd8 GNOME 3 PPA to the latest version which works with GNOME Shell 3.4.

The updated extensions that work with GNOME Shell 3.4 available in the WebUpd8 GNOME 3 PPA are: the official GNOME Shell extensions (now it's a single package), GNOME Shell Weather, GPaste (clipboard tool), System Monitor and MediaPlayer. More will follow.

Initially, I wasn't planning on updating them since they are available on extensions.gnome.org, but I've got quite a few requests for this. One thing that's not available for extensions installed through GNOME's extensions website is update support so the PPA should be useful for those who want to use the latest version of the above mentioned extensions.

Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Beta 2 Released [Screenshots, Video]

ubuntu 12.04 lts screenshot

Ubuntu 12.04 LTS beta 2 has been released today, this being the last beta before the final Ubuntu 12.04 release. Let's take a look at what's new since beta 1.

Also see the changes in: Ubuntu 12.04 beta 1, Ubuntu 12.04 alpha 2

GNOME 3.4 Has Been Released

gnome 3.4

GNOME 3.4 has been released today, bringing many important changes such as video calling for Empathy, smarter pop-ups and message tray, a much improved Epiphany browser, a new menu for some GNOME applications, new scrollbars and more.

Get Dodge Windows Unity Autohide Behaviour For Maximized Windows In Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

As you probably know, the window dodge Unity launcher autohide behaviour has been removed from Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin. Unfortunately, it seems this feature won't make it back into Unity, but thanks to a work-around by WebUpd8 reader Jorge, you can get the dodge windows feature back. Well, almost.

SkypeTab-NG Gets Better Unity Support


SkypeTab-NG, a tool that adds tabs to Skype for Linux, has been updated recently, getting some Unity tweaks:

Linux Mint Debian Update Pack 4 On The Way; To Bring Cinnamon, GNOME Shell And MATE

Linux Mint Debian (LMDE) is a rolling release distribution based on Debian Testing. 

LMDE Update Pack 4, which will include Linux Kernel 3.2, Mate Desktop 1.2 (a renamed GNOME 2 desktop), Cinnamon 1.4 (GNOME Shell fork), GNOME Shell 3.2.2, KDE 4.7.4 and Xfce 4.8, "is being prepared and tested at the moment" and should be available soon.

XBMC Media Center 11.0 Released, Install It In Ubuntu

xbmc 11

XBMC Media Center is a free and open source (GPL) digital media hub and HTPC (Home theater PC) software, available for Linux, OSX, iOS and Windows.

XBMC 11 "Eden" has been released recently and comes with speed increases, better and simpler library, better unencrypted BluRay support, default skin improvements, better networking support, AirPlay support, upgraded weather service with geoip lookup and much more. The new version also brings support for Apple TV2 and iOS.

Recoll-Lens: Full Text Search Unity Lens For Ubuntu 11.10 And 12.04 [Updated]

Recoll Unity Lens

Recoll is a full text search desktop tool which indexes the contents of many file formats including OpenOffice, MS Office, PostScript, MP3 and other audio files, JPEG and more. Besides regular searches, Recoll also lets you perform some advanced operations like searching for the author, file size, file format as well as operators like "AND" or "OR".

Unity Recoll Lens lets you use Recoll from Dash, without having to open any additional GUI. The lens comes with a few filters like Text, Spreadsheet, Presentation, Media or Message, but for more advanced searches, you'll have to manually enter the Recoll search query. Examples:

Unity Launcher With Minimize Support Available For Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot

Quick update: Unity patched to support minimize on click for the Launcher is now available for Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot users too. We've already talked about Unity with minimize on click patch a few days ago so check out that post for more info (including a video).

How To Change The Hostname (Computer Name) In Ubuntu

Ubuntu hostname

If you need to change the computer name (hostname) in Ubuntu for whatever reason, you won't find a System Settings option to do it so you must edit two configuration files. But don't worry, it's an easy task!

Unity With Minimize On Click Patch (Unofficial) Available In A PPA For Ubuntu Users

A branch that implements minimize on click for the Unity launcher was proposed for merging into Unity but unfortunately it was rejected (bug report) because it's "unwanted behavior according to design".

WOW Theme Available For GTK3 (3.2)

WOW, a beautiful, easy on the eyes theme, is now available for GTK3 (3.2). The WOW-2 pack comes with two GTK3 theme versions, two GTK2 theme versions, Xfwm4, Openbox, Emerald and Chromium themes.

Update Manager Indicator Displays The Number Of Updates On The Panel, More

update manager indicator

Update Manager Indicator is an Ubuntu appindicator that shows up on the panel when there are updates available and comes with some extra features like showing a list of updates in a submenu, refresh the repositories or display NotifyOSD notifications when you have new updates.

There hasn't been a new Update Manager Indicator release in a while and the previous one was kind of buggy in Ubuntu Precise, so I've packaged the latest version from GIT and uploaded it to the main WebUpd8 PPA. The new version brings GTK3 support, an option to display the number of updates in the indicator icon and a new optional feature to upgrade in the background (until now, you could only use the Update Manager).

New Unity Spread Design For Ubuntu 12.10

Unity spread

A new "Spread" design which should improve Unity task switching is coming to Ubuntu, starting with version 12.10. The "Spread" design was tested before the Ubuntu 11.04 launch, but there wasn't enough time to release it so the development was postponed and the Compiz "spread" was used instead.

GNOME Shell 3.4 Might Make It In The Ubuntu 12.04 Repositories [Updated]


A while back, it was announced that Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin will continue to have GNOME Shell 3.2 available in the official repositories and not 3.4 (not yet released).

However, thanks to Jeremy Bicha and Rico Tzschichholz, it looks like GNOME Shell 3.4 will be available in the Ubuntu Precise repositories after all: the bug that requests the GNOME Shell 3.4 inclusion in the Precise repositories (and the Clutter/cogl update to version 1.9 bug which had blocked GS 3.4) has been conditionally approved:

Cinnamon 1.4 Released With New Hot Corner Behaviour, More

Cinnamon is a GNOME Shell fork which tries to offer a layout similar to GNOME 2: it comes with a panel at the bottom by default (optionally, you can use 2 panels or a panel at the top) that supports autohide, panel applets, a classic system tray, GNOME2-like notifications and so on, but using GNOME 3.

Hot corner: workspace selection
Hot corner: window selection

Cinnamon 1.4 has been released today and the major change in this release is a new hot corner behavior which can now use either workspace selection (like Compiz "Expo") or window selection (like Compiz "Scale"). In expo mode, you can add or remove workspaces and when you hover a workspace, the windows are arranged like in the overview so you can see all available windows (which you can drag onto another workspace, etc.). Also, the hot corner position can now be changed.

Jupiter Applet Officially Switches To Python [Quick Update]

Update: Jupiter has been discontinued. I suggest trying TLP instead.

A quick update for Jupiter users: Jupiter 0.1.2 has been released and it now uses Python by default instead of C#. The latest Jupiter comes with an Ubuntu AppIndicator as well as a notification area applet for those who don't use Ubuntu, so there's no need to use PyJupiter anymore. 

Google Tasks Indicator Can Now Display All Available Tasks, Edit Tasks, More

google tasks indicator

Google Tasks Indicator, an Ubuntu appindicator that displays your 10 most recent Google tasks on the Ubuntu panel, has been updated to version today, and it now lets you see all the available tasks, by selecting "Show Notes" from its menu.

How To Synchronize Google Calendar With Thunderbird

You can use Lightning to get a calendar that's fully integrated with Thunderbird, but what about Google Calendar synchronization? Well, there's an extension called "Provider for Google Calendar", which lets Lightning read and write events to Google Calendar.

LM Lists IMDB Information For Your Movies, Downloads Subtitles From The Command Line

lm is a command line tool that you can use to list the IMDB information for all the movies in a directory on your computer as well as to download subtitles from OpenSubtitles.

Use Linux Deepin Screenshot Tool "Deepin Scrot" In Other Linux Distributions

Deepin scrot

Deepin Scrot is a lightweight screenshot tool used in Linux Deepin that lets you add text, arrows and drawing onto the screenshot.

Unsettings: Tool To Disable Global Menu, Overlay Scrollbars And Tweak Unity

unsettings disable global menu overlay scrollbars

Unsettings is an Unity tweak tool that comes with some unique features, like: disable the global menu and overlay scrollbars or easily add applications to the systray whitelist. Besides these, the application also comes with features found in other Unity tweaking tools such as changing the Unity launcher look and behaviour, change the theme (icons, GTK, Metacity or cursor) and fonts and more.

Jupiter Applet Ported To Python, Gets Ubuntu Indicator Support

Update: Jupiter has been discontinued. I suggest trying TLP instead.

py-jupiter applet indicator ubuntu

Jupiter is an applet designed to improve laptops / netbooks battery life. It can be used to switch between maximum, high performance and power saving modes, change the screen resolution and orientation, enable or disable bluetooth, touchpad, WiFi (if available) and so on. If you own an Asus EeePC netbook, there's also a separate package that adds support for Asus Super Hybrid Engine (SHE) as well as some other EeePC tweaks.

Linux Deepin: Ubuntu-Based Linux Distribution With A Beautiful GNOME Shell Setup

Linux Deepin screenshot

Linux Deepin is a Linux distribution based on Ubuntu that uses a highly customized GNOME Shell as the default desktop environment. It was initially created for Chinese users only, but there are now different ISO images for both Chinese and English languages.

ReText 3.0 Released (Text Editor For Markdown And reStructuredText)

ReText is a text editor for Markdown syntax and reStructuredText (reST) that supports exporting to some popular formats such as PDF, ODT, HTML and plain text. It supports live previews, web pages generator, HTML syntax highlighting, full-screen mode for distraction free writing, can export files to Google Docs and more.

Wine 1.4 (Stable) Released

wine logo linux

After 20 months of development, a new stable Wine version has been released: 1.4, bringing a new DIB graphics engine, re-written audio stack which can make use of Gstreamer, full support for bidirectional text, ARM support and more. There are also many new supported applications, like Microsoft Office 2010.

Sublime Text 2 PPA: Separate Development And Beta Builds

Sublime Text 2

Update: the Sublime Text 2 beta builds are now considered stable builds!

A quick update for those of you who are using the WebUpd8 Sublime Text 2 PPA: until now, the PPA had Sublime Text 2 development builds only but starting today, you can install either Sublime Text 2 beta or the latest Sublime Text 2 development build, from the same PPA. The recommended package is Sublime Text 2 beta, because it's more stable.

Audience: A Slick, Minimalistic Linux Media Player

Audience media player

Audience is a new media player written in Vala that "brings the lessons learned from the web home to the desktop".

Help Test An Improved Unity Files Lens [Ubuntu 12.04]

Unity files lens ubuntu 12.04

The Unity Files Lens currently relies on Zeitgeist to display search results, meaning it can't find files you've never interacted with / accessed. But an improved Unity Files Lens is currently in testing, which doesn't rely solely on Zeitgeist. Finally!

Google Tasks Indicator: Quick Access To Your Google Tasks From The Ubuntu Panel

Google Tasks Indicator

Google Tasks Indicator is a new appindicator that displays your 10 most recent Google tasks on the Ubuntu panel.

Locally Integrated Menus Delayed For Ubuntu 12.10

In a blog post published today, Mark Shuttlewroth has said that "locally integrated menus" (LIM) are not going to land in Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin:

How To Dual-Boot Android-x86 And Ubuntu (With GRUB 2)

Android 4.0 ice cream sandwich

Some of you have asked how to dual-boot Android-X86 4.0 ICS (which uses GRUB legacy) with Ubuntu (GRUB 2), so here's how to do it, including a video showing all the required steps as well as installing Android-X86.

Updates: ffDiaporama 1.2, GNOME Pie 0.5, SMPlayer 0.7.1


ffDiaporama is a multi-platform application for creating videos from photos or movie clips. It supports various transition effects, titles/annotations, music and more.

HUD Is Now Available For Unity 2D Too [Ubuntu 12.04]

HUD menu unity 2D ubuntu 12.04

HUD was added by default in Ubuntu 12.04, but only for Unity 3D (with Compiz) and since feature freeze has passed, it seemed HUD wasn't going to be available for Unity 2D. But a feature freeze exception was made and Unity 2D now includes HUD.

Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Beta 1 Released [Screenshots, Video]

Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin beta 1 screenshot

Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin beta 1 has been released today and it includes a huge number of changes since alpha 2, so let's take a look at what's new.