Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.

Ubuntu 13.04: Alpha Releases Dropped, Only One Beta Milestone

ubuntu raring ringtail logo

For Ubuntu 13.04, all alphas and the first beta release have been dropped from the release schedule, so Raring Ringtail will have only one beta version and obviously, the final stable release.

Kazam Screencaster 1.3.2 Gets New UI, Screenshots Support

A new Kazam Screencaster version has been released today, which brings a complete UI overhaul, support for taking screenshots and other new features.

Kazam is a screen recording tool - or better said, it was, because with the latest 1.3.2 version, it's not just for screencasts and it can be used to take screenshots as well: fullscreen (current monitor), all screens, window or area.

The new version also brings a new user interface which lets you easily switch between the screencast and screenshot mode:

How To Get A Complete GNOME 3 Desktop In Ubuntu 12.10, Without Installing Ubuntu GNOME Remix

If you're using Ubuntu 12.10 with Unity or some other desktop environment and want to switch to a complete GNOME 3 desktop experience without installing Ubuntu GNOME Remix 12.10, you can do this by simply installing a few packages.

Using the instructions below, you won't just install GNOME Shell, but also the default settings and applications that come with Ubuntu GNOME Remix. There are also some optional steps to install the GNOME 3 applications which are missing from Ubuntu GNOME Remix.

Xnoise Media Player Gets New Album Art View

Xnoise 0.2.13 has been released today, introducing a new Album Art view, similar to the one available in Banshee or in Rhythmbox through the CoverArt Browser plugin, along with a new application icon created by Reda Lazri.

The new Album Art view can be accessed from the toolbar/menu or by using the CTRL + B keyboard shortcut. There's an integrated search too, which supports searching for artist, album or track name so you don't have to exit the Album Art view to find out on which album you can find a certain track:

xnoise media player
New Xnoise album art view

GPaste GNOME Shell Clipboard Manager Available For Ubuntu 12.10 (GNOME Shell 3.6)


GPaste, a native GNOME Shell clipboard manager, is now available for Ubuntu 12.10 / GNOME Shell 3.6 through the WebUpd8 GNOME 3 PPA.

GPaste features uris support (remembers copied files, not just text), a command line tool, option to backup / restore clipboard history, image support and other useful options.

Tweak Unity With Unsettings 0.08, Now With Ubuntu 12.10 Support


Unsettings, a tool that lets you tweak Unity, has reached version 0.08, getting support for Unity 6 and thus Ubuntu 12.10.

Unsettings 0.08 brings some new features as well:
  • option to force fast minimize animation
  • option to force low graphics mode
  • show real name on panel
  • option to disable online search results in Dash
  • Unity WebApps support
  • UI tweaks
  • more

The Faience Pack Gets A Beautiful New GTK3 Theme, GNOME Shell And Icon Themes Updated

The Faience pack has been updated today with new and improved icons for the icon theme, GNOME Shell 3.6 support for the GS theme and there's also a beautiful new GTK3 theme.

faience icon theme

Steam For Linux Beta Testing Survey

steam survey

Valve has posted a Linux Beta survey which they will use to select the 1000 users who will test Steam for Linux.

Xfce: Sync To VBlank Support For The Xfwm Compositor [PPA For Ubuntu 13.04 And 12.10]

If you're experiencing screen tearing in Xfce 4.10, you'll be glad to know there's a patch that fixes this, which you can install right away.

Clementine Music Player 1.1 Available For Download

clementine music player

Clementine, a cross-platform music player inspired by Amarok 1.4, has reached version 1.1, getting podcast support with gpodder.net integration, modbar support along with other new features.

Insync Repository Available For Ubuntu, Linux Mint And Debian Users

insync ubuntu

Insync, an unofficial Google Drive client for Linux, is now available in a repository for Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Debian users and it's recommended you add since you'll get automatic updates.

DockBarX Sees New Release, Now Available For MATE Desktop Too


DockBarX 0.90.3 has been released. For those not familiar with DockBarX, this is an application launcher / switcher that works as a GNOME2 panel applet, Avant Window Navigator applet or as a stand-alone dock. With the new version, I've also packaged it for MATE so you can use it as a MATE panel applet.

How To Enable Intel SNA Acceleration In Ubuntu

SNA is a 2D acceleration architecture for the open source Intel Linux graphics driver that provides improved X.Org driver performance, and thus, better desktop user experience. The name stands for "Sandy Bridge New Acceleration" and contrary to its name, it not just for Sandy Bridge but for previous Intel graphics generations as well.

Here's how to enable Intel SNA in Ubuntu 12.04 or 12.10.

Lubuntu (w/ LXDE) 12.10 - Quick Overview

Lubuntu, an official Ubuntu flavour starting with version 11.10 which uses LXDE, a lightweight desktop environment by default, has reached version 12.10.

I'm posting this article a bit late, since Lubuntu 12.10 was released 5 days ago, but there are too many Ubuntu flavours to cover in just one day.

Things You Do After Installing Ubuntu 12.10

ubuntu 12.10

If you've been following WebUpd8 for a while, you've probably noticed that we used to make a post with things to tweak after each Ubuntu release (here are the 12.04 and 11.10 posts). This time, let's do things differently!

I'll start by sharing with you the first things I did after installing the latest Ubuntu 12.10 and you, the readers, can post comments, telling us what you've installed / customized / tweaked after installing 12.10, no matter what Ubuntu flavour you're using.

`Photo` Is A Fancy Image Viewer Written In Qt [Ubuntu PPA]

Photo is a fast, fancy and highly configurable image viewer written in Qt.

Besides supporting most popular image formats like gif, jpeg, png, bmp, tiff, xpm and so on, Photo can also perform some basic image manipulation like rotating, flipping or zooming, display exif information and comes with a beautiful interface. When opening an image, you can quickly switch to another image in the same folder by using the thumbnails displayed at the bottom:

photo image viewer

Cairo Dock 3.1 Implements More Of Unity's Functionality

cairo dock screenshot

Cairo Dock is a tool that can be used as a complete panel/launcher replacement thanks to its huge list of features: besides the fancy launcher / application switcher, it comes with applets like menu, Messaging Menu, systray, trash, weather and many others.

Ubuntu Tweak Development Stopped [Update: Development Will Continue]

The Ubuntu Tweak developer has announced today that Ubuntu Tweak will no longer be developed. 

Prefer GNOME Shell? Download Ubuntu GNOME Remix 12.10

Ubuntu GNOME Remix 12.10 has been released!

Ubuntu GNOME Remix, a Linux distribution which aims to become an official Ubuntu flavour, uses GNOME Shell as the default "shell" and tries to provide a "mostly pure GNOME desktop experience built from the Ubuntu repositories".

Update: you may also be interested in How To Get A Complete GNOME 3 Desktop In Ubuntu 12.10, Without Installing Ubuntu GNOME Remix

Xubuntu 12.10 Released With Xfce 4.10 [Screenshots, Video]

xubuntu 12.10

Xubuntu, the Xfce Ubuntu flavor, has been released today along with the other Ubuntu flavours. It's a great alternative for those who do not want to use GNOME Shell or Unity and prefer a more traditional layout.

Ubuntu 12.10 Released - See What`s New

ubuntu 12.10 screenshots

After 6 months of development, Ubuntu 12.10 has been released, bringing some exciting new features.

With Ubuntu 12.10, Unity has gained a "Previews" feature and there's also an innovative new "webapps" technology which integrates websites tightly with Ubuntu. Read on to find out what's new in the latest Ubuntu 12.10.

Ubuntu 13.04 Codename Announced: Raring Ringtail

raring ringtail

Mark Shuttleworth has announced the codename for the next Ubuntu release (13.04): Raring Ringtail.

How To Install Nautilus 3.6 Or Patched Nautilus 3.4 In Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal, which will be released in 2 days, will use Nautilus 3.4 by default, the same version used in Ubuntu 12.04. If, however, you want to use Nautilus 3.6 or the patched Nautilus we've talked about a while back, in Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal, you'll find installation instructions below.

Lightweight Qt Desktop Environment `Razor Qt` Reaches Version 0.5.0

Razor Qt is a lightweight desktop environment - think of it as LXDE, but using Qt. It doesn't come with its own window manager and its developers recommend using it with Openbox, but it should work with any window manager like Kwin, Metacity, etc.

Razor Qt 0.5.0 has been released yesterday, bringing lots of new features and performance improvements. For instance, there's a new appearance GUI for configuring themes:

razor qt

elementary OS Jupiter No Longer Available For Download, Makes Room for Luna

elementary OS jupiter

Jupiter, the first elementary OS release, is no longer available for download.

Decentralized Bittorrent Client `Tribler` Gets New User Interface

tribler bittorrent client

Tribler, a cross-platform decentralized Bittorrent application, has reached version 6.0.0, getting a redesigned user interface.

Ubuntu Multi-Monitor Tweaks (Full Screen Flash Fixes, Span Wallpaper Across Monitors, More)

If you are using a multi-monitor setup in Ubuntu, here are a few tips which should help you fix some annoyances, like:
  • get full screen flash videos to be displayed on any monitor
  • get flash videos to remain full screen while working in the other desktop
  • a tweak to move windows to a different display using keyboard shortcuts
  • how to extend the wallpaper across monitors or use a different wallpaper for each monitor

Get Movie Information And Play Trailers In Ubuntu Using Unity Movie Lens (With Previews Support)

unity movie lens

Lorenzo, who has developed many useful Ubuntu tools (appindicators, lenses, etc.), has released yet another cool Unity lens with previews support: a Movie Lens.

The Unity Movie Lens can be used to search for Movies and using the Previews feature (which can be accessed by right clicking on a search result) available in Ubuntu 12.10, you can see various movie information like the movie cover, rating, genre, artists and a movie description.

Y PPA Manager Released With New Features


Y PPA Manager, like the name says, is a tool to manage PPAs: add, remove, purge PPAs, search for packages in Launchpad PPAs, list packages in a PPA and lots more, all from a single user interface. For a complete feature list, see the Y PPA Manager Launchpad page.

Today I'm releasing Y PPA Manager, which comes with new features and many under the hood changes:

Get Ubuntu NotifyOSD Notifications To Show Up On Active Monitor In Multi-Screen Environments [Quick Tip]

notifyosd notification

By default, the Ubuntu NotifyOSD notification bubbles are displayed on only one monitor in multi-monitor setups, which might be useful in some situations, but it doesn't make sense in most cases.

Unofficial Google Drive Linux Client `Insync` Hits Beta 9

insync linux

Insync, an unofficial Google Drive client for Linux, has reached beta 9, fixing the MS Office formats (files now downloaded as ODF) and glibc errors for Debian users, so the deb files aren't just for Ubuntu anymore.

Keep Your Desktop Fresh With Variety Wallpaper Changer

variety wallpaper changer

Variety is a wallpaper changer application that works with most desktop environments (KDE, LXDE, Xfce and Unity / GNOME Shell) and, besides being able to change your wallpaper automatically on an interval you set or on demand, the application can automatically download wallpapers from Flickr, Wallbase.cc, Wallpapers.net as well as NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day.

Other Variety features:

Alternative YouTube Video Lens Updated With Previews, More [Ubuntu 12.10]

A while back, Lorenzo has created an alternative video lens and YouTube scope for Unity, which can be used to easily search and play YouTube videos using an external player of your choice.

Unity in Ubuntu 12.10 does have its own video lens, but it only supports YouTube Shows, Movies and Educations, so most YouTube results won't show up in the default Ubuntu video lens.

Lorenzo's YouTube lens/scope has been updated for Ubuntu 12.10 recently, getting proper video previews (I say "proper" because the default Ubuntu 12.10 video lens previews are kind of broken) which display the license, view count, likes and dislikes, the video description along with a video image and options to play the video using the player selected from the YouTube scope settings or open it in a web browser - check it out:

Ubuntu Tweak 0.8.0 Gets New `Apps` Feature

ubuntu tweak apps

Ubuntu Tweak, the most popular tool to tweak various Ubuntu settings as well as add third-party sources (PPAs), has reached version 0.8.0, introducing a new feature called "Apps", a combination between the already existing App Center and Source Center features.

Speed Up apt-get Downloads With apt-fast [Ubuntu PPA]

Apt-fast is a script that can "drastically improve APT download speed" by using command line download accelerators such as Axel or Aria2 with multiple connections per package.

We've actually blogged about apt-fast back in 2009 but since then, the script has received some important changes so I've wanted to update our readers with its current status.

Indicator Remindor 12.10 Released With New Features

indicator remindor

Indicator Remindor, an Ubuntu appindicator that can be used to schedule reminders or alarms, has been updated to version 12.10.

Indicator Remindor 12.10 comes with a new design for some UI parts like the time, date and command, along with a new option to have a reminder popup dialog window, which you can use to make sure you don't miss any important reminders.

Ubuntu 12.10 Gets Option To Disable Online Search Results In Dash [Unity 6.8.0]

Unity 6.8.0 has been released in the Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal repositories today, along with updated default lenses, bringing many bug fixes as usual, along with an option to disable online results from showing up in Dash.

Starting with the latest Unity 6.8.0, you can disable Dash online search results by going to System Settings > Privacy > Search results, and setting "When searching in Dash - Include online search results" to OFF:

`My Weather Indicator` Gets New Forecast Map, Improved Geolocation

my weather indicator

`My Weather Indicator`, an appindicator which displays the weather on the Unity panel, has been updated to version yesterday and comes with an interesting new feature: a weather forecast map through the OpenWeatherMap service.

How To Reset Unity And Compiz In Ubuntu 14.04, 13.10 Or 13.04


In Ubuntu 14.04, 13.10 and 13.04, Unity (and Compiz) are using Gsettings and because of this, the "unity --reset" command used to reset Unity in previous Ubuntu versions doesn't work anymore. In case some settings are messed up and you want to reset Unity and Compiz to their default settings, here's a new way of doing this that works with Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr, 13.10 Saucy Salamander and 13.04 Raring Ringtail.

Update: this article was initially for Ubuntu 12.10 and 13.04. I subsequently tested new Ubuntu releases and these instructions work with Ubuntu 13.10 and 14.04 as well.

Easily Create Animated GIF Images From Videos With Video2Gif

There are various ways of creating animated GIF images from video files under Linux, but most require cutting the video into images, then combining the images using GIMP or some other tools, but here's an easy way that only requires selecting the video, and optionally, changing the frame rate: Video 2 Gif.


Fuduntu 2012.4 Released With New Default Applications And Theme

Fuduntu, a Linux distribution forked from Fedora, has reached version 2012.4. This release brings a new default theme and wallpaper, new default packages and many other improvements.


Rhythmbox 2.98 Released, Install It In Ubuntu


Rhythmbox 2.98 has been released yesterday, bringing a new dialog for importing music into the library along with some other small, but interesting changes and many bug fixes.

Popular Video Editor `OpenShot` 1.4.3 Released

OpenShot, a popular Linux video editor, has reached version 1.4.3 today, the new version bringing new effects, 3D animations, transitions, a new dark theme and more.