I have moved to Scientific Linux

June 10, 2011

I am maintaining a forum at http://scientificlinuxforum.org. I will still be adding much for Scientific Linux on this site, and posting relevant information when I get Debian or Ubuntu back on one of my machines. Come visit us if you are a SL user!


Printing from MS Word via CrossOver Office 9.x

January 3, 2011

Install the following or you won’t be able to print from MS Office (as of this date with LMDE)

apt install libwine-print

this will also install “cups-bsd”. Hope this saves you from banging your head on your desk 🙂

HowTO: Install Dropbox in KDE

August 1, 2010


The filemanager integration (the nautilus-only part) is for putting the little status icons on dropbox files and allowing you to copy the public link, etc. The Dropbox daemon dropboxd is what interfaces with Dropbox the website, and keeps the folders synced; and it is not dependent on nautilus, Gnome, KDE, Dolphin, Konqueror, or anything of the sort. It will work regardless of your DE or FM.

So what do you need to do? Well, it’s quite simple. 🙂 Download the daemon from http://www.getdropbox.com/download?plat=lnx.x86 (x86_64 for 64-bit), and extract it to your home directory. It made a hidden folder called .dropbox-dist. Now run ~/.dropbox-dist/dropboxd and that will help you setup your Dropbox account and provide a tray applet (works in KDE, don’t worry) that kindly tells you when it has synced your dropbox folder. That’s it!

Sorry if this is already in an FAQ, KB, or forum post elsewhere. I couldn’t find it, and I wanted to make life easy for my fellow KDE-ers searching for a Dropbox client.

Flashing a DELL BIOS in Ubuntu (or Debian)

June 22, 2010

This is a guide designed for Dell laptops, netbooks, desktop and workstation machines running Debian GNU/Linux and also Ubuntu. I have tested it on a machine running Debian Lenny i386. There are three logical steps: get all the necessary tools in place, extract the actual BIOS image, and apply the image. For Dell servers, the BIOS images provided by Dell are ready to flash from Linux directly, so the method described here should not be needed.

Before starting
The Dell BIOS updates itself by loading the BIOS ROM image into RAM and warm-booting directly into the flashing program. It keeps the BIOS image to be flashed in RAM. Therefore it is important to reboot the machine instead of powering it off when updating the BIOS so as to not lose the contents of RAM.

First things first
Download the BIOS update .EXE file from Dell’s website. Save it somewhere.

Get a few packages installed: WINE, smbios-utils/libsmbios-bin, and firmware-addon-dell.

For Ubuntu:

sudo apt-get install wine smbios-utils firmware-addon-dell
For Debian:
sudo apt-get install wine libsmbios-bin
Also for Debian, download the firmware-addon-dell package manually from here: http://packages.ubuntu.com/lucid/all/firmware-addon-dell/download and install manually (the version may change and the file name may be different than in the example):
sudo dpkg -i firmware-addon-dell_2.1.0-0ubuntu2_all.deb
Prepare the system
Load the required kernel module:
sudo modprobe dell_rbu
If you haven’t run WINE before, run winecfg and just exit immediately, it will set up your .wine directory and profile:

Extract the actual BIOS image from the .EXE with WINE
Where DELLBIOSUPDATE.EXE is the .EXE file downloaded from Dell’s website:

wine DELLBIOSUPDATE.EXE -writehdrfile -nopause
This will leave a .hdr file with the same name as the .EXE file.
Check the BIOS image and flash it
First check the BIOS image to make sure it is good:
dellBiosUpdate -t -f DELLBIOSUPDATE.hdr
Assuming all is well, apply the update:
dellBiosUpdate -u -f DELLBIOSUPDATE.hdr
Finally, reboot, and the BIOS will be flashed to the new version.

Courtesy of: http://www.allurgroceries.com

Google Chromium install on Ubuntu Karmic x64

December 4, 2009

I love Chrome on Windows, and Chromium is useable now on Linux. It’s fast, and I find it pretty stable. Flash works on my Karmic x64, but can be buggy sometimes.

That said, here is how you do it:

First you need edit /etc/apt/sources.list file

sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

Add the following two lines

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-daily/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-daily/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

save and exit the file

Now add the GPG key using the following command

sudo apt-key adv --recv-keys --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com 0xfbef0d696de1c72ba5a835fe5a9bf3bb4e5e17b5

Update source list

sudo apt-get update

Install chromium browser using the following command

sudo apt-get install chromium-browser

This will complete the installation and you should have an icon for Chromium in the Internet group on the applications menu.

Thanks to Ubuntu Geek for this information.

Ubuntu Studio -Karmic x64 Screen Capture

December 1, 2009

I went back to Ubuntu Studio (gnome) because of problems using CXOffice and DropBox in Xfce:

HowTo: Using Drop Box in Xubuntu

November 24, 2009

[IN PROGRESS…I haven’t been able to get this to work yet]

Started working with a new Dell Vostro 1220 laptop, so I decided to install Xubuntu. Keeping my work files in sync is a high priority. Dropbox is designed to work along with Nautilus which is the default file manager in GNOME…and the default window manager in Ubuntu. But not Xubuntu which uses Thunar as it’s file manager.

By following the instructions below you can get Dropbox to work side-by-side with Xfce and Thunar. We will basically just be starting a no-frills instance of Nautilus which causes Dropbox to start. The explanation will mostly be relevant to Ubuntu/Xubuntu users, but can simply be modified to other distros.

Nautilus file manager
Dropbox for Linux
Xfce (4.4+ works best)

Install dropbox from source, or using the packages provided on the Dropbox site.
Type the following into the terminal:

nautilus --no-desktop --browser

This will start Dropbox, and the icon should appear in your system tray.
Log in, or sign up with a new account.
Now, in order to have Dropbox running every time you use Xfce, you need it to autostart. Just go to:
Menu -> Settings -> Settings Manager -> Autostarted apps -> Add
and add the following


And that’s it! Dropbox should work normally now, synching your files perfectly.