Tag Archives: top 10

gnome-shell-keyboard-shortcuts

Top 10 GNOME Shell Keyboard Shortcuts

GNOME 3 – The Next Generation Desktop is optimized for speed and productivity. If you haven’t installed the Gnome Shell in Ubuntu 11.10, then you must give it a try – because by default you are using the unity interface of Gnome 3 instead of Gnome Shell (Latest Version : 3.2). Gnome 3 has arrived with lot of exciting and innovative features that you can expect from a modern desktop. This post is dedicated to provide some cool keyboard shortcuts – which will further help you in maximizing the speed as well as in customization.

The keyboard shortcuts will work not only with Ubuntu 11.10 but also with other Linux distributions running Gnome3. I’ve already covered a post about unity keyboard shortcuts in Ubuntu 11.10, but this will focus on Gnome Shell (although some shortcuts may be common for both).

Top 10 most useful Keyboard shortcuts for Gnome Shell

  1. Alt+Tab : Pop Up Application Switcher
  2. Alt+Shift+Tab : Similar to above but in reverse order
  3. Alt+F2 : Pop up command dialog, typically helpful for launching apps
  4. Alt+F2 then type ‘r‘ and hit Enter to reload Gnome Shell Theme
  5. Alt+F1 or System Key (Windows Key) : overview of desktop (same when you slide the mouse to top left corner (Hot Corner))
  6. Ctrl+Alt+Tab : Pop up Accessibility switcher
  7. Ctrl+Shift+Alt+R : Start and end screencast recording
  8. Ctrl+Alt+Up/Down Arrow key : Used to switch between workspaces
  9. Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Up/Down Arrow key : Moves the current window to a different workspace
  10. Ctrl+Enter : Launch a shell command in new Terminal window

How to add a custom Keyboard Shortcut ?

gnome-shell-keyboard-shortcuts

Go to System Settings -> Keyboard -> Shortcuts to view the existing shortcuts or to add one or edit the existing one as you want.

zukitwo-theme with Ubuntu

Top 10 GNOME shell themes

I think that – Ubuntu 11.10 is going to rock with Gnome Shell interface (there was some critical compatibility problem with unity desktop, in earlier version). Unity also got a lot of innovative features (so I like it) but I love Gnome 3 (with Gnome Shell). After installing Ubuntu 11.10, install some necessary apps first then you may want to customize the login screen or themes. If you are a regular reader of this blog – then you might have noticed that – I’ve already covered few cool and best collection of Gnome 3 themes – i.e GTK3 and Gnome shell themes but in this article, I’m going to focus on Gnome Shell theme.

I’ve tried a lot of cool and beautiful themes in Ubuntu 11.10 but here is the list of my favorite Top 10 – cool and best gnome shell themes, that you may want to try. All are good looking, Fun and Amazingly great artworks.

Best Gnome Shell Themes

1. Zukitwo

currently, It’s my most favorite Gnome Shell theme on Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot, I’m using beta version, stable will be out within few days). It looks great! The theme is available not only as Gnome Shell Theme but also as GTK 3 theme and GTK 2 theme, so even if you are not using Gnome shell or Ubuntu, you can try it in older version of Ubuntu. The theme has been updated frequently and the bugs has been fixed actively to work seamlessly.

zukitwo-theme with Ubuntu

Download Zukitwo Gnome Shell Theme by lassekongo83

2. Atolm

Atolm Gnome Shell theme

Download Atolm Gnome Shell Theme by half-left

3. Slave

slave-gnome-shell-theme

Download Slave Gnome Shell Theme by half-left

4. Nord

nord - gnome-shell theme

Download Nord Gnome Shell Theme by 0rax0

5. Metal X

metalx-gnome-shell-theme

Download Metal X Gnome Shell theme by justviper

6. Elementary Viper Luna

Elementary luna-shell-theme

Download Elementary Viper Luna theme by justviper

 7. Capazul

capazul-gnome-shell-theme

Download Capazul Gnome Shell theme by plaidcounty

8. Orta

Orta Gnome Shell Theme

Download Orta Gnome Shell Theme

9. Adwaita White

adwaita-White shell-theme

Download Adwaita Gnome Shell Theme by oberon27

10. MinimaZero

MinimaZero Gnome Shell Theme

Download MinimaZero Theme by plaastik

How to install Gnome Shell Themes in Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) ?

installing-gnome-shell-theme

You can install it either manually (lets go with it) or using ‘gnome shell extension’. First, extract the theme packages and copy the gnome-shell directory to the usr/share/gnome-shell directory. Then rename the ‘theme’ directory to something else – e.g theme_default. Now, rename the gnome-shell directory (you’ve copied) to theme. You’re done. Simply Reload the Gnome Shell Theme either by – press ALT+F2 then type r and hit enter or logging out from the current session will also reload the theme when you will be back.

Update : If you want a Mac like look Try Mac OS X Theme in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

update-manager in Ubuntu 11.10

10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 11.10

Ubuntu 11.10 – Oneiric Ocelot beta 1 is out now! Now it’s the time to install some necessary applications/packages to make the system useful for any common purpose such as Listening music, watching movies, playing videos over the web etc. or any specific purposes (e.g if you’re a web designer then you need to install some cool fonts, image editors, graphics designing tools etc).

Since Ubuntu 11.10 has already made some good changes in the selection of default applications (as compare to previous versions), but still a lot of efforts are required to customize the Ubuntu for your needs. Here is list of top 10 customization tips that I think is required for most of the users, feel free to add one if you feel it’s useful for Ubuntu users, through comments. Some of the packages are mandatory while some are recommended based on its popularity – if you don’t like any Apps, just swap it out with your favorite one.

Things to do after a fresh installation of Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)

1. Update Ubuntu (Repository cache)

After installing Ubuntu 11.10, first of all, update the package information (you are always recommended to update your computer as frequently as possible but surely before installing any new programs so that you will get the latest one available in the repository). You can update your system either from command line

Open a terminal (Ctrl + Alt + t) and execute the following commands –

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

Alternate way – start update manager (it’s installed by default, just search for it) and click on install updates.

update-manager in Ubuntu 11.10
updating repository using Update Manager

2. Install ‘Ubuntu Restricted Extras’ – codecs/plugins

You need to install the audio mp3 (MPEG Layer 3) decoders as it’s required for playing your mp3 songs), similarly you need to install Adobe flash player on Ubuntu 11.10 for playing flash content such as YouTube Videos (although they are trying to replace the flash dependencies with HTML 5). You can install all these proprietary plugins/codecs by installing the package called ‘ubuntu restricted extras’. Open a terminal and execute the command –

sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras

Restricted library/packages for playing encrypted DVD’s

Although you’ve installed ‘ubuntu-restricted-extra’, you still won’t be able to play any proprietary DVD (which is usually encrypted with CSS(Content Scramble System) ). Therefore You also need to install libdvdcss2, a free software library for unscrambling/accessing those DVDs. Open terminal and execute the following commands (You may need to reboot) –

sudo apt-get install libdvdread4
sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/install-css.sh

3. Install Additional (graphics card and webcam) drivers

If you are using any graphics/video card (which is recommended for 3D effects in Unity or Gnome-shell, if your computer doesn’t fulfill the graphics requirement then you will be 2D version of Unity, in fallback mode). In most of the cases, Ubuntu will automatically detect and tell you there any additional hardware drivers are necessary or not, you just need to select the appropriate driver and click on Activate.

graphics-drivers

For any reason if your graphics card (probably NVIDIA or ATI) doesn’t get detected automatically then don’t be panic. Go to System Settings -> Additional Drivers and wait for the window to appear with driver options. Select the driver software you want to install and click on Activate. After installing the driver – restart your computer. That set.

install cheese – webcam software/driver for your webcam

If you want to use your webcam for taking pictures or recording videos then you must need a webcam software. Cheese is the most popular webcam software, and it’s already there in Ubuntu Software Center, or install it from terminal –

sudo apt-get install cheese

4. Install Chromium Web browser for faster browsing

chromium
Chromium – Browsing with Speed

Firefox is the default web browser in Ubuntu 11.10, which is slow and very unstable (if you’ve multiple tabs and add-on’s installed). On the other hand Chromium is pretty fast and it’s popularity is increasing exponentially. So it’s a must have Application on Ubuntu (or any other OS). Chromium supports all the extensions/themes that you use on Chrome. it’s one of the most popular software in Ubuntu Software Center. So you can install it in a single click from Ubuntu Software Center, or just type the command in terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T ) :

sudo apt-get install chromium-browser

You should install some codecs like FFmpeg for playing multimedia contents on web.

sudo apt-get install chromium-codecs-ffmpeg-extra

If you want to use chrome then go here – I’ve already explained about – installing Google Chrome on Ubuntu 11.10, in detail.

5. Install VLC Player

VLC player is one of the most popular open source media player. It is commonly called as – ‘all in one‘ media player, it has lot of features that you expect from a modern media player. On Ubuntu 11.10 – it’s a must have application – for video player it’s probably the best one. VLC player is capable of playing a wide range media formats such as mp3, avi, mp4, flv etc. Since it’s available in Ubuntu Software Center – you can either install it from there or type the command –

sudo apt-get install vlc

vlc-snapshot

6. Install any Image editing program

An image editing/creating software is necessary for every one, by default no such program is installed. So you’re recommended to install an image editor.

GIMP is the most popular open source and free image editor, having features similar to Adobe Photoshop. GIMP has a lot of powerful features which allows you to create complex graphics designs/images. it is more suitable for intermediate users – those having some experience in image editing. To install gimp – either search in Ubuntu Software Center or install it from terminal –

sudo apt-get install gimp

For some extra set of brushes, gradients and plugins etc execute :

sudo apt-get install gimp-data-extras
sudo apt-get install gimp-plugin-registry

pinta-snapshot

Pinta is a good image editing program – with some basic features. it’s very easy to use, so most suitable for absolute beginners. it looks very similar to MS paint program. To install pinta – use Ubuntu Software Center or execute the command –

sudo apt-get install pinta

7. Try Gnome shell

Ubuntu 11.10 uses Unity as the default UI/window manager but it’s based on Gnome 3 so you can install Gnome shell simultaneously (without breaking the Unity desktop, which used to happen in previous version of Ubuntu i.e in 11.04). Gnome shell has been developed from scratch for a totally new experience. The interaction and navigation has been evolved in Gnome shell – so it appears to be the next generation desktop. The Gnome shell is already there, in the official repository of Ubuntu 11.10 – so you can install Gnome 3 in one simple command (or from USC)

sudo apt-get install gnome-shell

If you’ve any problem in using Gnome shell – then refer to my previous post about installing Gnome shell on Ubuntu 11.10 , where a little bit of extra information is there along with step wise installation instructions.

8. setup an online file backup program

You must keep an an online backup of your important files. Now a days- cloud backup is recommended. Ubuntu 11.10 has ‘Ubuntu One’ installed by default, in which you will get 2GB free storage and you can access (direct music streaming is also available) your files from anywhere. Most of the backup programs such as Dropbox offers sync features – which can also be used in collaborative projects.

ubuntu-one
Ubuntu One – backup with Cloud

 

Ubuntu One

it’s already installed in Ubuntu 11.10. You will get 2GB of free storage (in cloud). So you can easily synchronize your critical files using this application. Click on the Ubuntu One launcher in the panel and follow the instructions. Files can accessed from anywhere – and music streaming is also available on Android and iPhone.

Dropbox

Dropbox
File Sharing is Fun!

Dropbox is one of the most popular file sharing (as well as backup) program. Dropbox offers 2GB storage for free. You must have a dropbox account to start, if you don’t have then create an account first. Sync feature of dropbox is great! which makes it well suitable for collaborative projects (as files are secure and easy to share/collaborate, deleted files can be recovered up-to 30 days (in free plan)). In Ubuntu 11.10 – dropbox (integration script with Nautilus) has been included in official repository. So you can install it directly from Software Center or type the command –

sudo apt-get install nautilus-dropbox

9. install gnome tweak tool

Gnome Tweak Tool is a utility for Gnome 3 desktop for tweaking the desktop settings – and so it allows us to customize (windows look/behavior, theme, Fonts etc) the desktop as we want. The ‘appearance’ settings doesn’t have much option now (as it used to be in earlier version of Gnome) so Gnome Tweak Tool will do that.

gnome-tweak-tool
Tweaking Ubuntu 11.10

To install Gnome Tweak Tool open terminal and execute –

sudo apt-get install gnome-tweak-tool

10. Try cool themes / icons

The default theme in Ubuntu isn’t that cool. Right? I don’t know about you but many of us like to have cool/charming icons and themes. So find out some great themes and icons, and enjoy Ubuntu 11.10.

Radiamentary Theme for Unity

Download Radiamentary Theme

To install themes in unity, Extract and Copy the theme file to usr/share/themes ; then open Gnome Tweak Tool and select that theme (GTK, icon, window etc). That’s All.

Additionally, Ubuntu software center is there – so just relax and search for applications that you like, and find out your favorite applications or try something new. Have Fun!

Update! For latest stable version of Ubuntu – 10 things to do after installing ubuntu 12.10 guide!

Checkout my new web Application : Railyo – a private job board for rails developers!

keyboard shortcuts

Ubuntu 11.04 keyboard shortcuts

Ubuntu is the most popular Linux desktop, the latest version ubuntu 11.04 (code name : Natty Narwhal) has arrived a month ago with a lot of changes, modification and surprises (such as Unity is now the default desktop in Ubuntu). If you’ve been using Ubuntu from long time then upgrading to Ubuntu 11.04, may not be a good idea as Unity is almost different and so you have to customize and learn new tricks as well as keyboard and mouse shortcuts for better experience.

Unity desktop has removed the bottom panel, which is helpful in accessing opened windows and other running applications, instead of that – it has a left panel  – Launcher (with auto hide features) seem almost similar to Dock Application but with some different functionality and 3D effects.

Why should you try keyboard shortcuts in Ubuntu?

Although an average computer user do not use shortcuts a lot but shortcuts can improve (a lot) the experience with Ubuntu (or any other Linux based distribution because all are 100% customizable) and it will also save a lot of time and effort, eventually resulting in better productivity. That’s the importance of keyboard shortcuts. Let’s consider an example – to open a terminal you will have to spend  3-6 seconds, if you don’t use any shortcuts, on the other hand if you use shortcut then 1-2 seconds will be enough; it means you saved 2-4 seconds in opening an applications…so finally you will save a lot of time if you apply this to some of your favorite applications or actions. The layout of unity also encourage us to use keyboard shortcuts, because there is no bottom panel is available from which we can select the apps window in single mouse click, instead of that first we have to move the mouse to launcher’s location, then launcher will appear, now we can select the desired apps.

keyboard shortcuts

Okay, lets come to the point – learn some cool and best keyboard shortcuts (these are default shortcuts, if you want you can customize/configure out in your way) that you can use in Ubuntu 11.04 with unity Desktop (although some of them may works with Gnome desktop as well as in older versions of Ubuntu such as 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) or 10.04 LTS (Lucid Lynx)..just try (of course carefully) you will figure out in minutes).

Top 10 keyboard shortcuts for Ubuntu 11.04 Users

#1 : Ctrl+Alt+T => Opens a Terminal (Command Line or shell).

#2 : Super => Shows Unity Launcher (with Numbers indicated for each Apps) .       /* Super key => key with Windows Logo */

#3 : Super + {Number} => Opens corresponding Application (according to the number).       /* e.g Super+1 opens Home directory on my desktop */

#4 : Super+T => Opens Trash (Recycle Bin of Ubuntu).

#5 : Super+A => Opens the Application Lens.

#6 : Super+F => Opens the File and Folders Lens.

#7 : Alt+F2 => Run a command.

#8 : Alt+F1 =>Puts focus on a Launcher.

#9: Super+D => Minimizes or Restores all Windows

#10 : Ctrl+Alt+Numpad x => where

x = 0 : Maximizes the Window

x = 1, 2, 3….9 : Move the window to different location on the screen depending on the number, so focus on a window and try it.

I’ve explained only few simple keyboard shortcuts, if you know something extra then feel free to share with us – through comments!

desktop-configuration-editor

Top 10 Tips and Tricks for Ubuntu 11.04

Ubuntu 11.04 – Natty Narwhal is out now!, After fresh installation of Ubuntu 11.04, you need to install some basic application and packages to make your system usable, although some nice Apps are installed by default. In this post, you will get some basic and cool tips and tricks, for Ubuntu 11.04, and I assume that ‘it will be helpful for beginner, who has just installed the Ubuntu and wondering – what should I do now? how will I do that in Ubuntu?’, Relax.. everything is simple . if you have any problem/question or you want to recommend something then reply through comments.

Ubuntu 11.04 is a free and open source – Linux Based Distribution, developed for common desktop users. I’ve more than two years of experience with Ubuntu (Since version 9.04). Few days before I’d installed the fresh stable version of Ubuntu 11.04, and finally prepared a list of few tips ‘n’ tricks that may help you in understanding, exploring and customizing Ubuntu as you wanted. Here is my favorite – and probably the best Tips ‘n’ tricks for a novice Ubuntu 11.04 users –

Top 10 collection of cool Tips ‘n’ Tricks for Ubuntu 11.04 users :

#1 : Remove Hard Drive Partition/Volume Icons from Desktop

Open Configuration Editor – hit ALT+F2 , then type gconf-editor and hit Enter. Then go to apps -> nautilus -> desktop and simply uncheck (select the row by double clicking on it) the box that says ‘Volumes Visible’. That’s all you will notice the instant effect, Then just close the window and Enjoy! Your Desktop looks much better now, due to removal of cluttered – drive icons.

desktop-configuration-editor

#2 : Mount Drives automatically when your computer starts

If you are using Ubuntu along with Windows in dual boot mode, then you may need to access NTFS partition frequently, so it’s not a bad idea to enable auto-mount of hard drive at system startup. PySDM is a simple ‘storage device manager’ application (based on PyGTK)  that allows full customization of hard drive mount points. To install you can search for ‘pysdm’ in synaptic package manager or Type the following command(s) given below – at Terminal (CTRL+ALT+T) :

sudo apt-get install pysdm

storage-device-manager

Then open it from Applications -> System -> Storage Device Manager or simply search for it. Now you are ready to customize it – just select the drive or partitions and click on mount or any other options that you want to configure. Be careful, while tempering with your hard drive, a silly mistake might piss you off.

#3 : Aero Glass Effect in Window Border

translucent Window in Ubuntu 11.04

You just need to enable metacity opacity (by default opacity value is equal to one, Make it translucent by decreasing its value, less than .7 to get effective level of translucency) settings from the configuration settings. Again, open gconf-editor (hit ALT+F2 , type gconf-editor and press Enter)  and go to Apps ->gwd and double click on metacity_theme_opacity row, then change its value (1) to .7 or .5 (something less than 1).

gwd

#4 : Try Gnome 3 / Gnome Shell

Gnome 3 (The Next Generation of Desktop) is available through PPA (Personal Package Archive), although if you will install Gnome 3 on Ubuntu 11.04 – Natty Narwhal , then your Unity would break and this process is irreversible , so think once! before you do that.

gnome-3-snapshot

#5 : Switch to classic Gnome 2.3 desktop

Probably, Many of us do not like Unity Desktop, don’t worry, you can use your favorite classic desktop – ‘Gnome 2.3’ on Ubuntu 11.04 without any problem, it is installed by default. You just need to select the classic desktop option at login prompt, to run Gnome Desktop.

#6 : Install Cool Faenza Icons

Don’t you like cool icons on your desktop, I think so (with the Assumption that you are a Human! :)). Install Faenza icons from the command line – Then select it from Theme customize options (Appearance -> Themes, then customize any theme to use Faenza Icons and save the theme).

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:tiheum/equinox
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install faenza-icon-theme

faenza-icons-snapshot

#7 : Unlock Root in GUI mode

Although it’s not required because you can do the administrative task using sudo command, but – just for fun! if you want to enjoy root power in GUI mode then there is a simple trick to unlock root in Ubuntu 11.04. But you have to be – very careful while using Ubuntu as root, because a small mistake may break the system.

#8 : Tweak Ubuntu 11.04 settings as you want

Ubuntu is a free and open source OS, so it’s 100% customizable. If you want to tweak ubuntu settings then use some tools/utility like Ubuntu Tweak for customizing Ubuntu 11.04. Ubuntu Tweak (a free and open source application) will allow you to configure Ubuntu in easy way.

how-to-tweak-ubuntu 11.04

#9 : Configure Boot options – Grub

Install a simple utility –  StartUp Manager, to customize the GRUB and splash screens, in GUI mode. The command is –

sudo apt-get install startupmanager

startup-manager

#10 : Move the Windows buttons to Right Corner

Moving button to right

If you have the habit of using Maximize, Minimize and Close buttons in Right Corner, then you should change default windows button layout of Ubuntu 11.04. Open gconf-editor (hit ALT+F2 and enter ‘gconf-editor’) and go to apps -> Metacity -> General and select button layout field (Double click on the row) and change the default value to –

menu:maximize,minimize,close