Launch more than one instance of a program in Ubuntu on another workspace

For the insanely organized amongst you there are times you may wish to run more than one instance of the same program – but on a separate workspace.

="http://cdn.omgubuntu.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/Workspace-1_013-500x281.png" alt="" width="500" height="281" />

If you open an application in workspace A, then move to workspace B and click that application’s icon in the Unity launcher, you’ll be jumped back to workspace A.

Instead, to open another instance of the program, simply middle mouse click (or if you’re on a laptop, press both left button and right button simultaneously to simulate a middle click) on the icon which will spawn a new window with the same application.

It’s the little things that count!

The video below by Ubuntu user johnekerr shows an alternative method of achieving the same thing by using Natty’s Applications Dash.

No related posts.


One Hundred Paper Cuts’ Oneiric cycle has started, get involved!

It’s the beginning of yet another cycle of bug fixing, squashing, smashing and thrashing!

The One Hundred Papercuts Project is back for the Oneiric cycle, with lots of tiny and trivial bugs, a.k.a Papercuts, waiting to be fixed by everyday people like yourself.

What is a Papercut?

From the Papercuts wiki page:

A paper cut is a trivially fixable usability bug that the average user would encounter in a default application of Ubuntu or Kubuntu OR in any of the featured applications.

A more detailed explanation of a papercut would be:
  • A bug, or an unintended problem occurring within an existing piece of software,
  • the presence of which makes a computer more difficult or less pleasant to use,
  • that is easy to fix,
  • that the average user would encounter,
  • in a default application of the Ubuntu or Kubuntu release currently under development OR in any of the featured applications.

How do I get involved?

It’s really quite simple!

To report a Papercut, follow these steps:

If you found something you believe to be a valid paper cut, how do you report the issue?
  1. Make sure that the issue you’re about to report isn’t already reported at Launchpad and make sure the bug is a valid paper cut;
  2. If the paper cut was already reported in Ubuntu, but not in the One Hundred Paper Cuts project, press the “Also affects Project” link to add the paper cut to the project;

If the paper cut was not reported yet:
  1. File the bug in the affected package in the Ubuntu project on Launchpad. When reporting the bug, use Apport, either via the application’s “Help -> Report a Problem” menu item, or by using the command ‘ubuntu-bug’ and pass the name of the affected package as an argument.
  2. Now add the One Hundred Paper Cuts project to the bug report using the “Also affects Project” link.

To fix a Paper cut, follow these instructions:

All you need to do is check out the list of Paper cuts attached to this cycle on Launchpad, decide on a few you’d like to have a crack at fixing, upload your patch, and you’re done!

For more information, check out https://wiki.ubuntu.com/PaperCut and get to it so we can make Oneiric a kick-ass, niggly-bug free release!


‘Unity Impression’ theme for Ubuntu 11.04 is subtle, easy on the eyes

If the default GTK themes supplied with Ubuntu 11.04 aren’t to your taste ‘Unity Impression‘, a new GTK theme designed specifically with Ubuntu’s Unity interface in mind, is well worth a try out.

Drawing on elements of the impression-ism painting movement of the 19th century throughout, the theme is described by its author, John Baer, as “…falling somewhere between Ambiance and Radiance.”

The theme sports dark scrollbars, inset frames, and sees a smooth almost sandy-coloured gradient used for windows and buttons.

The window controls are small and ‘button free’ A known bug in Unity sees the window controls replaced by a set of defaults when a window is maximised.

Download | UnityImpression.tar.gz

Images by John Baer


Turn The Google Menu Bar Into An Ubuntu-themed Panel

Google began rolling out a darker menu bar across its sites and services yesterday.

This minor similarity has led one developer to create a userstyle that replaces Google’s choice of menu bar with an Ubuntu Ambiance-themed ‘Panel’ style – even through to the highlight colour used in menus


The userstyle is available to download from gnome-look.org.

Once fully download head to your Downloads folder and extract the .zip archive.

Next open your ‘Home’ folder and press ‘CTRL+H’ to reveal hidden files and folders.

Google Chrome/ium users need to move the css file to:
  • ~/.config/chromium/Default/User StyleSheets/

Firefox users need to move the css file to:
  • ~/.mozilla/firefox/yourProfile/chrome/

Going Further in Chrome

For an even greater Ambiance-themed Chrome you can also install: -


Understanding Version Control Systems – Bazaar with Launchpad

This article will cover mostly bazaar as git is still complex for part II. Bazaar is mostly widely used along with Launchpad, so this article would also contain lots of launchpad and bazaar references. Before reading this, please read the previous post>.

From the previous post you learnt:
  1. Getting the code
  2. Making changes
  3. Saving your changes
  4. Checking and analysing your changes and sync with team
  5. Revision numbers.

The understanding of these is needed for further reading.


Branches can be explained as a unit of parallel work. When multiple people get the code, they have their own local copy of the branch.

Whenever you want to work on a project which uses any version control system(VCS), the general workflow is
  1. Get the code
  2. Make the changes
  3. Commit the changes
  4. Submit the changes
  5. Your changes make it's way in the official codebase

Each of the step can differ slightly in each of the VCS. Each VCS can have more than one way to execute any of these steps. The way these steps are executed also depends on how the whole project works.

Let's imagine you are working on the codebase of zeitgeist. Zeitgeist development happens on lauinchpad and it uses bazaar as it's VCS. Now let's see how the whole thing should work

Bazaar branch URL format

You need to branch the code from the remote server, also called the central repository. Bazaar can also work without launchpad, but it's lanchpad integration makes the work a lot easier. Let's branch the code

bzr branch lp:zeitgeist

The lp: is a shortcut and the bazaar-launchpad integration resolves the whole thing and gets the code from http://launchpad.net/zeitgeist which is the code you see over here

Handling branches

In Bazaar each branch is contained inside a folder. So basically you can branch the code into multiple folders and work parallel on it without knowing what the other branch has. This means that multiple people can together work on the same codebase without worrying about who else is working on the same codebase.

Every branch can be present locally on your disk as well as on the remote server – in this case launchpad. If you need to make some changes to a remote branch, you need to fetch it from the server using the bzr branch command, then make changes, commit and push to the same branch. Note that you might not be able to push to that branch if you don't have it's ownership. This case will be discussed now. You can then also make further changes to your branch and push them to the same location.

After you are done with the work on your branch, you commit your changes and push your code on the server in a new remote branch. Example this way

bzr push lp:~yourusername/projectname/branchname

like in my case it would be

bzr push lp:~manishsinha/zeitgeist/testing-branch

all these branches are visible at the URL – http://code.launchpad.net/zeitgeist

Similarly the other users can also make changes to the codebase and push their branches in the similar fashion. Two branch names can hardly clash since you cannot push branches under someone’s else name

The branch which is denoted by lp:projectname and in this case being lp:zeitgeist denotes the primary branch where all the code ends up finally. This is the official branch for any project.

Branch gets merged

Now the maintainer of the project has to merge your branch. The maintainer first gets the latest branch contents by doing a bzr pull in the already existing branch on the disk or a bzr branch lp:zeitgeist in case the owner does not have the code with him/her at the moment.

Next the maintainer does a

bzr merge lp:~manishsinha/zeitgeist/testing-branch

which merges both the branches. Next the maintainer commits the changes and pushes the changes in the official branch. The push is done by simply

bzr push lp:zeitgeist

Merge Requests

Launchpad a feature called merge request. When you have your changes ready in a branch present on launchpad, then you can request that your branch be merged with your official branch. The maintainer of the projects gets notified of your request. In the merge request launchpad page, the various maintainers can review your branch changes. Taking their comments into picture, you need to update your branch on the local disk and then push it to the same branch.

An example of the merge request is here


The first line shows who proposed the merge request. There can be cases when a person made the changes and pushed the branch on launchpad, but the merge request was created by someone else.

At the top you can see Status of the merge request which can be
  • Work in Progress
  • Needs Review
  • Approved
  • Rejected
  • Merged

The status are self-explanatory

The next two lines contains
  • Proposed Branch – The branch which needs to be be merged
  • Merged Into – Most of the time it is the official/main branch of the project, but it can be any random branch.

Next you can see who all reviewed the merge request and what they said about it. The review which is used the most are
  • Comment only – Just add a remark
  • Approve – Everything is fine
  • Needs Fixing – Some problems found. It needs to be fixed
  • Needs Information – Sometimes the changes are not clear and the reviewer asks for more information
  • Abstain – The reviewer prefers to abstain from any review
  • Disapprove – The reviewer disagrees with the changes. This is used when the reviewer doesn’t want the changes at all.

Just below you can see the description of the merge request and the various comments from the reviewers. Note that reviewers might not always be the developers of the project you are contributing too. Anyone can be a reviewer in which case Community would be appended to the name in the Review table.

After the comment section you can see the commits which were made in this branch. A person can get the code, make the changes in multiple commits and then push. All the changes which are not in the official branch are shown here.

Below the commit list is the diff. Diff shows the differences of changes. Red lines show what has been removed and green tells what has been added.

Many projects on Launchpad make heavy use of Merge Request. In infrastructures where this feature is not present, bug reports are used for reviews. This feature of Merge Request is more easier for newcomers,much cleaner and clearly separates bugs from merge reviews.


Hangouts, Sparks, Circles, and Huddles – we make sense of Google+

Before you ask: No, I can’t send you an invite. Google has turned off invites for now due to “insane demand.” Sorry!

Yesterday, Google unveiled its new social network and competitor to Facebook, ‘Google+.’ The service aims to bring the search, phone, advertising, video chat (seriously, what doesn’t Google compete in nowadays) giant into the social network market currently dominated by Mr Zuckerberg’s Facebook.

We don’t usually cover social networks on OMG! Ubuntu!, but we figured that the introduction of Google+ means a lot to the future landscape of the Internet, and the fact that invites are scarce (luckily we were sent a couple) compelled me to write a run-down article covering the basic features.

Upon opening up Google+ for the first time, you’re greeted with a welcome screen which briefly explains a few of the core features: Circles (how you organize contacts), Hangouts (video conference calling), and Sparks (feeds of interesting content).

If you’re a Google user and your Google Profile is filled out, you’ll have a bit of a head start as Google+ pulls in your profile picture and information automatically, as well as linking to a Picasa account.

The basic structure is fairly similar to Facebook, with four main sections of the service: Stream, Photos, Profile, and Circles.


The +1 button finally makes sense. The Stream is pretty much a Facebook news feed. You’re able to post updates, attach photos, links, videos, your current location and more. Your contacts can then “+1″ things (equivalent to like on Facebook), and comment.

The stream instantly updates in real time when new comments appear and people +1 things. One of the biggest selling points over Facebook is the ability to selectively choose which Circles you’d like to share updates to. A bit like Facebook Lists, but mainly taking huge inspiration from Diaspora’s way of managing contacts, the Circles feature of Google+ really makes it easier to organize contacts into groups, creating an experience much more akin to real life.


Photos are split into a couple of different areas, “Photos from your circles,” “Photos from your phone,” “Photos of you,” and “Your albums.”

The most interesting feature in Photos is the Photos from your phone section. If you’re lucky enough to have an Android phone, there’s a Google+ app in the market. It’s exceptionally feature rich and very responsive, even on my ancient HTC Magic. The niftiest feature by far is Instant Upload which, when enabled, automatically uploads photos you take to a private album on Google+.

Your photos can’t be seen by anyone until they’re shared. It’s a bit like Apple’s iCloud.


Google have taken a careful approach to the Profile section, mimicking Facebook but with a lot less detail which in my opinion is a great thing. There is currently no equivalent for Facebook’s Pages on Google+, so people’s profiles aren’t cluttered with a bunch of music, interests, movies, books, mindless pages, or events.

The absence of an equivalent to Facebook Pages is interesting, and I’d love to know whether Google have a plan to introduce something similar. A lot of businesses and brands (including OMG! Ubuntu!) rely heavily on social media as a tool to connect with their audience.


As I touched on above, Circles give you a way to easily organize your contacts into groups that closer reflect real life. The default circles are Friends, Family, Acquaintances, and Following. The first three are self-explanatory, and following is simply a group for people you “don’t know personally, but whose posts you find interesting.”

Organizing contacts is a simple matter of dragging and dropping them into circles. The animations are pleasing (especially the awesome one where you delete a circle!) and it’s all much easier than Facebook.


Hangout is simply Google Talk video chat except with people in a particular circle. You or one of your friends can start a “Hangout,” at which point Benjamin Humphrey is hanging out appears in their Stream. Up to a maximum of 10 people can jump on the bandwagon and join in the video chat session.


Huddle is a mix between Google Talk and Apple’s iMessage. It’s targeted at mobile, and lets you group text anyone you please that you’re friends with on Google+. Unlike iMessage, it’s cross-platform, so once apps for platforms other than Android start appearing, you’ll be able to chat with your friends anywhere you like.

It’s unclear what the difference is between Huddle and Google+ Chat (which is just Google Chat), apart from the emphasis the former has on group participation, rather than simply one-to-one chatting.


Google+ is certainly an extremely enticing and competitive alternative to Facebook. It fills the gap for a service that has been requested by many over the years, especially since Facebook privacy concerns have escalated.

Google+ promises an easier way to manage your privacy and your friends, it has a friendly and intuitive interface and cuts down on the cruft that built up over time (I’m looking at you, Facebook Apps!)

It also introduces new features such as video conferencing with friends (should Skype be worried?), a slick and fast mobile app for Android with Instant Upload of photos, and integrates existing Google technologies like Chat, Gmail, Google Profiles, and Picasa.

Google+ is really what Google has needed from the very start. While Wave and Buzz felt like half-baked addons to the Google Apps network, Google+ really feels like it’s a centralized service that brings everything together.

Whether you want to give up Facebook and convert to Google+ is a personal decision, but deep down inside, I can’t help thinking that we’re only taking our information and handing it over to another big corporation without really improving our privacy along the way.


Ubuntu 11.10 Development Update

This is a guest post from Daniel Holbach, who will be posting updates about Ubuntu Development. (Original Post).

Ubuntu Development Update

We are one week away from Alpha 2, so right now you can see lots of developers trying to get as many things into Ubuntu Oneiric as possible: AirPrint, theme changes and loads of other stuff. After this milestone we will have only 4 weeks left until Feature Freeze at which stage most of the features should have have landed. As always: the status overview should give you a very detailed look on how each feature is progressing.

I’m very pleased about the number and turnout of initiatives we have to allow new contributors to get involved in Ubuntu Development easily.
  • The dh_python2 porting jam was very successful. Up until now we managed to convert 44% of all the packages on the CD. There is still quite a bit to do. Here’s instructions, talk to Barry on IRC how to best help out.
  • Nigel Babu and Stefano Rivera organised a FTBFS jam to fix packages that fail to build from source. A number of packages have been fixed, but there’s still quite a few that need to get sorted out. Catch Nigel and Stefano on IRC and talk to them about it!
  • Ubuntu Developer Week is very very closed to being finalised. Put 11th to 15th July into your diary and make sure you’re there. It will be awesome!

Last week I pointed out five different bitesize bugs. I’m happy to report that two are currently under review (thanks Alexander Fougner and Ben Tucker) and two had been fixed in Oneiric already.

New Contributor

This week I talked to Alexandru Cucu from Romania, here’s what he has to say:

Alexandru CucuI’m close to having a bachelor’s degree in computer science but I’m not that much into software development.

I have started using Ubuntu in 2007, on a virtual machine running under MS Windows. Ubuntu was love at first sight! After a couple of weeks of working in a virtual machine, it was installed as the only OS on my machine. I was looking for free (as in “free beer”) software as my budget was very low. I had discovered more than that, it was free as in “free speech” software, most of it at a couple of clicks away, in the Ubuntu repository. Since then, I have dedicated my spare time for spreading the word about the free software movement.

The best things about Ubuntu are the freedom and the large community. It’s impossible not to find someone able to help you.

I use Ubuntu for:
  • programming (mostly Java, but there were some C, C++ and C# projects – I know .NET/Mono is not a good choice if you are into FLOSS, but I had some school projects that required it)
  • hosting web, email, file and database servers (learned many useful thing about how GNU/Linux works while configuring my first server)
  • usual stuff as web browsing, watching movies, document editing, instant messaging …

Most of my contribution to Ubuntu is inside the Romanian LoCo Team. I’m offering technical support on the Romanian web forums and I am now a moderator.

Other small contributions are:
  • translations
  • holding presentations at conferences and workshops
  • LoCo website editing
  • sending free Ubuntu stickers to users around the country
  • spreading the word about Ubuntu in other informal ways

About my contribution you wrote about, I have read your article where bug #785052 was mentioned. It just looked too simple not to fix it. I’m not familiar with the Ubuntu development process, but your tutorials guided me through the entire thing.

I plan looking for projects written in Java (since I have some experience) and contribute some more, also planning a translation of your tutorials as this might attract people interested in developing free software.

Get Involved

  1. Read the Introduction to Ubuntu Development. It’s a short article which will help you understand how Ubuntu is put together, how the infrastructure is used and how we interact with other projects.
  2. Follow the instructions in the Getting Set Up article. A few simple commands, a registration at Launchpad and you should have all the tools you need, and you’re ready to go.
  3. Check out our instructions for how to fix a bug in Ubuntu, they come with small examples that make it easier to visualise what exactly you need to do.

Find something to work on

Pick a bitesize bug. These are the bugs we think should be easy to fix. Another option is to help out in one of our initiatives.

In addition to that there are loads more opportunities over at Harvest.

Getting in touch

There are many different ways to contact Ubuntu developers and get your questions answered.
  • Be interactive and reach us most immediately: talk to us in #ubuntu-motu on irc.freenode.net.
  • Follow mailing lists and get involved in the discussions: ubuntu-devel-announce (announce only, low traffic), ubuntu-devel (high-level discussions), ubuntu-devel-discuss (fairly general developer discussions).
  • Stay up to date and follow the ubuntudev account on Facebook, Identi.ca or Twitter.

No related posts.


Ask OMG! – What are the best C++ development tools for Ubuntu? We find out!

This is a new weekly series called Ask OMG! where readers can send in their questions each week and we’ll do our best to come up with an answer. We’d encourage you to provide even more detailed insight in the comments section, too!

Development tools for Ubuntu – there are a few of them, but which one is the best for C++ development?

Avi Hein wrote in to us with the following question:

What are the best development tools for C++ in Ubuntu?


Eclipse is one of the most well-known IDEs available across the board for Linux, Windows, and OS X. Born as an IBM Canada project in 2001, it has been a free software project for its entire decade-long life and is surely responsible for helping the development in a lot of your day to day software.

Predominantly written in Java, Eclipse is praised as being easy to use and feature rich, thanks to an extensive range of plugins. In fact, with the exception of a small run-time kernel, everything in Eclipse is a plug-in!

A lot of people replied to us on Twitter and said that they used and loved Eclipse, although OMG! reader Henri Sivonen noted that he used the version from Eclipse’s website, rather than the version in Ubuntu’s repository, presumably because it’s out of date.

Website: eclipse.org


Unlike Eclipse, Anjuta is an IDE that’s built specifically for coding in C and C++. It’s not cross-platform, but integrates very well with the GNOME environment, and consequently Ubuntu.

Anjuta features project management, application wizards, an interactive debugger, and a powerful source code editor with source browsing, code completion, and syntax highlighting.

A lot of readers on Twitter said that they like Anjuta because it’s very easy to use and looks good in Ubuntu. Being fine tuned specifically for C and C++ development work, there’s also no need to do anything special out of the box before you get your C on.

It’s also regularly updated and actively maintained.

Website: anjuta.org


Code::Blocks is a six year old free and open source, cross-platform IDE. Using a plugin architecture similar to Eclipse, its capabilities and features are defined by the provided plugins. Code::Blocks is also oriented to C and C++ which makes it an ideal candidate for work in those languages.

Code::Blocks boasts a number of useful features, including support for multiple compilers, syntax highlighting, an integrated to-do list, font settings, a debugger, GUI designer, and a custom build system.

Website: codeblocks.org


An Oracle project, NetBeans was born out of a student project at Charles University in Prague, until it was bought by Sun Microsystems in 1997. NetBeans is a cross-platform IDE with support for developing code in many languages such as Java, JavaScript, PHP, Python, Ruby, C, C++, Scala, and many more.

Feature rich and reliable, NetBeans is the choice of many for developing in any language.

Website: netbeans.org

A text editor like Geany, Vim, Emacs, or Gedit

If you don’t want the added weight of a fully-fledged IDE like the above four, and can survive without all the extra features, then the best way to develop C++ might be to simply use a pimped out text editor like Geany, Vim, or Emacs.

Even Ubuntu’s standard text editor Gedit does the trick for some!

Install: sudo apt-get install geany vim emacs gedit

In all

At the end of the day, whatever tool you use to develop will be down to personal preference. While some software may be more feature rich than others, more stable, reliable, or cross platform, ultimately developers will use whatever suits their workflow the most.

What do you use?

We hope you enjoyed this first iteration of Ask OMG! If you’ve got a question for us to look into, send us an email at ask@omgubuntu.co.uk and you might see your question answered here.

In the meantime, join the discussion in the comments!

No related posts.


Novacut back on Kickstarter

OS X and Windows users always had no shortage of pro video editors but Linux never had such privilege. Novacut project aims to bring a pro video editor to Linux that is 100% free and open source right down to every single detail.

t-is-back-on-kickstarter/ks-novacut-brandmark/" >A year ago, Novacut tried to crowdfund their product project using Kickstarter but failed due to less publicity. This time they are back but now with an awesome community with support from some famous artists, The best ever brand identity and a full blown User Experience focus.

What is Novacut?
Here is a video that explains what Novacut is:-

You can support the project with any amount and read more at Kickstarter.


GNOME Screencasts Episode 3: ‘Creating a Nifty Calculator’

The third episode in Daniel Siegel's 'GNOME Screencasts' series, which aims to introduce new developers to the GNOME platform, is now online and ready to view.

This episode, which weR17;ve helpfully embedded below, sees Daniel guide the creation of ‘a nifty calculator application’.

Last weeks episode “creating a fancy photo application” can be found here, whilst the first entry to the series can be viewed here.

Via Dgsiegel.net


LibreOffice 3.4.1 Released, Brings Bugfixes

LibreOffice 3.4.1 has been released for all platforms.

The update, the first of the 3.4.x version line, is primarily a _blank">bug fix release and brings fixes for many of the new features and changes the previous release introduced.

“LibreOffice 3.4.1 fixes several bugs that affected the previous version, and can be safely deployed for production needs by most users.” ~ Document Foundation


LibreOffice 3.4.1 can be downloaded in .DEB installer format for Ubuntu from the official website at libreoffice.org/download.

LibreOffice PPA is also available for Ubuntu users, however it is yet to be updated with the 3.4.x series.

The latest version of LibreOffice available from the Ubuntu Software Centre is LibreOffice 3.3.2.

The next release in the LibreOffice 3.4.x series is due late July.



Ubuntu Oneiric Updates: Slicker Scrollbars, Modal dialogs, Guest Session & More!

Ubuntu 11.10 Alpha 2 is expected late next week. To help temper your appetite until its release here are a couple of recent changes in Oneiric…

Ubuntu’s unique Overlay Scrollbars have been tweaked a little. Now less round and sporting a new ‘thumb’.

"http://cdn.omgubuntu.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Screenshotaasa.png" >New overlay scrollbar thumb in OneiricThe scrollbar also now uses GTK colors: -

Overlay scrollbar in Oneiric using GTK colors

‘Modal Dialogs’ have made their first appearance in Unity 2D:

There’s also the welcome renaming of ‘Sound Preferences’  to ‘Sound Settings’.

sound settings preferences changed in Oneiric

There’s no more ‘About Me’ dialogue as a result of the shift to GNOME 3: -

Support for a new ‘Classic Guest Session’ (though at the time of writing this doesn’t actually do anything yet): -

Thunderbird will very shortly be replacing replacing Evolution as the default mail client in the Oneiric Alpha. The Ubuntu-meta package lists it as a default inclusion, with Evolution and some of its associated package being removed.

As with all Oneiric developments and updates we report on what see above is subject to change between now and October.


Multi-platform music app Minitunes updates with search, new icon, more

Minimalistic multi-platform music app  ’Minitunes’ has been updated with a new search feature, new icon and updated translations.

MiniTunes 1.0 can also ‘save’ playlists between sessions, a feature missing in previous releases.

s/2011/07/minitunesalbumview.jpg" >

Minitunes 1.0 comes almost one year after the last release of Minitunes, version 0.1.1, released mid-July last year.

Drawbacks to MiniTunes in Ubuntu

Minitunes is billed as ‘just another music player, only better’, with an interface that ‘unclutters’ your music playback experience.

These statements are are all true to various degrees: the MiniTunes UI is slick to look at, simple to use and the ‘information’ pane is possibly one of the best integrations of social meta-data in any music player period.

The minimal set of features MiniTunes offers is, in truth, part of its appeal.

However the lack of Ubuntu Sound Menu of Unity integration, Last.fm scrobbling, track data editing or option for multiple-music-folder-sources make it a tool best suited to those with the least demanding of music playback needs.

Power users are best suited to to alternative players such as Banshee, Amarok or Clementine.

Download MiniTunes for Ubuntu

Minitunes can be downloaded for 32bit Linux from the MiniTunes site at flavio.tordini.org/minitunes

Just download the archive, extract then double-click on the ‘MiniTunes’ file inside to run.

A PPA is also available for Minitunes, however at the time of writing it is yet to be updated to version 1.0.

MiniTunes is also available for OS X, and will shortly be available via the Mac App Store.



Ubuntu Logo Appears in Samsung Galaxy S II Ad

The Ubuntu logo can be clearly seen on screen in the latest promotional spot for Samsung’s Galaxy S II Android phone.

The old-style ‘circle of friends’ is prominently positioned during a precession of application icons at the beginning of the advert.

Perhaps coincidentally, the logo sits next to the icon for Android game ‘Jumping Narwhal’. ‘Natty Narwhal’ was, of course, the development mascot of the Ubuntu 11.04 cycle.

Quite why the logo is shown so prominently (you’ll notice it far in advance of the MSN butterfly) is open to debate: it could be to reference Ubuntu One’s suite of Android applications (plausible); a reference to the fact that hackers have already installed Ubuntu on various Samsung devices (unlikely); or, most likely, plain old happenstance on the part of the creative hands behind it

Either way, it’s a pretty cool nod.

The logo can be see at the 0:06 mark in the TV spot embedded below.

Back in May we reported on the surprise appearance of the Linux ‘Penguin’ mascot ‘Tux’ in a TV advert for a children’s breakfast cereal…

Thanks to Bilal


[How to] Fix ‘tinny’ sound quality in Ubuntu on an iMac

So you’ve just installed Ubuntu on your shiny new iMac 2011 model but the sound quality is torturously tinny. What to do?

The cause is basic and easy to fix: We simply need to ‘unmute’ the surround speaker, then turn the surround sound up. Doing this in Ubuntu is painless and quick.

Fix iMac sound in Ubuntu
  • Open a Terminal
  • Type ‘alsamixer’ (without quotes) and hit ‘Enter/Return’
  • The following 1980′s style display will appear: -

Tinny sound in Ubuntu on your iMac? Solve it
  • Using the navigation keys on your Keyboard select the fourth pillar from the left called ‘Front Speaker’
  • Increase the volume of the ‘Front Speaker’ by pressing the ‘Up’ navigation key
  • Now navigate to the first ‘Surround Speaker’ entry
  • Un-mute it by pressing the ‘M’ key
  • Nudge across to the second and press the ‘Up’ key to increase its volume
  • Press CTRL+C to exit the ‘alsamixer’

All done – fire-up Banshee, YouTube or any other noise-emitting application to hear the audible difference.




Critically Acclaimed Puzzle Game Braid Hits Ubuntu Software Centre

Platform puzzle game ‘Braid‘ is the  latest paid game to hit the Ubuntu Software Centre.

ads/2011/07/Screen-shot-2011-07-03-at-11.25.42.png" >Brain in the Ubuntu Software Centre

At first glance Braid looks like an old-school 2D side-scroller, very much in the mould of SNES or Genesis classics. But don’t be fooled – Braid is a puzzle game requiring more attention, cunning and brainpower than Sonic 2 or Golden Axe ever called for.

And whilst the brain-teasers, which require mastery of the game’s ‘Time’ manipulation mechanic, can be fiendishly difficult to solve they do give an insoluble sense of satisfaction upon completion.

Braid is available to buy in Ubuntu 10.04, 10.10 and 11.04 and is priced at $9.99.


Linux Screenshot Tool ‘Shutter’ Update – Adds Minor Features, Bug Fixes

A new version of popular screenshot utility ‘Shutter’ has been released.

Shutter 0.87.3 finally sees the ability to capture the ‘real’ cursor image in use. Shutter previously only used the ‘standard’ cursor image.

Shutter can now capture 'real' cursors that are in use

Another new addition is a ‘Show in folder’ menu entry to enable quick access to the location of a recently taken screenshot.

Other bugs fixed in the release include support for gnome-web-photo and minor UI changes to the ‘time out’ men.


A PPA providing the latest release for Ubuntu 8.04, 10.04, 10.10, 11.04 and 11.10 is available @ launchpad.net/~shutter/+archive/ppa

If adding a PPA isn’t your thing standalone .Deb installers are also available for Ubuntu 10.04 through to 11.10 from the Shutter download page.


Get ready for Ubuntu Developer Week

This is a guest post from Daniel Holbach, who will be posting updates about Ubuntu Development. (rackEvent','outbound-article','ubuntu-news.org']);">Original Post here).

Ubuntu Developer Week

Get ready for Ubuntu Developer Week from Monday, 11th July to Friday, 15th July. We will have one full week of online IRC sessions which will introduce you to Ubuntu Development and hacking on Ubuntu-related projects. Sometimes these sessions will take the form of Q&A sessions, sometimes of presentations and sometimes hands-on workshops.

Here’s the links for the impatient:

A lot of developers readily agreed to give sessions, so we have a wide variety of sessions this time around:
  • Packaging-related: Intro to Ubuntu development, specific packaging sessions: Mono, Python, Java, collaboration with Debian, fixing ARM build failures.
  • Project demos: Desktop Team Q&A, hacking on Launchpad, dotdee, Upstart, nux, hacking on compiz, hacking on Ubuntu websites, Lubuntu development, project lightning talks.
  • QA-related sessions: working with apport-reported bugs, debugging the kernel, intro to LAVA, how to triage bugs.
  • hacking sessions: porting to gobject introspection, making use of Launchpad translations, app creation with QML, writing Ensemble formulas.

As you can see: there will be something for everybody and we will have a great time.

If the times should be bad for you, don’t worry – there will be logs of the sessions made available afterwards. It’s only one week left to go, so please do us a favour and tell your friends! If you always wanted to learn something new, meet great people and start helping interesting projects, now is the perfect time: UDW is for you!

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Modal Dialogs Land in Ubuntu 11.10

Modal dialogs in Ubuntu 11.10 made their first appearance /www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2011/07/ubuntu-oneiric-updates-slicker-scrollbars-modal-dialogs-and-thunderbird-by-default/" >last week for Unity 2D users. Today they make their appearance in Unity proper.

The effect is provided by the ‘unity dialog handler’ plugin.

Unlike the Unity 2D version of the dialogs which look visible ’different’ from a regular dialog window the current Unity build retains the ‘native’ Ambiance/GTK themed look. One would imagine that this is likely to change at some point to match the original mock-up/Unity 2D.

Various aspects of the modal dialog effect can currently be tweaked using the Compiz Configuration Settings Manager, including the strength of the ‘dim’ applied to to parent window.

As ever all Ubuntu 11.10 development updates the features you see and read about are subject to change before the release of Ubuntu 11.10, due mid-October.


Top Five Terminal Commands Everyone Should Know (as suggested by you)

Reader Raiyan mailed in with an idea for an article a few weeks back, titled ’Top five commands a new-comer to Linux should know.’

A great idea, but we all have different ideas about what makes a must-know command. So I took to thelick="javascript:_gaq.push(['_trackEvent','outbound-article','twitter.com']);" target="_blank"> @omgubuntu twitter account to ask you – the readers – what five commands would be in your top five.

There were literally hundreds of responses, so thanks folks! Below are the five most suggested commands by OMG! Ubuntu! twitter followers.

One | ‘sudo’

‘Sudo’, best thought of as ‘Superuser Do’, allows you to run commands with elevated permissions, typically those of the ‘root’ user.

If you have ever tried to run a command or install an application using the command line only to be told you ‘need to be root’ chances are you need to prefix your command with ‘sudo’.

sudo is always placed at the beginning of a command. For example, running the following command will update the System package lists:
  • sudo apt-get update

To run graphical applications as root – e.g. root Nautilus, root gedit to edit a system file – ‘gksudo‘ is best advised for use in place of ‘sudo’.

Why? Firstly it’s the ‘proper’ way, and secondly it avoids any potential ‘hiccups’ that can often occur when using ‘sudo’ to run graphical applications.

With this in mind you would run Nautilus file manager like so: -
  • gksudo nautilus

Two | cd

‘cd’ (Change Directory) is the command used for navigating folders in the Terminal.

By default the Terminal opens ‘in’ your Home folder.
  • ‘cd folder/name/’ will navigate you into that folder
  • To go back on folder type ‘cd -
  • Typing ‘cd‘ on its own returns you to the ‘Home’ folder

Tip: Remember you can always use the ‘Tab’ button to auto-complete commands and locations in the Terminal. To quickly get to the Desktop using the cd command one could just type
  • cd De

then hit the Tab key to complete the command to
  • cd Desktop/

Three | ls

Navigating into folders is all fine and dandy – but how can you tell if the file you want is in there?

That’s where the list command – ‘ls’ – comes in.
  • ‘ls’ lists all of the items (bar hidden files) in the current folder
  • ‘ls -al’ lists all items in a folder, including hidden files and directories

Four | sudo apt-get install

Applications available in the Ubuntu Software Center and added PPAs can be installed from the command line using ‘apt-get install‘.

For example, to install the Chromium web browser in Ubuntu you would enter: -
  • sudo apt-get install chromium-browser

apt-get can also be used to remove packages. To remove the Chromium web browser you would run: -
  • sudo apt-get remove chromium-browser

Five | uname -a

“How Can I tell What Kernel Version I’m Running In Ubuntu?”

Simply by opening a Terminal then entering:
  • uname -a

If you have an idea about something we should cover, send us a shout via the Tip Form.