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Changing the Action of the Power Button in Ubuntu 14

To alter the setting of the computer’s power button in Ubuntu 14, you’ll need the gnome-tweak-tool package. Once installed, it’ll be in the Launcher as “Tweak Tool”.
Under “Tweaks” on the left, select “Power”. From there you can change the Power Button Action.

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Canon RAW .CR2 Thumbnails

By default, “Files” will not show thumbnails for Canon RAW .CR2 files. There are two things that need to be changed to do this:

  • Install the package gnome-raw-thumbnailer.
  • Change the settings in “Files” to enable the thumbnails for larger files. From the “Files” menu, choose Edit > Preferences. Select the Preview tab. Change “Show thumbnails” to Always and “Only for files smaller than” to 100 MB.

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Blank TTY on Ubuntu 14.04

Jennings, the new Lenovo PC has presented a few challenges. The most recent one is no display on the TTYs. Although the default interface is graphical, pressing CTL+ALT+F1 (or F2 through F6) will get you a text console. This is useful for quick operations or when something wonky happens with X. But doing so on Jennings presented a black screen with no video. I was curious to see if this was a display-only issue since Jennings has an NVidia card in it. I pressed CTL+ALT+F1 and entered my log-in, then top. I jumped back to the X session with CTL+ALT+F7 and entered ps aux. Sure enough, top was running. I went back to the TTY, killed top and logged out. Googling for “ubuntu 14.04 blank tty” turned up some advice that Grub may be using a graphical log in that’s incompatible with my video card. The cure is to edit /etc/default/grub as root, uncomment out the line GRUB_TERMINAL=console, then sudo update-grub and reboot.

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More Jennings Ubuntu 14.04 Set Up

Install the Lexmark printer drivers. The steps are exactly the same (they haven’t updated the drivers since ubuntu 12.04, except this time, we need the 64-bit drivers. Remember that when the Lexmark printer utility is looking for the printer over Ethernet, it takes about a minute to find it. Be patient. Also install the Scan driver for 64-bit Linux distributions with Debian-based packaging.

Install Gimp.

Install unity-tweak-tool to change UI settings. This is a separate application from System Settings.

In Appearance application, select the Behavior tab and show menus in the window’s title bar.

Install Digikam and Darktable. Change Digikam setting for Import, File Renaming Option to “INI-[date]-[file].[ext]“, where INI is your initials.

Install gallery-uploader.

Set the keyboard shortcuts for logging out.

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Setting up Ubuntu 14.10 on Jennings

First up, run the Software Center and load Synaptic. Use Synaptic to load these packages:

  • emacs
  • nautilus-dropbox
  • keepassx
  • gkrellm
  • system-config-lvm
  • cifs-utils
  • gnucash

Load Firefox and install Chrome. Sign in to Chrome.

Set up user accounts and groups

  1. As root, edit /etc/passwd and add the other users from Boon’s /etc/passwd
  2. Copy the corresponding lines in Boon’s /etc/shadow for the other users
  3. Edit /etc/group and add the groups for those users and also the ds411p2 group from the same file on Boon

Install NAS credentials

From Boon, copy the NAS authorization file:
/etc/ds411p2pwd

Set up NAS mounts

As root, edit /etc/fstab and add these lines, substituting your username for {me}:

//ds411p2/video /mnt/ds411p2-public-video cifs rw,suid,gid=ds411p2,credentials=/etc/ds411p2pwd 0 0
//ds411p2/music /mnt/ds411p2-public-music cifs rw,suid,gid=ds411p2,credentials=/etc/ds411p2pwd 0 0
//ds411p2/photo /mnt/ds411p2-public-photo cifs rw,suid,gid=ds411p2,credentials=/etc/ds411p2pwd 0 0

//ds411p2/home /home/{me}/ds411p2 cifs user,uid={me},gid={me},rw,suid,credentials=/home/{me}/.ds411p2pwd 0 0
//ds411p2/video /home/{me}/ds411p2-public-video cifs user,uid={me},gid={me},rw,suid,credentials=/home/{me}/.ds411p2pwd 0 0

As root, create the above directories in /mnt. You can (as root) mount them now, but don’t mount the home directories yet.

Port user home directories

TAR all the home directories on Boon to a file on the NAS, then extract them to Jennings. (There are other ways to do this, of course):
On Boon:

  1. cd /home
  2. sudo tar cvzf /home/dave/ds411p2/boon-home-all.tgz --one-file-system {myuser} {anotheruser} {theotheruser}

On Jennings, download the TAR file from the NAS through the web console to /home. Write these next steps down, then close all programs except your terminal because we’ll be overwriting the home directories.

  1. cd /home
  2. sudo tar xvzf /boon-home-all.tgz
  3. sudo mount /home/{me}/ds411p2
  4. sudo mount /home/{me}/ds411p2-public-video
  5. Log out and back in again
  6. Dropbox will ask you to sign in again and the Gnome keyring will complain that your password is different. Use the Jennings password to unlock it.
  7. Make sure you can see the NAS files in the /mnt and ~/ds411p2* directories.

Install Java 8

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install oracle-java8-installer

Install Minecraft for the kids

  1. On Boon: cd /usr/local/games; sudo tar cvf ~{me}/ds411p2/usr-local-games-minecraft.tar *
  2. On Jennings: cd /usr/local/games; sudo tar xvf ~{me}/ds411p2/usr-local-games-minecraft.tar
  3. rm ~{me}/ds411p2/usr-local-games-minecraft.tar

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Installing Ubuntu 14.04 on Jennings

Jennings is a new Lenovo K450E. It’s replacing Boon which is getting flakier every day.
Jennings came with Windows 8.1 and UEFI. I tried to install Ubuntu alongside Windows, but failed. It turns out I was doomed from the start because I got Jennings with an NVidia card that was so new, the Linux Nouveau drivers don’t support it yet, nor has nvidia-current been updated with the new NVidia drivers. As a result, when booting with UEFI, it would lock up. The Boot Repair Disk I needed to fix the UEFI issues also locked up. Eventually, I gave up and installed Ubuntu by itself in non-UEFI mode. For some reason, with UEFI turned off, it would load and run fine, except for the video being stuck at a lower resolution than the monitor could handle.
To fix that, I needed the NVidia binary driver, available at http://www.nvidia.com. The instructions are simple, just download and run the installer as root. The only catch? You can’t have X running when you do so. And because of the confused nouveau driver, I didn’t have any console TTYs. To get around that, I ssh’d in from another box on my network. Setting the runlevel to 3 didn’t shut down X. I had to sudo service lightdm stop for that. Once X was out of the picture, the NVidia installer ran and only complained that a distribution pre-install script failed, but that didn’t affect anything. After letting the installer update my X configuration, I ran sudo service lightdm start and was back in business–no reboot required.

Update: The console TTY issue has been solved, so there’s no need to log in remotely to do this. The bad news is that these steps must be run after every kernel update:

sudo service lightdm stop
sudo sh ./NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-340.24.run
Accept/Yes/Reinstall to everything
sudo service lightdm start

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Boon Upgrade to Ubuntu 14.04

I tried to upgrade Boon (an Ubuntu 13.10 installation) to 14.04. During the upgrade, the / file system ran dangerously low on space. I was removing stuff from the file system to give it enough breathing room and got no errors, but when I rebooted, Grub failed to load:
Error: symbol 'grub_term_highlight_color' not found
Entering rescue mode...

I found a reference to a bug causing Grub to break which had a fix.

I booted my live USB drive of 32-bit Ubuntu 13.10 (it took a few times–see my notes about the hard lock-ups). Once I got it running, I did the following:

sudo mkdir /mnt/u13boot
sudo mount /dev/sda6 /mnt/u13boot
sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/u13boot /dev/sda

(/dev/sda6 is the location of the /boot directory of the installed Ubuntu and /dev/sda is where Grub is installed.)

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Can’t Log In to Gallery2

I could not log in to Gallery2 from either my account or the admin account. This is the error (only shown when logging in to admin):

Error (ERROR_COLLISION)
in modules/core/classes/GallerySession.class at line 712 (GalleryCoreApi::error)
in modules/core/classes/GallerySession.class at line 322 (GallerySession::_acquireNewPersistentSession)
in modules/core/classes/GallerySession.class at line 513 (GallerySession::start)
in modules/core/classes/helpers/GalleryUserHelper_medium.class at line 362 (GallerySession::regenerate)
in modules/core/classes/helpers/GalleryEventHelper_simple.class at line 59 (GalleryUserHelper_medium::handleEvent)
in modules/core/classes/GalleryCoreApi.class at line 2238 (GalleryEventHelper_simple::postEvent)
in modules/core/UserLogin.inc at line 143 (GalleryCoreApi::postEvent)
in main.php at line 250 (UserLoginController::handleRequest)
in main.php at line 104
in main.php at line 88

A little Googling turned up this error message with the cause being two user accounts with the same email address. To check, I logged in to the MySql server from the command line:
mysql -u {admin} -p -h mysql.{mysite}.com gallery2

show tables;
select * from g2_user;

No two users had the same email address. Another post mentioned a corrupt session map table. So:

select * from g2_SessionMap;

Sure enough, MySql complained the table had been marked “crashed”. Next:

check table g2_SessionMap;
repair table g2_SessionMap;

And that was it!

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Enable Tethering on Nexus 5 with TMo

Instructions are here:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/google-nexus-5/help/nexus-5-tethering-block-t2512674/page7#70

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Transfer Tasker to a New Phone

On the old phone, start Tasker and select Tasker menu > Data > Backup. This will create backup files in /sdcard/Tasker.
Copy /sdcard/Tasker/userbackup.xml and /sdcard/Tasker/profiles/* to the same locations on the new phone.
On the new phone, start Tasker and select Tasker menu > Data > Restore.

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