Why you should care about PulseAudio (and how to start doing it)

The sound server PulseAudio is a relative newcomer to the Linux audio arena, but since it has been selected as the default setup in the next releases of at least two major distributions (Fedora and Ubuntu), it's probably time to start looking into it.

Book review: The Essential Blender

The Essential Blender from No Starch Press is both a reference and instructional guide to Blender, the open source 3-D modeling, rendering, and animation tool. It walks readers through Blender's capabilities by alternating hands-on tutorials with broader, topical chapters that discuss the key concepts and how Blender implements them. Despite a few flaws, it's a good resource for those struggling with the software.

How to Secure Ubuntu With AppArmor

AppArmor attempts to protect processes on the server or desktop from security threats. AppArmor enforces limits on what processes can access on the system. It attempts to restrict processes to those resources that the process requires to function only. AppArmor will not only define the system resources a program can access , it will also determine the privileges with which it can access those resources. To protect applications you will need to set up a security profile for each application that you want to protect.

Ubuntu Hardy Heron to limit new features, boost existing ones

As far as the desktop side of things are concerned, the next Ubuntu update, code named Hardy Huron, will forgo major functionality additions and instead focus on boosting what’s already in the operating system.

Simplify backups with Synbak

Making periodic backups is a common task. Synbak can help to simplify it. Synbak brings together several different backup methods and provides a powerful reports system that provides details about all the work it does.

How To Upgrade Your Desktop From Ubuntu Studio 7.04 To 7.10

This guide shows how you can upgrade your desktop from Ubuntu Studio 7.04 to Ubuntu Studio 7.10.

Ubuntu Web Banners

Here is my first batch of Ubuntu advocacy banners. I've got more in various formats/stages of production and I'll post them as and when I complete the sets.

I enjoyed making these — playing with GIMP provides a nice break from coding. Anyhow, this first batch contains two sets of standard 468x60px banners. Each image is supposed to encourage the viewer to explore the possibilities of Ubuntu by advertising one of Ubuntu's default applications.

I'd love to know what you think of these so please feel free to leave a comment with ideas for improvements etc.

Listening to and recording audio and video streams with MPlayer

Most streaming audio and video on the Internet is disseminated in proprietary formats such as RM, RAM, WMV, and ASF. Fortunately, the open source application MPlayer can play and even record streams in almost any format.

In-Depth Roadmap Analysis For Ubuntu Hardy Heron 8.04

The Hardy Heron Roadmap has over 130 new ideas that have been proposed thus far.  I’ve examined each one of these ideas in detail, threw out the ones that weren’t interesting to me, wrote an explanation for each, and sorted the list into three categories:

Monitoring Tomcat 5.0 on Ubuntu

This document describes how to set up and enable Hyperic HQ for monitoring on Ubuntu and Tomcat. The resulting system provides a comprehensive, web-based Systems Management Software. It's the next stage of classical monitoring and able to manage all kinds of operating systems, web servers, application servers and database servers. The install comes prepared to monitor almost 70 different technologies natively and provides many detailed features. For brevity sake, I won't list all of them here. Hyperic HQ is available as an open source distribution licensed under the GPL v2.

Ubuntu Developer Summit lays out vision for strong Hardy Heron release

The first day of the Ubuntu Developer Summit began with roundtable sessions which focused on high-level planning for Hardy Heron, the next major release of the Ubuntu Linux distribution. I attended the Hardy Heron desktop roundtable to get the inside scoop about the future of Ubuntu on the desktop.

Back up and print your blog with OpenOffice.org Base

If you are running a blog (or any Web publishing system, for that matter) that relies on a database back end, you will sooner or later face the problem of backing up the content stored in the database. One way to go about it is to build a backup tool using OpenOffice.org Base. Since Base can pull data from a MySQL or any ODBC-compliant data source, you can create a simple database that connects to the blog's back end and extracts content from it, which you can then export in different formats.

Installing Songbird 0.3 Developer Pre-Release On Ubuntu 7.10

This guide shows how to install the Songbird media player (0.3 Developer Pre-Release) on an Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) desktop. Songbird is a free software audio player with media database capabilities written using XUL and VLC, with an interface similar to Apple's iTunes. From the Songbird web site: "Songbird is a desktop media player mashed-up with the Web. Songbird is committed to playing the music you want, from the sites you want, on the devices you want, challenging the conventions of discovery, purchase, consumption and organization of music on the Internet."

The Perfect Desktop - Ubuntu Studio 7.10

This document describes how to set up an Ubuntu Studio 7.10 desktop. The result is a fast, secure and extendable system with focus on multimedia creation - the real-time (RT) kernel is installed by default. It provides all you need for daily work and entertainment.

Boston Developer Summit Day 4: Rain with a slight chance of laptops

Greetings from the Developers’ Summit! As was predicted, the good weather didn’t hold up with today’s light rain and clouds. Inside, the ways to make Ubuntu rock more continue across the many areas on the schedule.

Developer Summit Day 3: The good weather continues

The Developer Summit continues to tick along on the third day. As with previous days, today started with a number of roundtables about various topics. After that, …

Ad Units for GIMP 2.4

I've recently started creating some banners and buttons for Ubuntu. I've been using Gimp to create the images and I wanted a quick-and-easy way to create a new file with the correct dimensions. To accomplish this I edited Gimp's templaterc file and created a new template entry for each of the IAB Ad Units.

How to change or recreate your Desktop folder on Ubuntu

The default location of your Desktop folder is ~/Desktop. You might prefer another location. If you by accident deleted the Dekstop folder, it will be stuck in your Trash folder as you can't put it back.

Thoggen: A GTK+ based simple DVD ripper

Thoggen is a GTK+ based DVD ripper with very simple user interface. The name is based on the fact that it outputs the video to Theora/Ogg format.

Deskbar Applet & Tracker on Ubuntu

I've been using the Gutsy Gibbon on my desktop for just over a week now. I pretty much settled into using it straight after the upgrade fresh install from Feisty. So far I've experienced no real problems with it whatsoever.

Quickly Add Appointments to Google Calendar in Firefox

Google Calendar is simply a great calendar application, and for many of us it has become the logical choice. The only problem is that to add a new appointment you have to open the calendar. There should really be a simpler way.

Tricks and treats for your desktop

Even if you're too old for trick-or-treating this Halloween, you can still get in the spirit of things with these free software games, tools, and applications. Why should kids get to have all the fun?

Quo Vadis, Kubuntu?

Events of the past week, before and after Gutsy’s release, have led me to think deeply about Kubuntu. No, I haven’t been thinking about what new features to implement (not that I could anyway), what bugs to fix (I’ll try, of course) or what Ubuntu features we need to catch up with. No, I was thinking much deeper, less technical, more abstract, more long term. Not that those goals are unimportant. But they will only be important depending on who/what we are and what we have planned.

Taking a Look at Gobuntu 7.10

Gobuntu is a official derivative of Ubuntu composed of only open source software. It was launched with the Ubuntu 7.10 release.

Gobuntu is a GNU/Linux operating system, derived from Ubuntu, that endeavors to adhere to the Free Software Foundations four freedoms and intends to provide a base for other free software platforms to build upon with minimal modification required.

Recover A Password in Linux

After reading this article at HappyLinuxGuy’s Happy Linux Thoughts page, I thought I might share with you a way to recover password on a *nix system. The commands and screenshots here will be Ubuntu oriented, but this basic process should work for any distro.

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