Friday, 10 September 2010

Howto: Bind Keys In Nautilus To Scripts Or Other Menu Items.

I picked up this excellent tip from Webupd8.

First you should have installed Nautilus Open Terminal for an initial very useful shortcut. It adds a menu entry on the right click and in the File menu to do exactly what it says, open a terminal at the current folder you have open in the active Nautilus window. So enter the following into a terminal.

sudo apt-get install nautilus-open-terminal

If it is already installed it will just inform you of it in the text it spews, otherwise it will install it, and inform you of that too.

Open up gconf-editor from a terminal or Alt+F2 (you may also have it listed in your Applications/System Tools/ menu as Configuration Editor. Be a little bit careful in here, there is possibility of breaking stuff. Navigate in the left hand pane to Desktop/Gnome/Interface.

Change the toggle for "can_change_accels" to true/enabled. Leave the gconf-editor window open as you most likely want to disable it again after setting the keybindings you want. Be aware that you can only bind to the main Nautilus menu and not to its right click menu.

Press Alt+F2 and enter "nautilus -q" to restart Nautilus, then you may set any menu item or script to have a key bind simply by opening the Nautilus main menu and then pressing the key bind that would like to set it as while hovering over the item. For instance I hovered over Open Terminal and I have set to F4, I have also added bindings to other scripts I use fairly frequently.

I would suggest disabling the "can_change_accels" to false again to prevent accidental overwriting of key bindings, thats entirely up to you though, and be aware of what key binds you set of course, binding ctrl+c to close/quit nautilus is going to cause problems ;)

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Howto: Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Post Install Acer Aspire One 110 (aka AAO & AA1) 8GB/16GB SSD Model

I need to clarify that this is on the Acer Aspire One 110, a couple of comments have indicated that the wifi fix did not work on their machines, one at least has a different model and its entirely my mistake I didn't state clearly which model it is I have, well the wife and I both have. Doing a lspci shows we have Atheros AR5001 wireless device.

Post install there are a number
of things that need tweaking. The wifi and media cards will not function correctly without some work, other things will improve performance or help the SSD longevity.

Lets start by fixing the wireless, its probably the first thing you want to do as it will drop your connection like a butterfingered, blind juggler...... With one hand.

In your System / Admintration / Software Sources, enable any repo's that aren't enabled, though you can avoid the source ones if you want. The fire up synaptic, Reload the repository lists and add following package:


it will also select a similar named package with your kernel version in its name that we also want. Once that is done I would reboot and your wifi should be nearly done. Now I have installed on mine twice and the second install wouldn't automatically connect to the home wifi when I rebooted, I had to go into System / Preferences / Network Connections and delete the existing wireless connection there, and then Add the connection again. I am not sure why, but its not much trouble to correct and barely worth the time investigating. Yours may work without doing that.

Media Card Readers
You need to edit /etc/default/grub (as root ofc) and find the
line that starts:


Change it to read

GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="pciehp.pciehp_force=1 elevator=noop quiet splash"

The pciehp part fixes the card readers to be hot swappable and the
elevator=noop improves SSD performance, we'll add that now while we are dabbling in the right place. Anyone with a HD version who may be following this should omit the elevator=noop.

To then make the changes actually apply next boot they have to be applied to the Grub boot process so you should then perform :

sudo update-grub

Many thanks to Magrat G for pointing out the ommision in the comments.

Ramon in the comments made the following suggestion:

I've got a SD card in the storage expansion slot (where /home is mounted). To avoid suspend/hibernate failure, this is a nice tweak:

echo "SUSPEND_MODULES=\"sdhci sdhci_pci\"" | sudo tee -a /etc/pm/config.d/suspend_modules

It is reported in bug #477106 (see comment #35):

I will add a disclaimer that I have not tested that but it seems like a good fix and has many reports of it working for many people.

Move /tmp to RAM and general fstab fiddling
Lets backup our fstab before we start messing with it, if anything breaks we can copy it back and start again.. By we, I mean *you* of course ;)

sudo cp /etc/fstab /etc/fstab-bak
sudo gedit /etc/fstab

then add these lines at the bottom

none /var/log tmpfs size=10M 0 0
none /tmp tmpfs size=100M 0 0
none /var/tmp tmpfs size=20M 0 0

That is all we do to move /tmp to RAM but we can make another change here to improve SSD lifespan and performance. Find the lines that mount your SSD partition/s and tweak the options to include noatime so the filesystem does not record access times, which is pretty useless and causes unnecessary writes. An editted line might look like this for root:

/dev/sda1 / ext2 defaults,noatime,errors=remount-ro 0 1

Or if the UUID scheme is in use /home might be:

UUID=10b794b3-78b6-44f1-b179-8e38302efe05 /home ext2 defaults,noatime 0 2

Notice the use of ext2 in the examples above, Its fairly important to not use a journalled filesystem on this older SSD. I'm not a filesystem guru and it may be fine to use ext3 or ext4 without journalling, but I am unsure so I formatted with what I knew was recommended.

You get the idea, if you have any doubts just leave it be or google for a more in depth guide on this point.

I will be adding further onto this post as time permits and I go through them myself, or remember what I did.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Howto: Move the Window buttons back to the correct side.

Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx has moved the window buttons to the left on the title bar. Its a peculiar thing to decide to do and myself and others I have spoken with can't see *why* they should chose to do it. The only answer I keep coming back to is that this is just something to stand out and give a unique(ish) appearance, as part of their re-branding.

Well, I would much prefer them back over on the right, as I feel it looks better and I really don't see the point in moving something that
requires a retraining has no purpose than for appearances sake. In my opinion of course.

Paste the following into a terminal:

gconftool-2 --set '/apps/metacity/general/button_layout' --type string ":minimize,maximize,close"

Or, fire up gconf-editor from a terminal or Alt+F2 run dialog, and in the left pane navigate to :
apps / metacity / general

In the right pane double click on button_layout and paste in:

Note, if you select Ambiance again in the theme selector it will again "break" your buttons, bit of a nuisance.

This will give the original layout, be aware that the default themes will look a little broken if you do this, if you do use the orginal theme I would advise you to keep the order of maximise,minimise,close (I am not sure whether it still breaks the buttons surround). They will look fine in the new order on the right, the bevelling on the theme will look nasty if you re-order the buttons though. Personally I don't much like the default theme so I will be retaining my current window decoration and going back to the "old" order.

The window theme I use can be found here : LINK :