All posts by Bhushan Shah

About Bhushan Shah

I am student of Information Technology from India. Currently I am doing KDE development under Season Of KDE program. I am proud Linux user and FOSS enthusiast.

How to test Plasma 2 Technology preview

On 20th December 2013 Sebastian Kügler released the Plasma 2 Technology preview. Plasma 2 brings many improvements and and big changes in Plasma Workspace, KWin, and other parts of desktop.

The good news for KDE SC users is that they can now test and try the preview in many ways. Before you want to try it out, check out this video.

OpenSUSE 13.1
Plasma 2 Technology preview depends on the Qt 5.2 so you need to install it first. OpenSUSE provides the Qt5.2 packages in KDE:Qt5.2 repository. To add this repository enter this command,

sudo zypper ar -f http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/KDE:/Qt52/openSUSE_13.1/ KDE:Qt5.2

After that you need to add KDE:Unstable:Frameworks repository to openSUSE. To add KDE:UnstableFrameworks repository enter this command,

sudo zypper ar -f http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/KDE:/Qt52/openSUSE_12.3/ KDE:Unstable:Frameworks

After that you need to install kf5-session package. This package provides entry in login manger to log in the Plasma Workspace 2.

Kubuntu / Ubuntu
Project neon provides the packages for Ubuntu/Kubuntu in project-neon5 PPA. To add Project Neon 5 PPA and install Plasma 2 packages run this command.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:neon/kf5
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install project-neon5-session

This will provide the entry in login manager to log in the Plasma Workspace 2 session.

Project neon 5 ISOs
Project neon 5 provides Live CD which have Plasma Workspace 2 pre-installed and you can explore the Plasma 2 Tech preview. Currently only x86_64 images are available to download from here. If you want i686 build you can checkout scripts here.

Compiling from source
To compile Plasma Workspace 2 from you can find instructions on KDE Community wiki here http://community.kde.org/Frameworks/Building.

cinnamon-sticks-1

Cinnamon 2.0 now officially available

Linux mint team has announced the new release of Cinnamon, 2.0. This version ships 856 commits from 28 developers, a lot of bug fixes and new features like better edge tiling, edge snapping, sound effects, better user management, improvements in file manager – Nemo, and window manager improvements.

Along with this new features a lot has changed in the Cinnamon Backend 2.0. As explained on the official announcement,

Prior to version 2.0, and similar to Shell or Unity, Cinnamon was a frontend on top of the GNOME desktop.

In version 2.0, and similar to MATE or Xfce, Cinnamon is an entire desktop environment built on GNOME technologies. It still uses toolkits and libraries such as GTK or Clutter and it is still compatible with all GNOME applications, but it no longer requires GNOME itself to be installed. It now communicates directly with its own backend services, libraries and daemons: cinnamon-desktop, cinnamon-session and cinnamon-settings-daemon.

This release will be shipped with Linux Mint 16 “Petra” planned to be released in the end of November and then will be available to Linux Mint 13 LTS and LMDE via backports. Cinnamon 2.0 packages are already available for Arch Linux in community repos.

arch-linux

How to find required software effectively on Arch Linux

Sometimes you need to intsall a desired software but could not find package name for it, sometimes the application you want to compile has some missing library or shared object files and you could not find those required files or libraries. This tutorial is aimed at finding and installing right software for your need in Arch Linux.

pkgfile

In Arch Linux most of the software are available through AUR and official repositories. To find the required software and files there are several tools available. pkgfile is one such tool. This tool tells you which package owns which file. To install pkgfile in Arch Linux run following command:

$ sudo pacman -S pkgfile

After installing pkgfile on your Arch Linux system you need to download and update the file database using this command:

$ sudo pkgfile –update

Usage of this tool is simple, suppose you want to find a package which includes makepkg command. You simply need to run:

$ pkgfile makepkg
core/pacman

Also you can list the files installed by giving package name ‘file':

$ pkgfile –list core/file

Command not found hook

Normally when you enter any command which is not installed on your computer it shows an error message.

$ abiword
sh: 1: abiword: not found

pkgfile package ships command not found hook which searches the official repository when you enter unrecognized command. To enable command not found hook on bash add this line to your ~/.bashrc:

source /usr/share/doc/pkgfile/command-not-found.bash

If you are using the zsh then add line given below to ~/.zshrc

source /usr/share/doc/pkgfile/command-not-found.zsh

After that when you run unknown command the output will be:

$ abiword
abiword may be found in the following packages:
extra/abiword 2.8.6-7 usr/bin/abiword

Once you get the required package name it is easy to install it using pacman or packer.

Enjoy Arch!

Ubuntu_Logo_0

Ubuntu 13.10 will not use XMir by default

Ubuntu 13.10 was expected to use XMir as its display server by default but due to some “outstanding technical difficulties” XMir won’t be used as default in the upcoming release.

Canonical developer Olli Ries wrote on the mailing list:

As many of you will know, the Mir team had two core goals for the Ubuntu 13.10 cycle:

1. Deliver Mir + XMir + Unity 7 on the desktop for those cards that supported it, and fall back to X for those that don’t.
2. Deliver a native Mir + Unity 8 running on Ubuntu Touch images and devices.Unfortunately, due to some outstanding technical difficulties, we can only achieve the latter of these two goals.

While we are on track to successfully deliver Mir for Ubuntu on smartphones, we are unfortunately not going to be able to deliver Mir +
XMir + Unity 7 as the default experience on the desktop.

Mir has made tremendous progress and is currently available on the Ubuntu archive for use, but there are still some outstanding quality issues that we want to resolve before we feel comfortable turning it on by default.

Many of these issues live in the XMir part of the stack, which provides the integration between the X server and the underlying Mir system compositor.

More specifically, the multi-monitor support in XMir is working, but not to the extend we’d like to see it for all of our users. The core of Mir is working reliable, but with XMir being a key component for our 13.10 goals, we didn’t want to compromise overall Ubuntu quality by shipping it.

Mir & XMir are available from the archive as an optional configuration, but XMir won’t be part of the default configuration.

I know many of you have been curious about the progress of discussions with GPU manufacturers about Mir support, and while those conversations are under NDA, I can assure you they are progressing forward.

We have compiled a Q&A which can be found at

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Mir/13.10/NoDefaultQ%26A

If you have any further queries, please feel free to reach out to me or my team, and feel free to discuss this in more detail either here or on
mir-devel (https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/mir-devel/).

This doesn’t mean that XMir project has failed. If you want to install XMir on your desktop then it is available on Ubuntu Archives. You can find install instructions here.

qt-2013

Qt 5.2 alpha now available

Digia have announced the alpha release of Qt 5.2. This release includes better support for Android and iOS operating systems and new built-in JavaScript engine for Qt QML. Qt 5.2 alpha will be shipped with Qt Creator 3.0 which includes improved Android support, initial iOS support, extensions for multiple screens, a cleanup in the Creator plugin APIs and initial support for lldb.

This release includes future preview of many new modules like:

  • Qt Bluetooth
  • Qt NFC
  • Qt Positioning
  • Qt Windows Extras
  • Qt Mac Extras
  • Qt Android Extras.

If you want to install Qt 5.2 alpha on your system source tarballs are available to download here. If you don’t want to compile then you can wait for Qt 5.2 beta which will include binary packages.

XMir now available for Ubuntu 13.10 ‘Saucy Salamander’

XMir, display server developed by Canonical for Linux is now available for Ubuntu 13.10 Saucy salamander. XMir will be the default display server for the Ubuntu 13.10, however X server will be provided as fallback session.

To install the XMir on Ubuntu 13.10 ‘Saucy Salamander’ run following commands.

sudo apt-get install unity-system-compositor
sudo reboot

Currently enabled featuers of the XMir display server, as explained by Kevin Gunn on ubuntu-devel, are:

  • Support for xserver-xorg-video-intel
  • Support for xserver-xorg-video-ati
  • Support for xserver-xorg-video-nouveau
  • Intel sna enabled
  • Unity 7 operation fully functional with no visible corruption
  • Important application operation functioning with no visible corruption (Firefox, Chrome, Thunderbird, etc)
  • Good performance (without bypass), approximate 10% addition of overhead,
  • in most cases normal operation results in 60fps
  • Fallback to stand alone X (for proprietary drivers)
  • Multi-monitor mirror mode works, but screen resolution changes not well handled
  • VT switching working
  • removed hardware cursor

However there are some bugs and features on which XMir development team is working, you can have a look at them here.

Alpha 2 of the Ubuntu 13.10 flavors available for testing

Now second alpha version of the flavours of Ubuntu 13.10 Saucy Salamander is available for download and testing. Images for the Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, UbuntuKylin and Xubuntu are available immediatly. This is an alpha release so it is not ready for installation on production machines.

Links to download the Alpha 2 images are as below :

However due to changes in Ubuntu release policy alpha version of the regular Unity based Ubuntu are not available. You can find the daily builds here.

Razor-Qt Is Merging With LXDE

Few days ago LXDE team has demostrated the Qt port of the LXDE desktop environment. Since then there were many requests and talks to merge the LXDE and Razor-Qt projects because both desktop environments are lightweight, will use Qt as window toolkit and many other reasons. To address such requests today Jerome Leclanche, UX designer of the Razor-Qt has announced that Razor-Qt and LXDE are merging officially on the Razor-Qt Google group.

Our plan is to cherry-pick the best parts of Razor and LXDE and include or port those to LXDE-Qt. Other components will be ported straight from GTK code or rewritten from scratch. In the end, we want to offer the best possible experience while reusing as much code as possible. It will not be an easy process and as always, we welcome anyone who wishes to help, be it with development, translations, or general feedback.

Razor-Qt team will release 0.6.0 package for the Razor-Qt desktop environment and then they will work on LXDE-Qt branch. They have no plans to maintain tree of Razor-Qt on own.

In addition if you wonder what will happen to GTK version of the LXDE in feature?Then currently development team have plans to keep two branches of the LXDE, one for Qt port and other for GTK version. Andrej will maintain the GTK version of the LXDE. And GTK version will also receive bug fixes and improvements.

Google publishes the stock Android keyboard on Play Store

Google has pulished the stock Android keyboard, dubbed Google Keyboard, on the Play Store. If you are looking for the alternatives to OEM and Third party typing solutions then you can use this new Google Keyboard.

Features of this keyboard are :

  • Gesture Typing with dynamic floating preview
  • Voice Typing
  • Next-word suggestions and current-word completions
  • Dictionaries for 26 languages
  • Advanced keyboard layouts
  • Works across your Android devices (tablets and phones)

This keyboard can be a great alternative to Swiftkey, Swype and other keyboards available on the Play store.

Pidora, Fedora Remix For The Raspberry Pi

Raspberry Pi owners can now take advantages of the Fedora Linux distribution on their Raspberry Pi devices using Pidora, developed by the Seneca Centre for Development of Open Technology (CDOT).

Pidora is the fifth remix of the Fedora for Raspberry Pi. In this new version Pidora takes full advantages of the support for ARMv6 processor in Fedora 18. ARMv6 architecture is used by the ARM11 processors. In addition Pidora provides almost all packages via yum, programming environment for languages like C, Python and Perl.

Pidora installation guide is provided on the Open Source@Seneca wiki page. After installation Pidora offers firstboot configuration tool and many other features. More information can be obtained from the Pidora project homepage.