Saturday, March 2, 2013

My switch Linux Mint 11 Gnome -> Mint 14 Cinnamon x64

Here are my notes on my switch over for my main desktop OS....

To Linux Mint 14 Cinnamon x64
from Linux Mint 11 Gnome 64 bit.   I had tried Linux Mint Debian XFCE, but decided I wanted the added ease of use, stability and packages afforded by Ubuntu base and did not need so much the bleeding edge afforded by Debian testing base.  I then tried Linux Mint 13 XFCE x64, but after installing Mint 14 Cinnamon on my daughter's computer I was hooked!

Nifty Help from Others
Tips and tricks on Mint 13 Cinnamon:

Video Driver and Updates
Installed the nVidia Graphics card proprietary driver (now via tab in software sources program) and performed all other system updates

Netflix and Amazon Prime Setup
Netflix setup is available using ehoover's repository.  Setup from there as follows:
  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ehoover/compholio
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install netflix-desktop
Amazon Prime was working correctly in Firefox for a while, then in Dec 2012 suddenly quit working for some videos.  After some search, I discovered the solution.  The package 'hal' needed to be installed.  Once installed from Software manager, Amazon prime movies began working again.

Java 7 from Oracle
ProxMox Server administration would not work properly under OpenJDK (unfortunately), so I needed to install Oracle Java 7.  My instructions for doing so are here:

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install oracle-java7-installer
  • java -version
    • this verifies the oracle java 7 is installed (if not link to tutorial)
  • update-java-alternatives -l
    • this lists the installed alternatives - note the openjdk java listed
  • sudo update-java-alternatives -s [name of openjdk]
    • this switches back to primary java use of openjdk, but keeps links to Oracle Java 7 intact for functions not supported in openjdk
    • will show some errors because of the missing alternatives in openjdk
  • java -version
    • this should show the openjdk java
Create Menu Item or Launcher
At first I could not figure out how to Create a menu item or modify the menu, a bit tricky, though simple and logical...
  • To Create menu item or modify Menu
    • Right click on "Menu" on the panel and choose "Edit menu"
    • Add menu item or modify menu as desired
  • To create Launcher
    • right click anywhere on desktop and choose "create launcher"
  • Move Menu item to Panel (quick launch), desktop, or favorites (left in Menu)
    • simply right click the desired program in Menu and choose the desired location
Minecraft Launcher
The suggested sample launcher script given on does not work.  Following is what works for me:
  • command:  java -jar /home/user/.minecraft/minecraft.jar
  • downloaded image file for menu icon and placed in .minecraft folder
  • Created menu item as described above with the command given here

Pithos - Pandora Music Player
This nifty program allows me to use Pandora service in a true aplication/program so my keyboard media buttons work.
  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:kevin-mehall/pithos-daily
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install pithos

Rapid Photo Downloader - The best for getting images off your devices, renaming and ordering
To get the latest version, added the following ppa repository.  Followed this help:  and performed the following in console.

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:dlynch3
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install rapid-photo-downloader

Steam Games and Flash Player within steam
Installed Steam for buying and installing games.  (I'm not much of a gamer, but want to support the the industry as they consider porting games for Linux.)  One of the issues is that the flash player within steam does not work.  Found this workaround:  It entails doing the following:

  • download Adobe Flash Player 32 bit from here (even though my system is 64 bit - yes):
  • unzip in the download directory
  • Make a directory for the new flash plugin
    • mkdir -p ~/.local/share/Steam/ubuntu12_32/plugins
  • Move the file .../install_flash_player_11_linux.i386/ into the folder you made ~/.local/share/Steam/ubuntu12_32/plugins
  • you can now delete the downloaded and unzipped files
  • made sure the libxt6:i386 was installed on my computer:  it was
    • sudo apt-get install libxt6:i386
GRIVE - Google Drive Configuration
Because Google does not have an official Google Drive client for Linux yet (to automatically sync Google drive to a spot on your local hard drive), can use an open source alternative.  One is available via a WebUpd8 PPA.  See this page for details:  Problems are that it is command line only, no auto sync, doesn't download google docs.

Another Google drive setup available is via a .deb package.  Found here with instructions:
Problems with the above are: no downloading of Google docs, no auto-sync.

I'm skipping this setup for now... think I will wait for official client.

SpiderOak Backup has a good online backup solution and has had a stable Linux client for much time.  Allows you to share files with others, file encryption, etc.  Download client install file from

Printer Configuration
Because gnome-control-center has a broken or useless link to printer setup options, I added a launcher to system-config-printer, which seems to be awol from the menu.
  • To Create desktop launcher
    • Right click desktop and select "create launcher"
    • Write system-config-printer in the command box.
  • To create Menu Item
    • Right click on Menu and select "Edit menu"
    • Fill out options the same as when creating a launcher

Cinnamon Nightly Build
Maybe a bit risky, but because Cinnamon is new enough, decided to add repository to update to nightly builds.
mySQL or MariaDB
I am looking at MariaDB as a replacement for mySQL.  Seems like the way to go, but for now, going to install mySQL, then play with MariaDB on the side.  I've been installing mySQL right on my desktop computer and running it in the background for my business accounting database back end without any issues.  Following are the packages installed.

  • mysql-server 
  • automysqlbackup - for automatic backups
  • libreoffice-mysql-connector - for moving data between mySQL database and spreadsheets
  • Install MySQL Workbench.  This replaces MySQL Administrator and MySQL browser
    • Download from here; tried the 12.04 download as no 12.10 listed.
    • try to install the 64bit deb package, has depency problem: libctemplate0 not installed
    • Add PPA repository someone created as follows:
      • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:olivier-berten/misc
      • sudo apt-get update
      • sudo apt-get install mysql-workbench
      • to start the application 
        • type in terminal:  "mysql-workbench &"
        • or select MySQL Workbench from menu
      • reference 1  Reference 2
  • Other Admin front ends to try
  • Help on SQL
  • MySQL Workbench
    • First go through the "New Server Instance" setup to connect to local SQL Server
    • Now I can "Manage Import/Export" to add in my SQL dump file from my old computer
  • Connecting to SQL database from LibreOffice Base
    • /Edit/Database/Properties
      • Database name = GVaccounts
      • Server  = localhost
      • Port = 3306
      • User name = []
      • select password required
    • /Edit/Database/Connection Type
      • Database type = MySQL (Native)
This program is a good screen recording program which overcomes some of the problems of other options.  Enter the following in a terminal.  Thanks to Jim Lynch for the heads up.
  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:maarten-baert/simplescreenrecorder
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install simplescreenrecorder

Sony Music Player - flash player woes
I have 2 Sony mp3 players.  Both stopped working in recent versions of Linux in terms of being able to transfer music files on or off the player.  I had given up on this, deciding to not buy this brand again, and keeping my music stagnant on it, occasionally updating from someone else's computer.
WORK AROUND is now working again.  Just installed jsymphonic from the software manager and now able to access these players again.  jsymphonic - file manager for sony's mp3 players.

Add my Favorite Programs
  • Accessories
    • KeypassX - password vault
    • Lucky Backup - full featured front end for rsync
    • grsync - another rsync front end, connects to network drives
    • Guake - my favorite terminal app
    • Shutter - screen saver that lets you edit screen shots before saving them to custom location
    • SpiderOak Backup - computer back up service front end
    • optional:
      • ClamTK - antivirus front end
      • jSymphonic - allows access to Sony music players
      • f.lux - night time screen dimmer
      • USB Image writer (LM 17 has USB writer)
  • Administration
    • optional
      • APTonCE
      • GParted - disk format utility  (LM 17 has USB formatter & Disks)
      • hardinfo - System Information - shows detailed info on hardwqare
  • ChromeApps - installs automatically with Chrome apps
  • Education
    • BibleTime - bible study program

  • Games
    • Steam - I am not a gamer, but I appreciate the Linux support of the Steam community (same reasoning for purchasing Humble Indy Bundles).  I signed up and bought a couple titles... works great, even in Beta!
    • Neverball
  • Graphics
    • darktable - professional grade negative and image editor
    • Fotowall - very nice and easy collages and photo arrangements
    • gThumb - quick photo cropping and simple editing
    • Inkscape - vector graphics creator
    • Openshot - easy to use video editor
    • PhotoPrint - simple but powerfull photo printing program, better photo printing results
    • rapid-photo-downloader - Great for automatic downloading, renaming, then deleting of photos and videos off of device digital camera or other devices 
    • Optional
      • Document Viewer - if PDFs are not displaying correctly in default viewer
      • pdfmod - edit pdf docs
      • pdf shuffler - rearrange, merge, etc
      • Shape collage - powerful java based program to make photo collages from many photos, needs to be downloaded from web site  
      • Inkscape - vector graphics program
  • Internet
    • Chrome Browser (Download .deb from Internet)
    • EtherApe - graphical view of network traffic and more
    • FileZilla - Easy file browsing and transfer over sftp, ftp, ssh, etc
    • Google Music Manager - allows me to upload titles to/from Google account (both for purchasing from Play and for downloading my other music onto my Android devices)
    • Pidgin - My favorite (for now) IM client
    • Transmission - simple, stable bitTorrent client
    • Optional
      • Chromium Browser
      • Google Earth
      • Skype
  • Office
    • ePDFviewer - worked to print a few PDF docs when the default viewer had misplaced numberical dataap
    • Optional
      • GNUCash - Personal finance
      • Gnumeric - light weight spreadsheet
      • KeepNote - simple note taking
      • PDF Shuffler - working with PDFs
  • Programming (optional)
    • Emma - SQL front end, simple
    • Meld
  • Sound & Video
    • Audio Tag Tool - fixing mp3 tags
    • Pithos - Pandora music player
    • K3B - awesome disk writer
    • Netflix desktop - from PPA, see above, but maybe obsolete soon!
    • Openshot video editor - video projects
    • VLC media player
    • Optional
      • simple screen Recorder
      • Sound Recorder
  • System
    • Lucky Backup - fav backup program
    • Guake - (my favorite quick command line access) via F12
    • VirtualBox  Non-free
    • Optional
      • Unet Boot  (LM 17 has USB writer)
      • Wine
Other packages to install:
  • ubuntu-restricted-extras  This package allows playing of mp3s, etc. Perhaps unnecessary with Linux Mint.  Actually, thsi uninstalled libavcodec53 and libavutil51 and replaced them with libavcodedc-extra-53 and libavutil-extra51.  It also installed various other packages..

Programs I am testing

Other Resources
  • Web Upd8 PPA repository source for adding tweaks and content to Ubuntu via repositories:

Side Launch Bar Setup


Maria Database vs MySql
Database backup:

Programs to try
SM Player - reviewed as the best video player for all media including DVDs
PeaZip - all inclusive and fast
Splash Top - Remote viewer, proprietary, up to 10x faster, access computer from pad even
Pitivi - video editing
Devede - for creating video dvds, different focus from above
Firestarter or GUFW - graphical front end to UFW firewall
Crashplan - alternate backup to LuckyBackup
XBMC - home theater software for turning your pc into a home theater
Tomahawk - music center combining local and online music sources
Okular - nice pdf (, etc) reader, but best with KDE desktop

Notes, Other Resources