March 19, 2010 at 6:45 pm (arch, commands, install, tips)

Bashrun in progress

So, I’ve been getting used to using the terminal/command line a lot more since moving to Arch. In the process, I’ve been trying to run programs from the terminal. I find it to be much quicker than looking for it in the menu and getting used to that helps me troubleshoot my friends computer much easier. The problem I’ve been running into with running a program from the terminal, is that you can’t close that terminal or the program will close as well. I stumbled across a solution to that problem.

It’s called Bashrun and can be installed from the main repos: $ sudo pacman -S bashrun. Be sure to also install the optional file it suggests. It will give bashrun more functionality. What it does essentially is pop up a little box in which you can run your programs/commands from. It will then hide in the background (it’s a very small process).

Simply run $ bashrun and a small box will appear, then type in a program/command and hit enter. It will then hide and the command/program will run. Very useful. Here are some basic commands for the program:

$ bashrun –hide #Will hide bashrun
$ bashrun –show #Will show bashrun
$ bashrun –restart #Restarts bashrun
$ bashrun –su (cmd) #Run the command as root [note: don’t add the parenthesis]

Edit: Apparently xdotool breaks bashrun in the last 2 release. The devs for xdotool are working on fixing the problem of bashrun not closing once run, as well as –toggle not working properly


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Torrent Client Change

March 11, 2010 at 10:29 am (arch, AUR, install, linux, packages, packer)

So, I ran into a problem earlier today. Deluge torrent client completely stopped working on me. I kept getting numerous python errors from it:

File "/usr/bin/deluge", line 8, in <module>
    load_entry_point('deluge==1.2.1', 'console_scripts', 'deluge')()
  File "/usr/lib/python2.6/site-packages/deluge/", line 121, in start_ui
    UI(options, args, options.args)
  File "/usr/lib/python2.6/site-packages/deluge/ui/", line 127, in __init__
    from deluge.ui.gtkui.gtkui import GtkUI
  File "/usr/lib/python2.6/site-packages/deluge/ui/gtkui/", line 1, in <module>
    from gtkui import start
  File "/usr/lib/python2.6/site-packages/deluge/ui/gtkui/", line 41, in <module>
    reactor = gtk2reactor.install()
AttributeError: 'module' object has no attribute 'install'

I’m not sure what exactly happened, but it just decided to stop working properly. I even tried reinstalling it by issuing a $ sudo pacman -S deluge and still didn’t work. I’ve always liked Deluge as a torrent client, yet I always tend to have problems with it. So today seemed like it would be a good chance to try an alternate torrent client.

I’ve seen Transmission on other Linux distros as a standard for a torrent client and I’ve never had problems with it, so I figured I’ve give it a shot again. I also figured I would try to look for something light weight as well, seeing as how I’ve been going for a fairly minimal install.  Seeing as how Deluge didn’t really fit into that category, I uninstalled it. Wow…what a major chunk of space I saved. Uninstalling it using $ sudo pacman -Rs deluge. It removed about 120 megabytes of space.

resolving dependencies...
looking for inter-conflicts...

Targets (1): transmission-gtk-1.91-1

Total Download Size:    0.84 MB
Total Installed Size:   2.37 MB

Yeah…major difference. So far, so good. It’s been fairly fast with _no_ errors that I can tell. I found Transmission from the AUR.

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My Openbox Switch

March 1, 2010 at 6:45 pm (install, openbox, packages, pacman, sudo, terminal, tips)

My Openbox Screenshot

So over the last few weeks, I’ve been debating on switching to openbox. I borked my sound the other day trying to use mpd and could only get login/logout sounds to work. I didn’t have sound from any movies/music or flash videos. I decided that was a good enough reason to switch. I spent the past 2 days messing around with various settings and programs and did one last fresh install today. I’ve got most things set up pretty much the way I like it (still have to mess with the menu and add a few more programs, but overall, I’m good).

I followed the Openbox Wiki and got a basic idea for programs to install and ways to set them up. I’ll list the programs I went with and I’ll post the themes/icons configuration files in another post.

The common codecs: Flash Player, Microsoft Fonts, and Java
$ sudo pacman -S flashplugin ttf-ms-fonts jre
Note: jre is optional (well, all of it is, but I rarely use java, so that can be excluded)

My Browser of Choice (at least temporarily): Firefox
$ sudo pacman -S firefox

A very basic, lightweight notepad/editor: Leafpad
$ sudo pacman -S leafpad

A Lightweight/Speedy File Manager: Thunar, with optional plug-ins
$ sudo pacman -S thunar thunar-volman thunar-thumbnailers ffmpegthumbnailer thunar-archive-plugin thunar-media-tags-plugin

Archiver of choice: XArchiver
$ sudo pacman -S xarchiver

Misc system information: Conky
$ sudo pacman -S conky

A Taskbar/System Tray: Tint2
$ sudo pacman -S tint2

Wallpaper Manager: Feh (Extremely Lightweight)
$ sudo pacman -S feh

Image viewer: Mirage
$ sudo pacman -S mirage

Screenshot Utility: Scrot (Command Line)
$ sudo pacman -S scrot

Torrent Program: Deluge
$ sudo pacman -S deluge

CHM viewer: Xchm
$ sudo pacman -S xchm

Terminal of Choice: Tilda
$ sudo pacman -S tilda

IDE/Development Program: Geany
$ sudo pacman -S geany

A GUI for the Openbox Menu: OBMenu
$ sudo pacman -S obmenu

Music Player: Goggles Music Manager – Very lightweight and extremely fast with 22k song list
$ sudo pacman -S musicmanager
Note: This program is started by issuing the following command $ gmm

Movie Player: SMPlayer
$ sudo pacman -S smplayer

RSS Reader: Liferea
$ sudo pacman -S liferea

Super Easy Openbox Menu Generator: MenuMaker
$ sudo pacman -S menumaker

CD Burner: Xfburn – Very lightweight, and almost no dependencies.
$ sudo pacman -S xfburn

That should give you a pretty good setup in terms of basic programs. I know not all are super lightweight, but I can’t live without some. I tried to install only the most basic programs and avoid anything with gnome/kde dependencies. Some pull in a fairly large amount of dependencies (smplayer), but most are just codecs.

These are the few that I grabbed from the AUR using packer.

Office Program: Abiword-Light (without gnome dependencies)
SNES Emulator: ZSNES
PSX Emulator: pSX
Internet Browser: Chromium
PDF Reader: Foxit Reader (Yes, I know it’s proprietary…it’s just the best one I can find besides Okular)
Color for Pacman: Pacman-color
Windows Emulator: Wine
Virtual Desktop: Virtual Box
Online Backup: Dropbox

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My Openbox test.

February 21, 2010 at 7:17 pm (arch, install, linux, openbox)

Hosted by

So in my ever expanding quest for knowledge, power and the perfect Linux desktop, I decided to give Openbox a try. Openbox is a lightweight window manager that can be used as a standalone or with KDE or Gnome.

I’ve dealt with Openbox before, and loved how #! (Crunchbang! Linux) used that as a “desktop environment”. It was extremely fast and I enjoyed the incredibly minimalistic view of it. Having literally everything hidden on a blank desktop made it fun to showcase it off to my friends. Or for a real treat, let them attempt to use my desktop without explaining anything to them. The only thing I didn’t like was how many packages were installed with #! and the package manager aptitude has always been lacking.

So I began testing Openbox with my KDE previously installed. I was able to use KDM to select Openbox as an environment to log into. Installation went smooth and installing tint2 as well as obmenu made working in Openbox extremely easy. I loved the speed and my desktop was usable seconds after I started it up. There is much tampering to deal with and various alternate programs I would love to test and use before I begin my foray into using Openbox as a standalone window manager.

I’ve been quite impressed with it so far and it may actually take over my KDE as my primary(only) desktop. Plus I’ve gotten jealous with all the pretty screen-shots I’ve seen for Openbox on the arch forums 🙂

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Arch on a Friends Computer.

February 21, 2010 at 4:06 am (arch, friend, install)

So, the other day I had informed a friend about Arch Linux. He had been using Ubuntu since about a year ago and has for the most part not had too much trouble with it. He has been asking about the “new Linux” ever since I informed him that Ubuntu had come out with 9.10 (…it might have even been 9.04). I decided that a rolling release might be a better option than a flaky upgrade.

Upon first booting into his Ubuntu, I noticed something instantly. If he had been using a Windows system instead of a *nix based system, his computer would have slowed down significantly. His computer booted just as fast as the day I left it (I haven’t really messed with it since I first installed Ubuntu). The other thing that amused me was Ubuntu has a bad habit of keeping old kernel files in the grub boot menu. He had a solid list of 8-10 kernel upgrades in the menu. Very messy looking to say the least.

I informed him that he would have to use the command line a bit, but I would give him the few basic commands to run as well as how to install software. He didn’t seem to mind, but he did seem a little intimidated. So, today he dropped his computer off and stuck around for a bit while I started installing Arch. He was quite impressed with how much I knew and watching his reactions while I installed the base system was priceless.

He decided to install KDE since he was fairly familiar with Gnome and he wanted to learn a new desktop environment. Plus I think he was fairly impressed with my setup after seeing my KDE desktop. Installation went smooth, and the only problem I have yet to test out is the wireless. He left the antennae at home, so I couldn’t test it out on my network. Since I haven’t yet tried to install and configure a wireless network with Arch, I may be in for a few hours of searching and testing. Hopefully all goes well though. /fingers crossed

Let’s hope that he enjoys Arch as much as I have!

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