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Post- Install Page
Saturday 28th April 2012



About this web page
This page is about some of the things that can be done after a fresh installation of Ubuntu in order to get the most enjoyment from your new Ubuntu operating system.

This page is being re-written.

It's probably best to use your help menu because a lot of things have changed in Ubuntu since the last time I worked on this page.  I have not had time to keep up with all the changes. Evolution Email has been replaced with Thunderbird. Software Center has replaced Synaptic Package Manager, even our desktop isn't sacred, Unity has been imposed on us instead of the Gnome desktop that we were all familiar with.

Most of this web page has now been deleted. What's left is mostly out of date. Eventually I hope to get this page back up to date eventually but I don't think it will ever be as comprehensive as it used to be.


Don't overlook the obvious - read the instructions.
Your Ubuntu Help Center is the obvious place to look first to learn all about your new Ubuntu operating system. It's right in front of our noses, so therefore it's often overlooked by all of us 'experts'.
Your 'Ubuntu Help Center' is located under your 'System' menu, the third menu from the left on your top panel.   
Just go 'System'-->'Help and Support'.  
You'll find out the best way to do almost everything in there, and no matter how much you think you already know, your bound to find out some new tip or trick that can help you.

The Official Ubuntu Wiki is another great place to go to learn how to get started with Ubuntu.
Here is the link, The Official Ubuntu Wiki.

This is not an official Ubuntu website,
This web page is not supposed to compete with the excellent rescources mentioned above.
It's nowhere near as comprehensive, and may not be as accurate. 
This page shows you an example of what I do right after I install a new Ubuntu operating system.
Often, people can understand what the help pages are trying to explain when they see an example.

Ubuntu Linux Resources.
Another good user friendly website I highly recommend is Aysiu's site,  Ubuntu Linux Resources.


Enable Standard Repositories
A 'repository' is a special place on the internet where the operating system looks for software packages.
There are different kinds of software repositories, and the repositories Ubuntu comes with enabled (open) by default contain free software that meets the highest standards of security and suitability for you and your Ubuntu operating system.
There are some things you will want to be able to do with Ubuntu that the default repositories that are enabled at installation time are not allowed to provide. I guess there are some kind of complicated legal reasons, I'm not sure.
Most computer users want to have access to as many safe repositories as we can, so we can install the full range of software available for Ubuntu so we can choose from the widest possible range of available softwares for our operating systems to download and install for us.

About the first thing I always do after I boot up a clean new Ubuntu installation for the first time is enable all the available repositories.

It's easy, just open Software Center from the icon on the side bar and then go 'Edit', - Software Sources'- and tick all the boxes except the bottom one  for 'source code'.  (Unless of course you are interested in reading code, most ordinary users probablt won't be too interested in it).









THE INFORMATION BELOW HERE HAS NOT BEEN CHECKED YET TO MAKE SURE IT'S STILL RELEVANT. MUCH OF IT COULD BE OUT OF DATE BUT SOME BITS OF IT MIGHT STILL BE OKAY.











The /etc/apt/sources.list file is the configuration file which contains the web addressess for our Ubuntu operating system to look for software.
There are a couple of these extra repositories already in our /etc/apt/sources.list files which are disabled at installation time, and all we need to do is enable them.

Here is what to do.

1. Open your terminal.

Type the following code into your terminal, (or just copy mine and paste it into your own terminal with your mouse).
code:
herman@bookpc:~$ sudo cp /etc/apt/sources.list /etc/apt/sources.lst_backup

3. You'll be asked to type in your password.

code:
herman@bookpc:~$ gksudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list
This opens up a file named sources list from inside the /etc/apt directory. This file controls what repositories we can access on the internet.

4. In Linux, we can configure the behavior of our operating system by editing files like this.
When a hash mark is placed at the beginning of a line, that tells the operating system to skip (ignore) the instructions on that line. A 'hash mark' is a number symbol, it looks like this: #
In this particular example, each line we are going to do this to is a web address for a software repository. Removing the hash (#) mark before the line will enable the operating system to read that web address and access that repository.

Find lines with single # (comments) in front and uncomment all those.
Leave all ## (double commented) lines alone.

So here is my 'Precise Pangolin'  /etc/apt/sources list before, and under that you'll see it again after.

Before,
#

# deb cdrom:[Ubuntu 12.04 LTS _Precise Pangolin_ - Beta i386 (20120327.1)]/ precise main restricted

#deb cdrom:[Ubuntu 12.04 LTS _Precise Pangolin_ - Beta i386 (20120327.1)]/ precise main restricted

# See http://help.ubuntu.com/community/UpgradeNotes for how to upgrade to
# newer versions of the distribution.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise main restricted
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise main restricted

## Major bug fix updates produced after the final release of the
## distribution.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates main restricted
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates main restricted

## N.B. software from this repository is ENTIRELY UNSUPPORTED by the Ubuntu
## team. Also, please note that software in universe WILL NOT receive any
## review or updates from the Ubuntu security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise universe
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise universe
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates universe
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates universe

## N.B. software from this repository is ENTIRELY UNSUPPORTED by the Ubuntu
## team, and may not be under a free licence. Please satisfy yourself as to
## your rights to use the software. Also, please note that software in
## multiverse WILL NOT receive any review or updates from the Ubuntu
## security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise multiverse
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates multiverse

## N.B. software from this repository may not have been tested as
## extensively as that contained in the main release, although it includes
## newer versions of some applications which may provide useful features.
## Also, please note that software in backports WILL NOT receive any review
## or updates from the Ubuntu security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-backports main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-backports main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security main restricted
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security main restricted
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security universe
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security universe
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security multiverse
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security multiverse

## Uncomment the following two lines to add software from Canonical's
## 'partner' repository.
## This software is not part of Ubuntu, but is offered by Canonical and the
## respective vendors as a service to Ubuntu users.
# deb http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu precise partner
# deb-src http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu precise partner

## This software is not part of Ubuntu, but is offered by third-party
## developers who want to ship their latest software.
deb http://extras.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise main
deb-src http://extras.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise main

After,
#

# deb cdrom:[Ubuntu 12.04 LTS _Precise Pangolin_ - Beta i386 (20120327.1)]/ precise main restricted

#deb cdrom:[Ubuntu 12.04 LTS _Precise Pangolin_ - Beta i386 (20120327.1)]/ precise main restricted

# See http://help.ubuntu.com/community/UpgradeNotes for how to upgrade to
# newer versions of the distribution.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise main restricted
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise main restricted

## Major bug fix updates produced after the final release of the
## distribution.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates main restricted
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates main restricted

## N.B. software from this repository is ENTIRELY UNSUPPORTED by the Ubuntu
## team. Also, please note that software in universe WILL NOT receive any
## review or updates from the Ubuntu security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise universe
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise universe
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates universe
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates universe

## N.B. software from this repository is ENTIRELY UNSUPPORTED by the Ubuntu
## team, and may not be under a free licence. Please satisfy yourself as to
## your rights to use the software. Also, please note that software in
## multiverse WILL NOT receive any review or updates from the Ubuntu
## security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise multiverse
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-updates multiverse

## N.B. software from this repository may not have been tested as
## extensively as that contained in the main release, although it includes
## newer versions of some applications which may provide useful features.
## Also, please note that software in backports WILL NOT receive any review
## or updates from the Ubuntu security team.
deb http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-backports main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ precise-backports main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security main restricted
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security main restricted
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security universe
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security universe
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security multiverse
deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise-security multiverse

## Uncomment the following two lines to add software from Canonical's
## 'partner' repository.
## This software is not part of Ubuntu, but is offered by Canonical and the
## respective vendors as a service to Ubuntu users.
 deb http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu precise partner
 deb-src http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu precise partner

## This software is not part of Ubuntu, but is offered by third-party
## developers who want to ship their latest software.
deb http://extras.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise main
deb-src http://extras.ubuntu.com/ubuntu precise main
Do you see how the hash marks are removed for lines that began with a single hash, but lines with two hash marks have been left alone?
That's all we need to do for now.
Remember to click 'save' before you close the file.

If you looked in 'Ubuntu Software Center, or in Synaptic Package Manager, at the list of software you could download before you enabled the extra repositories, and again afterwards, you would notice an increase in the amount of software that is available to you now. There is so much software available for Ubuntu that is takes hours even just to scroll through the list in Synaptic and look at the summaries for it all.

NOTE: Synaptic Package Manager is no longer installed in a clean new Ubuntu installation by default, we have to install Synaptic Package Manager from the Software Center is we want it.

TIP:
If you have more than one computer and you want to save yourself some internet bandwidth, it is possible to obtain the entire Ubuntu Repositories on an .iso file and burn that to a CD-ROM.
If you are interested in doing things that way, visit http://aptoncd.sourceforge.net for more information, it's called 'APTonCD'.  That also works if you downloaded one of the DVD .iso files for Ubuntu, because the installation DVDs also contain all the software in the repositories.

To enable this idea to work, you can remove the hash mark from that top line referring to the CD-ROM.
That means when you want to install new software, Ubuntu will ask you to insert your Ubuntu Hardy Heron DVD or CD-ROM. It will look there first and get what software it can from the DVD or CD before it will look on the internet and download software from the repositories.

TIP:
Take a look around in your ISPs web site or ring their tech support to see if they have their own mirror site for the Ubuntu repositories. Often you can edit your /etc/apt/sources.lst to get updates and downloads from your ISP's 'freezone' or 'file library', or whatever they call it.





Update your System
I presume that since you're able to read this web page you're probably connected to the internet.
Updates for Ubuntu are available wherever you can get an internet connection.

The simplest way to update your system is to just click on your update icon in the top right-hand corner of your desktop. Using the update icon will be obvious and doesn't need much explanation, so I'll just skip that.
herman@bookpc:~$ sudo apt-get update

herman@bookpc:~$ sudo apt-get upgrade


Install Multimedia codecs -
Follow the instructions here -  Comprehensive Multimedia & Video Howto - Ubuntu Web Forums

These codecs may be proprietary software and although they may be available free of charge, they're not 'free software' meaning they may be subject to copywrite laws. For that reason it is left up to the computer user to decide whether or not to install these codecs. You need multimedia codecs if you want your Linux operating system to be able to play most kinds of sound and video files, and view pages on the internet properly.


Installing Software in Ubuntu
You can't install software by downloading an 'installer' for it from just anywhere on the internet and double-clicking it, that won't work in Ubuntu, so just forget about it.
Even if a web site offers you a .deb file with special instructions for Ubuntu, that doesn't mean it is safe.
You really should think twice before you go and install software from unknown sources in Ubuntu. There's a risk it could break your system, or install security vulnerabilities like a root kit for example.
You can be certain that software from the official Ubuntu repositories is safe, but you can never be certain about software from anywhere else.

The proper ways to install software in Ubuntu are to use 'Ubuntu Software Center', 'Synaptic Package Manager', 'apt-get' (in terminal), or your own software installation scripts.

Add/Remove Applications
The simplest way to add or remove software is to open 'Ubuntu Software Center', and pick out what you want from the lists in that application. The Ubuntu Software Center is simple to use do there will be no need for me to go into details about that.

Synaptic package Manager
If you don't find what you want in Ubuntu Software Center, Synaptic package Manager might be worth a look through.
I explained a little about Synaptic already further up this page, adding software is easy with Synaptic, there are some intersesting things we can do with Synaptic and it's a subject I hope to have time to elaborate on here in a future update.

apt-get
For use on the command line. When you know the name of the application you want, apt-get is the fastest and easiest way to install software in Ubuntu.
One reason apt-get is good is because you can copy each terminal command we use to install added software to a text file as a record of what we have installed. Later, we can turn that into a script that can be run in terminal to automatically install the same list of software again some time if we want to for some reason.
You just open a terminal, and type 'sudo apt-get install' followed by the name of the software.
For example,
Code,
herman@bookpc:~$  sudo apt-get install gparted


For an experiment I just typed 'apt-get install', and then pressed my tab key twice for a list of possibilities, there are 32178 possibilities. Wow! 
herman@bookpc:~$ apt-get install
Display all 32178 possibilities? (y or n)



Installing 'Services'
As it is, when we install Ubuntu 'Out of the box', we don't need to use any firewall because there are no 'services' running 'open ports', where something from the internet can gain access to our systems.
Neither do we need a firewall for rogue programs making 'outbound' connections. This is because all of our programs come from trusted repositories. There are no rogue programs as long as we stick to the official Ubuntu repositories. Only known programmers with a special 'key' are allowed to upload programs in the official Ubuntu repositories.

If you do decide to add extra repositories to your /etc/apt/sources.list, or if you download .deb files from anywhere on the internet to install software with, understand that you are taking a risk. When you are installing software, be careful what you install and be careful of software that installs 'services', (like networking or file sharing software). Make sure you understand the risks and know what are doing if you decide to install those type of programs.

Ubuntu has a built-in firewall called IP Tables. You shouldn't need to configure it unless you install unsafe programs. If you do decide to go ahead and do so anyway, then you might want a firewall configuration tool like 'Firestarter' or some similar program.

Scan your system for open ports
If you have more than one Ubuntu computer in a LAN network you can use one computer to scan the others for open ports. Ubuntu comes with some very good networking software. Just go 'System'-->'Administration'-->'Network Tools', and click on the 'Port Scan' tab.
You need to know the IP number for each of the other computers that you want to scan.
The easiest way to get that is just to go to the other computer and run 'ifconfig'.
The scan only takes a few seconds.
It should come up blank, you'll know your computers are invisible on the internet.

TIP: When you use most file sharing programs, you are opening ports and inviting strangers into your computer.
You might consider having a separate Ubuntu installation for that purpose, and do not mount any other file system while you are using it. Don't keep any sensitive files in it either!
You can have a separate Ubuntu operating system for your normal use. One of the advantages of using free software is, we can have as many installations as we like. Why not make use of that freedom?



Fix Broken Packages

This doesn't happen very often, (thankfully), but when it does it can be quite troublesome because we cannot install any more software until we fix the broken package.

A 'broken' package is a software package that can't be installed properly because it depends on some other software also being installed that's not available right now for some reason. Having a 'Broken Package' in your system can stop you from installing more software until you clear it.
Click 'System'-->Administration'-->'Synaptic Package Manager'.
You may be asked for your password before Synaptic Package Manager will open.

a) Click 'Edit', - 'Fix Broken Packages'

if that doesn't fix it, try the following;

a) Click the 'Custom Filters' button down near the bottom left of your screen.
b) Looking straight up, find the word 'Broken', in the left column above, and click on it.
c) If any packages appear in the right-hand pane, those are 'broken' packages. You should be able to right-click on those and click 'mark for re-installation'.
d) Click the 'Apply' button on your top panel (the third icon from the right), and click 'apply' again in the 'summary' window that will pop up, to confirm.

OR: (Faster!)
Open your terminal and copy and paste this command into it,
Code:
sudo apt-get -f install

That command does the exactly the same thing as 'Edit'-->'Fix Broken Packages'-->'Apply' in Synaptic, but it's sometimes quicker to just open a terminal and paste in a command than it is to go through all the hoops to get things done in GUI applications.

Sometimes the problem is caused by corrupted packages in your /var/cache/apt/archives. To fix those you can use the rm command with sudo,
sudo rm /var/cache/apt/archives/<name-of-corrupted-package>
NOTE: Replace '<name-of-corrupted-package>' with the real name of the broken package, normally you will see that in feedback in your terminal from running other commands like apt-get -f install.

or if you want you can empty your entire package cache,
sudo apt-get clean

Then try running apt-get update and apt-get upgrade again. It will download fresh copies of the needed packages from the internet and hopefully those won't be corrupted this time and will install okay.

You can boot into 'Recovery Mode' from your GRUB Menu, and choose 'dpkg - Repair Broken Packages.

In extreme cases, when the operating system becomes upbootable, the proper thing to do is chroot into it from a Ubuntu Live CD and try to fix the problem with the commands just mentioned above.
Another hard-disk installed Ubuntu of the same achitecture will work too, or a Ubuntu Auxilliary USB installation.

The Ubuntu 'Alternate Installation CD' offers one of the easiest ways to 'Fix a Broken System'.
You just boot the Ubuntu 'Alternate Installation CD' and select 'Fix a Broken System' from the boot screen.
After running through the usual hardware initialisation routine, the Alternate CD offers you a terminal in the selected operating system, for using the above mentioned commands. It's much easier than chrooting.
See this website's Rescue a Broken System Page.









Download very large files with BitTorrent
Ubuntu includes Transmission, a graphical BitTorrent client already installed.
If a .torrent (torrent starter file) is offered at the download site you may just download that to start your Bittorrent download with.
It's seen as being more community minded if we can download large files with BitTorrent because Bittorrent lets you upload the file to others as you download it, which is good for your ISP and faster for all internet users. When your file is complete, you should keep the torrent open for quite a long time to share the file and help others.

BitTorrent (protocol) - Wikipedia

BitTorrent -Ubuntu Community Docs

To download a file using BitTorrent,
  1. You just google for say for example 'Ubuntu 8.10 torrent', and hopefully you'll find one.
  2. I found this page with google: Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) Alpha 3
  3. Scrolling to around the bottom of the page I found: maverick-desktop-i386.iso.torrent
  4. I clicked on that link for a windows offering to save the torrent file to disk, which I accepted
  5. After a fraction of a second, I find the torrent file on my Desktop
  6. I right-clicked on it and clicked 'Open with Transmission BitTorrent Client'
  7. In the 'Torrent Options' window, I clicked the 'Add' button.
  8. My download has started, I have an icon like a T-bar gearstick and a Torrent Window showing the progress of my downloading file.
It's polite to keep the torrent open for a long time after your file has completely finished so you can upload the file to other people. We should all upload at least an equal amount as we download, or up to double what we downloaded if we want to be good internet citizens.

What if we want to turn our bittorent off during peak times and turn it on again during off-peak internet periods? My ISP is iinet, and with iinet our peak period for downloads is 12 noon to 2am and the off-peak period is 2am to 12 noon.

I tried and tried to get crontab and even sudo crontab to open a torrent client for me, even a command line torrent client, but nothing worked.

OUT OF DATE INFO:
Try setting a calendar appointment in your evolution calendar, and set it to run a program as an alarm and make it run /usr/bin/transmission. See this link for an example, Memos, Tasks and Calendar Appointments. That's what works for me!



Ubuntu Screencasts
There are some excellent videos you can download in which you'll learn how to do all kinds of things in Ubuntu. Even experienced Ubuntu enthusiasts can pick up a lot of neat tricks and tips from watching these great videos. I know I'm certainly learning a few things! Everyone should watch them, especially if you're new to Ubuntu.

Anyone can all download them from screencasts.ubuntu.com, the full collection will be found there. It's quite a large collection too, and very well done!

Nixie Pixel
I'm hopelessly addicted to Nixie Pixel, and I have a growing collection of Nixie's YouTube Ubuntu How-tos.

OSGUI
There's another nice collection of short videos to help us at  tim1980's OSGUI Tech Show.









Set up Seahorse
Seahorse HowTo
Saturday, June 14 2008
Seahorse Index
Generate your PGP Keys

Encrypting a File

Sign a File

Export/Import PGP keys

SSH keys (RSA)

Export/Import RSA keys

Seahorse Home Page:  Seahorse -Encryption Made Easy.
Ubuntu Hardy Heron comes with Seahorse already installed and it's a great feature that you shouldn't overlook. You don't have to use Seahorse, but it's well worth the time invested to do so.
Seahorse is a nice GUI application and it makes and manages both PGP and RSA keys.  Seahorse is really cool!


With PGP keys we can securely encrypt our sensitive data and emails, and sign documents.

RSA keys are used for setting up passwordless logins to our computer over the LAN or even over the internet if we have SSH Server installed.  See:
SSH network.
After installing the RSA key, we can edit /etc/ssh/sshd_config files to disable password based logins. The RSA key is a lot harder to crack than even a very long passphrase, so they improve security for our SSH Server as well as add convenience and ease of use.

Links:

What is a Digital Signature? An introduction to Digital Signatures, by David Youd

 How PGP Works     |     
Dr. Small's Blog     |    Public Key Cryptography - Wikipedia  

The International PGP Home Page           

To set up Seahorse, just go 'Applications'-->'Accessories'-->'Passwords and Encryption Keys'.

We will have four keys,
  1. a PGP private key which we keep secret,
  2. and a PGP public key which we can copy and give to our friends.
  3. An RSA Private key for SSH networking to keep secret, we can keep it in our Desktop computer when we're home, and take it with us in our USB drive when we travel.
  4. and a RSA public key which we can install copies of in the .ssh directory of any SSH server computers (our friend's or our work computers) we want to be able to log into.
Remember:
  • you must back up your keys somewhere
  • you must keep your private keys secure
If you lose your private keys especially, any data files you have encrypted with them won't be any good to you because you won't be able to unencrypt them again.
On the other hand, you should keep your backup copies of your private keys somewhere secure, like in CD in a secret and secure hiding spot, or even locked up in a safe. If someone else gets  a copy of them and knows what they are for, your data is no longer private.


Generate your PGP Keys
  1. Go 'Applications'-->'Accessories'-->'Passwords and Encryption keys', and a Window called ''Passwords and Encryption keys' should open.
  2. First time user: you need to generate your keys first, so click 'Key'-->'Create New Key...'
  3. A 'Create New Key Window will open, and you have a choice of creating a PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) key or an Secure Shell Key
NOTE: A PGP key is not the same thing as a GPG key (Gnome Privacy Guard), although both are types of encryption keys.

001.png




Let's make a PGP key first.

002
Just click on PGP Key to highlight that field if it's not already highlighted.
Click the 'Continue' button.

003
Fill in the fields:
Full name, tip: I used all lower case letters and underscores rather than spaces - call me superstitious if you want.
email address, your real (evolution) email address, (not gmail).
and a comment, (a reminder for yourself later on about what this key will be for. eg. file encryption key
Click 'Create'
Type your passphrase twice.

004
A "Generating Key' window will open and show a reciprocating bar, this will take a while, sit back and relax...


005
Now you should have a new PGP key in your 'Personal Keys' tab.

The 'Trusted Keys' Tab has keys in it that others give to you.

When you right-click on files from now on, you'll notice two new options in your right-click menu: Encrypt, and sign.







Encrypting a File

The 'Encrypt' option will help you to encrypt a file.

After you right-click on the file you want to encrypt, you'll see this 'Choose Recipients' Window.
006
Just place a check mark in the square for the recipient, or yourself, who you want to encrypt this file for.
As soon as you click 'Okay', the file will be encrypted for you.

If you can sign a file with your private key, then it can be verified by anyone who has your public key. That can be used to prove the file is genuine, or that you have viewed and approved the contents of the file, much the same a real signature, but with the added effect similar to a seal as well.

You'll have an encrypted copy of the file now with the same file name and a .pgp extension, as well as the original file.
It's up to you what you want to do with the original file. Shift-delete it maybe.


POSSIBLY OUT OF DATE- NEEDS CHECKING WHETHER THUNDERBIRD HAS BEEN INTEGRATED WITH SEAHORSE ?

Encrypt your email

Normally, whenever you send an email, it gets sent unencrypted, meaning it can be intercepted and read by anyone. It's a good idea to encrypt your email, and it's very quick and easy to do with Seahorse and Evolution.
As soon as you have keys generated in Seahorse, you'll notice the when you are compozing a new email in Evolution, if you click the 'Security' tab, the options are no longer greyed out, and you can use the PGP Encrypt option.
You encrypt the message using the public key of the person you are sending the message to, and only they can decode the message.


Sign a File
You can sign a file so that the recipient can verify that it's definitely from you and no-one can altered the file since you signed it.
Or you might want to sign a file that someone sent you to prove you read it.
Just right-click on the file and choose 'Sign' from your right-click menu.



Export/Import PGP keys

In the old computer:
Open Seahorse
'Key'-->'Back up KeyRings'
Name: keyring.tar.gz            (it must be some kind of archive file).
Click 'Save'.

Copy the keyring.tar.gz to the other computer.

In the new computer:
Extract the archive (right-click on it and click 'Extract Here').
Open Seahorse - 'Applications'-->'Accessories'-->'Passwords and Encryption Keys'
'Key'-->'Import', and navigate to the keyring folder. Make sure 'Show all Files' spinbox is set (look below the lower right-hand corner).
Select the file to import and click 'open'.
Go back and do the same again for the next one if there are more.

Shift-delete the key files when you are finished with them, for security reasons.



SSH (RSA) keys
PGP keys are used for encrypting/unencrypting/signing files or emails, RSA keys are used for SSH.
Both your private and public RSA keys live in your .ssh directory.
Our private key must be kept with us and kept secure and private at all costs.
The public SSH key will be copied to each computer you want to ssh into.

In the home or local computer, the SSH key will be stored in a text file in .ssh called: rd_rsa
Your own RSA public key is stored as text in a file in .ssh called: id_rsa.pub

In all the remote computers (your friends computers), seahorse will append your public RSA key to their files in .ssh called: authorized_keys.

When we ssh into a remote computer, the remote computer generates a random number using our own public RSA key.
That number gets sent back to our own computer.
The number is decoded using your own RSA private key and sent back to the remote box to prove the local box has the private key.
Then the remote computer lets us in.


Export/Import RSA keys

Open the home directory in the old operating system or computer and click 'View'-->'show hidden files'.
Open the .ssh directory and copy rd_rsa and id_rsa.pub

In the new operating system, do the same thing, 'View'-->'show hidden files', open .ssh and paste in rd_rsa and id_rsa.pub
These should show up in Seahorse now.







Linux Keyboard Shortcuts
Linux Keyboard Shortcuts - tuxfiles




Gnome Keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard Skills - Gnome Documentation Library, and Keyboard Shortcuts Preferences - Gnome Documentation Library



     
Links to Linux Courses  
You don't have to study any of these to survive with Ubuntu, you can get by okay without them just fine for quite a long time. Sooner or later, you'll find yourself wanting to do something you can't do unless you resort to using some more of these terminal commands.

 'Terminal For Beginners' , by kryal of Ubuntu Web Forums would be a great help. It's a very informative thread, it's a Ubuntu Web Forum thread. Some Linux tutorials are more specific to other distros and some of the commands work a little differently, so it's nice to see an good all-Ubuntu tutorial, thanks Kryal!

More tutorials are linked here,

UNIX Tutorial for Beginners
This one's about Unix, which is the language that Linux is based on. Linux uses unix commands, plus some extra ones that Unix might not have. This is the first one I began learning from, and I still refer to it often. There are a few things here that might not directly apply to Ubuntu, but it's a great tutorial.

Linux Command.org

Linux Online - Linux courses

The Linux Tutorial

A Hands on Guide  by Machtelt Garrels

Rute User's Tutorial and Exposition by Paul Sheer

TLUG CS Student Linux Users Guide

These are just a few, there are plenty more you can google if you like.






Asking questions Ubuntu Web Forums
Here's a link to Ubuntu Forums, another one of the things that helps make Ubuntu the greatest operating system on Earth!  
 
Ubuntu Forums are very friendly. Here are a few quick tips to help you get the best response:
* Your User Profile is a big help to someone who wants to provide an appropriate answer to your question. An answer for the same question to suit an eight year old child will be very different to one that suits a computer software engineer, even though the question may look exactly the same. If you fill out your user profile when you sign up, it helps people decide how to answer your question appropriately. (You can edit your user profile any time too).
* Use the search function before posting a question to see if someone else has already asked the same one and if there's already a good answer for it.
* Think of a title for your question that will attract the right attention. One that describes your problem very briefly is often a good idea.  The same thing goes for your first sentence, since people in a hurry can scan your title by hovering it with their mouse pointer, so help them decide if it a subject they can help with or not.
* Try to post it in the appropriate section if you can. If you can't decide don't worry, just post it somewhere.



    

Activate your printer
A lot of people use their computer for running a printer. It's easy to set your printer up in Ubuntu. Ubuntu already has drivers for most printers. To find and install your printer driver, just click  'System', (third from the left on the top left corner of your monitor), and then 'Administration', then 'Printing'. A small window will open with an icon called 'New Printer' in it. Click on that icon, and from there it's pretty simple to read the instructions and follow the prompts and your printer will be working in no time!


    

Make a Data CD
Making a data CD is so easy in Ubuntu it hardly needs any instructions. Just pop a CD into
your CD-ROM drive and try it! An icon will appear on your desktop. You can click on it. The CD software is very intuitive, and will even offer to erase CD-RW disks before writing fresh data on them! You can drag and drop files into the CD/DVD creator windows and click 'File', and 'Write to disk'. It's a breeze!




Make an .iso CD
Right click on your .iso file and click 'write to disk', (when there's a CD-RW or a blank CD-ROM in your CD-ROM drive. Or a DVD if you have a CD/DVD drive.



                

Digital Camera Pictures
Just plug your digital camera in and try it!

Most people probably like to use F-Spot

No setup CD-ROMs were needed to install any fancy drivers. Ubuntu already knows what to do. It just works!





Links to outside sources:

Video Surveillance With ZoneMinder On Ubuntu - HowtoForge.



    

GIMP
Another thing you can do with photos in Ubuntu is open them in GIMP and edit them. GIMP (Gnu Image Manipulation Program), is excellent for all types of image processing! You can add  all kinds of special effects to your pictures with GIMP. 
I used GIMP for making the .png and .gif images and animations for this website. For more on GIMP, go to GIMP's own website and click on 'tutorials' for a special ideas, tips and techniques!

The best website of all for  learning all about GIMP is called GIMP SAVVY and it features the book
Grokking the GIMP, by Carey Bunks. 

GIMP supports a huge number of different image file types, and can convert one to another.
Here's a thrifty tip for reducing the file size of e-mail and websites where you might have to pay for extra usage (mb. upload or download); don't send images as bitmaps or jpeg, if possible, open them in GIMP and 'save as' .png (file format). Then use the .png copy for your e-mail. '.png' images are as light as a feather, and great quality!
Gif is the image format that supports animations.
Jpeg's are good for photos, but for other uses like maps and drawings, the colors tend to bleed and they loose quality.
Bitmaps are as heavy as lead for sending in e-mails, but they are good for being able to be handled by a wide variety of common software. Keep them in your computer though, never email a bitmap.Your recipient won't appreciate the long time it takes to download into his or her computer, plus they will add significantly to your internet usage (bill).
GIMP can convert images of almost any file type to almost any other file type you like, easily. 
Portable Network Graphics, or .png is the best  format for images. .png images are even lighter than .gifs when comparing two images of the same quality.





KompoZer

NOTE:
KompoZer doesn't work in Intrepid Ibex (yet) since the last time I tried it, Saturday Dec 6th 2008.
KompoZer works very well in Hardy Heron and earlier versions of Ubuntu.

Make web pages inside your own computer with Kompozer!
Kompozer is now easy to install in Ubuntu, look for it in your 'Applications'-->'Add/Remove', or Synaptic', or use apt-get, but get it!
This website is made with Kompozer. Using Kompozer is as easy as using a normal word processor, except you can make .html pages the same as pages you find on the internet.  
That means you can use your own links and anchor points too!
Now you can keep your own information in .html files and use hyperlinks to click instantly to whatever it is you need to look up inside your own computer as well as on the internet!

You can make your own Firefox start page too! Make a page in Kompozer with your favorite photo on it or whatever you like. Mine is full of links to other .html files inside my computer.

Open Firefox and go 'Edit'-->'Preferences', and under the 'Main' tab, in the 'Startup' fields, select 'Show my Home Page', and paste in the file path to your new home-made home page.
Example:
file:///home/herman/Documents/html_files/HermansHomePage.html
You can add the file path to your own home page in the same format as shown above.

I highly recommend Kompozer!



 
    

Screen Caps in Ubuntu are simple to take and save, and also far superior in quality than what you may have been used to in your other operating system. Ubuntu screencaps are .png images by default. .png images can be very light, maybe one twentieth the number Kb. of an equivalent bitmap, but also unbelievably great quality. All you need to do is press your 'PrintScreen' key or Alt+PrintScreen' keys. You don't have to go looking for any file to paste them to, a dialog box will appear for you and you can name your file and choose a location you'd like it saved to.

There is  another way to take a screencap too, you can take a screencap from a movie you are watching with Movie Player. Use Shift + Spacebar to pause the movie and Shift + S keys to take your screencap.
You can set a screencap as wallpaper too if you like.

If you can install Avidemux, you do even more. You can advance a movie file one frame at a time and even reverse it, and more tricks. Avidemux is great for martial artists and sports fans who want to be able to analyse video actions.    



Scanned Images, Maps
If  you have a scanner, you may be able to get it working in Ubuntu by going; 'Applications', 'Graphics', 'Xsane Image Scanning Program', and seeing what's there.  Ubuntu is able to support more and more peripherals all the time. It's an amazing achievement. Other operating systems wait for the manufacturers of peripheral devices to make the software to suit the operating system, but not Ubuntu!
 I use maps a lot for my work, and I found that I could scan maps and then open  them with GIMP in Ubuntu and join them together. GIMP can rotate images or parts of images to the number of degrees you specify, so the edges can be lined up, and several A4 sized maps can be pasted together to make a larger map as big as a poster. (Well that's the normal size for a map anyway).
Ubuntu can handle such a large image easily, because I have a large 'swap' partition, and because there aren't greedy 'resource hog' applications occupying the RAM needlessly when they aren't being used, and there aren't any 'TSR's like antivirus programs doing likewise either. I can use Ubuntu to do things easily that Windows would choke on with the same computer. In Ubuntu I can pan around my huge maps easily, while panning around the same map in windows would cause the computer to do a lot of 'thrashing' from lack of memory.


    

Make a Linux Home Network    
OpenSSH Networking is good for use between Ubuntu Computers or between Ubuntu and other Linux boxes. It can also be installed in Windows too! OpenSSH for Windows
Networking is very quick and easy to do using more than one Ubuntu or other Linux computer. Here's an example page for how I set up my quick and easy home network using SSH.





Run a Web Server in your Computer
If you have a hobby, club or a business that you want to showcase, you can!
Here's an example of caryb's aquarium club website which runs in Kubuntu, Aquarium Club.


   
This is not an official Ubuntu website
The information on this page is for the assistance of Ubuntu Linux users but is not guaranteed to be free from errors.  The author does not claim to know everything there is to know about these subjects. Use this information at your own risk.
Better and more complete information can be found in the Official Ubuntu Wiki. on all these subjects. Please refer to the Ubuntu Wiki for more information. This page is to help beginners get off to a quick start. In no instance is it intended to replace or contradict any information to be found in the Official Ubuntu Wiki.




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