Friday, 28 October 2011

My personal all-in-one usb stick

For my own use I like to create an all-in-one usb stick with everything I need. Well what to do with a 16GB usb stick. So much space and rarely enough data to fill it :-).
  1. All 11.10 Xubuntu editions should be on the stick. This includes the 32-bit and 64-bit alternative and desktop editions. In the past I used UNetbootin or usb-creator-gtk. But there you could only use just one system and I had to delete or format the stick for a new iso file afterwards.
  2. An encrypted data safe for personal data. For keeping my personal data always safe in case of loss.
My solution for both points are the following lines:
    1. For having a good tool that can handle multiple iso files in one boot loader I found MultiSystem. To install Multisystem you need priviously gtkdialog in the newest version 0.8.0. Following you can add your iso files to Multisystem and it will create a boot laoder and integrates all iso files.
    2. Download and install TrueCrypt. The usb stick has be formated to FAT32 due to the reason for being bootable. So your private data safe can be just 3,99GB huge. Of course you can create more than one. If you have a chance to install TrueCrypt on a Windows system you can add the Traveler option to your stick. So you can start TrueCrypt even on Windows systems where no TrueCrypt is installed.

    Thursday, 27 October 2011

    Xubuntu 11.10 and missing features in Xfce

    I already mentioned the missing functionality of remote file system mounting here in Xfce. There are more functions that I missed and which I had to install separtely.

    Multimedia features:
    That's genric and has to be installed manually for every Ubuntu version: xubuntu-restricted-extras.

    Menu editor: 
    There is no one. Of course you can edit Xfce in several config files. But I prefer the GNOME menu editor alacarte.

    Partinioning tool:
    parted is availibe in the console, but no GUI is preinstalled. So install GParted.

    Monday, 24 October 2011

    Webilder as wallpaper changing tool

    Wally is not working right now. I mentioned it here. Well, Wally is not the one and only wallpaper changing tool that can connect to flickr. I found Webilder. It is working with Xubuntu 11.10 and it can connect to flickr. That's great.

    The configuration is simple and easy to understand. The first download of flickr pictures can take some time. So be patient. Otherwise start the download after you made your configuration with webilder_downloader from the console. So you can watch Webilder connecting to flickr.

    In the end you have to add it manually to the autostart options with webilder_unity_indicator.

    MP560 and grayscale printing

    Wondering in the past where I can set greyscale printing instead of printing always with color I found now the solution in the wiki of ubuntuusers.

    You can add additional information into the printer config file which are not there from the beginning.
    sudo nano /etc/cups/ppd/MP560LAN.ppd
    Add this lines to MP560LAN.ppd
    *OpenUI *CNGrayscale/Grayscale: PickOne 
    *DefaultCNGrayscale: false 
    *CNGrayscale false/Off: "false" 
    *CNGrayscale true/On: "true" 
    *CloseUI: *CNGrayscale
    I put these lines between ColorModel and PageSize. See for yourself. Now you find in the printer settings a greyscale option which default value is on.

    Sunday, 23 October 2011

    Xubuntu 11.10 and Déjà Dup

    Since 10.x Déjà Dup is my favorite backup tool. Back In Time wasn't bad either, but I prefer Déjà Dup nevertheless. It worked very fine with Ubuntu 11.04 and I thought that this would continue with 11.10 as well. But there were some issues to overcome.

    Now I use Xubuntu with Xfce so I have as standard file manager Thunar not more Nautilus like in Ubuntu. Thunar is light and fast and I really like it. However there are some features not integrated like in Nautilus.

    For example mounting remote file systems!!! Unbelievable! In Ubuntu 11.04 I gave Déjà Dup my SSH destination and the backup started immediately. In Xubuntu 11.10 Déjà Dup told me that it was not able to mount the destination.

    After some searching I found information here and here. For integrating fully gvfs support install:
    apt-get install gvfs-backends gvfs-fuse fuse-utils
    Afterwards type the following line into your console and add so your user to the group fuse.
    sudo gpasswd -a $USER fuse
    Finally start Déjà Dup and you will see that a SSH connection is now possible again.

    cyberJack RFID comfort and Hibiscus in 11.10 64-bit

    Well, this was not easy with 11.04 and it seems that Reiner, the manufacturer of the card reader cyberJack RFID comfort, could have been more supportable on its website. I tell you later why.

    Somehow I managed it in 11.04 to bring the card reader online. But don't ask me how. I used the 11.04 64-bit driver of the Reiner website. First it didn't work, then sometimes and in the end everything was fine.

    Since there is no offical 11.10 driver available yet I tried the old 11.04 driver for 11.10. After installation plus adding me into the group cyberjack manually I got with
    the already well-known error message
    BEGIN: ermittle Distribution (0/5)
    END : ermittle Distribution (1/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle Systeminformationen (1/5)
    END : ermittle Systeminformationen (2/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle Gruppeninformation (2/5)
    END : ermittle Gruppeninformation (3/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle laufende Dienste (3/5)
    END : ermittle laufende Dienste (4/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle und teste angeschlossene Leser (4/5)
    SCardListReader: Cannot find a smart card reader. (8010002E)
    Error in enumReaders: -5
    END : ermittle und teste angeschlossene Leser (5/5) [ERROR]
    To get my Tasque working proberly again, I mentioned the problem here, I reinstalled Xubuntu. Additional searching next to the offical Reiner forum, I found an interesting thread at Have a look. A guy asked Reiner for additional support and got an unofficial driver for 11.04! It is named libifd-cyberjack6_3.99.6rc4_amd64_u1104.deb instead of the last official driver libifd-cyberjack6_3.99.5final.SP02_amd64_u1104.deb. And you won't believe it! After my fresh reinstallation I did just following: Installing, group adding, rebooting, WORKING!!! So should look now your result of the cyberjack command:
    BEGIN: ermittle Distribution (0/5)
    END : ermittle Distribution (1/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle Systeminformationen (1/5)
    END : ermittle Systeminformationen (2/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle Gruppeninformation (2/5)
    END : ermittle Gruppeninformation (3/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle laufende Dienste (3/5)
    END : ermittle laufende Dienste (4/5) [OK]
    BEGIN: ermittle und teste angeschlossene Leser (4/5)
    END : ermittle und teste angeschlossene Leser (5/5) [OK]
    Here the direct download link of the unofficial driver: libifd-cyberjack6_3.99.6rc4_amd64_u1104.deb

    @Reiner: Please let the Linux community know if you have additional drivers next to your official website available!!!

    So far, so good. Now to the second part. My banking programm used to be Hibiscus. But for working with cyberJack RFID comfort there is a additional wrapper necessary. There are two versions available at the moment. Version 0.2-1 named libpcsc-ctapi-wrapper0_0.2-1_i386.deb as a already packaged file and version 0.3 named pcsc-ctapi-wrapper-0.3.tar.gz as a file for compiling.

    I tried version 0.2-1 with
    dpkg --force-architecture -i libpcsc-ctapi-wrapper0_0.2-1_i386.deb
    but resolving the dependencies didn't work out for me.

    So use version 0.3 and compile it by your own. Extract pcsc-ctapi-wrapper-0.3.tar.gz and type into the console
    It won't work from the start. I got this error message:
    ~/Downloads/pcsc-ctapi-wrapper-0.3$ sudo make
    gcc -O2 -Wall -I /usr/include/PCSC/ -c -fPIC pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.c
    pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.c:31:48: schwerwiegender Fehler: wintypes.h: Datei oder Verzeichnis nicht gefunden
    Kompilierung beendet.
    make: *** [pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.o] Fehler 1
    So install the missing package libpcsclite-dev via console or Synaptic Package Manager.

    Now again
    ~/Downloads/pcsc-ctapi-wrapper-0.3$ sudo make
    gcc -O2 -Wall -I /usr/include/PCSC/ -c -fPIC pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.c
    gcc -O2 -Wall -I /usr/include/PCSC/ -shared -o -Wl,-soname="" pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.o -lpcsclite
    sudo make install
    gcc -O2 -Wall -I /usr/include/PCSC/ -shared -o -Wl,-soname="" pcsc-ctapi-wrapper.o -lpcsclite
    cp /usr/local/lib
    That looks far better. Now start Hibiscus and set the path for the wrapper to /usr/local/lib/

    mplayer und VDPAU in 11.10

    One good thing in 11.10 is, that you do not have to compile the mplayer by your own anymore. All necessary VDPAU support is already given. Therefore you can start a high definition movie directly with:
    mplayer -vo vdpau -vc ffh264vdpau movie.file
    Trying to use SMPlayer as a GUI was not very successful. It seems that through my own sound configuration SMplayer has problems with initialising the sound properly. Crash after crash with several different settings I tried GNOME-Mplayer as well, but with the same error results. It is a little bit curious, because both video players are just GUI's for mplayer.

    Well it doesn't matter. I am fine with mplayer and so I added just some additional lines for more comfort into /etc/mplayer/mplayer.conf:
    For working smoother with mplayer here my favorite keyboard shortcuts:
    p / SPACE - Pause (pressing again unpauses)
    q / ESC - Stop playing and quit
    # - Cycle through the available audio tracks
    f - Toggle fullscreen

    Friday, 21 October 2011

    VDPAU support for Adobe Flash Player

    Since several month there is a great Firefox Add-on available for installing the newest Abobe Flash Player version for Ubuntu almost automatically. It is called Flash-Aid. Easy in handling and just great.

    After installing the flash player it is necessary checking the VDPAU support of Abobe Flash Player, but only if you have a NVIDIA ION graphic processor.

    If not already installed install
    apt-get install libvdpau1
    Next check
    otherwise add this line or, if available, change the value to "1".

    64-Bit Oracle (Sun) JRE since August 2011

    Normally I would be fine with OpenJDK, but ElsterOnline and Hibiscus require the original Oracle (Sun) Java.

    Unfortunately in August 2011 Oracle cancelled the "DLJ" (Operating System Distributor License for Java). Therefore Linux distros are no longer allowed to create and offer pre-packed Java packages.

    To do the installation step by step several steps are to be done:
    1. Download the newest JRE Version.
    2. Create a new folder.
      sudo mkdir -p /opt/java/64
    3. Move the download to the new folder.
      sudo mv ~/jre-6u<Version>-linux-x64.bin /opt/java/64
    4. Change the access rights.
      sudo chmod 755 /opt/java/64/jre-6u<Version>-linux-x64.bin
    5. Change into the new folder.
      cd /opt/java/64
    6. Start the installation.
      sudo ./jre-6u<Version>-linux-x64.bin
    7. Confirm the license agreement.

    8. Inform the system about a new java version.
      sudo update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/java" "java" "/opt/java/64/jre1.6.0_<Version>/bin/java" 1
    9. Make the java version standard.
      sudo update-alternatives --set java /opt/java/64/jre1.6.0_<Version>/bin/java
    10. For every user create a folder for the firefox plugin.
      mkdir ~/.mozilla/plugins
      ln -s /opt/java/64/jre1.6.0_<Version>/lib/amd64/ ~/.mozilla/plugins/
    11. Check if the plugin works.
    Updates you have do manually starting from step 6 afer downloading the newest version.

    Thanks to ubuntuusers

    11.10 and Wally

    Wally is a really good wallpaper changing tool for Ubuntu due to its plugins to flickr, picasa & co. I prefer normally the Windows tool John’s Background Switcher, because you have there a pinboard option where you can have a lot of different pictures on the screen. It looks really cool.

    Since there is at the moment just a Windows version of JBS I stick with Wally for Ubuntu. But no more, or better not at the moment! Wally is not working with 11.10 right now. It does not matter if you install it from the Ubuntu Software Center or directly from And in addition it is not comparable to my Tasque post. I tried Wally on Ubuntu and Xubuntu, so the version does not matter too. As a matter of fact you can install Wally, but the connection to flickr, picasa & co. won't work.

    So I have to wait for a fix or searching for an alternative...

    Tasque and 11.10

    Tasque is my favorite task planer in Ubuntu. Yes Ubuntu, but I mentioned previous that I am using now Xubuntu. I am going to tell you why.

    With Tasque I can sync my tasks with RTM and carry them with my smartphone.That's great. In Ubuntu 11.10 I had two problems with Tasque.

    First the tray icon. It was not there! There is since 11.04 a well-known problem with the systray in Unity. Even with
     gsettings set com.canonical.Unity.Panel systray-whitelist "['all']"
    I did not get the tray icon.

    Second the view of a task when you want to edit it. You cannot see the field in which you want to write your notes. Just have a look at the screenshot:

    After that I looked for alternatives to Tasque. However just finding Getting Things GNOME! did not solve my problem, because I was not able to establish a connection between GTG and RTM.

    Changing to Gnome Classic with 
    apt-get install gnome-session-fallback
    was not helpful either.

    Having a look at Kubuntu, which was definately too Windows-like and too colorful was not a choice at all. So there remain Xubuntu and Lubuntu. I choose Xubuntu, because liked the XFCE desktop environment more than LXDE.

    And the major point: No problems with Tasque in Xubuntu, Lubuntu or even in Kubuntu!!!

    SSH - authentication with public key method

    Quite comfortable when doing remote control. At first install a ssh server on the destination machine.
    apt-get install openssh-server
    Generate a key pair on your source machine.
    ssh-keygen -t rsa
    Copy the public key to the destination machine.
    ssh-copy-id -i ~/.ssh/ user@server
    Now try to connect directly without a password prompt.
    ssh user@server
    If it is not working from the start a reboot could be helpful.

    On my destination machine I encrypted /home with the new installation of Xubuntu 11.10. Since then I have some lags in typing into the console fluently and the connections seems to be not so reliable anymore. Therefore I am going to try move the authorized_keys into an non-encrypted folder.
    sudo mkdir /etc/ssh/$USER
    sudo mv $HOME/.ssh/authorized_keys /etc/ssh/$USER/
    ln -s /etc/ssh/$USER/authorized_keys $HOME/.ssh/
    I am going to tell you soon if this worked out or not.

    EDIT: Feels better now!

    EDIT: Well I am not a lazy person, but I like it comfortable. Therefore I created a 1-click remote login. Put the following lines into $HOME/.ssh/config:
    # ssh (secure shell) configuration file
    Host test1
    HostName 123.456.789.0
    Port 22
    User MeinBenutzerName
    Create in the Xubuntu dock bar a new icon with the command ssh test1. You have now a 1-click remote login! Of course you don't need necessarily $HOME/.ssh/config for a 1-click remote login. ssh user@server will work as well.

    Thanks to ubuntuusers

    11.10 und 5.1 surround sound

    The lasts evenings and nights I tried to get my 5.1 surround sound bringing back online. With 11.04 it felt that I hadn't to do anything. But I am not more so sure about that ;-).

    After a fresh installation of Xubuntu 11.10 I found only one sound device in my sound settings. However I was able to change it to HDMI 5.1 surround output.

    Now I got sound with
    aplay chan-id.wav
    speaker-test -c6
    Well, I got sound, but not from the right channels. Center and rear left were interchanged as well as rear right and the bass. What now? After researching, a lot of time and many try&errors I figured out that through the wrong allocation of the channels I was unable to use pulseaudio any further. So I was forced to use ALSA.

    Removing pulseaudio from your system:
    apt-get autoremove --purge pulseaudio pulseaudio-utils gstreamer0.10-pulseaudio libsdl1.2debian-pulseaudio pavucontrol pavumeter paprefs
    Afterwards reboot your system. Otherwise there could be still some pulseaudio settings on.

    Now for telling the system that ALSA is primary soundsystem you need to install
    apt-get install gstreamer-properties
    Start gstreamer-properties and change the settings to ALSA.

    So far so good. But the Adobe Flash Player will still be silent for using OSS instead of ALSA.

    Now we need the create our own sound setting file including the right channel allocation and the flash player output. Either with .asoundrc in your home folder or  in /etc/asound.conf.

    Here the content of my asound.conf file:
    #Define the soundcard to use
    pcm.snd_card {
        type hw
        card 0
        device 3
    # 6 channel dmix - output whatever audio, to all 6 speakers
    pcm.dmix6 {
        type dmix
        ipc_key 1024
        ipc_key_add_uid false
        ipc_perm 0660
        slave {
            pcm "snd_card"
            rate 48000
            channels 6
            period_time 0
            period_size 1024
            buffer_time 0
            buffer_size 5120
    # Some cards, like the "nforce" variants require the following to be uncommented. It routes the audio to the correct speakers.
        bindings {
            0 0
            1 1
            2 4
            3 5
            4 2
            5 3
    # upmixing - duplicate stereo data to all 6 channels
    pcm.ch51dup {
        type route
        slave.pcm dmix6
        slave.channels 6
        ttable.0.0 1
        ttable.1.1 1
        ttable.0.2 1
        ttable.1.3 1
        ttable.0.4 0.5
        ttable.1.4 0.5
        ttable.0.5 0.5
        ttable.1.5 0.5
    # rate conversion, needed i.e. for wine
    pcm.2chplug {
        type plug
        slave.pcm "ch51dup"
    pcm.a2chplug {
        type plug
        slave.pcm "dmix6"
    # 'full-duplex' device for use with aoss
    pcm.duplex {
        type asym
        playback.pcm "2chplug"
        capture.pcm "microphone"
    # for aoss
    pcm.dsp0 "duplex"
    ctl.mixer0 "duplex"
    # softvol manages volume in alsa
    # i.e. wine likes this
    pcm.mainvol {
        type softvol
        slave.pcm "duplex"
        control {
            name "2ch-Upmix Master"
            card 0
    #pcm.!default "mainvol"
    # set the default device according to the environment
    # variable ALSA_DEFAULT_PCM and default to mainvol
    pcm.!default {
        @func refer
        name { @func concat 
               strings [ "pcm."
                         { @func getenv
                           vars [ ALSA_DEFAULT_PCM ]
                           default "mainvol"
    Thanks to wishie for this great config!

    You can check your settings with
    speaker-test -Dplug:dmix6 -c6 -l1 -twav 
    aplay -D dmix6 chan-id.wav
    chain-id.wav is part of sound test files you can find here:

    Check your flash player for 5.1 e.g. with this video on youtube:  Dolby Digital Orchestra Hi-Fi Test

    Finally for using e.g. mplayer with your new sound settings you need to add some lines into the /etc/mplayer/mplayer.conf file:
    # 5.1 surround sound 
    channels 6 
    # Using correct sound device 
    # For both AC-3 and DTS passthrough
    Check your mplayer settings in the end with
    mplayer chan-id.wav
    That's it! I am greatful that it's done. Serves my quite some short nights...

    Tuesday, 18 October 2011

    MP560 and 11.10 64-bit

    It was also tricky with 11.04, but as far as I remember it took not so much time. Now 11.10... You know the feeling after reaching something that took you a lot of effort? I guess you know it :-) !!!

    Several stages are to overcome to install the Canon MP560 on 64-bit properly:

    1. Download files from Canon Asia or Canon Europe. You need
    MP560 series ScanGear MP Ver. 1.40 for Linux (debian Packagearchive) and
    MP560 series IJ Printer Driver Ver. 3.20 for Linux (debian Packagearchive).
    2. Both files contain a script. Likely you will receive this the error message when executing the script:

    Canon Inkjet Printer Driver Ver.3.20-1 for Linux 
    Copyright CANON INC. 2001-2009 
    All Rights Reserved. 
    Error! Cannot specify package management system.

    You get the error only when both dpkg and rpm exist on your system. So far I cannot remember this message from my installation with 11.04.
    ## Judge is the distribution supporting rpm? ##
    rpm --version 1> /dev/null 2>&1 c_system_rpm=$?
    Change rpm –version to e.g. rpm-not-active --version or something else. So the script skips this procedure.

    Thanks to Mark

    3. Now we have to take care about the dependences. The scripts use --force-architecure, however that is not enough when packages are missingThe system told me e.g. that cnijfilter-common:i386 depends on libpopt0 (>= 1.7).
    For each package do the following:
    1. dpkg -x [package].deb common
    2. dpkg --control [package].deb
    3. nano DEBIAN/control
    4. remove the whole "Dependency:" line
    5. cp -a DEBIAN/ common/
    6. dpkg -b common [package].deb
    7. dpkg --force-all -i [package].deb
    8. rm -rf common DEBIAN
    The script should work properly now. And for the next installation save the modified package, because you can use them again!

    Thanks to

    4. The printer was now recognized. Printing not tested yet due to empty cartridges. But printing itself was the last time not the major issue. Scanning was more important to me. I restarted and looked into GIMP for the ScanGear MP plugin. At first it was not there! Starting scangearmp on the shell showed me why.
    scangearmp: error while loading shared libraries: wrong ELF class: ELFCLASS64
    What now? After quite some searching the answer. wrong ELF class: ELFCLASS64 means that 32-bit version of libgimp tries to run on a 64-bit system. Did the Canon driver overwrite my 64-bit files or made the 32-bit version primary? I reinstalled over Synaptic the package libgimp2.0 and voila! scangearmp runs now and the GIMP plugin is also available. 

    What a day... 

    EDIT: Due to my reinstallation I tried to reinstall libgimp2.0 over Synaptic again. But this was not enough. I had to download the 32-bit driver from here and extract it with
    dpkg -x libgimp2.0_2.6.11-2ubuntu4_i386.deb ~/Downloads
    An installation of libgimp2.0:i386 over Synaptic won't work. Copy then the files manually from ~/Downloads/usr/lib to /usr/lib and /usr/lib32. Afterwards reinstall libgimp2.0 over Synaptic. Strange, but now it works again.

    Update: Copying ~/Downloads/usr/lib to /usr/lib is sufficient for scanning. Do a backup of libgimp* in advance.

    After the printer driver installation some days ago I didn't try to test the printer. Now I tried to print and there are still some things to do. Printing failed with error cups-insecure-filter. Do the following to get rod of the last obstacle:
    sudo chown root:root /usr/lib/cups/filter/pstocanonij
    sudo chown root:root
    This sets finally wrong given rights correctly and you can print ongoing without any further errors.

    GIMP and watermarks

    For providing watermarks for my upcoming pictures in this blog, I searched for a quick way to put watermarks into pictures with GIMP. I found long manuals, but finally I crossed a website with a perfect script.

    Download and copy the two files into home\.gimp-2.6\scripts. Start then GIMP and go to Filters -> Script-Fu -> Skripte auffrischen. Afterwards you find under Filter -> Dekoration the new entries Wasserzeichen (Grafik) and Wasserzeichen (Text). It can be that you have to go first to Filters -> Script-Fu -> Skripte auffrischen, so that GIMP creates the home\.gimp-2.6\scripts folder.

    Thanks to Schdefoon

    2nd try

    After starting my blogging career two days ago on my account was deleted yesterday due to so-called TOS violation. Imagine that! I wrote approx. seven articles and tagged them a bit?! Now that is owned by google and I made only positive experience with google, I hope this try lasts a little bit longer.

    What can you expect? I am very interested in Ubuntu systems, thats why I called the blog "dukuntu". Changing from one version to another there are always some functions bringing back online is different than before. Now that I upgrade my systems to 11.10 I want to use this blog as my diary and as a platform for sharing my knowledge and experience.