Monthly Archives: February 2014

Fettling Ubuntu

Ubuntu’s probably the least-worst option for Linux client machines (this week, at least), but it still takes a bit of hammering to get it into shape. The web is full of idiotic half-solutions to these problems. So, in no particular order, here are my idiotic half-solutions to the things that tweak my blood pressure:

  • Disable product search Oh my, this is an annoying thing. As of Ubuntu 13.ish it seems there’s no single package culpable. The easiest way to shut it up it is to prevent it being able to contact the remote search service by adding to /etc/hosts:
  • 127.0.0.1 productsearch.ubuntu.com
  • Focus follows mouse: as any fule knoe, this is the way it’s meant to be. The magic incantation for this is:
  • gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences focus-mode 'mouse';
    gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences auto-raise  false
    
  • Triple-tap for emulated mouse third-button: Why yes, I do want to run xfig.  Put the below in ~/.bashrc
  • synclient TapButton3=2
  • Two-finger scrolling the right way: this is now the ‘Natural scrolling’ option in settings -> mouse & touchpad
  • Install Microsoft Office: Because friends don’t let friends use the lamentable OpenOrifice. Wine alone is a bit too fiddly, so use the PlayOnLinux wrapper to install Office from your legitimate installation medium.
  • apt-get install PlayOnLinux
  • Disable gnome-terminal confirm-on-quit gnome-terminal pops up a nagging “are you sure?” dialog every time a tab is closed. Change this with: (What’s the difference between gsettings and gconftool-2? Don’t know, don’t care. )
  • gconftool-2 --set -t bool /apps/gnome-terminal/global/confirm_window_close false