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Daily Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews
Updated: 2 hours 48 min ago

Vivaldi 1.4 Released With Theme Scheduling

Thursday 8th of September 2016 09:05:00 AM
Vivaldi, the web browser aimed at power users, was updated to version 1.4 (stable) today. There aren't as many changes as in the previous release, but a few interesting improvements.
The latest Vivaldi 1.4 ships with Theme Scheduling, a new feature that allows setting the browser to automatically change the theme based on the time of day. This is useful if you want to use a dark theme at night, change the theme based on your schedule, and so on.
To configure it, open the Vivaldi Settings (Tools > Settings), and under Themes, you'll find a new option called Scheduled Themes:

Vivaldi 1.4 also includes improved Web Panels. With this version, you can have different widths for web panels, and choose to show all navigation buttons in its toolbar (this can also be completely hidden).

Web Panels allow adding individual websites to Vivladi's sidebar, useful if you want to have something like Twitter, or some news sites and so on, always visible while browsing other websites.
And finally, a minor but useful addition, is the ability to restore the last closed tab by middle clicking on the trash icon.
For a complete Vivaldi 1.4 changelog, see THIS page.
As a reminder, Vivaldi is built using open source technologies, but the browser itself is not open source software.
For a bit more about Vivaldi, see our previous article.

Download Vivaldi
Download Vivaldi (available for Linux: deb and rpm, Windows and Mac)
Debian/Ubuntu users: the latest Vivaldi 1.4 should already by available as an update via its repository, so check your Software Updater.

How To Install Avant Window Navigator In Ubuntu 16.04 Or Linux Mint 18

Wednesday 7th of September 2016 12:17:00 PM
Avant Window Navigator is a dock / task manager for Linux, which was very popular a while back. Its developers lost interest with the introduction of Unity, and after several years of inactivity, the project was taken over by a new maintainer.
Unfortunately, the new maintainer isn't too active either, but at least Avant Window Navigator was updated to work with recent Linux distributions.

Mike Baum created an Avant Window Navigator PPA for Ubuntu 16.04 / Linux Mint 18, because the official AWN PPA wasn't updated in a while.
There are a few AWN applets from this PPA that can't be installed, so I decided to rebuild the packages in the main WebUpd8 PPA. Update: I added Ubuntu 14.04 / Linux Mint 17.x packages to the PPA.
Before installing Avant Window Navigator in Ubuntu 16.04, note that if you encounter bugs, chances are they aren't going to be fixed. Also, some Avant Window Navigator applets no longer work, mostly those that rely on various web services, like the Weather applet or the Pandora Radio applet, or which were built for technologies that have seen significant changes in recent years, like the Indicator applet, Lock Screen or the Media Player applet.
Many applets do still work though, like AWN Main Menu, Cairo Main Menu, Hardware Sensors, Notification Area, Shiny Switcher, Stacks, System Monitor, Terminal, Volume Control, and even the Zeitgeist-based Related applet.

Avant Window Navigator is obviously not something you'd want to install if you use Unity, since you already have a dock that can't be removed, but it can be a nice addition for nostalgics (and not only) that use the Flashback session, or on other Ubuntu flavors, like Xubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, etc.
I should also mention that a while back I removed the AWN applet from the DockBarX package (I maintain the official DockBarX PPA), but since you can now install AWN in Ubuntu 16.04, I re-enabled it for the Xenial package.
Note: for the screenshot above, I used AWN with the Lucido style (see THIS ancient article for how to customize the AWN Lucido style) and the the DockBarX applet (available in the DockBarX PPA for Xenial - after adding the PPA, install the "awn-applet-dockbarx" package).

Install Avant Window Navigator in Ubuntu 16.04 or Linux Mint 18
Avant Window Navigator is available in the main WebUpd8 PPA, for Ubuntu 16.04 / Linux Mint 18. Update: I added Ubuntu 14.04 / Linux Mint 17.x packages.

To add the PPA and install Avant Window Navigator, use the following commands:sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
sudo apt update
sudo apt install --install-recommends avant-window-navigator
Important: if Avant Window Navigator crashes the first time you run it, use the following command to restart gconfd-2:killall gconfd-2
Then, use Synaptic Package Manager to install the AWN applets you want to use (simply search for "awn applet" and you should get a complete list of applets).
Or, to install all the available applets (except the DockBarX AWN applet, which is not part of AWN), use the following command:sudo apt install --no-install-recommends awn-applets-all
I used "--install-recommends" for the AWN package because on Linux Mint, recommended packages are not installed by default, and that would result in awn-settings package (among a few others) not being installed. For the awn-applets-all, I used "--no-install-recommends" to prevent it from installing Unity Control Center and other Unity / GNOME Flashback packages along with the AWN applets in Xubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, etc (this is not the case for Linux Mint).

For other Linux distributions, you can find the source code on GitHub:

QOwnNotes Is A Note Taking And Todo List App That Integrates With ownCloud

Monday 5th of September 2016 01:26:00 PM
QOwnNotes is a free, open source note taking and todo list application available for Linux, Windows, and Mac. 
The application saves your notes as plain-text files, and it features Markdown support and tight ownCloud integration.

What makes QOwnNotes stand out is its ownCloud integration (which is optional). Using the ownCloud Notes app, you are able to edit and search notes from the web, or from mobile devices (by using an app like CloudNotes). 
Furthermore, connecting QOwnNotes with your ownCloud account allows you to share notes and access / restore previous versions (or trashed files) of your notes from the ownCloud server.
In the same way, QOwnNotes can also integrate with the ownCloud tasks or Tasks Plus apps.

In case you're not familiar with ownCloud, this is a free software alternative to proprietary web services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and others, which can be installed on your own server. It comes with a web interface that provides access to file management, calendar, image gallery, music player, document viewer, and much more. The developers also provide desktop sync clients, as well as mobile apps.
Since the notes are saved as plain text, they can be synchronized across devices using other cloud storage services, like Dropbox, Google Drive, and so on, but this is not done directly from within the application. 
As a result, the features I mentioned above, like restoring previous note versions, are only available with ownCloud (although Dropbox, and others, do provide access to previous file revisions, but you won't be able to access this directly from QOwnNotes).
As for the QOwnNotes note taking features, the app supports Markdown (with a built-in Markdown preview mode), tagging notes, searching in tags and notes, adding links to notes, and inserting images:

Hierarchical note tagging and note subfolders are also supported.

The todo manager feature is pretty basic and could use some improvements, as it currently opens in a separate window, and it doesn't use the same editor as the notes, not allowing you to insert images, or use Markdown. 

It does allow you to search your todo items, set item priority, add reminders, and show completed items. Also, todo items can be inserted into notes.
The application user interface is customizable, allowing you to increase or decrease the font size, toggle panes (Markdown preview, note edit and tag panes), and more. A distraction-free mode is also available:

From the application settings, you can enable the dark mode (this was buggy in my test under Ubuntu 16.04 - some toolbar icons were missing), change the toolbar icon size, fonts, and color scheme (light or dark):

Other QOwnNotes features include encryption support (notes can only be decrypted in QOwnNotes), customizable keyboard shortcuts, export notes to PDF or Markdown, customizable note saving interval, and more.
Check out the QOwnNotes homepage for a complete list of features.

Download QOwnNotes
For how to install QownNotes, see its installation page (packages / repositories available for Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, openSUSE, Fedora, Arch Linux, KaOS, Gentoo, Slakware, CentOS, as well as Mac OSX and Windows).
A QOwnNotes snap package is also available (in Ubuntu 16.04 and newer, you should be able to install it directly from Ubuntu Software).
To integrate QOwnNotes with ownCloud you'll need ownCloud server, as well as Notes, QOwnNotesAPI, and Tasks or Tasks Plus ownCloud apps. These can be installed from the ownCloud web interface, without having to download anything manually.
Note that the QOenNotesAPI and Notes ownCloud apps are listed as experimental, so you'll need to enable experimental apps to be able to find and install them. This can be done from the ownCloud web interface, under Apps, by clicking on the settings icon in the lower left-hand side corner.


thanks to Lionel R. for the tip!

Google Earth For Linux Update Brings Fixes For Panoramio Pictures And Various Linux Crashes

Monday 5th of September 2016 09:12:00 AM
Google has updated Google Earth recently, fixing some of the issues that were occurring on Linux, such as Panoramio pictures not working, as well as various crashes.

Google Earth had quite a few issues on recent Linux distributions. Back when Ubuntu 16.04 was released, Google Earth wasn't installable at all, and this was later fixed, but the app would still crash after a few seconds of usage, for many users. Furthermore, Panoramio pictures weren't working.
These issues should be fixed with the latest Google Earth 7.1.7.2600 for Linux. Furthermore, the update also brings support for the OAuth2, as well as updated Google and Google Earth logos.
Google Earth 7.1.7.2600 changes:
  • removed menu items for Google Maps Engine and the Google Earth Community.
  • new Google and Google Earth logos;
  • fixed crashes from rearranging items in My Places;
  • Earth Pro: Removed registration dialog as Pro no longer requires a license;
  • Linux: fixed font dialog and other crashes;
  • Linux: fixed cache data inconsistency between 32 and 64-bit builds;
  • Linux: fixed RPM installer problems with permissions in directory /usr/bin;
  • Mac & Linux: updated driver support for 3Dconnexion controller devices.


Fix Google Earth crashing in Debian
Update: according to WebUpd8 reader G.Willems (thanks for the tip!), Google Earth crashes in Debian (and probably other Linux distributions as well) when using the search feature. 
To fix this Google Earth crash in Debian, open its launcher script with a text editor (as root) - I'll use Nano below:sudo nano /opt/google/earth/free/googleearthAnd in this file, above the line starting with LD_LIBRARY_PATH (should be the last line), add the following:LD_PRELOAD=libssl.so.1.0.0 \
After editing the file, this is how its last two lines should look:LD_PRELOAD=libssl.so.1.0.0 \
LD_LIBRARY_PATH=.:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH ./googleearth-bin "$@"Then save the file (to save the file in Nano, use Ctrl + O, then Enter; to exit, use Ctrl + X).
You'll also need to install libssl1.0.0:sudo apt-get install libssl1.0.0That's it. Google Earth should no longer crash when searching on Debian.

Download Google Earth
Download Google Earth
Thanks to Martin B. for the tip!

More in Tux Machines

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  • Don't Trust Consumer Routers
    Another example of why you shouldn’t trust consumer routers. d-link It isn’t just this specific d-link router. We’ve seen the same issues over and over and over with pretty much every non-enterprise vendor. Plus we don’t want our devices used by crackers to DDoS Brian Krebs anymore, right? We are Linux people. We CAN do this ourselves.
  • D-Link DWR-932 router is chock-full of security holes
    Security researcher Pierre Kim has unearthed a bucketload of vulnerabilities affecting the LTE router/portable wireless hotspot D-Link DWR-932. Among these are backdoor accounts, weak default PINs, and hardcoded passwords.
  • The Cost of Cyberattacks Is Less than You Might Think
    What's being left out of these costs are the externalities. Yes, the costs to a company of a cyberattack are low to them, but there are often substantial additional costs borne by other people. The way to look at this is not to conclude that cybersecurity isn't really a problem, but instead that there is a significant market failure that governments need to address.
  • NHS trusts are still using unsupported Windows XP PCs
    AT LEAST 42 National Health Service (NHS) trusts in the UK still run Microsoft's now-defunct Windows XP operating system. Motherboard filed Freedom of Information requests with more than 70 NHS hospital trusts asking how many Windows XP machines they use. 48 replied within the allotted time, and a whopping 42 of them admitted that they still use the operating system that reached end-of-life status in April 2014. Some of the culprits include East Sussex Healthcare, which has 413 Windows XP machines, Sheffield's Children's hospital with 1,290, and Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Trust in London with an insane 10,800 Windows XP-powered PCs. 23 replied to Motherboard's quizzing about whether they have an extended support agreement in place and, unsurprisingly, the majority said that they do not.

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Android Leftovers

Licensing resource series: Free GNU/Linux distributions & GNU Bucks

When Richard Stallman set out to create the GNU Project, the goal was to create a fully free operating system. Over 33 years later, it is now possible for users to have a computer that runs only free software. But even if all the software is available, putting it all together yourself, or finding a distribution that comes with only free software, would be quite the task. That is why we provide a list of Free GNU/Linux distributions. Each distro on the list is commited to only distributing free software. With many to choose from, you can find a distro that meets your needs while respecting your freedom. But with so much software making up an entire operating system, how is it possible to make sure that nothing nasty sneaks into the distro? That's where you, and GNU Bucks come in. Read more