The best backup utility in Ubuntu

To backup my files in Windows, I have used (and will forever use) Cobian Backup. It’s an awesome and simple way to create various types of routine backups. For myself, I used it to create an incremental backup of my important files (my user directory, basically), so any files that have been changed since my previous backup are well, backed up!

Since my switch to Ubuntu, I couldn’t find a good backup program that could compare to Cobian Backup until now, and I tried whatever I could find. The final solution: luckyBackup. It easily created incremental backup tasks for me, and I am amazed at how fast they run. If you need a way to back up your files in Ubuntu, try luckyBackup. Enjoy.

Make Google Chrome with Gmail the Default for Mailto Links in Ubuntu

Starting with the great instructions here, I have set my default mailto link action to open Gmail in Google Chrome. Simply follow those instructions, but then edit the script so its entire contents are as follows:


/opt/google/chrome/google-chrome "`echo $1 | sed 's/mailto://'`"

And that should do it. Enjoy.

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Windows 7-like Taskbar for Ubuntu

I am a fan of the Windows 7 taskbar, and now I’m glad I can fuse my launchers into a taskbar in Ubuntu as well with DockbarX. To install it, run these commands:

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:dockbar-main/ppa
  • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install dockbarx

Then simply add it to your panel and have fun!

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Quickly Install Microsoft Office in Ubuntu

Installing Microsoft Office in Ubuntu is really easy, believe it or not, if you know what to do. Thanks to the Internet and people who are smarter than me, here are simple steps to follow so you can look smart, too!

First of all, install Wine 1.1.24 from here. Then install Office via Wine.

Follow the instructions in this tutorial. Or for convenience, I’ll give a quick summary of the tutorial by mostly copying pieces straight from it. He says…

Run winecfg. Make sure that the Windows Version is set to Windows XP (Applications Tab).┬áIn the Libraries section, you need to add two overrides: “riched20” and “usp10”. To do this, simply type the the names (no quotes) into the dropdown-looking textbox, and click “Add”. Repeat this for both of the overrides.

Run all these commands:

That should do it! Office should run pretty well now. One final step, to enable font smoothing for Wine, run the following commands (as documented here by the author of the script) and select the RGB font smoothing option:


That’ll polish everything up nice and neat for you. Enjoy.

Note: If the font smoothing wget line doesn’t work for you, you can download the script from here.

Steps to setting up Ubuntu

A simple guide to set up Ubuntu, specially written for dual booting alongside Windows.

After a fresh install of Ubuntu, I find myself doing much to make myself feel at home. Crack open a Mountain Dew and follow these steps to set up Ubuntu in one sitting.

To get easy access to the terminal, visit System -> Preferences -> Keyboard Shortcuts and add something like Ctrl+Alt+T to the Run a Terminal action.

To automatically mount the Windows partition, set up pysdm with the instructions here. To be able to install the application, you’ll need to ensure that most every software source you can check is checked in System -> Administration -> Software Sources and that it has reloaded everything. Now, following those instructions will easily allow access to all your infamous “My Documents” files on startup.

To set up your custom Compiz settings, install the simple-ccsm and compizconfig-settings-manager packages via Synaptic Package Manager or the crazy command line. Next, enable custom visual effects in System -> Preferences -> Appearance. And finally, have at it in System -> Preferences -> CompizConfig Settings Manager.

To install some fonts, do this: sudo apt-get install msttcorefonts (and see here for more about that). Also remember any other fonts you want to install go in the /home/you/.fonts/ directory.

Finish it up by customizing your panels and launchers and font preferences to make it all your own.

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I finally fixed my sound quality in Ubuntu 9.10 (and 10.04)

Ever since fresh install of Ubuntu 9.10, my sound quality was pretty poor when listening to music (just as it was to begin with before the switch in previous versions). To get better sound quality, I always had to decrease the PCM volume, but I couldn’t those settings in 9.10.

I finally figured it out (and/or found the thing I was too stupid to know). Use the command alsamixer to access those settings and turn down the PCM volume a bit. I set mine to about 88 or so.

Then listen to some rock.


Thanks to this post, now I know how to keep the PCM volume the same, so you only have to do things once. Check it out!

Basically, you have to run

sudo gedit /usr/share/pulseaudio/alsa-mixer/paths/analog-output.conf.common

And change the [Element PCM] section to contain volume = ignore instead of volume = merge and the settings in alsamixer will remain constant.

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My Heart is Tied to It Fiercely

I only wanted one thing. Right? But, do I want to give, or do I want to get? Either way, I just know that my heart is tied to it fiercely. I know there are selfish reasons embedded within my desires – I want to be the one who you talk to, I want to be the one who you come to for rest.

But it doesn’t work that way, I know. It is hard for me to stay here and stand still while you hurt or are going through a hard time. It might not make sense that someone would even be worried about you; maybe it’s really not that bad. But it is you – and I care so deeply I cannot help it. And there’s nothing I can do. There’s nothing you want me to do. There’s nothing you want me for.

But I can pray. I can pray as fiercely as my heart is tied to what I am praying for – and my heart is tied to it fiercely.

If you prick a finger, I’ll feel like I’ve lost a limb

If you happened to need a bandage, I’d need one just as big

If you ever cry, I’d feel as I’ve been torn apart

And I can’t imagine how I’d feel, if someone broke your heart