~Archived - Software

Common FAQs:

  1. What can I do if a website which used to work on Internet Explorer 7 doesn't work properly anymore after installing Internet Explorer 8?
    1. You don't need to uninstall Internet Explorer 8, just visit the website and select "Compatibility View" from Tools menu in Internet Explorer 8.
  2. How many Intel CPUs will fail the XP Mode test in Windows 7?
    1. http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/?p=946&page=2&tag=col1;post-946
  3. How can I get Bluetooth functionality on Ubuntu?
    1. Blueman - Bluetooth manager for Ubuntu
    2. http://www.ubuntugeek.com/blueman-bluetooth-manager-for-ubuntu.html
    3. http://blueman-project.org/downloads.html


To do any of the task below, you must have a bootable CD of the latest ubuntu distribution. Download the ISO image file from http://www.ubuntu.com/GetUbuntu/download and burn it on a blank CDR. You may use the freeware ImgBurn (or any other software like Nero) on Windows to burn the ISO file to CD. This CD can also be used as a LiveCD (boot linux without installing to your PC's harddisk) as well as an installer.

Booting directly from CD/Recovering Data:

Click here to know how to boot from a LiveCD. If your Windows PC has crashed and doesnt boot anymore, you can boot ubuntu directly off the CD and copy all the essential files from the PC's harddisk to an external harddisk. To do this you need to know the commands for mounting USB harddisks. You might also want to know how to mount Windows partitions in ubuntu. Mounting a harddisk in ubuntu makes it accessable in ubuntu.

Installing ubuntu from CD:

Click here to know how to install ubuntu as a sole operating system or in addition to Windows (dual boot). In case of installing ubuntu in addition to Windows, you will need to choose the OS to boot to - linux or windows - every time you turn on your PC. After installation of ubuntu, you can always change the default OS to be booted into - windows or linux - just make sure the "default" parameter is set to the entry number which corresponds to Windows (incase of the link pointed to in this sentence, "default 1" will cause booting to ubuntu and "default 0" will cause booting to Windows XP).

Update or installing ubuntu:

ubuntu comes with all the drivers and many applications thereby saving you the trouble of installing any of them. After installing ubuntu you may use the Synaptic Package Manager to install new applications which didnt come on the CD (like OpenOffice Draw, eagle, usbprog etc etc) or to update existing applications/linux kernel.

My ubuntu install procedure:

(0) backup files

(1) install ubuntu 9.10 from usb drive, erasing hard disk

(2) install blueman, virtualbox, gstreamer codecs, eagle, mplayer, vlcplayer, dropbox, xmarks

(3) sync mydropbox

(4) share music folder and goodsync it from desktop

Freeware for common Tasks:

    • LAN Messenger:
    • IPMsg 2.5 alpha 7
    • Office Suite (Microsoft Office Compatible):
    • OpenOffice (linux/windows)
    • File Compression (Like Winzip or WinRAR):
    • 7-Zip (windows)
    • CDR/DVDR Burning/Copying, ISO Image Burning/Copying:
    • ImgBurn (windows)
    • Internet Browsers (use any one of the following):
    • Firefox (linux/windows)
    • Google Chrome (windows)
    • Internet Explorer (windows)
    • Internet Browser Plugins:
    • You must install Adobe Flash (windows/linux) to view animations on websites.
    • You must also install Java Runtime Environment (windows) to access websites with java applets. Please not that if you installed OpenOffice, then the Java Runtime is installed with it and you do not need to install it seperately.
    • RealPlayer BASIC to view streaming video content from within your browsers. Also enables you to download flash videos from sites like youtube.
    • Google voice and video chat plugin.
    • PDF Viewing:
    • Use Adobe Reader (windows).
    • You may also use the Foxit Reader (windows) which is light on system resources and load very fast.
    • If you are using Adobe Reader, you may require the Font Packs to open PDF files in Chinese/Japanese/Korean Languages. The fontpack for version 8 will work with Adobe Reader version 9. You might want to turn off the updates in Adobe Reader if they annoy you.
    • PDF Creation:
    • Install CutePDF Writer (windows) and Ghostscript (windows) and print your documents to the "CutePDF Writer" Printer from any windows application to create a PDF file.
    • PS Viewing:
    • Use GSview together with Ghostscript (windows) to open files with .PS extension.
    • Video/Audio Playback - Standalone programs to play any video/audio file (use either one, MPUI is more reliable, but VideoLAN Player is more convenient):
    • VLC Media Player (windows/linux/mac)
    • MPUI (download the "MPUI with MPlayer" package")
    • Note that the above two programs dont require any codecs. Instead of using the above two programs, you can install the ACE Mega Codec pack. Using this codec pack, you can use thttp://www.google.com/talk/he standard Windows Media Player to play any kind of video/audio file. This method is somewhat unreliable and compromises the integrity of your system. But you can always install the codec pack and use one of the above player to play the files. The codecs can be used to compress videos using VirtualDub
    • Video Compression and Conversion:
    • use VirtualDub to compress video files. You would also require some codec to compress it like XviD. ACE mega codecs pack can also be installed if you want to use other codec to compress the video. Use DubMan to create job lists for VirtualDub.
    • DVD Video Ripping and Encoding:
    • Magic DVD Ripper (Rip DVD Video to MP4 - not free but one of the best and esiest to use)
    • Video Transcoding:
    • MPEG Streamclip (Transcode to MP4 - specially from HD MOV created by Canon 550D)
    • Download Manager:
    • DownThemAll (available as a add-on for Firefox)
    • Instant Messenger:
    • GoogleTalk
    • Yahoo Messenger
    • Windows Live Messenger