A new OS experience


Installed Anti-Virus, Firewall, and Rootkit Hunters

I decided to install an anti-virus for Linux since I use my flash drives on Windows systems as well. I am trying to be responsible and not spread any viruses. I chose Avast as I used it in Windows. To make the isntallation easy I chose the Debian package:

$ sudo dpkg -i avast4workstation_1.0.8-2_i386.deb

To start the program:

$ avastgui


ALT+F2 > avastgui

For the firewall and rootkit programs:

$ sudo aptitude update
$ sudo aptitude install chkrootkit rkhunter firestarter

Linux makes things too easy. I have no idea why so many people still stay away from it. I know what it is: fear of the command line.


Got Wifi Working on My Desktop

I have a Linksys WUSB54G USB wireless adapter which I have been using for some time for my Windows PC. Lately installed Xubuntu 7.10 but I was having a rough time getting wireless to work. After some reseach I resolved the connectivity issue in just a short amount of time:

I downloaded the driver files from the Linksys site . I needed version 4, and after file extraction copied rt2500usb.inf and rt2500usb.sys to a local folder.

The next step was to blacklist the old driver.

$ sudo rmmod rt2500usb
$ sudo nano /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist

Added the following at the bottom of the file

# Blacklist old driver
blacklist rt2500usb

Installed the new driver with ndiswrapper and verified installation:

$ sudo ndiswrapper -i ~/tools/wifi/driver/rt2500usb.inf
$ sudo ndiswrapper -l

Installed the new module and made changes permanent:

$ sudo modprobe ndiswrapper
$sudo ndiswrapper -m

Added " ndiswrapper " (w/o quotes) to the bottom of the modules file

$ sudo nano /etc/modules

A quick check of iwconfig confirmed a wireless card. Afterward I edited the wpa_supplicant file, edited the /etc/network/interfaces file to add the new card and automate wpa_supplicant. The last step was the add dhclient to the begining of (and below the first line) /etc/init.d/rc.local file. A quick reboot put me in business. Hooray! I wonder if I'll ever get to use Windows on this PC. My wife might, so I'll leave it be.


WUSB54G, Chmod,GRUB and a Brainfart

Ok, so I installed Xubuntu 7.10 on my 5 year old desktop yesterday and I was having a really hard time with internet connection. I only use wifi at home, with WPA2 encryption, but my usb wifi card, the infamous WUSB54G, was being a pain. To ge the card working I am using ndiswrapper and the rt2500 driver. Coincidentally, this driver, which is v4 for my card, comes with the Xubuntu installation. For whatever reason once I install the driver, it won't let me connect on system reboot, so I have to do it manually every time I reboot the system.

Later, I really had a brainfart. I had created a fourth partition for Linux files, but I didn't update permissions. I couldn't remember how to change read-write permissions, but after a little while all I had to do was:

$ sudo chmod -R 777 /media/hd6/whateverFolderorFile

where the -R option stood for recursive, as it pertains to folders, and 777 corresponds to chmod making the file writable.

To date, I haven't found a soultion to my wifi issue. Will check ubuntuforums and other linux forums to see if anyone has an idea about what's going on.

My first install of Xubuntu was problematic. Once I established internet connection and updated the repositories, I initiated a system update via Synaptic. Problem was, I received an error message indicating some files weren't installed properly. Rather than look at the log files, I rebooted the system without making a backup. On reboot, GRUB ingratiated me with an Error 15 / File not found message. After a long search online and a post on ubuntuforums.org , I found the problem: my initrd file was the one "missing." Good news was that a backup (.bak). This blog entry confirmed it, and all I had to do is look under /boot to figure out what the hell went wron. I used the initrd.bak to get in my system.

Cisco VPN Client on Linux

I was trying to connect to my network drive at UTA but I was unsuccessful. Yeah, I completely did not read the instructions at the IT department's website. It turns out, a VPN connection is needed when connecting to the student (or faculty) server off-campus. Taking a look at the instructions on that site, the VPN of choice was Cisco's VPN client (multi-platform). In order to download it from their site, you need a school ID, but one can find it elsewhere on the web, available vpnclient-linux-x86_64- Setting it up was trickier than I thought, and of course the college's IT instructions were a bit short in explanation. As is the case with anything regarding Linux, I found a great how-to on this wiki by Soft Ice. Based on the wiki, this is what I did:

I. Installation

1. Downloaded the vpnclient tarball from: http://www.govnet.state.vt.us/restricted/ciscovpnclient/

2. Checked the kernel sources are installed:

$ sudo ls /lib/modules/

3. Downloaded the kernel patch (my kernel is 2.6.22-xx):

$ sudo wget http://tuxx-home.at/projects/cisco-vpnclient/vpnclient-linux-2.6.22.diff

4. Extraced the tarball:

$ sudo tar -zxvf vpnclient-linux-x86_64-

5. Applied the patch:

$ cd vpnclient
$ sudo patch -i ../vpnclient-linux-2.6.22.diff

6. Installed the vpn client:

$ sudo ./vpn_install

Accepted the default settings and moved on.

7. Confirmed vpnclient is installed:

$ ls /etc/opt

II. Configuration:

8. Started the vpnclient service:

$ sudo /etc/init.d/vpnclient_init start

9. Create a profile:

$ sudo nano /etc/opt/cisco-vpnclient/Profiles/mynewprofile.pcf

According to my college's IT department the minimum configuration of that file should be:


10. Started the VPN session:

$ sudo vpnclient connect uta

where uta is the name of the .pcf file created under /etc/opt/

That was all there was to it.


What To Do After Installing Ubuntu

I'm a student so for me the following work best:

1. Enable Additional Repositories:

system > admin > synaptic
settings > repositories

2. Add the medibuntu repositories:

$ sudo echo "deb http://packages.medibuntu.org/ gutsy free non-free" | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list

$ sudo wget -q http://packages.medibuntu.org/medibuntu-key.gpg -O- | sudo apt-key add - && sudo apt-get update

3. Install audio, & video codecs:

$ sudo aptitude install gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly

$ sudo aptitude install mpg123 w32codecs libdvdcss2

4. Install media players:

$ sudo aptitude install amarok amarok-engine amarok-engines amarok-xine vlc vlc-plugin-arts vlc-plugin-esd vlc-plugin-ggi vlc-plugin-glide vlc-plugin-sdl vlc-plugin-svgalib mplayer mplayer-fonts mplayer-doc mplayer-nogui mplayer-skin mplayer-skin-blue mplayer-skins mplayerthumbs mencoder dvdauthor vcdimager mkisofs devede qdvdauthor qdvdauthor-db dvd+rw-tools dvd-slideshow ffmpeg ffmpeg2theora lame lame-extras k3b k9copy istanbul audacity avidemux wink gnash gnash-common gnash-cygnal gnash-tools swftools gs-common

5. Useful tools:

$ sudo aptitude install icedtea-java7-bin icedtea-java7-jdk icedtea-java7-jre icedtea-java7-plugin linuxdcpp acroread acroread-plugins acroread-escript kpdf pdfedit flashplugin-nonfree d4x d4x-common bittorrent bittorrent-gui amule amule-common amule-utils amule-utils-gui filezilla filezilla-common vpnc kvpnc p7zip p7zip-full unrar rar zip unzip chkrootkit rkhunter clamav clamav-base clamav-daemon clamav-data clamav-docs clamav-freshclam clamav-getfiles klamav mondo mondo-doc firestarter gkrellm gkrellm-bfm gkrellm-common gkrellm-hdplop gkrellm-i8k gkrellm-ibam gkrellmd gkrellmwho2 gkrellmwireless wine scite truecrypt easycrypt

6. Communication tools:

$ sudo aptitude install xchat xchat-common xchat-guile xchat-systray xchat-sys pidgin pidgin-plugin-pack thunderbird lightning lightning-extension sunbird

7. Graphics:

$ sudo aptitude install gimp gimp-data gimp-data-extras gimp-cbmplugs gimp-help gimp-help-common gimp-help-en gimp-refocus gimp-dcraw gimp-ufraw xpdf xpdf-common xpdf-reader xpdf-utils

8. Office:

$ sudo aptitude install openoffice.org openoffice.org-bundled openoffice.org-writer openoffice.org-calc openoffice.org-impress openoffice.org-draw openoffice.org-base openoffice.org-math openoffice.org-filter-binfilter openoffice.org-l10n-en-us openoffice.org-help-en-us openoffice.org-hyphenation-en openoffice.org-java openoffice.org-java-common openoffice.org-officebean openoffice.org-thesaurus-en-us openoffice.org-headless cupsys-bsd openclipart-openoffice.org gnucash gnucash-common gnucash-docs vym

9. Science and Math:

& sudo aptitude install gretl gretl-common gretl-data gretl-doc gnuplot gnuplot-doc gnuplot-nox gnuplot-x11 r-base r-base-core r-base-html r-base-acepack r-base-bayesm r-cran-cron r-cran-cluster r-cran-date r-cran-dbi r-cran-design r-cran-fbasics r-cran-fcalendar r-cran-fecofin r-cran-fextremes r-cran-fmultivar r-cran-foptions r-cran-fportfolio r-cran-fseries r-cran-foreign r-cran-lattice r-cran-latticextra r-cran-matchit r-cran-matrix r-cran-mcmcpack r-cran-misc3d r-cran-multcomp r-cran-mvtnorm r-cran-nlme r-cran-pscl r-cran-rcmdr r-cran-rpvm r-cran-rquantlib r-cran-strucchange r-cran-survival r-cran-tkrplot r-cran-tseries r-cran-xml r-doc-html r-doc-info r-doc-pdf r-mathlib r-recommended rkward speedcrunch
I did my best to spell out the commands as well as I could.

This post was inspired from the blog "Linux on Desktop" found at: http://linuxondesktop.blogspot.com/2007/02/13-things-to-do-immediately-after.html