I finally had a moment to perform the annual desktop re-install to upgrade the OS on my primary computer. It’s always a little bit of pain, because I pretty much rely on that machine and I want to have everything in place and ready to use. I upgraded from Lovelock to Beefy Miracle which took me from Gnome 3.0 right to 3.4. Things moved forward a lot during the past year! Lots of people hate Gnome Shell, but I’m ok with it – despite the occasional segfault. It’s definitely not perfect, but I like the idea of using the SUPER key for switching between applications. I have bindings for switching workspaces and after all, I end up using vim, chromium and terminal anyway :).
There are always some post-installation tweaks I like to do, to make the system fit my personal needs more. Here they are, maybe someone could use them as well.
Gnome Tweak Tool
This is the first thing to install to a fresh Fedora 17 or probably any distribution using Gnome 3 desktop. For some reason, the designers decided, that normal users don’t like to change fonts or window manager themes and they moved all this “things for advanced users” to gnome-tweak-tool. To install it, use the following command
$ su -c 'yum install gnome-tweak-tool'
This will add Advanced Settings icon to the application picker in activities overview (that comes up after you hit the windows key). The application allows you to fine-tune various parts of Gnome, such as font sizes, icons on the desktop, enable or disable extensions etc.
Clearlooks in Gnome 3.4
What surprised me the most is lack of Clearlooks theme in Fedora 17. I got used to that theme too much over the years! Luckily for me, there’s a port for Gtk 3 called Clearlooks-Phenix! To install this theme you need to download and unpack Clearlooks-Phoenix 2, which is suited for Gtk 3.4. After that, copy the contents of the archive either to
/usr/share/themes to make it available for all users or
~/.themes just for yourself. There are more detailed install installing instructions available directly on the project’s website. Here’s a series of commands, that will do that
$ wget http://jpfleury.indefero.net/p/clearlooks-phenix/source/download/master/ $ unzip clearlooks-phenix-master.zip $ mv clearlooks-phenix-master Clearlooks-Phenix $ su -c 'cp -r Clearlooks-Phenix /usr/share/themes'
Nautilus Loading Too Long
I have this problem with Nautilus on my installation. When the file browser starts, cursor changes to the loading circle one and stays like that for 20 seconds. The application on the other hand seems to be loaded and fully usable. Fortunately, there is a simple workaround to this problem. To fix this, simply edit
/usr/share/applications/nautilus.desktop, find line that contains
StartupNotify=true (131 on my system) and change the value to false.
Multiple Workspaces with Two Screens
Another thing that bothers me on Gnome 3.4 is that, there are no workspaces on the secondary screen. The designers assume, that if you have two monitors, you use workspaces on the primary one and “pin” some windows to the secondary screen, that will stay there all the time through the context switching. I prefer to have this the other way though (i.e. so the workspaces change on the secondary screen as well). This can be easily altered by issuing this command:
$ gsettings set org.gnome.shell.overrides workspaces-only-on-primary false
The situation is also described in the following articles:
Blue Faces in Flash Player
This issue is caused by combination of Adobe Flash player and nVidia proprietary drivers. And for some reason, the colors are messed up in flash videos. I guess, that Linus was right (again). To fix this, you need turn off the hardware acceleration in flash player settings. Right click on the flash video, chose Settings and untick the Enable Hardware Acceleration option. You need to restart your browser for the change to take effect.
Logging Screen Background
I personally don’t like fireworks that much 😛 and since they’re the default background of Beefy Miracle, the wallpaper is also present behind the logging screen. You can change the default wallpaper by editing
# vim /usr/share/backgrounds/beefy-miracle/default/beefy-miracle.xml
and changing the paths to wallpapers for different screen sizes. I like the blue Gnome stripes. For that one, you can set the path to
Keyboard Layout Resets to US on Logout
I don’t know what’s causing this and I didn’t find a complete workaround either. Every time I log off from my account, the keyboard layout is reset to English(US), despite the settings where the default is Czech. The workaround for this is to remove the English(US) from layout settings completely and keep only Czech. I can live with that, but it can be pretty annoying to other people I guess.
Other Useful Links
- Installing Adobe Flash Plugin
- Installing MS Windows Proprietary Fonts
- Autoplus tool for Fedora
- Grub 2 v barvách (Czech only)
This is a little walk-through the whole build process of Ogre 3D rendering engine. It’s primarily for users of Fedora GNU/Linux distribution or any similar distro that uses rpms and yum. I chose the variant using cmake, so first thing you want to do is install cmake.
$ su -c 'yum install cmake cmake-gui'
After that there are also some prerequisites, that you need to install. For the Cg package you’ll need to enable rpmfusion nonfree repositary by writing
$ su -c 'yum localinstall --nogpgcheck http://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/fedora/rpmfusion-free-release-stable.noarch.rpm http://download1.rpmfusion.org/nonfree/fedora/rpmfusion-nonfree-release-stable.noarch.rpm'
Then install the dependencies using
$ sudo yum install gcc-c++ libXaw-devel freetype-devel freeimage-devel \ zziplib-devel boost-devel ois-devel Cg doxygen \ cppunit-devel
Some of them are optional, but I like to install them all, just in case. Since the hard-drive space is no longer an issue, it could save you from having to build it all over again. After that proceed to downloading the latest version of Ogre3d source and unpack it somewhere.
$ cd ~/Downloads $ tar xjf ogre_src_v1-7-3.tar.bz2
This will extract the sources into a new directory. Let’s rename it to
source. Then we’ll need another directory where all the binaries will be places. Let’s call it
build. After that run
$ mv ogre_src_v1-7-3/ source/ $ mkdir build $ cmake-gui
In the gui set both paths to the source and to the build directory and hit Configure button, leave the defaults (Unix Makefiles and Use default native compilers).
Check the Advanced and Grouped check-boxes and make sure you have installed everything you might need. If you compile ogre without some features here, you’ll need to do it all over again (I did it 4 times when I compiled Ogre for the first time). You should have installed zzip, zlib, freeimage, freetype, boost, opengl, X11, and ois. If you don’t, I highly recommend to install those libs and hit configure again. When you’re done, hit Generate.
At this point, we’re done with the cmake, you can close the window and get back to your terminal window. Now we proceed to the building process itself. Change to the
build/ directory and run
make to compile Ogre3D and wait.
$ cd build $ make
There will be percentage coming up as the library builds. It takes (on my machine) a solid half-hour to build, so feel free to go get some coffee. The only thing left is installing the compiled library to your system using the classic
$ su -c 'make install'
Enjoy your Ogre!