Author Archives: cviorel - Page 9

Enabling Temperature Sensors in Ubuntu

Most computers these days come with a myriad of sensors to monitor the temperature of your computer. These sensors are generally located on the processor and the motherboard, and you might also have sensors on your video card. On top of that, all S.M.A.R.T-enabled hard drives have built-in temperature monitoring.
I can show you the steps to enable the temperature sensors in your computer in Ubuntu, or any other version of Linux.
1. Installing the sensor libraries
First thing’s first – you need to install the libraries that allow Linux to read your sensors. To do this, install the lm-sensors library, by running the command:
sudo apt-get install lm-sensors
This will install the libraries for your motherboard’s sensors. For your hard-disk sensors, you’ll want to install hddtemp:
sudo apt-get install hddtemp
In Ubuntu, the install will ask you several questions. Do not be scared, the default settings should work.

2. Running sensors-detect
Now that your sensor libraries are installed, you need to detect your sensors! Run the command:
sudo sensors-detect
Which will probe your system for sensors. Answer “YES” to all questions! Don’t just hit enter, type “YES”, because at the end there will be a question for which the default answer is “no”, and we’ll want to answer in the affirmative.
You willbe asked, at some point, “Do you want to add these lines to /etc/modules automatically? (yes/NO)” This is the question we want to make sure we answer YES to.

3. Loading the modules
Since we answered YES to the previous question, our sensor modules will be loaded by default the next time we start up. But since we don’t want to have to reboot, we’re going to use the information we got from the sensors-detect script to load the modules ourselves, this time only. Right above the last question will appear a list of modules that you should load, in the form of:

#—-cut here—-
# Chip drivers
#—-cut here—-

You may have more, or different, items listed – that’s fine! What we want to do now, to load these modules, is use the modprobe command, as follows:
sudo modprobe [module name]

4. Monitoring the sensors!
Wow, that was a lot of work! Now, let’s see the rewards. On the command line, you can simply run:

However, we’d rather have a graphical interface for checking up on our hardware, so let’s install an applet for our Gnome desktop to keep an eye on our system’s temperature. Run the command:
sudo apt-get install sensors-applet
to install the applet. Now, add the applet by right-clicking on your desktop panel, selecting “Add to Panel,” and you will now see a “Hardware Sensors Monitor” applet in the System & Hardware section. Click and drag this to your panel to add it.

My experience with Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron Beta

After a few tests with the new beta from Ubuntu, I decided to write some of my thoughts about this release.
Please note that this is a BETA release, has many unresolved bugs and needs to be polished before the final release.
Overall, everything seems better. A new host-based firewall application, the new Vinagre VNC client, Firefox 3 Beta 4 replaces Firefox 2 as the default browser, PulseAudio is now enabled by default, PolicyKit is now integrated in the administrative user interfaces, linux kernel 2.6.24, Xorg 7.3, GNOME 2.22, a few new compiz plugins.
In my opinion, there is a downside in this release regarding the PulseAudio sound server. Some non-GNOME applications still need to be changed to output to pulse/esd by default and the volume control tools are not yet integrated. Users with Audigy1 sound cards will be suprised to find out that the 5.1 output is not so good as it was in ALSA. It will be very difficult for a beginner to configure by hand the audio for best results in sound quality.
Anyway, many of this bugs will be resolved until the final release. Can’t wait!

XMMS, Audacious, BMP equalizer presets

When using XMMS, Audacious or BMP on Linux, some of you miss the equalizer presets from Winamp.
This is how you can get them in your linux distribution.
Write a shell script or just run these commands in your terminal:

The script will activate presets for XMMS, Audacious and BMP. If you don’t use all of them, feel free to remove the appropriate line.


Have fun!

HOWTO make DVD and CD .iso images using dd or cat in Linux

Please note that making security backups of your DVD/CD:s may be illegal in your country.

for the purpose of making these backups, the programs you need are standard, *NIX programs, and it is a safe bet that you wont need to install anything.
You may also need to have root permissions in able for you to access the DVD or CD devices.

Heres how to back up the device:

with cat:

with dd:

replace /dev/dvd0 with what ever device it is corresponding with your CD/DVD rom player. If you’re unsure, you might find that $ cat /etc/fstab might provide you some useful information.

The two commands above copies the CD rom or DVD to the home folder. Making a image file with the iso 9660 or the Universal Disk Format file system. Please note that neither cat nor dd cares about file system. Dd copies blocks, and cat prints a file to stdout.

I have heard that cat does not copy the mbr record of the devices copied with it, but I know that dd does.

Note that if you’ve made the image file as the root user, you might have to chmod the file, and it might also be nice to change the files ownership

how to loopback mount the .iso file:

replace iso9660 with udp if your mounting a dvd image.

and how to umount it:


Ubuntu brainstorm launched!

Ubuntu now has its own Brainstorm website where people can add their ideas and vote for their favorites.


Unp is a small perl script which makes extraction of any archive files a bit easier. It support several compressors and archiver programs, chooses the right one(s) automatically and extracts one or more files in one go.

sudo apt-get install unp

usage: unp file [file]...
file: compressed file(s) to expand

Use -- to pass arguments to external programs, eg. some tar options:
unp fastgl.tgz xmnt.tgz -- -C /tmp

Special option:
-f Continue even if program availability checks fail
-u For Debian packages:
- extract data.tar.gz after each operation
- extract control.tar.gz in control//
For other archives:
- create directory /
- extract contents there

currently supported extensions and formats are
tar[.gz,.bz2], gz, bz2, Z, ar/deb, rpm, shar, rar, arj, zip, LHa, cab, ace,
tnef, uu (mail, news), mime, hqx, sea, zoo, pmd, cpio, afio, lzop

It doesn’t extract files from RAR archives with full path!


SSHMenu is a GNOME panel applet* that keeps all your regular SSH connections within a single mouse click.

To install it on Ubuntu, add this entry to your /etc/apt/sources.list:
deb stable contrib
Then you have to import the repository key:
gpg --keyserver --recv-keys 4CC00851
gpg --export --armor 4CC00851 | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get update
and then:
sudo apt-get install sshmenu-gnome
Here is a screenshot:


Get System Information Using the Terminal

Troubleshooting, upgrading, or just curious? Find out what’s in your system without opening the case. Using these Linux command line tools, you can get details about your hardware and distribution.

I’ve tested these commands in Ubuntu 7.10, but they should all work in other Linux distributions. Unless noted otherwise, all of this software is included by default with Ubuntu.

Graphics card:

– details about OpenGL, the Xserver, and your graphics card

– do you have direct 3d rendering?

– graphics card vendor

– specific graphics card model

– a simple 3d benchmark, prints frame rate to the terminal

– supported display resolutions


– audio controller

– more audio device information

Software versions:

– current distribution and version

– packagename’s version and dependencies

– Linux kernel version

– all kernel details


– Ethernet controllers

– networking interfaces, IP addresses, and more


– all processors, clock speeds, flags, and more

– processor load average for the last 1, 5, and 15 minutes

– press C key to sort processes by CPU usage


– amount of RAM and swap, and how much is being used for what

– total, used, and free memory shown in MB

– press M key to sort processes by memory usage

Hard disks:

– partitions, as well as their mount-points and usage in GB

– all partitions, their device names, and positions on disk

USB devices:

– USB buses and attached devices

Even more:

– monitor for hardware changes

– all PCI devices

(install from package hwinfo) – overview of all hardware, as well as more detailed info

– another program for listing hardware

– lists hardware with HTML output in the w3m web browser

– current time elapsed since last reboot, users, and load average

Set Drivel to Post to Your WordPress Blog

Drivel is a nice blog editor for Gnome. To install it on Ubuntu, run this in your terminal:
sudo apt-get install drivel
Now you need to configure Drivel to connect to your blog. Go to Applications -> Internet. Select Drivel Journal Editor.
When the dialog box appears, input your username and password into the first two textboxes. For Server Type, select Movable Type from the dropdown. Now the tricky part, for the server address you will need to enter the full path to the xmlrpc.php file on the server (for example Check the Remember password checkbox and the Automatically login checkboxes (if desired) and click the Log In button.

Happy posting!

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