Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Opera Unite provides webserver, chat room, file sharing right from your PC.

Opera Unite was launched on 16th June 09 and I decided to give it a try on first day. When I clicked on the download link on Opera Unite page it was nothing but version 10.00 Beta of Opera browser. I downloaded the .deb package and installed on Ubuntu Jaunty Jaackalope.

When I opened the browser there was Unite icon on side panel. I could use myopera userid and password to setup the system on my PC. Immediately I could start the chatroom on my PC and send the link to my friends and chat with them.

I had developed some content regarding my experience on steam Turbines using Tiddlywiki in 2007. I could immediately setup website on my PC using that content.

For sharing photos and files I don't need to upload them anywhere. My friends could download directly from my PC.

All these things have become so easy for common user.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Uzbl the new usable browser on Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope

Uzbl is a new Webkit based browser with minimal graphical interphase. For opening a URL you have to type 'o URL' and it opens. See the screenshot below:

For adding a bookmark you have to type 'B'. For loading a bookmark you have to type 'u' and for loading a URL from history you have to type 'U'.

Actually o, B, u, U etc are keybindings defined in the config file and B, u and U also call the required scripts.

Tabbed browsing is not available but you can open any number of windows for different URLs.

This browser is being developed on Archlinux and easily installable from AUR. The bookmarks and history use the utility dmenu which has been patched for displaying the URLs vertically and available as dmenu-vertical in AUR.

After installation you can start the browser with 'uzbl' command but you get a blank browser window which does nothing since there is no default configuration. You need to create 'uzbl' folder in ~/.config and copy the following two files in it:
cp /usr/share/uzbl/examples/configs/sampleconfig ~/.config/uzbl/config
cp /usr/share/uzbl/examples/configs/cookies ~/.config/uzbl/

For bookmarks you need to create 'uzbl' folder in ~/.local/share and copy the file:
cp /usr/share/uzbl/examples/data/bookmarks ~/.local/share/uzbl/

and create an empty session file:
cd ~/.local/share/uzbl
touch session
You can also create a launcher uzbl.desktop:
[Desktop Entry]
Exec=/usr/bin/uzbl %u
All the above settings are required even on Archlinux on which it is being developed since the developer is trying to just give a browser with all other things managed from scripts outside the browser, although, thy are giving 'example scripts' and the settings given above configure these example scripts to work in conjunction with the browser.

Now let us come to installation of uzbl on Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope.

For installing the recent version of Webkit Library add the following sources to /etc/apt/sources.list
deb intrepid main
deb-src intrepid main
to import keys
sudo apt-key adv --recv-keys --keyserver 0x991e6cf92d9a3c5b
and to install
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install git git-core libwebkit-dev
to compile and install uzbl
git clone git://
cd uzbl
sudo make install
After installation on Ubuntu you need to create uzbl directory in ~/.config and ~/.local/share and copy/create the files as stated above.

In addition, Ubuntu does not have $XDG_DATA_HOME set to ~/.local/share by default and dmenu-vertical is not available in Debian/Ubuntu repositories. These things are required by the example scripts.

There are various ways to set the environment variable $XDG_DATA_HOME but I simply decided to put the following line in the load_url_from_bookmarks and insert_bookmark scripts for the time being.
I have downloaded dmenu-4.0 sources from:

and the required patch from:
and compiled dmenu-vertical:
tar -xvzf dmenu-4.0.tar.gz
cd dmenu-4.0
patch -p1 < ~/path-to/dmenu-vertical-history.patch
sudo checkinstall
I used checkinstall to make .deb package of dmenu-vetical.

Monday, June 01, 2009

VOIP to Gtalk, YM, MSN using Gizmo.

I have setup Gizmo on Ubuntu and called couple of friends (Windows users) on their Gtalk and Yahoo Messenger and had voice chat today and surprised them.

Gizmo has not updated its Linux version since Nov 2007 and there is lot of criticism by Linux users on its forum. I had to use OSS to make the audio work.

Once setup and audio checked through free sip call to Echo Test I could easily import the Gtalk and YM buddies and could have text chat with online buddies but voice chat did not work. This was happening because they were setup as (Gtalk)

Then I added one contact as and called him and had successful voice chat.