Friday, October 21, 2011

Run Latest Ubuntu from USB stick.

My favorite Linux Distribution Ubuntu Linux has come long way in last 7 years. Today I decided to download the latest version 11.10 and try it on USB stick since I am not yet prepared to upgrade the LTS version 10.04. Downloading and making a USB stick has become so simple. Here is how to do it:

Go to download page.
Select Download options:
Ubuntu 11.10 Latest Version
32 or 64 bit
Click on Start Download
After download check the iso with following command:
sha256sum ubuntu-11.10-dektop-i386.iso
sha256sums are available in this file

Following procedures assumes that you are running Windows
Go to
Download Universal USB installer
Insert USB stick
Click on Universal USB installer exe file
Accept TOS
Select Ubuntu 11.10
Click on Browse button and select ubuntu-11.10-dektop-i386.iso
Select the drive for USB stick and check to format if necessary.
Select persistent file size
Click on Create

The installation process is going to take time. Relax.

After installation reboot with USB stick (I hope you know how to boot your machine with USB) and you get the new Ubuntu on your screen.

I did all the above steps and here is the screenshot:

I could also setup network connection using Bluetooth through my Samsung Galaxy 5 using the GUI.

I love new Ubuntu 11.10 but I need to learn using Unity Desktop which I am going to finish today.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Importing ICICI Bank and other Banks account file in GnuCash

Update: This is four years old. A new post on same topic may be found here.

I wrote in the previous post that I would write about how to import Indian Banks Transaction files in GnuCash accounting software.

ICICI Bank offers download of Bank Transactions file in MS Money Format (.qif) and GnuCash accepts importing this file format but when you try to import it may fail and if it succeeds the import wizard will ask many questions. Open Office has a macro CALC2QIF which imports .qif file. When you import the file you will see that the Category column has entries like TCI, TBI, TIP etc and while GnuCash can import the transactions into the Bank Account it does not understand where to post the corresponding debit/credit entry into the other account. Let us consider one example.

Suppose you have received payment from your Customer there are two entries to be made. One in the Bank Account and the other in Accounts Receivable but the file downloaded from ICICI Bank shows TBI on the Category. You need to change TBI to Accounts Receivables. Similarly you should write the names of other accounts like Cash etc in the Category column. If you can't decide the account name you can write Imbalance against such entries in the Category and GnuCash will show them as imbalance till you change them.

After you change the entries in Category column you should select the cells and click on Save to QIF, clear the default fields and select them again in the order they are displaced i.e. Date, Amount, Check Number, Payee, Memo, Category and Sub-Category, select the destination for QIF output file and click on Convert.

Now you can import this file easily in GnuCash.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Using GnuCash for maintaining books of accounts of small business in India

For the last two months I was working on suitability of GnuCash for maintaining books of accounts of small businesses of India. When you start GnuCash for the first it offers to setup the accounts. In Business Accounts Category it creates most accounts necessary for a Business excluding Fixed Assets. You can also select the Fixed Assets category which creates three accounts House, Other Asset and Vehicle. You can delete the accounts (e.g. House) you don't need for your Business later on. After you select the accounts the next screen offers to change the name of accounts. This is necessary because the default names are suitable for a Business in USA e.g. there is an account called "Federal" under Taxes which you can change to "Income Tax" and there is an account called "Checking Account" which you can change to "Current Account" and so on. You should also have the amounts of Opening Balances ready with you for Fixed and Current assets while setting up.

After setting up the accounts with Opening Balances you can delete the accounts (especially there are too many Expenses accounts) not relevant for your Business and also add the accounts which you need but not present (e.g. you can create Computer, Office Furniture etc under Fixed Assets.

I found a site explaining the setup nicely and there is no need to write the details here.There are more details on this page.

The next step is to import the Data from Bank Accounts. Some Banks (e.g. ICICI Bank) offer to download the statement in MS Money Format (.qif) which can be imported directly into GnuCash. I am going to write another post for importing the data from Bank Statements. If you do this correctly all Bank transactions get posted in double entry system in Books of Accounts and saves lot of time.

Friday, August 12, 2011

How to get new Indian Rupee Symbol ₹ on Keyboard shortcut on Debian or Ubuntu?

The new Indian Rupee Symbol ₹ exists for more than one year now. There are various posts on the Internet describing how to type it. The symbol has been included in UTF-8 as U+20B9. Most fonts now support this character therefore you don't need to install any special font for typing it.

You already know how to type $ sign (by pressing shift +4). There is a new Keyboard Layout "India English with Rupee Sign" in new xkb-data file but the stable Linux Distributions have not updated their files.

If you want to get this Keyboard Layout on Debian or Ubuntu download the latest xkb-data file. It is available on Debian Sid as xkb-data (2.1-2)  You can download and install it on Debian or Ubuntu.

After installation you need to select the Keyboad Layout "India English with Rupee Sign". Now you can type ₹ by using Right Alt +4 key combination.

Update: Ubuntu 12.04 has this Keyboard Layout Emglish (India, with Rupee sign).

Monday, July 18, 2011

Using Thunderbird to down load mail using POP3 server and importing address book from Evolution

I have been facing some issues using Evolution mail client and decided to switch to Thunderbird. When I opened the program for the first time it asked the email ID and password and communicated with server and configured IMAP server automatically. When I tried to change to POP3 server there was no option anywhere in the settings.

After Googling a bit I found couple of solutions. The one I used is as follows:

I deleted the account setup initially and asked Thunderbird to setup the account once again. While it was communicating with the server I interrupted the process and it offered me to edit the setup with a drop down for the server type. I selected POP and could setup POP3 server.

I faced another problem importing the Address Book. Evolution saves the Address Book only in VCard format and Thunderbird does not import from this format. I used this on-line utility to convert VCard (.vcf) into LDIF (.ldif) format and imported the converted LDIF file.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Deleting sms messages on Android Phone

I am getting sms messages daily from 2 numbers. Android phone was forming a thread of all the sms messages. In default Android messaging system it was not possible to delete one or some of the messages in a thread and if I wanted to delete the complete thread was getting deleted including the newest messages.

I searched on Market with "sms" and got number of applications. I downloaded HandsentSMS. Now with this application I can select Batch mode and then select the messages I want to delete and delete them

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Moving/Copying Virtual hard disk for Virtualbox

As described on this post I installed Windows XP on Virtualbox on Ubuntu 10.04. For creating virtual hard drive I used the default settings of Virtualbox which created it in hidden .virtualbox/harddisks folder on home.

Since I did not think about running Windows inside Ubuntu the /home was not very large. After a few months Ubuntu started complaining about low disk space and when I examined it the largest space was occupied by the virtual hard drive.

I copied the Windows.vdi file on another partition and tried to attach it but Virtualbox complained of same uuid already registered and refused to attach the copy.

Then I opened the terminal and typed following command after changing directory to that partition.
VBoxManage internalcommands sethduuid Windows.vdi

The uuid was changed and I could attach and use the copy of .vdi file.

After testing that everything was fine I deleted the original .vdi file.

Now I have enough space on home and Windows XP running in Virtualbox as before.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tethering Samsung Galaxy 5 on Ubuntu 10.04

I have been using Samsung Galaxy 5 to surf the net on the Laptop through USB and Bluetooth using its modem. But the speed which I was getting on Mobile could not be obtained on the Laptop.

Then I discovered EasyTether application on Android Market and installed the EasyTether Lite (Free). I could get better speed on the Laptop.

EasyTether Lite does not support https protocol and I could not login to gmail, facebook etc. Today I bought the License paying $9.99 and now it is supporting https also.