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Sunday, February 4, 2007

The Road to Ubuntu

I finally got my new Thinkpad and prompty installed XUbuntu on it (because I don't like KDE or Gnome), and here were a couple of tweaks I did to get everything working the way I like:

Installing a fingerprint reader

I was pretty excited about getting ThinkFinger to work, but if you read the fine notes, you will find out that neither gksu nor gksudo work with ThinkFinger. There is a bug report filed here about it.

Disabling the PC beep

Edit rc.local and add the following line:

modprobe -r pcspkr

Getting the media keys to work

Get xbindkeys and run xbindkeys-config for a graphical tool to configure buttons. You'll probably want to create shell scripts for volume up, volume down, and mute. I created some but you need aumix for them to work:

# Lowers volume.
aumix -v +$1
aumix -w 75

# Raises volume.
aumix -v -$1
aumix -w 75

Here is a link to the toggle mute.

Fixing the garbled display on startup/shutdown

This is due to buggy ati drivers, I'm assuming. The way to fix this is to edit your /boot/grub/menu.lst by searching for "splash"; it should be the last word in a line that looks like this:

kernel          /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.17-10-generic root=/dev/sda1 ro quiet splash

Remove the splash word, save and reboot, and no garbledness!

Other links to helpful tips

Remote desktop with XUbuntu