Run Netflix on Ubuntu in seconds

Since Microsoft Silverlight isn’t available on Linux, so Netlix hasn’t been either. Now there’s an unofficial desktop package available. You simply add the repository, run updates, and download and install the ‘netflix-desktop’ package. The package bundles WINE and Netflix, and makes the process really easy.


Three simple commands

Three simple commands in the terminal window:
sudo apt-add-repository ppa:ehoover/compholio
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install netflix-desktop

Then search for ‘Netlix’ and launch the application.

Netflix Shortcut

Netflix on Ubuntu

It launches in full screen mode, but you can press F11 to exit full screen mode. Close the application by clicking on the close button in the upper right of the screen, or press Alt + F4. To go back to the Netflix menu, click the left arrow at the top left of the screen.


Ubuntu gconf-editor – Move Buttons Back to the Right Side

From, pointed out by @packetlife:

Press Alt+F2, then type gconf-editor and press enter to open the configuration editor.

Once on this editor, in the item tree at the left, you have to look for this path app -> metacity -> general and you doubleclick on the field named button_layout.

Then, you have only to change the value field and put this:


You save the changes, and all the windows are reconfigured again!

Now all the windows show the minimize, maximize and close buttons on the right again


Installing Ubuntu – Windows 7 using Windows Virtual PC

Windows Virtual PC Console

A post at talks about installing Ubuntu 8.04 as a virtual machine in Windows using Windows Virtual PC. I’ve found that with a few small modifications, 9.10 installs very easily as well.
Here are the steps to install Ubuntu 9.10 as a VM in Windows 7 using Windows Virtual PC:

1) If you don’t already have it, download and install Windows Virtual PC

2) Launch Windows Virtual PC and click on ‘Create virtual machine’ at the top of the window.

3) Name your VM, click ‘Next’, select the amount of RAM you’d like to allocate, click ‘Next’, and click ‘Create’.

4) Insert the media that contains the .ISO and launch the new VM (by double-clicking).

5) The VM will boot off of the media. Select your language and hit ‘enter’.

6) Hit ‘F4’ (for alternate starting mode) and select ‘Safe graphics mode’.

7) Hit ‘F6’. Delete quiet splash -- and replace it with vga=791 noreplace-paravirt

8) Select ‘Try Ubuntu without changes…’ Wait for the live session to load and then double-click the ‘Install’ icon on the VM desktop. Note: Win 7 will probably warn you that the mouse will be taken over by the VM, but it should also tell you the key combo to release it again. Remember this info.

9) Go through the Ubuntu install process as usual.

10) Eject the disc and click on ‘Restart now’.

11) When Grub loads, hit ‘e’ to edit the first entry. Replace splash quiet with vga=791 noreplace-paravirt

12) Hit ‘Ctrl’ + ‘x’ to boot with the options you specified.

13) Ubuntu will boot. Log in and edit /boot/grub/menu.lst to make the boot options permanent. Once again, replace splash quiet with vga=791 noreplace-paravirt

Ubuntu VM in Windows Virtual PC


sudo: “User is not in the sudoers file. This incident will be reported.”

In Ubuntu 9.10 (and earlier) it is possible to break sudo by removing all of the users in the ‘admin’ group (or just removing them from the group, etc.). If this happens, you’ll probably see the following when trying to su:

User is not in the sudoers file.  This incident will be reported.

When trying to sudo, you’ll probably just fail to authenticate.

The fix:

1) Boot into single user mode. In grub, select the

(recovery mode)

line to boot in to the command line.

2) Add a new user and put them in the admin group.
adduser username admin


Make Ubuntu 9 look like Windows 7

This just feels plain wrong, but it is what it took to run Ubuntu on some temporary training machines.

Make Ubuntu 9.10 look like Windows 7

There is a post at on how to make Ubuntu 9.10 look like Windows 7. Here are the steps that they provide:

Type or copy and paste all of the following in a terminal:

cd $HOME


chmod 0755 $HOME/

WARNING: This will entirely change the look and feel of your Ubuntu desktop.

Please note: The gnomenu program will produce load error messages, just accept the “Yes” or “Ok” and “reload” options. This is a bug on Ubuntu 9.10.


Logout and login again.

Check all the applets are in the right location on the bottom panel and then lock them in position. The final bottom panel and gnome menu should look something like the one in the screenshot below. By right-clicking on or near an applet on the bottom panel you can move it after unlocking it.

Windows 7 theme for Ubuntu 9.10


KoH Virtual Servers –

KoH Virtual Servers is offering really great virtual server access.

Every virtual server includes:

  • Unlimited monthly bandwidth
  • Full root access
  • Dedicated system resources, never shared or oversold
  • Choose and load your own operating system
  • Web-based control center
  • Secure, graphical maintenance console

They can be activated INSTANTLY, right from the KoHvs site.

Once you’ve activated your virtual server, simply log in to the site and click on ‘Control Center’. This will display the basic information regarding your server, along with graphs for CPU usage and network activity. You can reboot your server here (or install a different OS), and you’re only one click away from controlling your server remotely.

KoHvs Control Panel - Kohntrol

From the Control Center just click on ‘Launch Maintenance Console’, and you’re right in front of your server!
KoHntrol - My Virtual Server running CentOS 5



Ubuntu .deb issue – Only one software management tool is allowed to run at the same time

Aptitude, Synaptic, and update-manager: Only one can run at a time. You may run into an issue where you ARE only running one, but can’t install a .deb. This is usually caused by canceling an install that is only partially finished (dpkg is interrupted).

The quick fix is: sudo dpkg --configure -a

From the dpkg man page:
--configure package...|-a|--pending
Reconfigure an unpacked package. If -a or --pending is given
instead of package, all unpacked but unconfigured packages are



Ubuntu 9.04 – Boot Fails and loads BusyBox after Improper Shutdown

My laptop battery died and Ubuntu didn’t shutdown properly. At the next boot, I saw grub, followed by the Ubuntu splash screen, and then:

mount: mounting /dev/disk/by-uuid/c3c4608e-fb99-4989-bfe2-ede4aec72b38 on /root
failed: Invalid argument
mount: mounting /dev on /root/dev failed: No such file or directory
mount: mounting / sys/ on root/sys failed: No such file or directory
mount: mounting /proc on /root/proc failed: No such file or dirctory
Target filesystem doesn't have /sbin/init.
No init found. Try passing init= boot arg

BusyBox v1.10.2 (Ubuntu 1: built-in shell (ash)


Booting to an earlier kernel didn’t seem to help. The disk was being referred to by its UUID (mount: mounting /dev/disk/by-uuid/c3c4608e-fb99-4989-bfe2-ede4aec72b38 on /root). Fortunately, the fix was rather simple. As detailed at, just edit the grub line that references the UUID, changing it to the correct device name. So instead of something like:
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.27-11 root=c3c4608e-fb99-4989-bfe2-ede4aec72b38 ro quiet splash rootdelay=90

You have:
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.27 root=/dev/hda1 ro quiet splash rootdelay=90


Ubuntu 9.04 boot error – “gave up waiting for root device”

Came across an intermittent boot issue where I was kicked to an initramfs prompt, with an error message reading “Gave up waiting for root device”. The machine booted fine when issuing the reboot command, but I wanted to resolve the problem permanently. The Ubuntu Forums saved the day. By editing /boot/grub/menu.lst as follows (adding the rootdelay=90 parameter), I’ve booted on the first attempt ever since:
title Ubuntu 8.10, kernel 2.6.27-11-generic
uuid 105e82bc-3131-428f-ad9e-aa5f55833421
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.27-11-generic root=UUID=105e82bc-3131-428f-ad9e-aa5f55833421 ro quiet splash rootdelay=90
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.27-11-generic