Concatenating PDFs

I found a great article to help me with creating the newsletter for our Sparks/AWANA club this month:

Easy way to concatenate PDF files in Ubuntu Linux

First, I had to trim off the last page of the newsletter.  I opened the PDF in Evince and printed it to a file, PDF format, pages 1-3 (not page 4).  That gave me a PDF with just the first 3 pages.

Next, I opened the orginal PDF with Gimp and imported only page 4.  That gave me a graphic of the last page, and I saved that as a PNG file.  Then, I created a new Open Office Drawing and inserted that PNG file as the background in the drawing.  (The last page of the newsletter is just an outline for you to add your own club-specific content.)  I added the news items for a our club and saved the last page as a PDF.

Finally, I used this command to build the final PDF:

gs -q -sPAPERSIZE=letter -dNOPAUSE -dBATCH -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -sOutputFile=Oct-Complete.pdf Oct-Part.pdf Oct.pdf

That was it!  Please comment if you know better ways to do this sort of thing.

Adding Custom Emblems to Your Folder Icons

I have a work folder under my Home folder that I store all of my work-related documents.  I wanted to put my work’s logo on the folder to make it stand out.

I found a great thread with some tips.  Basically, I downloaded a graphic from the company website with the logo on it.  I used Gimp to crop and resize it.  Then, I saved it to the folder: $HOME/.icons/hicolor/48×48/emblems (I had to create the .icons directory).  Finally, when I right clicked on the folder and viewed the property, my new icon was in the list of emblems.

3D Acceleration for VMWare Player

I noticed a message saying that I did not have 3d acceleration in my virtual image with VMWare player. I didn’t really need it as all I was doing was using the PeopleSoft IDE and a web browser, but I wondered if it would improve performance. I will probably never know if it made a difference other than get rid of the message.

The fix was to install driconf and enable “S3TC texture compression even if software support is not available”.

Installing driconf was as easy as:
sudo apt-get install driconf

Run driconf from the command line with the command:
driconf

Go to the “Image Quality” tab, and click “Yes” for “Enable S3TC texture compression even if software support is not available”

driconf

Resources

3D Acceleration on Intel X3100

Olympics in Linux

I went to watch the Olympics on my Linux laptop, and I didn’t have the correct plugin.  I found a post that pointed me to installing the Moonlight plugin.  It pointed to a website with both the download link and the installation instructions.  Now, I already had Mono installed from the repositories, but all I had to do was install the XPI addon for Firefox that I downloaded from the website.

Resources

Installing Office 2007 on Ubuntu

Here is a little script that I put together that installs Office 2007 for me.

Now, this script makes the following assumptions:

  • I already have a directory created called wine in my home directory.
  • I want Office installed in a separate directory/wineprefix
  • I have the Office CD mounted already at /media/cdrom0
  • I have winetricks in my path (which winetricks = /usr/local/bin/winetricks)

Also, just for information, here is my setup

export WINEPREFIX=$HOME/wine/office2007

mkdir $WINEPREFIX
winetricks msxml3 dotnet20 gdiplus riched20 riched30 vcrun2005sp1 allfonts ie6
winetricks vista
wine /media/cdrom0/setup.exe
winetricks winxp

I hope it helps.

NavIt

I was having trouble downloading the maps for RoadNav, and I didn’t notice a lot of progress or change on the problem.  So, I checked for alternatives, and I found this.  I tried the first on the list: NavIt.

Installing

I didn’t find NavIt in the Ubuntu repository, and so, I had to install manually.  The Wiki has a getting started section with instructions for installing on Linux.

First, I had to install the dependencies so that I could compile it.  I installed the list from the dependencies section.

sudo apt-get install build-essential pkg-config automake libglib2.0-dev libtiff-dev libtool libxmu-dev libfribidi-dev gettext zlib1g-dev gpsd gpsd-clients libgps-dev libgtk2.0-dev freeglut3-dev glutg3-dev libcegui-mk2-dev libdevil-dev libglc-dev libpcre3-dev libmng-dev libfreeimage-dev

Next, I ran the configure and make.  Instead of installing, I just ran it from the directory where I compiled it.

Configuring

At this point, I had it working as long as I ran it from the directory where the program exists.  But, it didn’t have any maps for my area.  Next, I had to tackle configuring with the XML file.

First, I created a hidden directory and copied the xml file to it:

$ mkdir ~/.navit
$ cp /home/skp/bin/navit-0.1.0/navit/navit.xml  /home/skp/.navit/

Next, I opened the xml file with Gvim (my favorite text editor).  “Gvim ~/.navit/navit.xml”.  You could use any text editor to open it.

The first change I made was to change the default position.  I got my default coordinates from here as suggested in the Wiki.  I found that these coordinates got me close, but not quite the address I had requested.  So, I checked them with Google maps.  If you notice, the URL on the “Link” link in the upper right corner has the coordinates of the map you request.

I tried to run it at this point from my home directory, but it would not work.  It was looking in other directories, and so, I took the easy route and just keep running it from the source directory.  It still read my xml file from my home directory.

Next, I had to setup the maps.  I followed these directions.  I used the maps from CloudMade, which has maps of the United States.  I downloaded the *.navit.bin.zip files and extracted them to ~/.navit/.  For example, I downloaded the Florida map: florida.navit.bin.zip to ~/.navit/florida.navit.bin.  Finally, I added this to the XML file:

<mapset enabled=”yes”>
<map type=”binfile” enabled=”yes” data=”/home/skp/.navit/florida.navit.bin” />
</mapset>

Now, when I started it up, I saw a map with where I wanted it to start!

Creating a Shortcut

The last thing  I did was create a shortcut in my application menu.  This was pretty easy.

The first step was to create a simple shell script to launch the program.  This was necessary because the program has to run from the source folder.  Here is what my script looked like:

#!/bin/sh

cd ~/bin/navit-0.1.0/navit
./navit

Note: change the cd path to the location where you downloaded and compiled the program.

Then, make the script executable with:

chmod +x navit.sh

To add the menu, I used the Menus application by right clicking on the Applications menu and choosing “Edit Menus”.  I clicked on the Accessories menu and clicked the New Item button.  Here are the options that I chose:

  • Type: Application
  • Name: NavIt
  • Command: /home/skp/bin/navit.sh
  • Comment: <blank>

Note: change the Command path to the script that you created to launch the program.

For the icon, I clicked on the little spring icon on the left to choose a different icon.  For the path, I chose: /home/skp/bin/navit-0.1.0/navit/xpm/desktop_icons/128×128.

To troubleshoot, you may want to change the Type from Application to Application in Terminal because the terminal window will show you the output messages from the program.

Bootable ISO to USB Drive

This page has moved.  Please update your links:
http://linuxsagas.digitaleagle.net/2008/11/29/bootable-iso-to-usb-drive/

I was trying to boot the Trinity Rescue Kit without having to burn a CD.  I never did get it to work, but I did get the Ubuntu ISO to boot.

Method 1 (didn’t work for me)

Step 1.  Download the ISO File.  Save it to a directory where you can browse to it.

Step 2.  Browse to the downloaded file.  Right click and choose “Open with ‘Archive Manager’.  (This is for linux.  You could use 7-zip in Windows, maybe WinZip).

Step 3.  Insert the USB Drive; notice where it mounts the drive.  For me it was at /media/disk.

Step 4.  Extract the ISO file by clicking the Extract button in Archive Manager.  Enter the path where the USB drive was mounted for the destination path.

This didn’t work for me.  I am assuming there is more to it than just copying the files onto the disk.

Method 2

Step 1.  Download  UNetbootin.

Step 2.  You need to make the file bootable.  I ran chmod +x unetbootin-linux-299.

Step 3.  When I ran it the first time, it told me that it needed mtools installed.  This was easy to install with: sudo apt-get install mtools

Step 4.  Run it from the terminal with ./unetbootin-linux-299

Step 5.  Choose the diskimage and pick the iso file.

Step 6.  Then, click OK

This worked on Ubuntu, but not on TRK.  When it booted into Ubuntu, it gave me a UNetBootin boot menu, and then it booted all the way into Ubuntu 8.10.

Resources

.iso to USB

Ubuntu: Installation from USB Stick

UNetBootIn

WebDav and fstab

This page has moved.  Please update your links:
http://linuxsagas.digitaleagle.net/2008/09/09/webdav-and-fstab/

We have a webdav enabled web site that I wanted to connect to on a regular basis.  I wanted it to mount on my filesystem as opposed to just using it in nautilus so that I could use meld to copy files to it.

So, I added a line to the end of /etc/fstab   (sudo gvim /etc/fstab):

https://mywebsite/~docs    /dir/to/mount/on    davfs    user,noauto,rw    0    0

Then, I added the following line to /etc/davfs2/secrets:

https://mywebsite/~docs    myusername    mypassword

Originally, I had just the unsecure http:// url.  But, it gave me this error:

/sbin/mount.davfs: Mounting failed.
401 Unauthorized

I fixed it by changing the urls to https://.

When I mounted it as root, it worked fine.  But, when I mounted it as my regular user, I got this message:

/sbin/mount.davfs: program is not setuid root

To fix it, I had to run this command:

sudo chmod u+s /sbin/mount.davfs

Then, I changed the file /etc/davfs2/davfs2.conf.  I changed the dav_group setting.  For me, I found a line that said “dav_group staff”.  I replaced staff with my username, which is my default group.  The thread I read mentioned using the users group.

Resources

Posted in How To. 5 Comments »

Gpsd: Fixing for Ubuntu

I have an LT-20 Delorme Earthmate GPS.  It may not be the best GPS, but it gets the job done.  Getting it to work in Ubuntu was no easy feat.

I had to fix a bug in a cypress module.  I followed the instructions from here.

To get the kernel version, I ran:

uname -r

Then, to install the kernel source, I ran:

sudo apt-get install linux-source-2.6.24

Then, I changed directories into the installation directory and unzipped the source:

cd /usr/src
sudo tar -xvf linux-source-2.6.24.tar.bz2

Then, I copied the two files:

cd linux-source-2.6.24/drivers/usb/serial/
sudo mkdir /usr/src/modules
sudo cp cypress_m8.h cypress_m8.c /usr/src/modules/

Next, I created the make file (note that I have installed gvim.  I saw a note saying that they had problems using the gedit text editor):

cd /usr/src/modules
sudo gvim Makefile

And, I pasted these lines into the Makefile:

obj-m := cypress_m8.o
KDIR := /lib/modules/

$(shell uname -r)/build
PWD := $(shell pwd)
default:
$(MAKE) -C $(KDIR) SUBDIRS=$(PWD) modules

Then, I edited cypress_m8.c and commented out line 408.  The original instructions have more detail on this.  I thought the line number might be different, but it was the same as the original instructions.

When running make (sudo make) I had trouble with “make: Nothing to be done for `default’.” message.  I just opened the file and deleted and readded the tab in front of the last line.  Then, it ran fine.

Then, I ran the command:

sudo install -m 644 cypress_m8.ko /lib/modules/`uname -r`/kernel/drivers/usb/serial/cypress_m8.ko
sudo depmod -a

Resources

Windows VPN in Linux

I had need to connect to a Windows-based VPN, and I found the instructions to do so here:

http://pptpclient.sourceforge.net/howto-ubuntu.phtml

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