Episode 113: The LinuxFest Northwest Report


  • Linux Mint named one of the 5 best Linux distros over at lifehacker. Some surprises at the other distos included. (lifehacker.com)
  • Mark your calendars: Texas Linux Fest 2012 will be held Aug. 3-4 at the Norris Conference Center in downtown San Antonio. (texaslinuxfest.org)
  • XFCE releases version 4.10. (xfce.org)

The Main Topic: LinuxFest NorthWest

Featured Website:

Tip: Minty XFCE

  • Our tip this week comes to us from Michael Torrie in response to Rob’s complaints about after-the-fact installs of desktop environments that weren’t very minty.

If you install XFCE using the software manager or aptitude you don’t get the nice Mint-flavored XFCE configuration. Instead you just get the stock config. I found that the Mint XFCE setup magic is provided by mintdesktop-xfce package and it’s all in /etc/skel. Thus if you start with LMDE XFCE edition, when your home directory is first created, the Mint XFCE configs get copied from /etc/skel into your home directory. If you add XFCE after the fact, your home directory has already been created, and so these files don’t get copied. If you create a new user, however, you’d find the new user has the Mint XFCE settings.

Here’s a formula for installing XFCE and making sure your existing account has the config files:

1. Install XFCE:
– sudo aptitude install mintdesktop-xfce
– sudo aptitude install xfce4-session

2. update files:
– rm -rf ~/.config/xfce4 #for good measure
– cp -a /etc/skel/.config/xfce4 ~/.config/
– cp /etc/skel/.gtkrc-xfce ~/

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Hosts:: James, Rob, Scott, HarrisonLive Stream (Mondays at 8:00 p.m. Eastern): mintcast.org

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Credits: Podcast Entry and exit music provided by Mark Blasco (podcastthemes.com). The podcast’s bumpers were provided by Oscar.

9 Replies to “Episode 113: The LinuxFest Northwest Report”

  1. Sho

    Hi Rob, I use “Firefox Sync” every time I install new distro, and after I synced, my Mint 12’s default search engine automatically becomes Google. “Firefox sync” not only syncs bookmarks and settings but also passwords and history. You may wanna try it.
    thanks for the great Podcast.

    • BostonPeng

      I use Firefox Sync as well, and for Chromium (my default browser) I use the built in sync. It remembers passwords but not the cookies sites place on your hard drive but it’s just a minor annoyance to me. I also use LastPass (https://lastpass.com/) to save and sync my passwords across browsers.

      For Firefox extensions I also Siphon (http://siphon-fx.com/) to reinstall my addons on a fresh browser. I have to remember to install Siphon but once I do it offers to reinstall my addons and removeons for me. It’s a one-two punch that Chromium doesn’t need to remember your extensions but I’m glad I have it for the fox.

  2. Bill_MI

    Hi guys.

    Ah… that’s better! It’s so much nicer downloading the show.

    No more 1/2 sentences. No more mystery topic changes. No more sitting beyond fist range of my favorite monitor… 🙂

    Ya know… ads inserted in the continuity of programs are one thing. Ads that whack out the content then leave you trying to mentally catch up is really really bad. At least for me. But I can only speak for myself.

    I still love ya, guys. I’m not sure if there’s a solution but I did want to emphasize that if content weren’t whacked by ads, they would be a whole lot more acceptable. But I can’t imagine James saying: “Let’s have a break and hear from a sponsor…” If that’s even possible. Let alone extra editing.

    Just in case that helps finding a solution. I’m glad you’ll be discussing it and let me know how I can help.

    And I loved the discussion about desktops – there are some turning points coming up. You guys framed the unknowns very well. In the meantime, I’m used to desktop zoom in Compiz, so you know where I might lead. 🙂

    Oh… please… if you get a chance… the Livestream page still has the old links which is why I assumed ‘back to the regular stream’ meant just that, with Scott back and all.

    Seeya! -Bill In Michigan

  3. Kansas Penguin

    I have to say I was surprised when I read through the comments and saw something from Bill_MI.

    I’ve heard Bill’s name mentioned on the podcast, but I didn’t get the spelling. I thought he was Bill-Am-I. I loved the Seussian flavor of the name.

    Now I’ve seen the name in writing and I know that I had it all wrong. He’s not Bill-Am-I, he’s Bill_MI. Well, I’m sure he’s a fine person but I’m disillusioned.

    • Bill_MI

      Hi Kansas Penguin!

      Thanks for the perspective that never occurred to me! My pseudonym grew up in the all-text 1990s and never spoken – which makes a big difference. I have heard “Bill In Michigan”.

      A related note on our podcasters…
      Scott_Empty? No way!
      James_OK? Of course!
      Rob_Tee-Ex? (awww darn…)

      (sorry if goofed Scott_MT, I’m sure I heard he does hockey there)

  4. Bananabob

    One of the problems with Mint’s control of the search engine box in Firefox is that there are many other search engines that are available. Also people living in countries other than the USA may like to use Google for their own country – google.co.nz for instance. None of this is available from Mint’s web page.

    However it is a very simple procedure to install any search engine that Mozilla provide access to through their Mycroft project.

    I recommend that people visit http://ihaveapc.com/2012/01/how-to-enable-google-search-for-firefox-in-linux-mint-12/ which will explain how to add the gazillions of search engines to the Firefox search box.

  5. Sid32

    Hey, can we get a libreoffice v. Apach. OpenOffice 3.4 comparison on an upcoming ep? Is it worth switching too?

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