10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 9.10

By Viktor Ustijanoski | 02 November 2009



Updated tutorial: Changed DVD install terminal command at category 4.

Ubuntu 9.10 is excellent, it has improvements in every field, it is faster, more responsive, the effects are smoother, the apps installation easiest than ever :) ) But after installing your system you must spend some time of fine tuning your system… Here is 10 things how to do that:

IMPORTANT: Before next steps, go to System/Administration/Synaptic Package Manager and click Reload – to refresh the repositories from the net. After that, everything will be installed smoothly :-)

1. Install Graphics drivers. According to your graphic card, you need to install graphic drivers to support advance compiz effects. In this particular case, I’m using nvidia, so in Applications/Ubuntu Software Center search for “nvidia drivers” without quotes (or ATI, Intel, VIA or other – depending of your graphic card). Next select the newest one and click install. If you have older graphic card maybe you should downgrade your driver version. Ubuntu will automatically suggest that when you start System/Administration/Hardware drivers to activate your graphic driver. (If there is no driver list there, restarting the system will fix that – and repeat the System/Administration/Hardware drivers process again) Select the driver from the list a click activate. After restart you will have new drivers activated with advance compiz effects..

2. Fonts. To install Microsoft Windows fonts, open your terminal (Applications/Accessories/Terminal) and enter:

sudo apt-get install ttf-mscorefonts-installer

If you want to install any other fonts you can get from the net or use your font database follow this steps:

  1. Go to your home folder (Places/HomeFolder)
  2. Enable “Show Hidden Files” option from Nautilus View menu
  3. Then create new folder with name “.fonts” (with dot in front)
  4. Now in new folder copy all your true type fonts. If you want to copy your Windows fonts, you can find it in WINDOWS/Fonts folder.
  5. After that, the new fonts will be active, you can try it with OpenOffice or other application.

3. Make LCD Monitor Adjustments – To optimize your Ubuntu LCD Screen go to:

  1. System/Preferences/Appearance and choose Fonts tab.
  2. Select the SubPixel Smoothing (LCD) and click details.
  3. Next – find “Hinting” field and select “Medium”.
  4. Close the Appearance window. Your pixels should be smoother now.

4. Make Ubunty 9.10 Multimedia ready (DVD, Divx, Xvid, MP3, WMA, WMV, MOV, etc..). Go to Applications/Ubuntu Software Center and search for Gstreamer plugins. From the list bellow, install one by one next Gstreamer plugins:

  1. GStreamer ffmpeg video plugin
  2. GStreamer extra plugins
  3. GStreamer plugins for mms, wavpack, quicktime, musepack
  4. GStreamer plugins for aac, xvid, mpeg2, faad

After installation you can play all you favorite songs and movies in various multimedia formats.

To enable protected DVD playback, you must install a few things more:

First, Medibuntu to the repository – Medubuntu is a repository of packages that cannot be included into the Ubuntu distribution for legal reasons (copyright, license, patent, etc). Doing that is quite easy, just copy and paste in terminal this commands block by block(Ctrl+Shift+V in terminal to paste):

For DVD:

sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/$(lsb_release -cs).list \
–output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list &&
sudo apt-get -q update &&
sudo apt-get –yes -q –allow-unauthenticated install medibuntu-keyring &&
sudo apt-get -q update

sudo apt-get install libdvdcss2

You can also add Windows, Real Networks, Quick Time and other codecs support:

Ubuntu 9.10 32bit

sudo apt-get install w32codecs

Ubuntu 9.10 64bit

sudo apt-get install w64codecs

That’s it. For DVD player, we recommend to install VLC media player. For anything else, the native Ubuntu player is excellent.

5. Install Screenlets – Screenlets are Widgets (Clock, Calendar, Weather and other useful things on your desktop). Go to Application/Ubuntu Software Center, search for Screenlets and Click install. Next you can set up screenlets from Applications/Accesories menu.

6. Mount your Windows HDD ‘s on Ubuntu startup with PySdm. You can install Pysdm with Ubuntu Software Center or with your terminal:

sudo apt-get install pysdm

Next run the app with

sudo pysdm

On partition list you can found all your hard drives. Click on the drive you want to mount, then on general preferences tab click Mount and apply. If the disks are not mounted on startup, start your Pysdm again and select Mount on startup options then apply. Be careful, don’t play with the rest options if you are not experienced user because you can damage your Ubuntu system.

7. Set another Keyboard Layout – If your language is not native English, you can set another keyboard layout so you can write to you native language.

  1. Open System/Preferences/Keyboard and select layout tab.
  2. Then click Add, and from the new window select your country or language and click add again.
  3. You default keyboard layout shortcuts are both ALT. If you want to change that, go to Layout Options/ Keys to Change Layout/ and select your combination.

8. Add Rar support to Ubuntu. Many files on the net (music, subtitles, e-books, rapidshare files etc…) are packed in .rar so you must add rar support to use them. It is easiest part of all tuning processes so open your terminal and copy/paste next line:

sudo apt-get install rar unrar

9. Install Skype and additional themes on your Empathy messenger. To install Skype go to Skype official page and download the latest Skype for Ubuntu 8.10+. Open it with gdebi installer and follow the on screen instructions. After that you can find Skype on Applications/Internet menu.

To install additional empathy themes follow this excellent DetectorPRO tutorial.

10. Install Adobe Flash Plugin to Firefox – You can do it manually from Ubuntu Software Center or Adobe official page (select .deb package in version download) or enter some address with flash content – example “youtube” and select install missing plugins from Firefox

After all this tunings, make update to your system – Go to System/Administration/System Update and make sure that everything is on and up to date. Enjoy and have fun with your new Ubuntu 9.10 experience.

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11 Responses to “10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 9.10”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi,
    i am a new entrant to linux world and i am already amazed by the way people have contributed for ubuntu. i am pretty sure that the first bug in their database will soon be fixed, :-) thanks to the wonderful community.
    sincerely appreciate your tips for finetuning ubuntu.

    cheers,
    D.karthikeyan.

  2. Dick says:

    Great tips! Thanks so much. I'm new to linux and these tips addressed most of my basic issues. Great stuff.
    D. Krohn

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the tips, came handy for a new linux/ubuntu user. (btw i Ubuntu is so cool)

  4. Saurabh Das says:

    Great tips !!
    It really helped me :)
    Keep it up !!

  5. kyle says:

    awesome help, thanks so much!

  6. UDon says:

    Nothing different to add, other than: great tips! Thank you so much for putting this out!

  7. Michael says:

    Hi, Thanks for a great bunch of helpful tips. I am a very newbie where do I go to upload wallpapers that I have created. I am a Graphic Artist of sorts. Thanks in advance.

  8. sdfsdf says:

    Thanks for the tips they were helpful.
    Altough there are some mistakes. The correct way to install DVD support:
    (the 2 errors are: use — instead of a long minus sign. Remove && from the end of each command, otherwise it wont ask for password.)

    sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/$(lsb_release -cs).list \
    –output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

    sudo apt-get -q update

    sudo apt-get –yes -q –allow-unauthenticated install medibuntu-keyring

    sudo apt-get -q update

  9. sdfsdf says:

    hmh seems like the autoformatting is messing things up. So use – - (without the spaces inbetween) instead of –






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