Linux (xubuntu) for myself

IMPORTANT: Don't contact me. Read this note instead.

Useful external pages

  • Do this first -- A page with several useful tips for things to do after a fresh install.

Linux configurations

Here are some random, yet useful, configuration commands for linux.


This page shows some linux network related topics, such as ssh and file servers


My device configuration in Linux. Ubuntu has a pretty good device recognition. Sometimes it gets stuck, though.

Command line

A list of my set of command lines that I keep forgetting.

Important note about these pages:

Until Dec. 31, 2011, my main and, for all practical reasons, only operating system was WinXP. I liked it. Not as much as I have liked Win2K, but still enough to keep it. In the past, I had tried to move to the linux world in several occasions. It never lasted for more than a couple of weeks before I run back to windows. Linux looked fine but there was too much trouble involved in tweaking it to the way I wanted. Way too much experiemental.

I am not one of those who likes to administer his computer. I want to get my job done (data analyzed, papers written, reports finished, programs working, etc). Yet I wanted access to my computer in a deeper way than just text editing and internet browsing. Windows was perfect for that (as opposed to Mac).

Linux, no so much. And the linux community did not help. Oh, how many times, when looking into forums, did I see people asking about a GUI to perform some task and getting the angry answer that GUI is for suckers and real men should use the command line? In the linux community you find a lot of open minded people as far as you think like them (if want to put this to a test, just post in a forum that you, personally, are willing to pay for a closed source binary package -- note that I did pay for QtiPlot and PDF Studio). This and the usability of windows kept me away from a long term relationship with Linux.

But then came Windows Vista, followed by 7 and the frightning preview I saw for Windows 8 (I want a system for a computer, not for a tablet). Older software stoped working. I stuck with XP. But XP is doomed. And doomsday is April 8th, 2014. Vista and "higher" versions pointed to a grim future. I gave up.

I needed a new OS. Mac was not an option. I cannot live with Apple's approach of telling me what I want to do. So, in desperation, I decided to give linux yet another shot. My past experience was with KDE in RedHat and OpenSuse. Ubuntu was getting a lot of media and people I know recommended it. I installed version 11.10. Never had an OS lasted so little time on my machine. It was installed (flawlessly, I must admit) in the morning. It was out by lunch time. Two words: "Gnome sucks!" Another two words: "Big time!" Both, unity and the 2D fallback. One of my linux friends said he understood my despair with gnome. And added: "Go for KDE, it looks like windows!" So kubuntu was in. It lasted longer. In, just after lunch. Out, 24 hours later. It does not look like windows (XP at least). I looks like a stripped down MacOS. I started to fear that I would have to suck it up and go back to Windows.

On a last stand, a student of mine mentioned xfce and Xubuntu was in. And it already survived its first year. Honestly, I find xubuntu worse than XP, which, remember, is doomed. I still need a virtual machine with XP to run a few programs. Linux has no equivalent to Origin (QtiPlot is almost good but extremely annoying); to PowerPoint (no, Impress falls way short in usability but the combination Inkscape/sozi/Firefox seems quite promissing); to SolidWorks or Inventor (I am trying out VariCAD and FreeCAD, so this might change in the near future); Dreamweaver (no, Kompozer and BlueGriffon are not enough, for starters they reformat the html layout) and a few other less well known. I hope that these issues will be solved one day (and no, wine does not make these programs work flawlessly -- it does a good job but it is not perfect).

All this yada-yada-yada is to say that I am not a linux enthusiast. I don't really care for open source or free software. I don't need a system update every 6 months (the most useful software I use are versions of pre 2005 -- including MS stuff such as PowerPoint). I only care for my productivity being unharmed. This page is not yet another shrine to linux. I wrote this page as a reminder to myself on how to configure xubuntu the way I want. If this page was useful for you, wonderful. I am sincerely happy to be of any help. But I was not looking for it and I don't want to know about your experience. If you want to discuss about these topics, I'd be delighted to get an email from you. If you want to talk about linux, go to one of the thousands of discussion forums available on the web. I don't want to receive tips on how to make some of the above tasks easier. I don't want to chat about linux with you. I don't want your feedback. I don't really care for your opinion. I don't want to be in the same group as you. I am not in your tribe. I don't want to enter your social or professional network (and this is even valid for these topics). I will not add a link to your page. I don't want to be your "friend".