Must have applications on Ubuntu Linux


There are endless lists of “must haves” that one can find on the net. It’s like something mandatory that every linux user must do. So here’s my list of stuff I’d do first on my system.

This is the problem most new linux users face, and one which ultimately makes them go back to their original OS. Once you connect to the net, there is unending help available on any topic under the sky. I will explain how to get the net running on ADSL modems (because this is what I have). Open a terminal and type:

sudo pppoeconf

Choose your eth port when it prompts (usually eth0), and follow the instructions. All you have to do is click next, next, next (so to speak). Enter username and password when asked.
Now to connect to the net, type

pon dsl-provider

To see status of connection type


To turn off connection type

poff -a

There you are, connected to the net.

Firefox is a must for me. It is installed by default in ubuntu, or can be installed simply by using the synaptic package manager ( or sudo apt-get install firefox ). Instead, let me enumerate some of the add-ons which are a must for me.
1)Tab Mix Plus
2)English Dictionary
3)AdBlock Plus

This is the eye-candy component of linux. If you think linux doesn’t have a great GUI, think again.
To install compiz-fusion, I used this guide and it worked perfectly for me. There seems to be some sort of flame-war going on between people using Trevino’s repositories and Amarnath’s repositories. I used Trevino’s repositories, and have faced no problem at all. I could never tire of the awesome effects of compiz-fusion, so here’s another youtube video if you’ve missed my earlier posts.

Like most of my friends, I too use a dual-boot system with windows as the other OS. I haven’t logged into windows for a really long time, and yet somehow I’m scared of dumping it altogether. So you can say I’m still a linux newbie. Using this tool, you can write data on your ntfs drives. Here’s the site, which has detailed installation instructions.

This is one of the biggest reasons why people don’t use linux. However, getting this on your distro is not as difficult as it is made out to be. If you are using Ubuntu, you’ll find that the system will download all the necessary codecs for you without any headaches.
On my ubuntu, I use Amarok for music and Totem for videos.
I intended to link a good HOWTO here, for people having problems on other distros, but I can’t seem to find one COMPLETE guide, so for now, I’ll skip this step.
To install Amarok on ubuntu, open terminal and type

sudo apt-get install amarok

If you are really afraid of the terminal, use the synaptic package manager (System->Administration)

I know you’re scared of it, I know you’re intimidated by it. But take some time to learn emacs, because this is the best programming ide I’ve ever used. To install emacs, use the synaptic package manager, or type

sudo apt-get install emacs

in the terminal.
Start with the emacs tutorial, which is really good. To see this tutorial, open your emacs, use the hotkey Control-h and then type t.
Once you get the hang of it, you may want to check this out, as it gives a few interesting tips.

In my experience, this is the best torrent client I’ve come across on Linux. It’s very easy to use and not too hard on the resources. To install deluge, go to their site and download the .deb package for ubuntu. Double-clicking this does the job. (or you can increase your linux knowledge by learning the dpkg command)

This is a handy system monitoring tool, which serves as eye-candy too for me. Not only does this give me all the information I need about my system, it even fulfils my geeky desire to have a display like they have in the movies. While this is not a noobie tool, slightly experienced users will enjoy this.

(This is my desktop. Right-hand side is a transparent terminal session as my desktop background, left-hand side is my customised conky, bottom is awn and wallpaper using webilder.)

AWN is a Mac-like dock for the gnome desktop environment. Installation instructions are messy (scratch that, complicated), and I recommend you don’t try it if you’re new.

Webilder is a tool that provides the most gorgeous wallpapers from Flickr. It auto-downloads wallpapers based on tags provided by you, and it changes your wallpapers every 5 minutes (customizable). Installation instructions here.


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5 Responses to “Must have applications on Ubuntu Linux”

  1. CDK Says:

    check out aptonCD…. loads of help in case of reinstalls and for those who do no hav a net connection..there’s also automatix…but purists hate it. they believe it makes linux too user friendly…??

  2. Vedang Says:

    automatix is frowned upon for two reasons:

    a)it installs closed-source stuff without adequately warning the user (against fundamental philosophy)

    b)it is supposed to break the system upgrade facility. Quote “systems where it has been used cannot be supported with a clean and official upgrade path” Unquote

  3. CDK Says:

    do check aptonCD…amarok is truly great…i hear there is a gnome parallel out now….just might take care of the very minor bugs amarok still has…btw….u checking out Gutsy Gibbon in beta, installing it after the release or sticking to Feisty ??? K3B is a good CD/DVD burning software…theres the gDesklets utility as well…

  4. Vedang Says:

    No, I’m not checking out Gutsy Gibbon. Apart from the kernel upgrade, it has nothing to offer me… I’m going to directly upgrade to hardy heron next year.

    I don’t know about the amarok parallel, but i think it’s supposed to be platform independent now that they made the capital K small. (used to be amaroK earlier)

  5. CDK Says:

    hav u found any gtalk parallel in linux….with the working talk function?? i tried jabbin but it doesnt work…just sends mp3 to mails accont

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