Installing Ajenti Linux Server Management Software on Ubuntu

Enter this command in Terminal to install the Agenti Linux server management software:

wget -O- https://raw.github.com/Eugeny/ajenti/master/scripts/install-ubuntu.sh | sudo sh

The above command may appear to be wrapped from one line to the next, but it should be pasted in as one complete command.

More comprehensive instructions can be found on the Ajenti installation instructions page.

After installing, go to this address in your browser https://localhost:8000/ and then when warned about the connection not being private (if using Google Chrome), then click the Advanced link. Then click Proceed to local host (unsafe). The reason for the alert is that you don’t have an SSL certificate on your local computer.

Installation Process

Below is an example of what you’ll see during installation. The text in bold is what you type.

username@computername:~$ wget -O- https://raw.github.com/Eugeny/ajenti/master/scripts/install-ubuntu.sh | sudo sh
–2014-11-30 19:22:38– https://raw.github.com/Eugeny/ajenti/master/scripts/install-ubuntu.sh
Resolving raw.github.com (raw.github.com)… [sudo] password for username: 199.27.76.133
Connecting to raw.github.com (raw.github.com)|199.27.76.133|:443… connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response… 301 Moved Permanently
Location: https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Eugeny/ajenti/master/scripts/install-ubuntu.sh [following]
–2014-11-30 19:22:39– https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Eugeny/ajenti/master/scripts/install-ubuntu.sh
Resolving raw.githubusercontent.com (raw.githubusercontent.com)… 23.235.40.133
Connecting to raw.githubusercontent.com (raw.githubusercontent.com)|23.235.40.133|:443… connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response… 200 OK
Length: 472 [text/plain]
Saving to: ‘STDOUT’

100%[======================================>] 472 –.-K/s in 0s

2014-11-30 19:22:39 (78.9 MB/s) – written to stdout [472/472]

(If the installation gets stuck at this point, you may need to press Enter).

Sorry, try again.
[sudo] password for username:
:: Installing repo key
–2014-11-30 19:23:23– http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/key
Resolving repo.ajenti.org (repo.ajenti.org)… 198.232.124.224
Connecting to repo.ajenti.org (repo.ajenti.org)|198.232.124.224|:80… connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response… 200 OK
Length: 1716 (1.7K) [application/octet-stream]
Saving to: ‘STDOUT’

100%[======================================>] 1,716 –.-K/s in 0s

2014-11-30 19:23:23 (3.48 MB/s) – written to stdout [1716/1716]

OK
:: Adding repo entry
:: Updating lists
Get:1 http://repo.ajenti.org main InRelease [11.7 kB]
Get:2 http://repo.ajenti.org main/main amd64 Packages [6,494 B]
Get:3 http://repo.ajenti.org main/ubuntu amd64 Packages [3,534 B]
Ign http://dl.google.com stable InRelease
Ign http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security InRelease
Get:4 http://repo.ajenti.org main/main i386 Packages [6,493 B]
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty InRelease
Get:5 http://repo.ajenti.org main/ubuntu i386 Packages [3,534 B]
Hit http://dl.google.com stable Release.gpg
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security Release.gpg
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates InRelease
Hit http://dl.google.com stable Release
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security Release
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports InRelease
Hit http://dl.google.com stable/main amd64 Packages
Ign http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty InRelease
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/main Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty Release.gpg
Hit http://dl.google.com stable/main i386 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/restricted Sources
Get:6 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates Release.gpg [933 B]
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/universe Sources
Hit http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty Release.gpg
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports Release.gpg
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/multiverse Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty Release
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/main amd64 Packages
Hit http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty Release
Get:7 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates Release [62.0 kB]
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/restricted amd64 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/universe amd64 Packages
Hit http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty/main Sources
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/multiverse amd64 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/main i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports Release
Ign http://dl.google.com stable/main Translation-en_US
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/restricted i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/main Sources
Hit http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty/main amd64 Packages
Ign http://dl.google.com stable/main Translation-en
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/universe i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/restricted Sources
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/multiverse i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/universe Sources
Hit http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty/main i386 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/main Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/multiverse Sources
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/multiverse Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/main amd64 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/restricted Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/restricted amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/universe amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/multiverse amd64 Packages
Hit http://security.ubuntu.com trusty-security/universe Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/main i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/restricted i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/universe i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/multiverse i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/main Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/multiverse Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/restricted Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/universe Translation-en
Get:8 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/main Sources [143 kB]
Ign http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty/main Translation-en_US
Get:9 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/restricted Sources [1,408 B]
Get:10 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/universe Sources [92.0 kB]
Ign http://extras.ubuntu.com trusty/main Translation-en
Get:11 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/multiverse Sources [3,534 B]
Get:12 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/main amd64 Packages [369 kB]
Get:13 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/restricted amd64 Packages [5,820 B]
Get:14 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/universe amd64 Packages [221 kB]
Get:15 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/multiverse amd64 Packages [9,359 B]
Get:16 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/main i386 Packages [361 kB]
Get:17 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/restricted i386 Packages [5,820 B]
Get:18 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/universe i386 Packages [221 kB]
Get:19 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/multiverse i386 Packages [9,567 B]
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/main Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/multiverse Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/restricted Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-updates/universe Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/main Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/restricted Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/universe Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/multiverse Sources
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/main amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/restricted amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/universe amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/multiverse amd64 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/main i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/restricted i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/universe i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/multiverse i386 Packages
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/main Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/multiverse Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/restricted Translation-en
Hit http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty-backports/universe Translation-en
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/main Translation-en_US
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/multiverse Translation-en_US
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/restricted Translation-en_US
Ign http://us.archive.ubuntu.com trusty/universe Translation-en_US
Ign http://repo.ajenti.org main/main Translation-en_US
Ign http://repo.ajenti.org main/main Translation-en
Ign http://repo.ajenti.org main/ubuntu Translation-en_US
Ign http://repo.ajenti.org main/ubuntu Translation-en
Fetched 1,537 kB in 5s (284 kB/s)
Reading package lists… Done
:: Installing package
Reading package lists… Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information… Done
The following packages were automatically installed and are no longer required:
libatk-bridge2.0-0:i386 libatspi2.0-0:i386 libcairo-gobject2:i386
libcolord1:i386 libdbusmenu-gtk3-4:i386 libgtk-3-0:i386 liblcms2-2:i386
libwayland-client0:i386 libwayland-cursor0:i386 libxkbcommon0:i386
linux-image-3.13.0-32-generic linux-image-extra-3.13.0-32-generic
Use ‘apt-get autoremove’ to remove them.
The following extra packages will be installed:
apt-show-versions python-catcher python-daemon python-exconsole
python-gevent python-gevent-socketio python-gevent-websocket python-greenlet
python-ldap python-mako python-markupsafe python-passlib python-psutil
python-reconfigure python-requests python-support python-urllib3
Suggested packages:
python-gevent-doc python-gevent-dbg python-greenlet-doc python-greenlet-dev
python-greenlet-dbg python-ldap-doc python-pyasn1 python-beaker
python-mako-doc
The following NEW packages will be installed:
ajenti apt-show-versions python-catcher python-daemon python-exconsole
python-gevent python-gevent-socketio python-gevent-websocket python-greenlet
python-ldap python-mako python-markupsafe python-passlib python-psutil
python-reconfigure python-requests python-support python-urllib3
0 upgraded, 18 newly installed, 0 to remove and 3 not upgraded.
Need to get 1,873 kB of archives.
After this operation, 8,717 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Get:1 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/main python-gevent-socketio all 0.3.6-1 [27.4 kB]
Get:2 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/main python-reconfigure all 0.1.64 [29.8 kB]
Get:3 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/universe python-support all 1.0.15 [26.7 kB]
Get:4 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/ubuntu python-passlib all 1.5.3-2 [156 kB]
Get:5 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/main python-catcher all 0.1.7 [5,338 B]
Get:6 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/main python-exconsole all 0.1.5 [3,638 B]
Get:7 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-greenlet amd64 0.4.2-1build1 [16.7 kB]
Get:8 http://repo.ajenti.org/debian/ main/main ajenti all 1.2.22.16 [1,056 kB]
Get:9 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-gevent amd64 1.0-1ubuntu1 [215 kB]
Get:10 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/universe python-gevent-websocket all 0.9.3-1 [15.3 kB]
Get:11 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-psutil amd64 1.2.1-1ubuntu2 [50.2 kB]
Get:12 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/universe python-daemon all 1.5.5-1ubuntu1 [17.5 kB]
Get:13 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-urllib3 all 1.7.1-1build1 [38.9 kB]
Get:14 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty-updates/main python-requests all 2.2.1-1ubuntu0.1 [42.9 kB]
Get:15 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/universe apt-show-versions all 0.22.3 [33.9 kB]
Get:16 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-markupsafe amd64 0.18-1build2 [14.3 kB]
Get:17 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-mako all 0.9.1-1 [59.6 kB]
Get:18 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ trusty/main python-ldap amd64 2.4.10-1build1 [63.9 kB]
Fetched 1,873 kB in 0s (2,320 kB/s)
Selecting previously unselected package python-support.
(Reading database … 226577 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack …/python-support_1.0.15_all.deb …
Unpacking python-support (1.0.15) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-greenlet.
Preparing to unpack …/python-greenlet_0.4.2-1build1_amd64.deb …
Unpacking python-greenlet (0.4.2-1build1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-gevent.
Preparing to unpack …/python-gevent_1.0-1ubuntu1_amd64.deb …
Unpacking python-gevent (1.0-1ubuntu1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-gevent-websocket.
Preparing to unpack …/python-gevent-websocket_0.9.3-1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-gevent-websocket (0.9.3-1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-gevent-socketio.
Preparing to unpack …/python-gevent-socketio_0.3.6-1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-gevent-socketio (0.3.6-1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-psutil.
Preparing to unpack …/python-psutil_1.2.1-1ubuntu2_amd64.deb …
Unpacking python-psutil (1.2.1-1ubuntu2) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-reconfigure.
Preparing to unpack …/python-reconfigure_0.1.64_all.deb …
Unpacking python-reconfigure (0.1.64) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-daemon.
Preparing to unpack …/python-daemon_1.5.5-1ubuntu1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-daemon (1.5.5-1ubuntu1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-passlib.
Preparing to unpack …/python-passlib_1.5.3-2_all.deb …
Unpacking python-passlib (1.5.3-2) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-urllib3.
Preparing to unpack …/python-urllib3_1.7.1-1build1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-urllib3 (1.7.1-1build1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-requests.
Preparing to unpack …/python-requests_2.2.1-1ubuntu0.1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-requests (2.2.1-1ubuntu0.1) …
Selecting previously unselected package apt-show-versions.
Preparing to unpack …/apt-show-versions_0.22.3_all.deb …
Unpacking apt-show-versions (0.22.3) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-markupsafe.
Preparing to unpack …/python-markupsafe_0.18-1build2_amd64.deb …
Unpacking python-markupsafe (0.18-1build2) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-mako.
Preparing to unpack …/python-mako_0.9.1-1_all.deb …
Unpacking python-mako (0.9.1-1) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-catcher.
Preparing to unpack …/python-catcher_0.1.7_all.deb …
Unpacking python-catcher (0.1.7) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-exconsole.
Preparing to unpack …/python-exconsole_0.1.5_all.deb …
Unpacking python-exconsole (0.1.5) …
Selecting previously unselected package python-ldap.
Preparing to unpack …/python-ldap_2.4.10-1build1_amd64.deb …
Unpacking python-ldap (2.4.10-1build1) …
Selecting previously unselected package ajenti.
Preparing to unpack …/ajenti_1.2.22.16_all.deb …
Unpacking ajenti (1.2.22.16) …
Processing triggers for man-db (2.6.7.1-1ubuntu1) …
Processing triggers for ureadahead (0.100.0-16) …
ureadahead will be reprofiled on next reboot
Setting up python-support (1.0.15) …
Setting up python-greenlet (0.4.2-1build1) …
Setting up python-gevent (1.0-1ubuntu1) …
Setting up python-gevent-websocket (0.9.3-1) …
Setting up python-gevent-socketio (0.3.6-1) …
Setting up python-psutil (1.2.1-1ubuntu2) …
Setting up python-reconfigure (0.1.64) …
Setting up python-daemon (1.5.5-1ubuntu1) …
Setting up python-passlib (1.5.3-2) …
Setting up python-urllib3 (1.7.1-1build1) …
Setting up python-requests (2.2.1-1ubuntu0.1) …
Setting up apt-show-versions (0.22.3) …
** initializing cache. This may take a while **
Setting up python-markupsafe (0.18-1build2) …
Setting up python-mako (0.9.1-1) …
Setting up python-catcher (0.1.7) …
Setting up python-exconsole (0.1.5) …
Setting up python-ldap (2.4.10-1build1) …
Setting up ajenti (1.2.22.16) …

:: Generating key

Generating RSA private key, 2048 bit long modulus
……………………………………..+++
………………………………………………..+++
e is 65537 (0x10001)

:: Generating certificate request
:: Removing passphrase

writing RSA key

:: Generating certificate

Signature ok
subject=/C=US/ST=NA/L=Nowhere/O=Acme Inc/OU=IT/CN=GregLinux
Getting Private key
:: SSL configured!
————————————————
Now start Ajenti with ‘service ajenti restart’
Ajenti will listen on HTTPS port 8000 by default

Default username : root
Default password : admin
————————————————
Processing triggers for python-support (1.0.15) …
Processing triggers for ureadahead (0.100.0-16) …
:: Done! Open https://<address&gt;:8000 in browser
username@computername:~$

Ubuntu Unity Program Launcher Desktop Dock Gone Missing

If you startup Ubuntu and find that the program icons are missing from the Launcher, and the Launcher itself is also gone, as well as the top-of-screen menu options, this means that something has gone wrong with the Ubuntu Unity desktop. Follow the instructions below to fix the problem. These steps have been tested with Ubuntu 14.04, but should also work with earlier versions.

  1. Press CTRL+ALT+F1, then enter your username and password to go to the command prompt.
  2. Enter this command:
    • sudo apt-get install unity
  3. Enter this command:
    • unity –reset
  4. Press CTRL+ALT+Delete to reset the computer.

You should now see the familiar program icons and menu bar at the top of the screen.

Ubuntu File Sharing with Apple

Ubuntu file sharing with Apple computers over a network is fairly easy. Follow these steps.

Right click on the folder you’d like to share.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-001

Choose Properties, and then click on the Local Network Share tab.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-002

When you click on “Share this folder” (for the first time) you’ll get a message stating “Sharing service is not installed. You need to install the Windows network sharing service in order to share your folders.”

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-003

Confirm to install the additional software.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-004

Provide your password to Authenticate.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-005

Wait for installation to complete.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-006

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-007

Once the installation is complete, you can share the folder.

20141108sa-linux-to-apple-file-sharing-009

Currently, something odd is happening between Ubuntu 14.1 and Apple 10.10 (Yosemite). It’s believed that Apple has implemented a version of SMB (file sharing) that does communicate properly with Ubuntu. Normally it would be possible to setup the folder to be accessible based on user accounts. However, attempting to login using one of the Linux user account names and password will fail. If you click on the bottom two boxes above, sharing will then work properly.

Apple Instructions

Follow these instructions to access the shared Ubuntu folder.

  1. On the Apple computer, press command+k (or from the Go menu in Finder, choose Go to server).
  2. Type in //ServerName/SharedFolder and press Enter.
  3. Choose Connect as Guest access (for some reason entering a username doesn’t work).

The shared folder should now be accessible.

Ubuntu Software Center Search Box Missing

The Ubuntu Software Center normally has a search box in the upper right corner. However, if the window is sized slightly smaller than usual, that search box goes away. This is an error in how the responsive design of the interface was setup.

You can see examples below. The top example is of the window when it’s not sized large enough. The bottom example shows a slightly wider view. Click either image for a larger view.

A better method would be to resize the icons or have a ‘more’ indicator button to expand out and see other options.

20141007tu-ubuntu-software-center-search-missing 20141007tu-ubuntu-software-center-search-visible

Bash Shellshock Bug Vulnerability Exploit Patch

Summary

Some people are calling the Bash Shellshock Bug the worst thing since the Heartbleed Virus. Others are saying that the vulnerability isn’t as bad as reported since it won’t directly effect most users. The truth is probably somewhere in between. This document offers an introduction into what the Bash exploit is and what you can do about it.

Bash Facts

Here are a few facts about Bash.

  • “Bash or the Bourne again shell, is a UNIX-like shell, which is perhaps one of the most installed utilities on any Linux system. From its creation in 1980, Bash has evolved from a simple terminal based command interpreter to many other fancy uses. In Linux, environment variables provide a way to influence the behavior of software on the system. They typically consists of a name which has a value assigned to it. The same is true of the Bash shell. It is common for a lot of programs to run Bash shell in the background. It is often used to provide a shell to a remote user (via ssh, telnet, for example), provide a parser for CGI scripts (Apache, etc) or even provide limited command execution support (git, etc)” (source)
  • “Bash is present on every Linux distribution, almost every UNIX system, many Android phones, thousands upon thousands of embedded OS versions on hardware devices — and on every version of Mac OS X ever shipped.” (source)
  • “This patch doesn’t even BEGIN to solve the underlying shellshock problem. This patch just continues the ‘whack-a-mole’ job of fixing parsing errors that began with the first patch. Bash’s parser is certain have many many many other vulnerabilities; it was never designed to be security-relevant.” (source)

Quick Test for Bash Vulnerability

Using Terminal, you can enter the following commands to test for Bash vulnerability.

  • env x='() { :;}; echo vulnerable’ bash -c “echo this is a test”

If you type that, and only get the message “this is a test” then your system is most likely not vulnerable (other exploits are currently being evaluated, so don’t assume you’re completely protected). However, if you also see the word “vulnerable” generated, then your system is vulnerable.

If you run the above example with the patched version of Bash, you should get an output similar to:

bash: warning: x: ignoring function definition attempt
bash: error importing function definition for `x’
this is a test

Ubuntu Users

If you’re a user of the latest version of Ubuntu (14) and have been installing system updates regularly, your computer has likely already been patched.

Resources

Rather than recreating here what has already been posted elsewhere, the following resources have been gathered to provide the information you need and save you from searching the web through thousands of articles.

20140928su-computer-security-news-672x372

Ubuntu Linux: Create an ISO Image from CD or DVD

Instructions

Follow these instructions to create an ISO image from a CD or DVD.

  1. Insert CD or DVD.
  2. Run Terminal.
  3. Run the following command:
    cat /dev/sr0 > cd_ISO_output_name.iso
  4. Another command that may work is:
    dd if=/dev/cdrom of=~/cdrom_image.iso

In Ubuntu, you can use the Disks utility to find your drive ID name. In the example above, it is sr0.

The resulting ISO image should show up in your home folder, but you can choose any destination you’d like by placing the path before the file name, such as /home/Desktop.

To test the ISO image, double click on it and view its contents.

Linux Computer Setup and Software

Summary

The standard Ubuntu Linux installation includes most of the software that people typically need for browsing the web and creating documents. However, some additional programs may be helpful depending on what kind of work you do. This document lists those programs and includes some other details about setting up a Linux computer. New programs will be added to this list as they are discovered.

Initial Setup

Unless you’ve purchased a computer than includes Linux, you’ll need another working computer to download the operating system and create a bootable installation DVD or USB flash drive. The best choice is a USB flash drive. Visit the Ubuntu download page to select the right version (flavor) for you and follow the instructions for making a bootable USB for Windows,  Apple, or Ubuntu.

Startup your computer and choose to boot to the USB device. On Dell computers this is typically done by pressing the F12 key on startup. MSI Motherboards use the F11 key for the boot menu.

Install Software

The following software is useful to have installed on a Linux computer for greater productivity.

  • Agenti – This helps manage sharing and other server features on your Linux computer. You’ll need to install Samba (see below) and restart the computer before Samba will show up in Agenti under the Software heading.
  • FileZilla – This is an FTP client useful for people who work on websites. Using the Ubuntu Software Center is the best way to install FileZilla.
  • Gimp Image Editor – This software lets  you edit images. This software is available for download in the Ubuntu Software Center. You can also use Terminal and install with these commands:
    • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:otto-kesselgulasch/gimp
    • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install gimp
  • Google Chrome – This is an excellent browser option for multiple platforms because it permits the installation of additional programs. This software is available for download in the Ubuntu Software Center. You can also download it from the Chrome Download page. There are many popular Google Chrome store apps. Here are some Google Chrome based programs that you’ll probably want:
    • Edge (Ruler) – Lets you measure objects on your screen in pixels, inches, or centimeters.
    • Gmail Offline – Lets you read and draft emails even when you’re not connected to the Internet.
    • Google Docs – Microsoft Word equivalent for word processing.
    • Google Forms – Lets you create online forms, polls, and surveys.
    • Google Keep – Cloud synchronized notes available on all your devices.
    • Google Music Player – Lets you store your entire music collection in the cloud and play from all your computers and devices.
    • Google Sheets – Microsoft Excel equivalent for spreadsheets.
    • Google Slides – Microsoft PowerPoint equivalent for presentations.
  • GParted – Lets you partition, format, and otherwise manage hard drives. This software is available for download in the Ubuntu Software Center. You can also use Terminal and install with this command:
    • sudo apt-get install gparted
  • Handbrake – Lets you create computer video files from your DVDs to make them viewable on computers and mobile devices. This software is available for download in the Ubuntu Software Center. You can also use Terminal and install with this command: sudo apt-get install handbrake-gtk.
  • LibreOffice – This is a Microsoft Office alternative that includes programs similar to Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint, as well as a drawing program. This software is already pre-installed with Ubuntu.
  • MDADM – This program, combined with the Ubuntu Disk Utility, lets you use RAID to combine multiple drives into one. Install using this command:
    • sudo apt-get install mdadm
  • Pidgin – A chat interface compatible with Google Hangouts, Microsoft Lync, and many other chat services.
  • Plex Server – Lets you store all of your videos, photos, and music files. This software is available for purchase in the Ubuntu Software Center. A more direct route would be to download the installation file from the download page on the Plex.tv website. We have a Plex User’s Guide with a brief introduction to how it works.
  • Samba – When you right click on a folder and choose to create a Network Share for the first time, Linux will prompt you to install the network sharing capabilities.
  • Thunderbird – This is an email client similar to Microsoft Outlook or Apple Mail. It lets you access multiple email services in one place, and download your messages for offline viewing or drafting replies.
  • VirtualBox – Lets you run different operating systems within  your Linux computer, so you can bring up a Windows session to run Windows program. You can follow the command-line installation instructions or use the Ubuntu Software Center.
  • YouTube Video Downloading – To get the YouTube downloader, enter this command in Terminal: sudo apt-get install youtube-dl. To use the downloader, type your request in this format: youtube-dl http://www.youtube.com/VideoNumber (you can use other video site links here as well).

Switching from iTunes to Google Music

Summary

Switching from iTunes to Google Music can offer broader access to your music library from multiple devices and platforms. The player runs as a Google Chrome app on most computers and mobile devices — including Linux computers. The iTunes software isn’t available for Linux users, which makes Google a good choice.

Google Music Advantages

Keep in mind that iTunes is much more than just a cloud music library. It offers video playing, podcasts, and organizing of music files on your local drive. However, for those only interested in a music player, the Google Music service might be sufficient.  Google Music is a good choice for people who want mobile access to music in the cloud.

Instructions

Follow these instructions to get your iTunes library moved into Google Music.

  1. Login to your Google account or create one.
  2. Go to http://music.google.com.
  3. Accept the terms.
  4. You can use the basic Google Music for free, or pay $10 per month for all access Google Music.
  5. Click the Add Music button and then click and drag your iTunes music Library folder to the upload area (or use the upload/browse button).

Google Music Manager

For easier and faster uploading of your music collection,  you’ll want to download and install the Google Music Manager.

Local Music Library Backup

Keep in mind that Apple offers synchronization in the cloud for the library stored on your hard drive. By contrast, with Google music, you can’t download your entire library. You can only download one song at a time, and “You can download each track from the web two times.” (source) So, it’s best to keep your music library organized on a hard drive somewhere as a local backup.

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Using Pidgin on Ubuntu Linux for Microsoft Lync Communications

Pidgin is a Linux chat interface that works as an alternative to Google Hangouts or Microsoft Lync. Follow the instructions below to use Pidgin. These steps have been tested on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.

  1. From a Terminal prompt, type this command and press enter to retrieve and install Pidgin:
    sudo apt-get install pidgin pidgin-sipe
  2. Run Pidgin
  3. Click Add
  4. Select Office Communicator as the Protocol
  5. Provide your Lync credentials.
  6. Confirm and save by clicking the Add button.

The first time you use Pidgin to interact with Lync, the usernames and descriptions may not show up even though the status for each user is showing. Exit Pidgin and start it again. The usernames should then be properly displayed.

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