Monthly Archives: July 2011

0

How to convert a dvd video for a Sandisk Sansa Fuse Player using Linux

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Original post here.

The basic idea of how to convert a video for the Sansa Fuse Mp3/Video player is simple. What’s not so simple is directions.

1. You will need to make sure you Sansa Fuse is set correctly. Set it to MSC Mode.

2. If not installed already, you will need to install k9copy. You can do this simply by:


sudo apt-get install k9copy

Note this is a KDE application, so it may add the required KDE libraries to make this application work, and this may take some time. As Alton Brown says: “Your patience WILL BE rewarded. Your impatience, will be punished!”

3. Follow the directions give in the post above, to install fuzemux, and video4fuze.

4. Now the k9copy part. To change the settings, bring up k9copy, and find “configure k9copy”

Hit the MPEG-4 encoder and select the vido tab:

It should look like this: Encoder: mencoder

Width: 224 Height: 176

and I arbitrarily set the file size to 500 meg.

k9copy mpeg4 encoder options

Video part done!

5. Now to the audio. Select the Audio tab (still under MPEG-4) — codec is mp3 (lame) and bitrate: 128. The gain was preset to 7 (I did NOT change this)

It should look like this:

k9copy mpeg4 audio settings

6. If you have never used k9copy, it can be a bit intimidating. What you want to do, is to OPEN the DVD. All the title sets will be presented: (make sure you check ALL the title sets)

k9copy title set

Set you input/and output as shown in the image above. Your name is going to be different then: “SOUTH_PACIFIC”

7. Hit the COPY button, and then go do you favourite 30 minute activity: walking, biking, television, reading. You know: something other then watching k9copy work!

It will create an output file called .avi in your home directory.

NEXT!

8. While the directions say to start video4fuze on the command line, in reality, that didn’t work for me. Why? Because at least in Ubuntu 10.10 (64 bit), it installs it into /usr/share/video4fuze

And while that’s NOT in-correct, it’s probably NOT in your path either.

Two choices:

either manually navigate to the directory


cd /usr/share/video4fuze

or

create a launcher:

Video 4 Fuze Launcher

You will note, that this is a Python Script.

so to run it: python /usr/share/video4fuze/video4fuze.pyw

And the screen pops up. Select the input file. The output file will be called, /home/username/input_file2_fuze.avi

video 4 fuze setup

You will note, that video4fuze – is really a front end for mencoder.

Again, this is NOT fast. So yea, another 30 minute thing.

10. Plug in your Sansa Fuse to your usb port. My Sansa Fuze has 8 G internally, and a 16G external drive. So I put this on the external drive. Videos will be 300 – 500 meg.

You MIGHT need to create a VIDEOS folder on the Sansa Fuze. (mkdir or nautilus will do this).

11. Copy and Paste time. Simply copy the /home/username/input_file2_fuze.avi file video4fuze created to your mp3 player VIDEOS folder. This will take some time, depending on how fast your ram is. Mine isn’t so, this time a 15 minute break. (Who said any of this was fast?)

12. When it’s done copying:


sync

sync to flush the buffers to disc.

13. Unplug the usb cable, let the fuze refresh, and enjoy!

Wayno

0

How to add user comments to the Linux system log

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So how do you add a comment to the system log?

It turned out to be MUCH easier then I thought.

Why would you want to do this? Maybe you added a new driver, or new hardware, and you need to identify when you did that. This is a handy way to note that.


logger
This is a test
ctrl d

ctrl d — means to HOLD and PRESS the ctrl key and the d key at the same time. Control + d is the Linux end-of-file. (NOT control+ z, like it is in Windows)

That would log: “This is a test” to the system log.

To display the log entries, I tail(ed) (see man entry on tail)
the output of the system log (/var/log/messages) and then piped that (the output of the cat, is the input to grep), and said hey find entries with just my userid.


sudo tail -150 /var/log/messages | grep nwayno

You should get back:

Jul 26 20:18:09 Homer nwayno: this is a test.

I also figured out how to add videos to a Sansa Fuse Mp3/Video player. Hope to have that up, tomorrow.

Wayno

0

Where are the Ubuntu ppas for newer versions of Firefox and Thunderbird?

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This requires an intermediate skill level.

Installing unstable software, can cause your system to crash. This is NOT recommended for n00bs. The how to add the ppa’s are contained in the link below. But again, if you don’t know what this is: DON’T DO THIS, unless you are sure.

PPA for Firefox / Thunderbird Versions 5/6/7/8

Version 3.X of Firefox kills my Ubuntu 10.10 (AMD 64) System. But version 6 and beyond run fine.

This is what Thunderbird V 5 looks like:

Thunderbird Version 5

Thanks again, Joe.

Wayno

0

How to create foreign characters with a USA keyboard

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Okay. So I am trying to learn Spanish again, and trying to make those special characters on a USA keyboard, turned out to be easier then I thought, once you know the tricks. Thanks Jacobo!

Windows Users can try this. I have NOT tried this.

So we need to create a compose character key. Here is how I got there, but I will show you a picture too!

System/Preferences/Keyboard

then: Layouts/USA/Options

find: Compose Key Position, and check: Right ctrl

It should look like this:

Setting the Compose Character

So to get ñ — you hit: the compose character (right control, the tilde ~, and then n)

For á. é. í, ó, ú – right control + apostrophe, then the vowel.

similarly, Á,É,Í,Ó,Ú right control + apostrophe, then SHIFT and vowel.

Need ¿ Easy! right control + SHIFT question twice!

Or how about ¡ — yes. right control + SHIFT ! twice.

German Character like ß – easy! right control plus s + s.

å – right control + o + a.

Pretty neat! Thanks Jacobo for helping me work this out!

Wayno

7

How to avoid bricking a Tracfone. What is the difference between a Pin Code and a Security Code?

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HOW TO AVOID BRICKING A TRACFONE!

You can see from previous post that I bricked my LG 500 Tracfone. I wanted to change the PIN, but ended up bricking it.

As used by Tracfone: A PIN always refers to the SIM Card Pin. And hey: there is no way to get that unless you call the carrier. It can not be displayed on the phone.

Security Code however, is what I wanted to change. The default is: “0000” – and I didn’t want that. So here’s how to change the Security Code on a Tracfone:

1. Hit the Menu button.

2. Select the Settings icon.

3. Select the Security icon.

4. Select the Change Codes icon.

W A R N I N G ! ! ! DANGER WILL ROBINSON! W A R N I N G ! ! !

NOTE: DO NOT SELECT THE PIN CODE. NOPE THAT IS FOR THE SIM CARD! WRONG!

5. Choose Security Code

6. Press ok (or the middle button) and it will ask for the Current Security Code. Mine defaulted to “0000” (yeah too easy to guess!) — I changed it to what I wanted. Confirmed it. It saved it.

7. To “Auto Lock the phone”

A. Hit the Menu button.

B. Select the Security Icon.

C. Select the Phone Lock icon.

D. Change from “OFF” to “ON”

You will be prompted for that Security Code we just changed. You are now all set!

Hope this avoids a call to Tracfone Customer Service to get a Puk (Personal Unlock Key) to unbrick your phone. But just in case, Tracfone’s Customer Service Number is: (800) 378-1874

and so it goes…;
Wayno

1

How to make the speaker phone work or change pin number on a Tracfone LG500 Phone

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Nothing to do with Linux, but I’l bet there are others wondering how to do this.

The manual supplied with the phone does NOT tell you, nor is the information anywhere on the net. This information was obtained via an email to Tracfone Customer Support.

My email:
———
Original Message Follows:

Hi I have an LG500 phone. I like it, but the manual is….well lacking. I have the following 3 questions:

1. How do I enable the speaker phone on this phone?. The manual does NOT say, nor is it obvious.

2. How do I change the pin number?

3. This says I can add applications to the phone?

What and where do I get them? Cost, how to? etc. I don’t mind reading the manual, it’s just the manual supplied does NOT give you much information.

Thanks,

Wayno

=====================

Thank you for your interest in TracFone Wireless. We are responding to your recent inquiry.

We would like to take this opportunity to apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced with this issue.

Please follow the steps below to turn on the speaker phone:

1. Once you answer or place a call, press the key located in the center of the navigation keys. “Speaker on” will display.

2. To turn it off, press the key in the center of the navigation keys again. “Speaker off” will display.

3. To return to the main screen, press the PWR/END key.

Please follow the steps to change the PIN:

What you want is: Security Code NOT Pin Number.

DO not TRY THIS. RESULTED IN A LOCKED PHONE. PIN BLOCKED. ENTER PUK Code.

To get the PUK you will need to call Tracfone Customer Service: (800) 867-7183

Information removed, for your protection! (Did I just say that?)

For us to better assist you in downloading applications for your phone, please contact our Sales Support Department at 1-800-323-2366. For your convenience, our representatives are available Monday-Sunday from 8:00 AM to 10:45 PM EST. Thank you for your patience.

Thank you for being a TracFone Wireless customer. We appreciate your business.

Sincerely,

TracFone Wireless

0

Getting kernel driver information on pci devices using lspci

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This was a neat little trick by edbian on the #ubuntu channel on freenode told to me. Thought I would pass it along.

Want to know what kernel drivers are being used by your hardware? Very useful information.

-k shows the kernel drivers handling each device.


lspci -k

produces output which looks like:

00:00.0 RAM memory: nVidia Corporation MCP61 Memory Controller (rev a1)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
00:01.0 ISA bridge: nVidia Corporation MCP61 LPC Bridge (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
00:01.1 SMBus: nVidia Corporation MCP61 SMBus (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: nForce2_smbus
Kernel modules: i2c-nforce2
00:01.2 RAM memory: nVidia Corporation MCP61 Memory Controller (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
00:02.0 USB Controller: nVidia Corporation MCP61 USB Controller (rev a3)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: ohci_hcd
00:02.1 USB Controller: nVidia Corporation MCP61 USB Controller (rev a3)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:04.0 PCI bridge: nVidia Corporation MCP61 PCI bridge (rev a1)
00:05.0 Audio device: nVidia Corporation MCP61 High Definition Audio (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: HDA Intel
Kernel modules: snd-hda-intel
00:06.0 IDE interface: nVidia Corporation MCP61 IDE (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: pata_amd
Kernel modules: pata_amd
00:07.0 Bridge: nVidia Corporation MCP61 Ethernet (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: forcedeth
Kernel modules: forcedeth
00:08.0 IDE interface: nVidia Corporation MCP61 SATA Controller (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: sata_nv
Kernel modules: sata_nv
00:09.0 PCI bridge: nVidia Corporation MCP61 PCI Express bridge (rev a2)
Kernel driver in use: pcieport
Kernel modules: shpchp
00:0b.0 PCI bridge: nVidia Corporation MCP61 PCI Express bridge (rev a2)
Kernel driver in use: pcieport
Kernel modules: shpchp
00:0d.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation C61 [GeForce 6150SE nForce 430] (rev a2)
Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 2a5b
Kernel driver in use: nvidia
Kernel modules: nvidia-173, nvidia-current, nouveau, nvidiafb
00:18.0 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] HyperTransport Technology Configuration
00:18.1 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] Address Map
00:18.2 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] DRAM Controller
Kernel modules: amd64_edac_mod
00:18.3 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] Miscellaneous Control
Kernel driver in use: k8temp
Kernel modules: k8temp
03:00.0 Communication controller: Conexant Systems, Inc. Device 2f81 (rev 01)
Subsystem: Conexant Systems, Inc. Device 0000
nwayno@Homer:~$

Thank you edbian (on #ubuntu)

Wayno

1

Installing gnome-3 on Ubuntu 10.10/10.04

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THIS IS NOT RECOMMENDED FOR N00BS
(do NOT try this!)

My friend Erick in Mexico City sent me this link:

installing gnome 3 on Ubuntu 10.xx

Yes, the original post is in Spanish, and my espanol is not up to par. So I translated the page into English.

The directions were pretty clear, but there is one error. I will repost the recipe here with the correction. (Yup,
It IS in Spanish. I was a little intimidated since sudo got translated to: I sweat!) Note, the original post had a space between the ppa name and gnome3. Nope that didn’t work, but was easily fixed.

Here’s the recipe:


sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gnome3-session

Also note, the I did NOT do the dist-upgrade as posted in the original article.

Logout. Choose gnome-3 at the bottom centre of the login, screen and go for it!

Gnome 3 desktop in Ubuntu 10.xx

Thanks Erick! (now I just have to figure out how to use it!)

Extra points if you can figure out where my desktop image was taken. Hint: It’s NOT in Arizona!

0

What is the pkill (process kill) command?

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Another question I am asked frequently.

!!! W A R N I N G! DANGER WILL ROBINSON! W A R N I N G !!!

NOTE: USE THIS COMMAND WITH EXTREME CAUTION!!

DO NOT USE THIS COMMAND, IF YOU ARE A N00B

The pkill command is a process kill by name. All processes that match the name given, are terminated.

This is different then the kill command, in that pkill allows you to kill all processes that match the name. kill just allows you to kill one process id (pid)

You might do something like this to get the process name:


ps -ef | grep chrome

I am looking for all chrome browser tasks, but it could be anything.

What the ps command does, (list processes) is give you a snapshot of what tasks are currently running on your system.

The -ef says list ALL the processes, and use the FULL format.

The output is then piped over to grep. Piping means to take the output of one programme, in this case ps, and make that the input to the next programme. grep in our case. (think of grep as a programme that finds things that match inside a file.) grep is the programme following the piping symbol or “|”.

so the above command produces output which looks like:

nwayno@Homer:~$ ps -ef | grep chrome
nwayno 2467 2774 2 Jul09 ? 00:05:01 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2765 1 0 Jul09 ? 00:08:43 /opt/google/chrome/chrome
nwayno 2772 2765 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:06 /opt/google/chrome/chrome
nwayno 2774 1 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:00 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2802 2774 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:12 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2805 2774 0 Jul09 ? 00:01:52 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2809 2774 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:15 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2811 2774 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:19 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 2822 2774 0 Jul09 ? 00:00:01 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 21980 2774 2 00:45 ? 00:00:10 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=zygote
nwayno 22325 22292 0 00:52 pts/6 00:00:00 grep chrome
nwayno 31015 2765 7 Jul09 ? 00:22:09 /opt/google/chrome/chrome –type=plugin –plugin-path=/usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/libflashplayer.so –lang=en-US –channel=2765.0x40f2b00.2139444310

to kill all the processes:

!!! W A R N I N G! DANGER WILL ROBINSON! W A R N I N G !!!

NOTE: USE THIS COMMAND WITH EXTREME CAUTION!!

DO NOT USE THIS COMMAND, IF YOU ARE A N00B


sudo pkill chrome

Would kill all the above chrome tasks. How do we know if the processes are gone?


ps -ef | grep chrome

Just returns a prompt:

nwayno@Homer:~$ ps -ef | grep chrome
nwayno@Homer:~$

Incidentally, there is NO pkill -9 command. But there is a kill -9 command! Use man to find the difference.

Wayno

0

and no, I am not British (not that it’s a bad thing)

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Although I was born in the United States, I use British spelling. I had an old dictionary that I used, that had British spelling. We also had an o.e.d. in school. So hey, that’s what I use.

It’s why you will see colour instead of color. Or programme instead of program. Centre instead of center.

Oddly though, I do USE contractions. It’s a very eccentric writing style, but uniquely mine.

Yeah I have been asked this question several times.

and so it goes….

Wayno