Andre's Blog

Andre's Technical Blog About How To Setup And Use Xubuntu

20160603 Why A Blog About Setting Up Xubuntu
Install Joe
Install Dropbox
Install Java, Gradle And Groovy
Why Java, Gradle And Groovy?
Setup .bashrc
Install The Atom Editor
Setup A Shared Folder with Synology Cloud Station
Uninstall Bluetooth
Install Meld to compare files graphically
How To Use Zip In Xterm
20160710 How To Use Bash
20160710 Midori As New Browser
20160710 Xfe As New File Manager
20160717 Install Hunspell for Spell Checking

20160603 Why A Blog About Setting Up Xubuntu

To know why I write a blog about setting up Xubuntu, please read my blog post

Install Joe

I use Joe (Joe's own editor) for about 20 years now for editing small config files.

The reason is, it supports the keyboard shortcuts from Borland Turbo Pascal I was using at school, about 24 years ago :

CTRL + K + B : marks the beginning of a selection
CTRL + K + K : marks the end of a selection /
               removes selection if done before selection
CTRL + K + X : cuts a selection
CTRL + K + V : pastes a selection
CTRL + K + D : save file

To install joe you just have to

sudo apt-get install joe

Install Dropbox

To be able to save my blog and my sources somewhere in the internet when I am away from home I use Dropbox.

To install Dropbox :

  1. download Dropbox installer Debian package
  2. install with

    sudo dpkg -i dropbox_2015.10.28_i386.deb
  1. follow the instructions

If the DropBox Tasklist icon looks broken (black with a red slashed zero), then please look here for updates on this problem.

For me it was sufficient to add this setting in my .bashrc


and the restarting dropbox in a terminal with

dropbox stop && dropbox start

Why Java, Gradle And Groovy?

I have decided to implement my software project with Java, Gradle and Groovy, because :

  1. I want to get more practice with java and the software shall run on Windows and Linux. Most likely I would have chosen Apple's Swift if it would be available for Windows.

  2. I really like Gradle for hiding the whole complexity of building the software for me, Gradle became faster with every new release the last months and I think reusing software makes more sense than always writing it new. With Gradle I can build my project with this simple build script, which means I reuse the experience and implementation of what is already there :

    apply plugin: 'java'

    jar {
      manifest {
        attributes 'Main-Class': 'com.wartbar.cisystem.CISystem'

Install Java, Gradle And Groovy

I like to install my compilers and build tools locally, e.g. to have several versions in parallel.

For Java, Gradle and Groovy this is easy, just download them and then unpack them where you want.

I did not want to have specific folders for scripts, tools and so on, I just unpack or put such things in my local bin folder. You will see the structure in the next section where I explain how to set the paths to the tools.

Setup .bashrc

FYI: my username is amos, it comes from my one-man-electronic-music project is called A.M.O.S. since about 25 years. If you are interested in what I do there, please have a look at

At the end of .bashrc you add


Install The Atom Editor

I use the editor atom, because

  1. with my screen resolution of 1024x768 Intellij Idea is no fun
  2. atom supports syntax highlighting from markdown and java out-of-the-box.
  3. atom implements a good plugin interface, supporting groovy syntax highlighting is easy.

I use atom while writing my blog with Xubuntu.

Since atom is still provided as alpha version, it is not yet available from the usual pre-configured sources, but WebUpd8 blog provides it (thank you!).

You install atom with

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/atom
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install atom

Setup A Shared Folder with Synology Cloud Station

At home I use Synology Cloud Station to save my files.

On Synology Station you have to :

  1. open System Settings
  2. select shared folders
  3. create a shared folder
  4. install the Cloud Station (server)
  5. activate your shared folder in Cloud Station

On Xubuntu you have to :

  1. download the client (e.g. synology-cloud-station-drive-4204.i686.deb)
  2. install the client

    sudo dpkg -i synology-cloud-station-drive-4204.i686.deb
  1. create a sync task with the cloud client syncing your shared folder

Uninstall Bluetooth

I don't want to deactivate Bluetooth after every start of Xubuntu.

If you don't need Bluetooth, you can uninstall it with

sudo apt-get purge "bluez*"
sudo apt-get autoremove

After rebooting the Bluetooth Manager will not be started again.

Install Meld to compare files graphically

While restructuring my blog to become better readable I wanted to compare different versions of my blog sourcecode files.

After some googling I have found the graphical compare tool Meld, which worked good for me.

You can install Meld with

sudo apt install meld

How To Use Zip In Xterm

To zip a folder you need to use -r for recursive, otherwise you only zip the folder, but not its content :

zip -r foldername/

20160710 How To Use Bash

I heard it from so many people, Eike, my colleagues, ... and its true :

Know your tools, know the shortcuts!

Today I was wondering if there is any way to repeat a command in Xterm I had just executed some minutes ago. I remembered it was something with "!".

Here you find a good overview for the shortcuts in Bash : : Linux Command Line & Bash Shell Shortcuts

To summarize what I was looking for :

With history 'number' Bash prints the last 'number' executed commands with their history index number. You execute a command from the history with !'number'.

Example :

$ history 5
678  md2html java
679  md2html blog
680  md2html CISystemRequirements
681  md2html blog
682  history 5
$ !678
md2html java

20160710 Midori As New Browser

These days running around with my netbook Samsung N150 in my bag (2GB RAM, Atom processor, several years old) I am very interested in tweaking its performance. One aspect is how a program performs, the other is how long it needs to start.

Though I was always a fan of Firefox it really takes too long to start on my machine. While looking for applications fitting to XFCE, the window manager I am currently using, I have started using Midori.

I cannot tell you much about how good it works for shopping or playing games or Facebook, I don't do these things on my netbook. What I can tell you is, Midori is a really fine browser when you are looking for a fast starting, fast rendering browser to just look up information. I read my APIs and other documentation with it and I did not experience a difference when doing web research.

It looks like it does not support folders to group links, but since I need it mainly to see the HTML of my blog I can live with that.

20160710 Xfe As New File Manager

In 20160710 Midori As New Browser I have explained I am very interested in using lightweight tools fitting to my XFCE environment.

Currently I use Xfe as file manager. It starts really fast, works as expected, e.g. supports the usual STRG-C, STRG-V and STRG-X, opens an Xterm with STRG-T in the folder where you are in Xfe and I really like that it is possible to configure which programs are used and that this is not connected to some defaults of the environment.

20160717 Install Hunspell for Spell Checking

Sorry for my typos!

I have decided to use the spell checker hunspell from now on.

Just install :

sudo apt install hunspell

and use :

hunspell -d en_US

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