Kubuntu Muon Software Centre Crashes on Opening

I’ve recently installed Kubuntu 11.10 on my HP Proliant Microserver (N40L). This was my third attempt at installing a Linux OS that I wanted to operate using Wake on LAN and Remote Desktop (RDP) from my Windows 7 laptop, so I was determined it would be third time lucky and I wouldn’t have to try another OS or reinstall.

After Ubuntu’s unity interface caused issues over RDP where nothing on the desktop displayed, and prior to that Fedora just outright refused to Wake on LAN, I was pleased that Kubuntu both Woke on LAN and let me login (and actually do things) over Remote Desktop. The only problem was that the installation seemed to be broken, as any time I tried to open Kubuntu’s “Muon” Software Centre, it crashed on startup with an error saying

Executable: muon-installer PID: 2165 Signal: Segmentation fault (11)

I could still install software using the command line (which is how I got a remote desktop server installed to know that this worked!) but I’m not yet au-fait enough with this for this to be an acceptable solution, plus I didn’t like the idea of my shiny new toy being anything less than 100% capable, so off to Google I went.

I did find a thread on Ubuntu Forums which sounded very familiar: like another poster, (same error, 64-bit OS version, and I had to interrupt an update post-installation because it stalled about half-way), but none of the proposed solutions in the thread worked. The suggestion seems to be that Muon is just Kubuntu’s own fucked up mangling of KDE’s standard package manager.

I may tru Ubuntu again and try enabling the GNOME fallback, but someone in that thread did mention OpenSUSE – a distro I hadn’t considered to date. Maybe it will be ‘4th OS lucky’!

Take a Screenshot on your HTC Desire S / Evo 3D

I know you can take screenshots with Android 4.0/Ice Cream Sandwich, but I discovered a week or so back that, having upgraded my HTC Desire S to HTC Sense 3.0 (on Android 2.3.5) I can now do this without an ICS upgrade!

Here it is from the horse’s mouth: it seems all you have to do to take a screenshot on your HTC device is hold the power button and press the home button. Your screenshot will be captured and saved to your gallery.

I actually took my first screenshot on my Desire S following the upgrade to HTC Sense 3.0 by accident!! I was on a website in the browser and pressed something that made a message come up “Screenshot saved to Gallery”. What!? Screenshot?

Yes, it turns out you can take a screenshot on HTC Sense 3.0 (and presumably HTC Sense 3.5). I have since got myself an HTC Evo 3D (which comes with Sense 3.0) and verified that the same process works there, the only difference is that it saves to “Camera Shots”.

Much thanks to Andrew Girdwood, whose post  “How do you take a screen shot with your HTC Sensation” I came across on a Google search as his comments section was where I first discovered the answer.

Thunderbird “invalid security certificate” error

I recently upgraded my Ubuntu installation to 11.10 after not having used it in a while. Part of the upgrade to this new version (Oneiric Ocelot) is that automatically (I believe) adds Thunderbird to your installation, intending that you use it rather than previous client Evolution.

Now, I haven’t used Thunderbird in a while so its fancy new “detect my mail server settings” functionality was all new to me. It all actually went quite well, detecting my mail server name and ports by checking “common server names” based on my email address of steve@xxxxxx.co.uk (in my case mail.xxxxx.co.uk).

However my providers SSL certificate isn’t mapped to my domain so the certificate is flagged as “invalid”. There’s no option to accept this certificate so you have to go digging around in Preferences (Options on Windows versions).

What you need to do is go to Edit -> Preferences and go to Advanced -> Certificates -> View Certificates, From here, Add an Exception giving your server (e.g. mail.xxxxx.co.uk:143). Click ok and go back to account setup and it should allow you to proceed. Hope this helps and thanks to leepa at Mozzilazine Forums and also bpat1434.

Why is Windows being such a dick?

I recently bought a netbook on eBay that had come with Windows 7 starter but the owner had wiped this and replaced it with Linux.  I needed a new netbook and figured the fact this one came without Windows would keep the price down.  I was right and I purchased a netbook for £68, now all I had to do was get a copy of Windows 7 to install using the product-key which was still stuck underneath.

In the mean time I installed the new Ubuntu 11.04 and set up a number of partitions to get it ready. I set up a /boot partition of about 500MB (for Grub etc.?), a / partition for Ubuntu and a /home partition for my documents.  I also set up a “Win” partition to leave a space for Windows and a final NTFS partition to use for documents etc. when I was booted into Windows or to share across to Linux.  Linux seemed to be working fine and I got on the internet etc.  It was all very smooth, much more so than when I installed Ubuntu 9.10 or whatever it was back in the day.

I got hold of a copy of Windows and began trying to install it from SD card.  When it came to selecting a partition for Windows to live on, I picked my 40GB Win partition but Windows started throwing a strop and told me something it seems to have told a few others before me:

Setup was unable to create a new system partition or locate an existing system partition. See the Setup log files for more information.

Not impressed, I booted into Linux and tried to set a boot flag on this partition.  That took it off my original boot partition though, as a hard drive can only have one boot partition.

In the end I gave up and wiped all the partitions using the Windows installer.  I then created a 40GB partition for Windows, which proceeded to also create a 100MB “system” partition at the start of the drive.  I’m wondering if I’d left my room for Windows at the start of the drive in the first place if maybe I would have avoided this, but as it is – I now have to install Ubuntu all over again.  Fail!!  Thanks Micro$oft!

Skype Installation Shows Ubuntu Not Ready for Masses

The horrifically footery and niggly process I’ve just gone through to install Skype is sad proof that Ubuntu, and Linux, is still not ready for prime time. The fact you have to get a bit hacky to get a product as mainstream as Skype working is a sad indictment of the state of the OS.

Step 1: Add the Ubuntu Partner Repository following the instructions from Ubuntu’s wiki.

As my installation was Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) upgraded from 9.10 (Karmic Koala) I had to edit the repository information and change the distribution from ‘karmic’ to ‘lucid’ as for some reason this had not been automatically updated as part of the upgrade.

After doing this, and reloading the package information, the Synaptic Package Manager still didn’t find Skype when I searched, so I had to follow

Step 2: Revert to the terminal and enter

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install skype

This was a command I’d picked up from Googling previously and finding this guide.  I figured it was worth a shot.  This seemed to work, gave me a lot of information and asked me if I wanted to continue. I did.

The terminal did a lot of stuff in the background as I’ve been typing this, eventually telling me:

Setting up skype (2.1.0.81-1ubuntu5) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin ...
ldconfig deferred processing now taking place

and returning me to the command prompt. Umm… ok? Still not sure this had worked I started looking for Skype and guessed (correctly) that it would be under Internet (I’m using Ubuntu Netbook Edition).  I opened it, accepted the Licence Agreement and signed in. Very slowly.

A good 2-3 minutes later I’m signed in.  Unfortunately, I only use Skype for talking to my girlfriend who’s currently studying in Malaysia and as it is currently 5:40 am there, she’s not online for me to test it out properly on a call.  However I don’t need to do that to ask this question:

How many ordinary users are going to go through all that just to install Skype, and how many will give up and go back to Windows?

Android/Facebook/Eclipse – Must Override a Superclass Method

I’m trying to get into developing apps for Android and developing an Android Facebook app seemed like an good place to start with something useful.  However it seems frought with problems that will perplex the beginner.

One early problem I encountered which had a non-0bvious solution was the message:

The method onCancel() of type new Facebook.DialogListener(){} must override a superclass method

This occurred after pasting some example code from the Facebook site into my project.  The problem?  My project was defaulting to JDK 1.5 and the code on the Facebook site requires 1.6!

It’s been a while since I looked at Java but the problem is apparently due to the use of the “@override” syntax. According to one helpful StackOverflow member, in Java 1.6 this can also be used to implement interface methods, but in 1.5 could only be used to override superclass methods.

Eclipse/Android Development Installation Issue

Yes, it’s Christmas as I blog this at 2am, however I got a new laptop for Christmas and am geeking it out to the point where I can use it for fun stuff.  To that end I’ve been trying to install the requisite tools for Android development and hit an issue which could have (but thankfully didn’t) take me hours to sort out.  I’m a complete n00b at this, so don’t treat this as anything like a complete guide!

Having managed to “install” Eclipse (which from what I can tell just means copying the contents of a zip file to somewhere on your hard drive) and the Android SDK, I needed to install the ADT (Android Development Tools) plugin for Eclipse.  However on doing this I was getting an error telling me:

Missing requirement: Android Development Toolkit 0.9.4.v200910220141-17704 (com.android.ide.eclipse.adt 0.9.4.v200910220141-17704) requires ‘bundle org.eclipse.gef 0.0.0’ but it could not be found

This was a pain, and it took a bit of Googling to discover how to rectify that. Apparently the version of Eclipse Google recommend (Classic) doesn’t include the GEF or ‘Graphical Editing Framework’ which the Android ADT plugin requires.  Nice!  So the easy way to install this (thank you to IBM for the pointer on this) is to install it the same way you would the ADT plugin, i.e. open up Eclipse and choose “Install New Software” in the “Help” menu.

When it says work with, instead of using the URL Google give for Android, use the one where GEF lives.  In my case, for version 3.6.x of Eclipse, this is:

Helios – http://download.eclipse.org/releases/helios

(Helios being the codename for Eclipse 3.6).  Once this is done you’ll be advised to restart Eclipse (so I did) and everything seems to be going ok now (touch wood!).

I just hope this helps someone else with the same problem or, more importantly, helps me the next time I come across the same thing and end up scratching my head trying to remember how I fixed it!

HTC Desire Headphone Issues

This is just a random puzzling issue. I recently went to work without my iPod headphones which I’ve been using with my HTC Desire to listen to music during work, so I tried some others I’d picked up over the summer courtesy of Continental Airlines.

For some reason when I put the headphones in the sound went all echoy and when I tried to fix it the tracks would randomly skip forwards, skip backwards and skip through tracks. I also noticed the headphones icon at the top included what looks to be a headset microphone.

Turns out I’m not the only one… users on Android Forums have been reporting the same issue. Very disappointing from a top-of-the-range Smartphone.

SOLVED: No sound after login on Ubuntu Eee PC / Ubuntu Linux

I’ve posted twice recently about my problems following an upgrade of Ubuntu Netbook Remix to Lucid Lynx (10.04).  In short, I upgraded both the BIOS of the netbook (an Asus Eee PC 1008HA) and upgraded Ubuntu from 9.10 (Karmic Koala) to 10.04 (Lucid Lynx).  Once I did this the sound would disappear after the first time I logged in following each boot, and only work properly if I logged out and in again.

One kind commenter (thank you “ThrasherC”) suggested