My Linux Journal Day 23

Today should have been really easy, but it was a bigger deal than I expected. It should be easy to figure out how to get your NUMLOCK key to be on when you boot up right? Wrong. In all of the Windows PC’s I’ve used NUMLOCK is always onwhen booting up, so I expected to find a simple checkbox somewhere in Ubuntu for this simple feature. Nope.


After looking around here’s what worked for me. I run Gnome sessions, so that means I run GDM (I learned form some quick reading). According to’s GDM page , GDM is the Gnome Display Manager that presents you with a graphical logon screen like this one:

GDM login screen

If you like it, you can find this login screen at

Ubuntuguide to the Rescue

You can click on the link above and do a lot of scrolling or just use the steps below. For some reason I could not do an apt-get install to install numlockx, here’s what I did:

1) In Synaptic, install numlockx

2) Make a backup of the file you are about to edit. In your console window type:

sudo cp /etc/gdm/Init/Default /etc/gdm/Init/Default.bak

3) Now back into the console window to edit your file:

gksudo gedit /etc/gdm/Init/Default

4) Now your file opens in gedit. Scroll down to the very bottom, and just above the bottom line that says “exit 0” add this and save, then close the file:

if [ -x /usr/bin/numlockx ]; then
/usr/bin/numlockx on

5) Now if everything’s gone well when you reboot next time you will see your NUMLOCK key is ON.

My Linux Journal Day 18

Just a quick note with more detail later…..

I’ve installed Wine, and to test it installed Notepad++. That seems to have gone well.

Also since my Linux machine only has 128MB 512MB of RAM with a PIII 900MHz CPU, and because I wanted a larger monitor with higher resolution I’ve installed BFG Technologies ASLMX4000 GeForce4 MX4000 128MB AGP (GeForce4 MX 4000) and a Philips Brilliance 202P4. This seems to be working well so far.

Oh and how about a cool screenshot:


My Linux Journal Day 11


Finally! I found a working HOWTO for installing Adbobe/Macromedia Flash 9 for Linux, and more specifically Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon). First, open your favorite console. Next, visit this Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) How-To page. Once you get to the instructions (below) its a simple matter of copy/pasting 4 lines of commands, or if your console doesn’t support paste, typing them in by hand (not so fun):

Either way, ignore the instructions 1 & 2 at the top since they do not work at this point due to a bug. Follow the instructions below that start 1. Manually download and… to get Flash installed and running.

I installed an Epson Stylus Photo 820, and it worked right off, not counting that I need new ink cartridges. The physical install was the easiest, power plug and parallel cord. Next, System > Administration > Printing, then click New Printer. It did a quick search returning several options of which I chose LPT:1. Going from memory now, the next choice was the brand of printer, Epson. After that I was presented with a list of Epson printers and selected the Epson Stylus Photo 820 from the list and finished.

Next was the part I’m having trouble with, ink. The ink cartridges are old and dry and the printer was given to me with a refill kit. The refill wasn’t too difficult after I figured the was ink for black, blue, light blue, red, light red and yellow. The blues and reds looked alike butthe light-colors were marked with a capital “L” on top. After refilling, including many ink spills on my hand its done, but not printing very well. I’ll give it some more time before I give up an attempt to buy new ink cartridges.

Preparing Ubuntu 7.04 for Upgrade to 7.10

I’m a novice Linux user, although I’ve used Linux on and off for about 10 years. Most of that 10 years has been OFF without Linux, so each time I start over I have to learn everything all over again.

The history with my Linux machine… where to start? Its an HP Pavilion 8766c (an old PC with a 900MHz P3, and 128 to 256 512MB RAM). It has had about 5 different distros of Linux on it during the past several years. Right now its running Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn) but I’ve been getting error messages while updating packages recently. A couple of months ago the Linksys EtherPCI LAN Card II network card died on me.

Well recently I installed a Network Everywhere NC100U-WM network card ($15 at Wal-mart) and it got right back online with no configuration! I was pleasantly surprised, and ready to do some updates. Naturally I got some error messages. that’s when I saw the “Upgrade” button to upgrade to 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon). The upgrade attempt was riddled with error messages so I decided to “wipe the system clean”. Last time I tried installing Ubuntu on Ubuntu it didn’t work for me. So I decided to install another distro (temporarily) and then re-install 7.04 fresh right back on top of it all, giving me a clean, “factory fresh” install.

After my re-install of 7.04 I did an update, about 266 updates to be exact, and I had no error messages. Great start! Next I clicked that “Update” button again and the system has now successfully been upgraded to Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibson).

Now I have to get ready to install all of the items I need (Adobe Flashplayer, Adobe Acrobat Reader, etc…) and other software packages later.