Sunday, March 02, 2008

KDE to Mozilla migration

I love KDE, or at least I am so used to it that I find it really convenient. While I only use Linux, at home, office, laptop in a way its not so much Linux that I like. If all the software I want was available on another 'nix: BSD*, Hurd, whatever, I would n't notice so much aslong as the interface was the same.

Konqueror has lots going for it as well as desktop integration, embedded applications that just work, man:, fish: etc as protocls. I love doing Alt-F2 gg whatever to google for whatever and other KDE standard shortcuts.

However konquerer is a standards compliant browser and lots of websites, especially gmail, google calendar, blogspot, youtube as well as some I use for work are not standards compliant and test to check you are using a browser implementing their favorite bugs.

Kontact: Kmail and Korganizer have server me well but I could not get korganizer to sync with google calender, kmail didnt agee with the universities imap server and did not let me read folders off line. Reluctantly I switched to Mozilla alternatives.

So how to easy the pain and recover some of the functionality of KDE with the mozilla apps.

The most annoying thing about Mozilla (at least on my Linux implementation Mandriva 2006) is the extremely annoying file save open menus. You cant even type the path and have it auto cmplete. Its all tedious clicking. Worst when the file you want to open is a program you want to run to associate with a file you are downloading, and it goes looking in all the wrong places. Another big pain is the non-standard printing menu.

Many of these irritations can be fixed by changing hidden settings in the about:config obscure settings sections.

Much help can be found on the Gentoo wiki.

File download can be configured more flexibly with firefox extension Flashgot. I downloaded the latest binary version of Firefox as it is needed for the latest extensions, and having checked all the bookmarks and settings worked I uninstalled the older rpm version.

Now for Thunderbird. There is an about config hidden in the Edit->Preferences dialogue box. Go to the advanced tab then "config editor". Then same as Firefox for the kde print menu.

Sunbird, the Mozilla Calender, is the weakest of the three suites. And the three are not tightly integrated. The configuration menu can be found in the same place as in Thunderbird.

There are two ways to connect Sunbird to google calendar. Provider for Google calendar synchronises it while on line. But for a laptop this does not work as the calendar goes blank when disconnected. In this case GCALDaemon is a sync daemon written in Java that sits their in the background syncing your google calendars ical file with a local copy that Sunbird can view and edit.


Saturday, March 01, 2008

Skype not installing on Linux

Although I had it working before the last time I reinstalled Mandriva Linux 2006, this time I cannot install the old package


nor the one currently on the download site


They both have a missing Qt library
Some package requested cannot be installed:

urpmi skype-
skype- (due to unsatisfied
Continue? (Y/n)

I could nt find in any Mandriva rpm.

I seem to have got around it by downloading the static version. Listed on the Skype download website as
"linux static"

I downloaded it, unzipped it with

bzip -d skype_static-
tar xvf skype_static-

I then found that running skype_static-
complained about a missing library

urpmi libsigc++2.0_0-devel

seems to fix that. So far so good