Kubuntu upgrade from 12.04 to 13.04

Despite Kubuntu 12.04 being a LTS release, and after some weeks upgrading to 13.04 on my personal desktop computer, I decided to do the same on my Work Laptop.

Things didn’t ran as expected…

First the upgrade from 12.04 to 12.10 deleted a bunch of packages, by my command 😦 and I ended up with no graphical display… A quick look at Xorg.0.log file showed me that my Xorger’s driver for my Intel graphic card was gone.

Anyway, I’ve installed the xservers-xorg-video-intel package and proceeded to upgrade to 13.04.

At the end despite having a graphical desktop, after login on KDE, a qdbus error appeared… qdbus package was missing… (apt-get install qdbus).

Also on 12.04 the transition from the login greeter to the desktop is silky smooth (it is on my desktop), on my laptop it blanks showing a black screen with a mouse cursor, but the desktop shows up abruptly. I don’t have now the KDE logon progress icons…

And finally, DNS settings from my DHCP servers didn’t worked, I had to manually add the dns servers IP to resolv.conf…  This issue was also a missing package, namely dnsmaq. After adding up the nameserver to my /etc/resolv.conf file, everything is up….

Let’s see what is waiting again in the dark…

Firefox Open Download Directory Action on KDE/KUbuntu

I had a bit of a strange issue with FireFox and Kde 4.7 on Kubuntu 11.X.

After downloading a file with Firefox, on the Dowloads Firefox windows, right clicking the downloaded file for the Open Download Directory action, instead of opening the Dolphin File Manager, it opened the KdeSVN application… Very, very annoying.

To solve this you need to reconfigure KDE, probably due to the fact that KDESvn was installed:

1) Goto System Settings
2) Select Default Applications
3) Select FileManagers
4) Deselect and select Dolphin
5) Apply
6) Restart Firefox

It should work now.

[K]Ubuntu on the Asus N73SV video issues – i915, Nouveau, Nvidia and Bumblebee

Well, after a month on using this Asus Laptop N73SV there are some issues with it.

The first one, and I’m not sure if it’s a driver issue or just a plain hardware issue is that the external connected monitor was working fine, and then started to have a blue tint and now it has a green tint. So first I wonder if the VGA cable or the monitor itself was bad, but replacing it by another same monitor brand and model  and different VGA cable, it has shown the same issues. So Ok, it’s a laptop issue that some HP owners are also having… Just search for HP an video tint… Removing the battery and power, waiting some time, and booting up with the external monitor, even the ASUS logo is tinted… So it’s not a K/Ubuntu issue. Solution? None so far. I have to try with a different monitor/and cable namely HDMI.

The second part of this post related with the video issues that I have is due to the fact that this N73SV has dual cards: an Intel i915 and NVidia GT540M. While trying to debug the above issue, I ended up with no desktop effects on KDE KDM by messing around with the desktop effects options… Whatever I did to enable them I was also greeted with the message that Effects couldn’t be enabled. So issue was related to the fact that the GLX libraries couldn’t be found/loaded… When running glxgears this error appear:

name of display: :0.0
Xlib: extension “GLX” missing on display “:0.0”.
Xlib: extension “GLX” missing on display “:0.0”.

The solution:
I’ve removed bumblebee and nvidia, which cleared the issue:

apt-get purge bumblebee
sudo apt-get purge nvidia*
apt-get install –reinstall xserver-xorg-video-intel libgl1-mesa-glx libgl1-mesa-dri xserver-xorg-core
dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg

And after this I could enable  again Desktop effects but I was using the default Intel driver and the Nouveau driver.

Finally, I’ve installed again MrMee/Bumblebee, which by itself installed again the Nvidia drivers, and after that I could only boot into Recovery Mode, because a normal start wouldn’t give me the Kubuntu boot logo and at final boot stage I just had a black screen with an hanged computer…

This issue is due to the fact that the nouveau driver is/was enabled, and I had to disable it. I found no complete instructions for doing that, but these do work:

The nouveau driver needs to be disabled, by editing two files:


Add at the end of this file the following line: blacklist nouveau

And then, the other file to edit it depends of your grub version. For Grub2 , there is the need to add the following to the file /etc/default/grub

GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=”quiet splash pci=nomsi nouveau.blacklist=1

And then run the command: update-grub2

On Grub1, just edit the menu.lst file and add the nouveau.blacklist=1 to yur booting kernel options, keeping in mind that after a kernel upgrade you need to blacklist the module again.

Booting up now with the Intel Driver and the Nvidia driver installed by Bumblebee should work.

Kubuntu, Bumblebee upgrade and NVidia

Yesterday, I’ve upgraded bumblebee on my Asus N73SV, which by itself downloaded and installed a new version of the proprietary Nvidia driver.

During the upgrade process, I was asked to install the maintainer version or my version… and I kept my version.

So after rebooting, I had no Kubuntu splash screen, just a black screen and after a while it just computer just hang with a dead keyboard. So unbootable and only rebootable by pressing the power button several seconds.

After some fiddling around I found out that booting into safe mode, getting into a root shell and starting KDM, everything seemed to work fine.

To keep a long story short, at boot time the X server loaded the Nouveau driver, and it was failing (looping) with some strange IRQ error. So the computer hanged.

The solution: Goto System -> Additional Drivers and enable the NVidia driver.

Reboot, and everything is Ok: Splash screen and Kdm.

A good solution is probably to purge completely the Nouveau driver if you’re really want to use the Nvidia driver. Instructions here: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BinaryDriverHowto/Nvidia

I reality this is the same issue with the ATI drivers. After upgrading the drivers it is, at least in my case, to explicitly enable them.

[K]Ubuntu on Asus N73SV

So my employer replaced my old work laptop HP nx9420 by a new ASUS N73SV, more precisely N73SV-V1G-TZ393V, which by the way is  a great name (not…). The Asus N73 is the bigger screen brother of the Asus N53.

My old HP was able to do any work I could ask for, but it’s limitations on handling virtual machines where showing up, delaying work significantly. This Asus is a completly different beast. It’s fast, and has 3 SODIMM slots, so right now I have it with 12GB of RAM (8GB are two 4GB of Kingston memory plus the original 4GB of RAM). To open up it, you must remove the keyboard (small tabs near the ESC key, F5, F9, PRTSC and End at the top)  and one SODIMM slot is available right away (on th Q2630 CPU’s). Then after removing some screws (check the manual), the disk bay and remaining memory slot is also available at the bottom by removing the bottom cover.

The first thing to do with it was of course to nuke Windows 7, and after much indecision between KUbuntu and Arch, I installed Kubuntu 11.04 64 bit edition. After some fiddling with partitioning (I just left the original recovery partition), everything installed smoothly. Going to KUbuntu was more for getting a full working computer as fast as I can, without too much fiddling, but I left a partition to try out Arch on my spare time.

So what works out of the box? Well almost everything. Let’s talk about what doesn’t work.

First I’ve followed these instructions on the Ubuntu Help Pages for the N53SV and installed the acpi4asus_dkms, blueetooth driver and Bumblebee for the dual card support.

Still USB3 with USB2 devices doesn’t work, and hibernation/suspension doesn’t work. Regarding USB3 it’s a confirmed bug, so in the near future a solution will be available. Regarding hibernation/suspension I think it’s related to the NVidia card driver, but not sure because the computer does shutdown, but comes up to a black screen.

Also this specific version of the N73SV ha a DVB-T card with the Philips chipset SAA7231. It doesn’t work and there is no driver available because the manufacturer doesn’t won’t to support Linux. There is a two year old drive, but I think I doesn’t work with the recent kernels.

At the end I have a full accelerated desktop, dual monitor support, Wifi, bluetooth, networking, webcam, USB2, TurboBoost and the left media keys working fine.

Moving from the old computer, was just a matter of copying my home directory and following these instructions to re-install all software.

The good:

  • Screen size and quality: Superb
  • Fast, fast, fast
  • Big Hard disk (640GB). Available slot for a second hardisk/SSD
  • Allows a lot of memory: 12GB
  • ExpressGate

The bad:

  • Fiddly keyboard, getting time to get used to.
  • Keyboard sunken a bit when pressing keys.
  • No ExpressCard Slot
  • No eSata port
  • Location of some USB ports at the back is not very practical.

Arch Linux test drive: Thoughts from a Kubuntu user

My old work laptop computer is about to be replaced by my employer by a new ASUS N73SV.

First of all this computer has what is called the Optimus Graphics Technology, that isn’t so Optimus regarding Linux… This technology is made of two video cards, one Intel embebed on the chipset and one discrete Nvidia chipset. As far as I know there is no Linux driver for this, and Nvidia won’t be releasing in a foreseeable future Linux support. So the Intel card will be used (I’m not using this for games) and the Nvidia card will be disabled. There are solutions for disabling completely the card and or use some applications on the Intel card and others on the Nvidia card, I’ll have to check. But disabling the Nvidia card improves the battery life, so…

So, off course, the first thing to do this computer is to nuke the Windows 7 install and install a Linux OS…

And there’s the catch: Kubuntu 11.04 or the Arch Linux Rolling distro?

Both have great documentation and great communities, but both could have some “clean up” on it. For example, on the Arch Beginner Install, some things aren’t completely obvious (Well at least for me). This is due to the fact that the documentation is in fact complete, it shows all the possibilities, but it should only show first the most obvious/common/standard way, and then link out the complete documentation regarding the subject. This way documentation could be more slim and straight forward.

Anyway, I was able to install and get an Arch system running without any issues with KDE Desktop but there where issues, and those are not Arch Linux fault. These issues are related to it’s mirrors and the software and sync status of them.

So being on PT, I’ve enabled all PT mirrors, and ended up with KDE 4.4.5 installing and running… Well the latest release of KDE is 4.6.3, so what happened here??? Browsing the mirrors I’ve found out that some where not up to date, so I’ve disabled them, and sure, pacman now shows that KDE 4.6.3 is available. So I’ve disabled the out of date mirrors, and while downloading I had failures regarding mplayer, and x264 packages that wouldn’t allow the upgrade to proceed.

Humm, ok, so I’ve enabled the core repository, and now everything is downloaded fine, but pacman refuses to upgrade due to some packages are corrupted.

So, not of the best starts…

But still I’ll give Arch Linux a try, because mainly on Kubuntu to have the latest software version, namely Libreoffice and even Calligra for test driving means to add backports and probably broking your next mandatory upgrade.

So, after reading the Arch Linux Wiki, I’ve found out that there is a mirror status page that shows what mirrors are available and up to date. I’ve deleted my obsolete mirrors, and enabled only the “live” ones (one in my case and did a full upgrade, and after an hour, more or less I had KDE 4.6 SC installed and running.

So far what I’ve done:

– Installed the base Arch system, making sure that the mirror list was up to date.

– Configured a new no priviledge user, and set up sudo

– Installed Xorg and KDE

– Configured the dbus and kdm daemons to start automatically

Then, I want to install the KDE Kpackagekit, but this was only available on AUR, not on the mainstream repositories. I’ve followed the instructions on http://archlinux.fr/yaourt-en#get_it and installed yaourt package manager. From here I’ve installed Kpackagekit, and with it I was able to install through KDE the rest of packages that I wanted, namely  the kdeplasma network widgets.


Kubuntu 10.10 upgrade to Kubuntu 11.04

After a two months of waiting that the dust settled on the release of the new 11.04 Kubuntu version, I’ve finally upgraded my home computer.

And now, for the first time, I’m amazed that it went flawless… Even with some backports enabled, namely Kubuntu backports, the upgrade went without any issue what so ever.

After reboot, and because I’m using the proprietary fglrx driver, I ended up on the console, no graphic environment, but enabling the X-Team PPA, doing an update and enabling the fglrx driver, I had again all things working fine.

So this time there are no tricks on this upgrade, and my I’ve able to upgrade since 8.10 till now successfully. All I have left to upgrade is the legacy GRUB 1 bootloader.

Now, my work laptop HP Compaq nx9420 is about be retired and replaced by a new ASUS N73SV laptop. On the HP I also was able to successfully upgrade to Kubuntu 10.10, but on the new laptop I’m thinking on a rolling release distro, Arch Linux to be exact. Here are my thoughts why: https://primalcortex.wordpress.com/2011/06/24/arch-linux-tes…r-from-kubuntu/