Unable to Retrieve Movie Information from IMDb in GCStar 1.6.2

When I was happily trying to insert a new movie into GCStar I was stunned, because the movie information was not retrieved. I remember about 2 months ago it was fine.

Then I checked in GCStar forum and found out that IMDb plug-in for GCStar is based on the movie finder page of IMDb, and unfortunately, now the finder page has changed. So, the plug-in was not working properly. Luckily the forum also shows the solution by changing a line (line 239) in the plug-in.

if ($self->{inside}->{h1} && $origtext !~ m/IMDb\s*Title\s*Search/i)

with this line:

if ($self->{inside}->{title} && $origtext !~ m/Find\s-\sIMDb/i)

And, it works. Thanks to soulchainer.




Fixing Blueish in Youtube (Flash) in Pangolin

When I tested Pangolin from Live CD, I didn’t encounter any color problem with Youtube. After I installed Pangolin into my system, and then installed NVidia proprietery driver, then I started encounter this blue color problem when watching Youtube or any other flash-based video streaming website.

I tried to find a solution for this problem in many forums. Most of them pointing the problem to Adobe, and some pointing to NVidia. I didnt care about this pointing problem, because I need those two software, so I needed a solution.

Eventually I found out the source of the problem is flash-based video cannot run using hardware acceleration. There are some solutions that suggested in forums:

  • Remove “libvdpau1” package from Pangolin system. This package is used by flash for hardware acceleration.
  • Disable hardware acceleration option from Youtube. Right-click on the video, select “Settings” and then untick the “Hardware Acceleration”. But alas, I couldn’t untick it, and I couldn’t remove the “Settings” window either. From this thread in this forum I found out that compiz cause this problem. So, I logged out from my system, logged in again using Unity 2D, and now it was possible to disable the hardware acceleration. I logged out and logged in again, and then tried to watch Youtube again. Voila, the blueish color was gone.




Install VMWare Player on Ubuntu 12.04

As I expected a new system means a new set of problems. The first application that encounter problem with Pangolin is VMWare Player 4.0.3. The installation of VMWare Player was smooth though, there was no problem occurred. For a while I felt relief, “yes, I can use VMWare Player tomorrow”. The problem showed when I tested to open one of the VMWare image. The VMWare was trying to install additional functions, and it failed.

After searching on the Internet, I found this reply from a thread from VMWare forum. Basically, he recommended to apply a patch in 5 steps. (Get the patch file here)

  1. Un-tar /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar to a directory you can write to (eg /tmp, /var/tmp or your desktop or home directory) – this creates a directory vmnet-only
  2. Apply the attached patch to the un-tarred source (run patch in the directory from step 1 – the patch file was created from the parent directory of vmnet-only)
  3. Save the original source tar file as /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar.orig
  4. create a new /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar from the patched source (with ‘sudo tar cf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar vmnet-only’ in the directory from step 1)
  5. Start the vmware player/workstation/….

So, these were what I did.

I extracted the “/usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar” to “/tmp” folder.

tar xvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar -C /tmp

Copy the patch file (vmnet.diffs) to “/tmp” folder and then apply the patch.

patch -p0 < vmnet.diffs

Back up the original “vmnet.tar” as “vmnet.tar.orig”.

sudo cp vmnet.tar vmnet.tar.orig

Create a new “vmnet.tar” from “/tmp” folder.

sudo tar cvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmnet.tar vmnet-only

Trigger the kernel update by trying to open a VMWare image again. At this time the update went smoothly, and the image was opened.

Transition 2012 Part 2: Pangolin Rules My Notebook (Officially)

It took about half-an-hour to install Pangolin on my notebook, as usual from Ubuntu. Yup, It’s a clean install. I removed the Lynx and installed Pangolin. I saw from the internet, many people tried to upgrade, but took hours to finish, and sometimes broke some already running well application. So, I prefer avoid this problem.

Unlike Lynx, Pangolin is using another desktop environment, even though still based on Gnome. Pangolin is using Unity, as seen below.

It’s totally different from previous desktop environment. It looks nice. It’s very nicely done. But, different desktop environment means different ways of doing things.

There is no more main menu on the top bar, even though on the left side of the top bar looks the same as before. Now the menu is in the Ubuntu button on the top-left corner of the screen. Once click on the button, a panel will be shown, which is showing latest application or files used, list of installed applications, list of music, and list of videos. On the window itself, there is a search box for me to find applications or, maybe, ever opened files. It is similar to Gnome-Do on my previous system, and I think I like Gnome-Do better. Anyway, it’s a good improvement.

On the left side of the screen there is a launcher bar, which holds selected applications for quick run the application without finding it in the application list. It remind me to my AWN on my previous system. So, that’s fine for me. The one that I surprise me (in a good way) is the ability of the launcher bar and all other on-screen notifications to adapt to the wallpaper colour. I like this functionality very much. 🙂

My impression for my Pangolin is good enough for now. The real test will start when I’m installing my applications, and how good my applications run on top of Pangolin.

So, King Pangolin, congratulations for your succession. Rule wisely and I hope the best from you. 🙂

Transition 2012 Part 1: Reign of Lynx Review

It has been almost 2 year since the Lynx reigns my notebook. I like Lynx, it’s stable, fast boot-up, fast shut-down, easy to configure, etc. Lucid Lynx is an Ubuntu linux distro version 10.04. I use this system for my daily usage at home after work. Sometimes I use my home system to do my office work. In office I use Windows XP and Windows 7 system, and most applications that I use in office won’t be able to work in my linux system. So, I use virtual machine to do my work. In this case I use VMWare, instead of VirtualBox. There are several reasons why I use VMWare rather than VirtualBox. First, most of my colleague use VMWare; second, I feel VirtualBox is still unstable; and third, USB support in VMWare is better than VirtualBox.

In term of internet browser, I still prefer Firefox, it’s just because I feel more comfortable using it rather than other linux browser. Firefox supports many add-ons and plug-ins. Other than that, most of my bookmarks are in Firefox. Chromium is my second browser. Chromium is a good browser, the look is very simple, fast, and I can install chrome-based application.

In term of display, I have installed compiz and Avant Window Manager (AWN). The compiz allows me to run animation special-effect on my system. It’s really nice, even though I don’t set it at full capacity. While AWN allows me to show icon launcher on any side of the screen, but I prefer left-side. Below is a screen-shot of my compiz capability and AWN.

There are several applications that I use very often.

  • Home Bank, a simple-personal accounting system, it tracks my income and expense, including my credit cards. I think it’s one of the best application for non-accounting person like me.
  • GCStar is an application to store my movie collection. It’s able to retrieve movie information from the internet. The good thing of GCStar, it’s not just for movie, but can be used for book or music collection as well. A recommended application for collectors.
  • SMPlayer is my most favourite movie player. It can run any movie format as long, as you have the codec, without a glitch.
  • Disk Usage Analyser is an application that allows me to check how much space that my data has occupied my harddisk. It’s a default application from Ubuntu, but it’s very very useful. I think Windows system also need this application by default. By using this application, I can pinpoint which folder that has occupied my harddisk the most.
  • Transmission is a downloader application with a torrent technology. Usually I use this application to download files from the internet. It’s very good, and it has never given me any problem.
  • Terminal Server Client and TeamViewer are vnc-like application. I can use them to remote to a server or desktop and control them. They have helped me a lot to do my job.
  • Geany is the best of the lightest IDE. It helped me a lot to do some programming works.
  • Brasero is a DVD writer for Gnome. It’s an fine application. It can do the job, but sometimes it took almost an hour just to burn a DVD, and sometimes the result is not copied very well. If there is another DVD burner application, I’m willing to try it, as long as it’s a Gnome application.
  • The last but not least is Wine, an application that allows me to run Windows application on my linux system, especially my games.  🙂

This Lynx is one of my best system of all. I still feel sad to overthrown Lynx from my notebook. But, I hope the next system, Pangolin, can give me a better performance than Lynx.

Thank you and good bye, Lynx.

Upgrade Firefox without Upgrading Ubuntu



Ubuntu always sticks to a version for every software that delivered in an Ubuntu version. Like Ubuntu 10.04 always sticks to Firefox 3.6. Its only update the Firefox if there is an update for Firefox 3.6. It’s applicable to all of the software in Ubuntu.

Firefox 5 has been released for quite sometimes. And, Firefox 5 is way better than Firefox 3.6, such as simplicity, speed, and overall appearance. Staying with Firefox 3.6 is like torturing yourself, while the Firefox 5 is sitting in the shop, waiting for us to take it home. On the other hand, I have no intention to upgrade my Ubuntu to the latest version.

Fortunately, there are 2 ways to upgrade our Firefox. First, download Firefox (tar.bz2 file) from Mozilla website, and install it manually. Second, install it using Ubuntu Software Center. I prefer the second method, because it has been tested by Ubuntu team.

In order to do this, you have to add PPA for Firefox into software repository list. There are 2 ways to do this:

  • By using GUI, open up the Ubuntu Software Center, click menu Edit > Software Sources and click the ‘Other Software’ tab. Click ‘Add’ and then paste ppa:mozillateam/firefox-stable into the APT Line input box. Once done you can click on menu System > Administration > Update Manager to perform an upgrade.

Ubuntu Software Center

Ubuntu Software Center

Software Sources

Software Sources

  • By using terminal, you just need to run these command in the terminal window:
    • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mozillateam/firefox-stable
    • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade

The Ubuntu Update Manager will upgrade your Firefox to the latest version according to its PPA, including automatically upgrade to Firefox 6 by the time it released. Have fun. 🙂


Print with Xerox DocuPrint C1110B in Linux

Up to now driver for printers are one of the annoying problem in Linux. Even though already plenty of printers out there that have been supported in Linux, but many, or should I say, most of them are not fully supported, because most of them are developed by open source programmers by reverse engineering those drivers.

My printer is also not spared. My printer, Xerox DocuPrint C1110B, is a home color laser printer. This printer is fast and quite reliable. The color print-out is perfect. The problem that I encounter with this printer is the paper size setting. Sometimes even though we set to print a A4 size paper, the printer still trying to print Letter size paper, and asks us to put Letter size papers into its tray. This problem happened even though I use it in Windows with its original driver.

At first I have problem to find driver for this printer for my Ubuntu system. I use any available Xerox printer driver, but this printer still print rubbish characters. But, luckily I found a generic driver that working with this printer. The name of the driver is “Generic PCL 6/PCL XL Printer”. You can find this driver in System -> Administration -> Printing. If you can’t find this driver, you can go to OpenPrinting website to get the driver (PPD file, see the reference below).

Change Printer Driver - Step 1

Change Printer Driver - Step 1

Change Printer Driver - Step 2

Change Printer Driver - Step 2

I can print perfectly by using this printer driver. I don’t encounter any problem with this printer, including printing power point using OpenOffice with color. Honestly, almost no problem. I can’t print full-duplex (two-sided) with this driver. It always print one-side of the paper. Even though this problem is still consider as tolerable, I’m hoping that those printer manufacturers are producing drivers for Linux or open those drivers and let those amazing programmers to port them to Linux.

Check these websites for more information:

Ubuntu Update Breaks NVidia Composite Display

Yesterday evening I’ve encountered an annoying problem. My composite display was broken. My compiz was not working properly. I couldn’t play any games that using 3D texture. I remember that the night before I installed regular updates from Ubuntu. As Homer says, DOUB! That must be the cause. Sometimes I don’t understand why this kind of problem must be happening. When I run “compiz-check”, it returned:

Gathering information about your system…
Distribution:          Ubuntu 10.04
Desktop environment:   GNOME
Graphics chip:         nVidia Corporation Device 0a2b (rev a2)
Driver in use:         nvidia
Rendering method:      Nvidia
Checking if it’s possible to run Compiz on your system…
Checking for texture_from_pixmap…               [ FAIL ]
Checking for non power of two support…          [ FAIL ]
Checking for composite extension…               [ OK ]
Checking for FBConfig…                          [ OK ]
Checking for hardware/setup problems…           [ SKIP ]
At least one check had to be skipped:
Error: Unable to detect maximum 3D texture size

I run “nvidia-bug-report.sh” to check what the error is, and then checked the file generated by the script. The file showed that GLX initialization is failed, and recommended me to reinstall the NVidia driver.

(EE) Apr 29 21:46:19 NVIDIA(0): Failed to initialize the GLX module; please check in your X
(EE) Apr 29 21:46:19 NVIDIA(0):     log file that the GLX module has been loaded in your X
(EE) Apr 29 21:46:19 NVIDIA(0):     server, and that the module is the NVIDIA GLX module.  If
(EE) Apr 29 21:46:19 NVIDIA(0):     you continue to encounter problems, Please try
(EE) Apr 29 21:46:19 NVIDIA(0):     reinstalling the NVIDIA driver.

As recommended, I reinstalled the NVidia driver. When reinstalling the driver, the installer returned an error message:

ERROR: File ‘/usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions/libglx.so’ is not a symbolic link.

After the message, the installer was still continuing the installation process until finish. I restarted my system, and found out that the problem had gone. Then I checked the location of the libglx.so, and it is there. So, I guess that’s the root of the problem. I think Ubuntu has to be more careful with its update, because sometimes it breaks a well-running system. Luckily, the problem is not as complicated as I thought.

Thanks to these forums:

And, special thanks to http://forlong.blogage.de/entries/pages/Compiz-Check for the “compiz-check” script. You Rockz!

Microphone Problem on Ubuntu 10.04

Recently I bought a PC headset with noise-cancellation mic. Smiling all the way to my work desk, I plugged the headset into my Sony Vaio notebook that running Ubuntu 10.04, but to my surprise the mic didn’t work (blasted!), even though it’s earphone is working fine. I tested the headset on my Windows 7 system, and it’s working fine.

After a little bit of experiment I solved the problem. The solution is quite easy.

Open “Sound Preferences” -> “Hardware” -> Change Profile to “Analog Stereo Input” -> Test -> Change Profile to “Analog Stereo Duplex” -> Test again.

Sound Recorder Profile

Sound Recorder Profile

Up to this step the device should be able to work.

I guess the cause of the problem is because of missing settings in one of the configuration files.  (Okay, I admit! Windows is not the only OS to have missing files out of nowhere).  By doing above steps, the system refreshed its settings. YAY!

Play Heroes of Might and Magic V on Linux

Heroes of Might and Magic is one of my favorite game in old times (I’m still young though). This game is a strategy game and it’s very addictive, I mean, REALLY ADDICTIVE.  Countless nights I spent in battlefield, thanks to this game.  We have to pick one of the race, build an army, and capture enemy castles. We can spend most of our time just to play this game. One of the best strategy game I have ever played indeed!  Heroes of Might and Magic V is latest installment of the game series.

The question is last time I play in DOS and Windows 98 environments, and Heroes V is also a Windows game. How to run this game on linux, especially Ubuntu? To do it I bet my luck on Wine.  Wine is not just good to play game but also to drink.  🙂

I use Wine 1.2.2 to install Heroes Might and Magic V on my Ubuntu 10.04. The installation run smoothly. I run the game. My screen resolution changed according to the game resolution. An introduction showed a story how the war starts. After the introduction, the game leads me to a main menu screen. The problem happened when I tried to click a menu. The screen shifted little bit to the right. The more I click to the screen the more the screen shifted to the right. In short I could not play the game.
After a little bit of research I would be able to run the game if I emulate a virtual window for all application run under Wine. It has to be set on Wine Configuration (winecfg).

Wine Configuration

Wine Configuration

After setting the virtual window I’m able to play the game perfectly, feels like I’m playing in Windows environtment… 🙂  See here, Bill. Your platform is not the only one anymore!!

Heroes of Might and Magic V on Wine

Heroes of Might and Magic V on Wine