Category: Linux


WVS openingsvergadering

Vorig jaar was een kalm jaar voor de VTK-WVS (VTK-Werkgroep Vrije Software), maar dit jaar zouden we er terug goed willen invliegen. Daarom organiseren we een openingsvergadering (affiche: PDF, ODG) op donderdag 26 oktober om 20u in VTK-Rood.

Ben jij zo iemand die liever een PDF dan een Word-document in z'n mailbox krijgt? Ben je al een doorwinterde kernel-hacker of heb je net je eerste stapjes gezet in de wondere wereld van GNU/Linux en dergelijke? Liever Firefox dan Internet Explorer? Kom dan zeker af!

Voor wie de VTK-WVS nog niet kent, wij staan in voor:

  • Het promoten van open-source software en vrije standaarden aan de faculteit Ingenieurswetenschappen en daarbuiten. (Bvb. Firefox, en Thunderbird in de pc-klassen.)
  • Introductiesessies (LaTeX, Linux ...)
  • Ondersteuning van nieuwe gebruikers, opstellen van UGent-specifieke documentatie. (Bvb. het VTK LaTeX en Linux forum, en de WVS wiki.)
  • En nog veel meer...

Afspraak dus op de openingsvergadering van dit academiejaar, donderdag 26 oktober om 20u in VTK Rood.

Permalink . RealNitro . 13:38:46 . 264 Words . Linux . Email . 695 views


Just a quick post to shed some attention on Songbird, a music player that's built on the same base as Firefox and claims to 'Play the web'. I came across a link to this screencast last week and decided to give it a try. Some screenshots:

Default skin
The default skin

Surfing, using the alternative skin
Surfing, using the alternative skin

The Mini-Player
The Mini-Player

The verdict: Songbird misses some basic features to become my number one music player:

  • It lacks a system tray icon.
  • It can't play non-ascii song names/tags (i.e. Laïs)
Permalink . RealNitro . 22:57:04 . 139 Words . Linux . Email . 814 views


Remote X sessions on Nokia 770

Some topics on have great views on what the N770 might have to offer in the future. One nice possibility is forwarding X sessions to a N770. I started with forwarding Gedit from my pc to my N770, but later on I had a go at 'oowriter2' ( 2 Writer), Supertux and The Gimp. My experiences about those apps on the N770 are at the end of this post. First I'll tell you how to try it yourself.

Some basic requirements:

  • a computer running the X-server and sshd (a decent linux box ;-) )
  • a (fast) network connection between your N770 and the server
  • openSSH for the maemo platform

To install openSSH on your N770, download the openSSH .deb package to your N770. Next,open an X-terminal, and gain root access. If the .deb openSSH package is on your mmc, navigate to it:

cd /media/mmc1/

And install openSSH (it doesn't install using the graphical package installer):

dpkg -x ssh_*.deb /

Caution: make sure that your servers sshd allows X forwarding! Time to connect to the server:

ssh -X user@server

Change user to your login-name, and change server to your servers IP or domain name. The first time you log into your server from your N770, ssh wil ask you a question. Answer 'yes'. Then it will ask your password. Enter it. You should get a command prompt as 'user' on your server. Time to execute a program! I use the Gnome desktop environment, and the default text editor (like notepad in Windows -- but waaay better ;-) ) in Gnome is Gedit. The command to start Gedit from a terminal is 'gedit' (duh! :-p ). Execute


Give it some time to start, and you'll see Gedit running on your N770! To try any other programs, just tap their commands into the terminal and have fun!

But there are a few downsides. The first big downside is text-input: The onscreen-keyboard does not appear when you put the cursor inside a text-field of an X-forwarded window. Copy-pasting text is possible though. Maybe people with working Bluetooth keyboards will be able to type some text. Is somebody willing to try? One other downside is that X-forwarded windows vanish when they are minimized. There seems to be no way to get them back, killing the parent program and restarting it is the only solution. (You can kill the parent program by bringing your X-term back up, opening 'X Terminal'->'Terminal'->'Send Ctrl-some key', and tapping the 'c' keyboard button.) The fullscreen button didn't work aswell. Gedit just doesn't recognise/receive the signal emited by that fullscreen button, I guess.

Beside those little anoyances, Gedit ran quite smooth. So I decided to start the 2 Writer. And it worked too! The gui wasn't 100% snappy (i.e. scrolling was laggy), but it seemed fast enough to be usable. Later that day, I decided to give Supertux a try. (Supertux is a Super Mario clone.) The verdict: not playable. The bluetooth connection between my pc and my N770 just wasn't fast enough to transfer all that graphical goodness without (a LOT of) lag. The Gimp suffers from the same problem. Drawing with your stylus is possible, but the result lags several seconds behind.

A possible solution for the lag problems would be to compress the data that's being sent between the X-server and the client (your N770). A FreeNX-client would be great as the NX protocol is in fact a compressed (and secured) forwarded X-session. (FreeNX is a free alternative to NoMachine NX.)

Permalink . RealNitro . 21:31:01 . 658 Words . Linux, Coding . Email . 2278 views


Sharing internet with Nokia 770 over bluetooth

It's been a (very) long time since I have posted here (again), but I bought myself a Nokia 770 last week, and it took me a lot of time to get it on the net, so I thought I'd share how I got it to work.

First off, some interesting links:

You need to have your bluetooth stick working first. Gentoo users should read the first parts of the host to host bluetooth howto, other distro's should consult the proper information on the community forums/wiki. (Don't scan for other devices yet, just setup your kernel and BlueZ.)

Then open the X Terminal on your 770 and be root. Enter:

hcitool scan

The scan should display your pc's bluetooth name and its bluetooth ID. If the scan cannot find your computer, check again if your bluetooth stick is really working. Scanning for your 770 on your computer is no use, since your 770 will remain invisible. Now let's pair your 770 with the pc. Execute the following on your 770, but replace 00:10:20:30:40:50 with your computer's Bluetooth ID:

hcitool cc 00:10:20:30:40:50

If you get an error, try:

rm /etc/bluetooth/link_key

If the pairing works, you will be asked to enter the PIN code of your pc. There is no need to try to connect from your pc to your 770, it will not work anyway (your pc cannot see your 770, remember). Next, make your computer listen for an incoming (network) connection. As root execute:

pand --listen --role NAP

Now, on your 770, connect to your pc:

pand --connect 00:10:20:30:40:50

(Replace 00:10:20:30:40:50 with your pc's Bluetooth ID again.)

If the connection has been set up, the following command should work on your 770:

ifconfig bnep0 netmask broadcast

Warning: if your local network already uses the 192.168.2.* subnet, replace the IP with another one that isn't in a subnet your pc is a part of!
On your pc, execute the same command, but change the IP:

ifconfig bnep0 netmask broadcast

We're almost there now. Your 770 and your pc are part of the same subnet now! Let's try to ping the 770. On your pc:


If you installed the ssh server, you can run it now, and log into it from your pc.

Now, let's set up the internet connection forwarding. First off, let your 770 know that your pc is its gateway to the internet:

route add default gw

Also add a dummy internet connection:

gconftool -s -t string /system/osso/connectivity/IAP/DEFAULT/type DUMMY

On your pc, display the content of /etc/resolv.conf:

cat /etc/resolv.conf

And add the rules to the /etc/resolv.conf file on your 770. For each line do:

echo "line" >> /etc/resolv.conf

All that's left to do is making your pc act as a router for your 770. One way to do that (not the easiest one), is to use a program called iptables. In this howto I will explain how to setup iptables on gentoo. Again, if you use an other distro, check the community forums and/or wiki. On gentoo, emerge iptables. You might have to recompile your kernel, just follow the 'Kernel Support' chapter of this howto on the gentoo wiki. To configure iptables, you can read this guide, or, if you just want a quick solution, use this script. As root, paste it inside a file. Then comment out IPTABLES=/usr/local/sbin/iptables, and uncomment #IPTABLES=/sbin/iptables. Change INTIF="eth1" to INTIF="bnep0". You might have to change EXTIF="eth0" too. (I had to change it to vpnlink because I connect to the internet with a vpn.) When you finished changing the script, make it executable, and run it. There should be no errors. Now save the script:

/etc/init.d/iptables save

and start iptables:

/etc/init.d/iptables start

If you want to start iptables everytime you boot, do:

rc-update add iptables default

You should be able to surf with your 770 now! I plan on writing a few script to make the linking more automatic. Plz share your comments here, and post any mistakes in the howto.

Permalink . RealNitro . 20:05:28 . 807 Words . Linux, Coding . Email . 3195 views


First exam, Nokia 770

The exams have started in a bad way. Hardly anybody had enough time to answer all questions of our first exam ('Transportverschijnselen'). Lets hope for the best.

As some people already know, I'm going to buy a PDA (or something similar) in the near future. The ones I am/was interested in are: the Palm Lifedrive, Dell X30 or X50, or the (to be released) Nokia 770. The LifeDrive is too expensive and slow I'm afraid, and the Dell's, well... they use Windows :-p . So I'll probably buy that Nokia 770. There are a few features of it that I'm worried about though:

  • Will it support VPN over Wifi?
    (needed to connect to our University network)
  • Will it support pdf reading?
  • How long will the battery last?
    (the site says three hours, I know)
  • Will there be linux desktop software to upload files to the 770?
  • I hope there will be apps to view .ppt (powerpoint) files.
  • And last, but not least: When will Nokia release it?
    (the sooner the better :-p )

I still have to check out the prices for those mini memory cards the 770 uses too. Lot's of things to think about. ;-)

Permalink . RealNitro . 12:24:43 . 261 Words . Life, Linux . Email . 676 views

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