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Setting up Ubuntu Desktop for a workstation

Desktop Install

Two methods for deploying Ubuntu Desktop or Linux Mint:

The thing with the OEM method is that you can finish-up the process as oem user, then click on the Prepare for shipping on the desktop, reboot, and the user will have a little setup wizard next boot.

e.g. finish-up as oem/sudo, choose preferred mirror for packages,

Control Center -> Software Sources

apply updates using the little shield button in the systray

install additional apps,

Control Center -> Software Manager

VLC
mpv
Sublime Text
Filezilla
(not Skype, this is the old version, see below)

install additional languages depending on target users,

Control Center -> Languages

make sure Firefox is also available language-specific.

click “Prepare for shipping” on the Desktop and reboot

note. few things are missing with this method e.g. Adblock for Firefox.

Desktop Post-install

eventually make things faster (sudo without password) on a desktop env if you’re the sysadmin of the box,

vi /etc/sudoers.d/ADMINUSER
ADMINUSER   ALL = NOPASSWD: ALL

enable ctrl-alt-backspace to kill X,

sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration

either tune Unity or eventually install e.g. MATE or Cinnamon.

Tweak your environment

Take a few hints from the Ubuntu Server post-installation guide. You may then add a few packages specific to workstation/desktop usage,

    sudo apt install \
            chromium-browser \
            deluge deluged \
            filezilla \
            rxvt \
            terminator \
            xterm

(optional) you might also want to install & setup Conky.

SSH key pair

generate your workstation key pair and copy/paste it to the servers you need to maintain,

    ssh-keygen
    cat ~/.ssh/id_rsa.pub

also provide the PPK format,

    cd ~/.ssh/
    puttygen id_rsa -o id_rsa.$USER@$HOSTNAME.ppk

Additional applications

Skype Alpha (not the freaking old v4.3)

fetch and install SKYPE BETA RELEASED (Apr 2017)

old link

[alternate link for skype 1.5 alpha / linux] (https://community.skype.com/t5/Linux/Skype-for-Linux-Alpha-and-calling-on-Chrome-amp-Chromebooks/td-p/4434299)

OVH Hubic

fetch and install Hubic for Linux from the Hubic forum

actually use the shit,

mkdir hubic
hubic login user@example.com hubic
(enter your password)

check the sync status,

hubic status

Java & Eclipse

install Oracle Java,

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
sudo apt update
sudo apt install oracle-java8-installer
sudo apt install oracle-java8-set-default

fetch [Eclipse] (https://eclipse.org/downloads/), extract and install the IDE flavor you need (you can do that from the gui).

Terminator

do you need Putty-like happy copy/pasting?

updatedb
locate terminal.py
cp -pi /usr/share/terminator/terminatorlib/terminal.py /usr/share/terminator/terminatorlib/terminal.py.dist
vi /usr/share/terminator/terminatorlib/terminal.py
/def on_buttonpress
(change 3 to 2 and 2 to 3)

Ref. http://askubuntu.com/questions/211292/a-terminal-which-provides-select-to-copy-and-right-click-to-paste

Networking

there is a main difference with the Ubuntu Server setup: network. It’s ok to keep using Network Manager on a desktop environment.

domain search

to add some domain searches for DHCP sessions (usually the case for a desktop/workstation), e.g.,

cd /etc/dhcp/
cp -pi dhclient.conf dhclient.conf.dist
vi dhclient.conf

prepend domain-search "nethence.com", "example.local";

OR change the resolvconf config directly,

    cd /etc/resolvconf/resolv.conf.d
    cp -pi base base.dist
    vi base

    search example.com

NFS & CIFS ready

install nfs client to mount nfs shares,

    sudo apt install nfs-common

setup your default workgroup when mounting windows file shares,

    sudo apt install smbclient cifs-utils
#smbfs samba
    vi /etc/samba/smb.conf

Multi-Boot

Reduce the boot-loader timeout,

cp -pi /etc/default/grub /etc/default/grub.dist
vi /etc/default/grub

GRUB_TIMEOUT=3

You can ask GRUB2 to boot the same OS that was booted last time by default,

GRUB_DEFAULT=saved
GRUB_SAVEDEFAULT=true

Troubleshooting

Kodi / ureadahead

(optional) you might also want to remove that one in case it is installed and not needed (it was spamming my logs),

    sudo apt remove ureadahead
    #sudo apt purge ureadahead

Network Fix

In case you’ve got this error when trying to make Wireless work,

    ifconfig wlan0 or wls3 up
    SIOCSIFFLAGS: Input/output error

try this,

wif=wls3
    service network-manager stop
    service wpa_supplicant stop
    ifconfig $wif down
    ifconfig $wif up
    service networking restart
    service network-manager start
unset netif

locales

sudo dpkg-reconfigure locales
#sudo locale-gen
sudo update-locale LANG=en_US.UTF-8