Saturday 7 January 2017

Pale Moon and why it may be a Firefox fan's only hope

Yesterday I blogged about Seamonkey, a community-run project affiliated with Mozilla. While I like Seamonkey, after googling about the upcoming deprecation of XUL based addons in Firefox (which is a bad decision because it basically makes Firefox a Chrome clone), I noticed that people were saying that Seamonkey will probably follow suit, as they are a much smaller team, and will likely follow whatever bad decision Mozilla ends up making.

In the past few years, Mozilla has been removing useful features from Firefox and announcing that it will remove even more, alienating its core userbase in the process. These days, they (Mozilla) are basically acting like children, putting their fingers in their ears shouting "Na na na na I can't hear you!" at any criticism they get.

I know in the past blog post I said I stopped using Pale Moon for "various reasons", well... I don't remember what those reasons were. Maybe it was because I thought Firefox wasn't going to go down this route.

Thankfully, Pale Moon isn't going to be deprecating the XUL based addons. (As far as I know from what I've read) It also is compatible with way more addons than Seamonkey is. It is a fork of an old version of Firefox, but modified and updated, and they forked Gecko and called it Goanna.

One downside is, that it is a much smaller team then Firefox. That could be said about any fork, though.

To install Pale Moon in Linux, you can use the Pale Moon installer. That is what I am currently using. However, you can also install it with the third party yet fully endorsed repository for Debian and Ubuntu (and Linux Mint + any other Ubuntu derivative) here: LINK

For more information about Pale Moon, visit it's official website at:

Friday 6 January 2017

Seamonkey - An Alternative to Firefox - Plus, my recommended themes and addons

Firefox on Linux is good these days, but it can be a bit bloated. I was using Firefox as my main web browser for a while now, but I wanted something more 'lightweight' with relatively the same amount of features. I previously blogged about Pale Moon, but I don't use that as my main browser anymore for various reasons.

I found Seamonkey, which is a community-run continuation of the "Mozilla Application Suite" based on the same source code, but updated with newer Mozilla code bases. (Thanks Wikipedia! :P)

Seamonkey includes a lot of the same features as Firefox, it supports some of the same addons, but looks like it's from 2005. The way it looks isn't really a problem for me, as I prefer function over form. I did tweak the look with some addons though, which I'll show later.

The reason I use Seamonkey is it is faster and less bloated than Firefox while having a lot of the same (if not more) features.

You can install Seamonkey in Ubuntu or Linux Mint by downloading it from the website, but in my opinion it is better to install it via adding the ubuntuzilla repository, which you can do with the following commands on the ubuntuzilla web page on sourceforge:

Also I recommend launching it with firejail to improve security.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:deki/firejail -y && sudo apt update && sudo apt install firejail -y

Then launch seamonkey with firejail.

$ firejail seamonkey

(without the dollar sign, that's just meant to show these are terminal commands)

Also, use menulibre to change the seamonkey launcher so it launches with firejail.

Now, the addons I recommend:

First off, one of my favorite addons is Greasemonkey. The official version of it doesn't support Seamonkey, so you'll have to get a ported version from here: Just grab that xpi and you'll be able to use all your favorite userscripts.

Now here's some other addons, also, if you have a problem with a grey download button saying the addon is not compatible, sometimes it's as easy as clicking that button and clicking "install anyway", and chances are it will still work.

In alphabetical order:

Chatzilla - IRC client
Compact Menu 2
Copy Plain Text 2
Foxyproxy Standard
Greasemonkey (duh)
HTTPS Everywhere
Open With (to open videos / links with MPV, VLC, or another web browser etc)
Private Tab
Sea Fox (Make Seamonkey look like Firefox 3.0)
Slim Add-ons Manager
Stylish (for user styles)
Tabs Open Relative
uBlock Origin
User Agent Switcher

The theme I use is "GNOMErunner".

If you have any suggestions on addons to get, let me know, as I only just started using Seamonkey.

This is what Seamonkey looks like with my setup:

Thursday 27 August 2015

KDE Connect - Connect Linux to your Android Devices

KDE Connect is an open source alternative to Pushbullet, which is an application that displays your Android notifications on your PC . However, KDE Connect also lets you send files to your devices, browse the files, and view the battery percentage, right from your Linux desktop or laptop.

This article will be focused on installing and using KDE Connect on Ubuntu-based distributions such as Linux Mint and of course, Ubuntu.
To install KDE Connect for any desktop environment simply type the following commands into the terminal. (CTRL + Alt + T)

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:vikoadi/ppa

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install kdeconnect indicator-kdeconnect 

Once it is installed, simply run "KDE Connect Indicator" from the applications menu, or type "indicator-kdeconnect" in the terminal.

Now, turn on your favourite Android device and install the KDE Connect application from either Google Play or F-Droid.

Finally, launch the app on your Android device and look down at your indicator panel/notification area/whatever you want to call it and you will see icons for either a phone or tablet, depending on what it detected your device as.

Click on one of the icons, and click "Request Pairing". You should get a notification on your Android device that you can accept. If you don't, try multiple times. You can also request pairing from your Android device, which will display a notification on your PC. This may work, but it requires a desktop environment that lets you click buttons inside notifications. For me, in XFCE it didn't work. In Cinnamon, it did.

If you still don't receive a request to pair the device, make sure your device and your computer are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

Note: If you have a firewall on your Linux PC such as GUFW, Make sure you have allowed ports 1714-1764 in both TCP and UDP incoming and outgoing. You only have to allow these ports in your local network, no port forwarding necessary.

Once your devices are paired, you can do things like send files to your Android device wirelessly, browse the device, and view the battery percentage.

Sending files to your device is easy with KDE Connect.

 On the device side, you can do things such as remotely controlling your computer by using your Android device as a mouse, and there's also multimedia controls.

Why use Pushbullet when you have KDE Connect?

I hope you found this useful.

Saturday 22 August 2015

Pale Moon - A Speedy Fork of Firefox

Since Mozilla is ruining Firefox, why not install a fork?

No, not a utensil used for eating food, a "fork". This means a copy of the source code, turned into a new project. This is a popular activity in open source software. If some one doesn't like the way the development of an application is going, they can take the source code of said application and make an entirely new project out of it.

Firefox has multiple forks, but today I will be focusing on Pale Moon.

What is Pale Moon? Pale Moon is a fork of Firefox focused on "efficiency and ease of use". It is compatible with most Firefox addons. It does not have the "Australis" interface that is criticized among many Firefox users. It claims to be more stable than regular Firefox. It is faster and smoother than Firefox.

You can get Pale Moon over at

It is available for both Linux and Windows. The Linux installer is available here. The Windows version is available here. There is also a 3rd party PPA for Ubuntu, as well as a build for the OpenPandora.

I hope you found this useful.

Mozilla, Why are you ruining Firefox?

I've recently switched back to Firefox on the desktop, for a few reasons. Reason #1 is that Firefox takes up way less ram. Reason #2 is addons.

Firefox has some of the best addons out there. Some of my favourites include DownThemAll, NoScript, Flashblock, Video DownloadHelper, and Greasemonkey, to name a few.

Firefox addons are more powerful than their Google Chrome counterparts. However, I woke up yesterday to I find out that Firefox is deprecating XPCOM and XUL-based addons.

What does this mean? A lot of addons won't work anymore. As mentioned on this post, addons such as DownThemAll will likely not work and the developers will probably not support them anymore. This includes any addons that let you do more "advanced" things.

Firefox is turning more and more into Chrome

The only upside to this is it will be easier for developers to make addons that work in both Google Chrome and Opera. However, if I wanted to use Chrome or Opera addons I would use Chrome or Opera, not Firefox!

Firefox is the most customizable and feature-rich web browser, and it should stay that way.

Mozilla, listen to your users.

Monday 17 August 2015

[Android] My Top Recommended Xposed Framework Modules

If you’re an Android power user, you’ll probably know about Xposed framework. If you’ve ever used a Custom ROM on your phone or tablet, you will know that these ROMs often come with additional features that are not available in stock Android.

Xposed framework allows you to use the stock ROM that comes with your device but with the benefit of ROM-like features, called “modules”.

Xposed Framework

Please remember that not every module works on every device, so keep the Xposed Disabler ZIP and a custom recovery handy if you get a bootloop.

Here is a list of my top recommended xposed modules, in no particular order.
  • Awesome Pop-up Video – This module allows you to watch videos in a tiny window that you can move and resize, which lets you multi task while you’re watching the video.
  •  Blacklist – This module allows you to block certain numbers or texts, for example unwanted callers.
  •  BootManager – This module allows you to disable certain applications from starting up. Why would a game need to run at boot?
  •  NotifyClean – This module allows you to block certain applications from notifying you about something.
  •  MinMinGuard – This module allows you to block ads on a per-app basis, and removes the empty space that the ad used to take up.
  •  Greenify – This module saves battery life by preventing certain applications from waking your device up when you’re not using it.
  •  YouTube Adaway – This module blocks ads in the YouTube app, whereas regular Adaway doesn’t.
  •  GravityBox – This module brings a whole lot of User Interface customization options to the table.
  •  CpuTemp in Statusbar – This module does what it says on the tin. It puts the current CPU Temperature of your device on the Status bar.
That’s all for now, I hope you find these modules useful.

[Originally posted on my other blog, PizzaDude Talks Tech]

Wednesday 24 June 2015

How to use F-Droid - The Free and Open Source App Marketplace for Android

F-Droid is an alternative app market for Android. It is basically a repository for open source applications, like the ones on Desktop Linux. Every single application on F-Droid is FLOSS. No, not dental floss. Floss as in "Free Libre Open Source Software".

Each application on F-Droid has to be approved. If an application on F-Droid has proprietary code, the code is removed by the F-Droid maintainers. If an application contains tracking code, it is reported on the app page. In my opinion, you can guarantee that 99.9999% of applications on F-Droid will be safe to install. On Google Play, you can't guarantee it. Even though Google Play is the default Android marketplace, some malicious developers have been able to put malware on there.

F-Droid also contains applications that Google have banned from their store, such as Ad blockers.

The installation of F-Droid is like any other app that is not in the Google Play store. In order to install it, you need to enable unknown sources. You also need to keep unknown sources enabled in order to install applications from F-Droid.

You will get a warning that enabling unknown sources is dangerous. It's not. Unless you go searching for random apk files on the internet that may contain malware, you should be fine. Just stick to trusted sources like Google Play, Amazon Appstore, and of course F-Droid. Please note that F-Droid is safer than Google Play or Amazon Appstore.

In order to enable unknown sources, open the Settings app, and tap "Security". You can enable unknown sources from there. You will get a warning. Just press ok.

Now go to on your phone. Tap "Download F-Droid". It will download an apk file. It should be named FDroid.apk. You should be able to install it from your notifications. If that doesn't work, open your downloads folder in your favourite file manager and install the apk from there.

Video clip on how to install F-Droid

Once installed open the F-Droid app. It will refresh the sources. Once that's done, you can select categories or search for a specific app. If you click on an app, it will show you a description, and multiple versions you can install. I usually install the latest version. If you click on one of the versions, it will download the apk file for that application and you will be able to install it.

Video clip on how to use and install apps via F-Droid

If you have root, you can allow F-Droid to automatically install apps once you've downloaded them. I personally haven't done this. F-Droid does not require root.

There are plenty of applications available for download. Of course, not as much as on Google Play, but way less junk, and much safer thanks to the open source nature of things.

I hope you have found this useful. Remember, there's more to Android than just Google Play!