Saturday, 7 January 2017

Modified Reddit Enhancement Suite for Pale Moon web browser

Reddit Enhancement Suite is one of the first addons I install when setting up any browser. It is one of those addons you don't know you need until you start using it.



My favorite feature in RES is the "never ending Reddit" feature. I can infinitely scroll Reddit without having to deal with pages. Does Reddit even have pages anymore? I don't know, because I always use RES.

Unfortunately, it is not available officially for Pale Moon. That said, Pale Moon forum member "JustOff" has hacked together a fixed version of Reddit Enhancement Suite which you can find here:

https://github.com/JustOff/pm27-sdk-addons

To install it, click the "Download" button corresponding to the addon you want (Reddit Enhancement Suite in this case) in the "Fix for PM27" column.

I tested this version, and it works as expected.

Thank you JustOff!

How to install and use mpv to watch streaming video in Ubuntu 16.04 or Linux Mint 18.x



mpv is an open source cross platform media player for Linux, Mac OS X, Windows, and BSD. It is excellent for watching streaming video when coupled with another piece of software youtube-dl. mpv is a nice alternative to watching videos in the browser, as you don't have to use flash or a buggy ad-ridden website.

This tutorial will show you how to install and use an up to date version of mpv and youtube-dl on Ubuntu 16.04 and Linux Mint 18.x (18, 18.1, and whatever point release comes after that)

Installing mpv

 

mpv is already in the Ubuntu 16.04 repository, but I will show you how to install an updated version.

Please follow my instructions carefully, also, if you have added any other updated media library PPAs, please purge them with ppa-purge before adding these ones. This tutorial is meant for people who have the default media libraries that came with Ubuntu 16.04 or Linux Mint 18.

If you have messed with your system, purge any other media lib PPAs with:

$ sudo ppa-purge -d xenial ppa:some/ppa

The dollar sign is not part of the command, it's only to represent that this is a terminal command. Change some/ppa to the ppa you want to purge.

Ok, now to get on with the tutorial.

Step 1. Type this in the terminal (or copy and paste)

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mc3man/mpv-tests -y && sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mc3man/xerus-media -y && sudo apt update && sudo apt install mpv && sudo apt dist-upgrade

Make sure to look at the programs and libraries that will be updated, and press 'y' once you're confident.

Once you're all updated and mpv is installed, install youtube-dl.

$ sudo apt install python-pip

$ sudo pip install youtube-dl

To upgrade youtube-dl if it ever gets outdated, do this:

$ sudo pip install youtube-dl --upgrade

Now we'll continue to the next part.

Using mpv & youtube-dl

 

To use mpv, simply paste a video URL such as a youtube video, or any other supported site after the 'mpv' command.

So, for example:

$ mpv https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ

That will play a popular YouTube video in an mpv video.

To use  youtube-dl (to download a video)

$ youtube-dl https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ

To find a list of options youtube-dl has, type:

$ youtube-dl --help

mpv supports all the video sites youtube-dl does.

The list of supported sites can be found at: https://rg3.github.io/youtube-dl/supportedsites.html

mpv has a barebones user interface, it has keyboard shortcuts you can use to play and pause the video (spacebar), and to fast forward and rewind you can use the arrow keys. For more shortcuts, look up the documentation on mpv with:

$ man mpv (to view the manual)

To install a fully featured GUI for mpv (like VLC has), type this:

$ sudo apt install baka-mplayer

(assuming you added those two PPAs)

It will show up in the menus as "Baka-MPlayer"

I hope you found this tutorial useful.

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:
https://www.palemoon.org/

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:

https://sourceforge.net/p/ubuntuzilla/wiki/Main_Page/

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: https://sourceforge.net/projects/gmport/. 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
DownThemAll!
Flagfox
Flashgot
Foxyproxy Standard
Greasemonkey (duh)
HTTPS Everywhere
Lastpass
Noscript
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 palemoon.org

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.