I tried a few ways of scrobbling my ipod play counts, before finding amarok. At first, I used Rockbox, which created a log I could upload to a site that would scrobble the tracks to my last.fm account. I switched back to mostly using the Apple Firmware for various reasons, but had trouble scrobbling my played tracks in Linux. At first I tried the official last.fm player, which has this feature for windows, with no luck in ubuntu. Then I gave my shot at a script which worked usually, but took a little effort and configuring, and even then I had about a 50% success rate. Finally, the other day I sync’d my ipod with amarok. I noticed it said ‘several tracks were submitted to las.fm.’ I checked my last.fm page and there were all my tracks! Somehow amarok bypassed the ‘spam protection’ in ubuntu and submitted tracks before the last ones i played. They were all there!
- Stumbleupon – a nice little add on for when I get bored… Click stumble and it takes you to a web page. The page could be anything. From videos to pictures, and games to blogs. Click ‘I like it!’ or the thumbs down, and it will change the sites you are more likely to ‘stumble’ ‘upon’
- Dowload Statusbar Just shows downloads in the statusbar at the bottom of the window, rather then a whole new window. Neatens things up a bit.
- Google Browsersync Synchronizes my cookies, saved passwords, and bookmarks between multiple computers. It saves a copy of all the data on google servers, and then you just add the addon on another computer, and it will ‘sync’ your ‘browser’
- CookieSafe Denies all cookies, unless you specifically tell cookie safe to keep them.
- TabMixPlus Adds a little ‘x’ to every tab, because for reasons unknown to me firefox sometimes chooses not to put them there….
- Full Screen Homestarrunner makes animations on the homestarrunner website take up the full browser window. This is a must.
I have been struggling to get my ipod to work properly in ubuntu for the past couple of weeks… here are some useful applications, with their pros and cons.
Pro: Full ipod sync including entire media library and all playlists with two clicks click (right click on ipod, click update ipod)
Con: Buggy program, still under high development. Takes up high amounts of memory. Does not work with gnome sound keyboard shortcuts.
The Bottom Line: Songbird is good for the full sync of my ipod.. but not stable enough to be my desktop media player yet.
Pro: Simple, lightweight media player. Can sync individual songs to ipod. new! can now sync ipod to last.fm!
Con: Sync only what songs you drag onto ipod, no option to just sync the whole library.
The Bottom Line: Before I got an ipod, rhythmbox was great for my desktop media player. Now that I need synchronization with an ipod, I have to look for a more advanced program.
Pro: Can sync entire library and playlists, but each has to be set up individually. Good Player in general. Apparently sync’s ipod’s play counts to last.fm. (I will have to test this later). Searches and Finds Album Art! I forgot the ipod could display album art until now! Woo! This is the only media player I have found that easily finds your album art, and sync’s it all to the ipod for every album.
Con: Not a light program like rhythmbox. A little tricky to set up mp3 playback, had to search the forums and then run
sudo apt-get install libxine1-ffmpeg libxine-extracodecs
–a little tricky to set up the ipod and ipod sync, and a few bugs in the program in general. (I had to force quit a few times)
The Bottom Line: Amarok seems to be the perfect balance for me, and that is why it is my media player of choice at the moment. It scrobbles to last.fm, manages my music library, and sync’s it all to my ipod video.
Pro: Made just for the ipod. If installed with automatix, can transfer video to the ipod as well. Checks checksum as well, and cleans up the ipod in general.
Con: Not integrated with a media player, so playlist creation is a chore.
The Bottom Line: Solid for use with just the ipod, and as far as I know necessary to sync videos, but not a media player I can use.
Wondering how you can get the pretty desktop you see in all my screenshots? Here is how I assemblede this fresh, blue theme.
- Install Compiz-Fusion
- Go to theme settings and set the theme to “Glossy”
- Download and install this icon theme
- Download this wallpaper
- Install Avant Window Navigator ( sudo apt-get install avant-window-navigator )
- Delete the bottom panel. configure awn how you like, I added the trashbar applet, workspaces applet, and changed the colors to match the blue theme a bit.
- Download this image
- Right click on the top panel and select properties. Go to the background tab and select background image and select the image above.
On a fresh install of Ubuntu, I find myself needing more packages for various things… here is an ongoing list of the packages I install. Just copy and paste this into the terminal to install them.
sudo apt-get install epiphany-browser subversion build-essential checkgmail nautilus-open-terminal ruby compizconfig-settings-manager flashplugin-nonfree cgmail music-applet
- epiphany-browser I install as an alternative to firefox. although firefox is great, its nice to be able to open another browser without all my saved passwords, add ons, andother things that could slow me down.
- subversion is for acquiring source code for those beta apps I feel I have to try before binaries are availible.
- build-essential is for compiling that source code
- checkgmail a nice little app that checks my gmail account and pops up when I get a new message
- nautilus-open-terminal adds a useful little ‘open terminal’ option when I right click in a folder. This saves me alot of time from cd’ing around my computer.
- ruby is needed for many scripts, most important for me my ipod_lastfm_bridge script.
- compizconfig-settings-manager installs the settings for compiz-fusion, because I often forget it (and it is not installed by default in gutsy)
- flashplugin-nonfree sets up my flash player for firefox and epiphany real quick.. so I don’t have to download anything manually
My intention for this blog is to share my expirience with ubuntu. This includes an ongoing list of packages I install, favorite and least favorite aplications, favorite web sites, tips, tricks, how-to’s, and so on. If you have any questions, feel free to pm me on ubuntuforums.org (username = m6arate)