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ubuntu.pngUbuntu is a linux based Operating System that’s getting more attention than ever before. It’s very user friendly, and lots of people are downloading it because it comes with better hardware detection and works well out-of-the-box. If you haven’t got yourself a Live CD, get a copy for free from ShipIt

Some reasons why you should give Ubuntu a try:

    * It is completely free. Order a CD via their ShipIt service, and you get the CD delivered at your doorstep, at ZERO cost!

    * It doesn’t need expensive hardware to run, it can run perfectly on a machine with a normal configuration. Doesn’t crash often like Windows.

    * Ubuntu updates every six months, and they’re free as well.

    * Installing apps in Ubuntu is very easy. Just a single command and you’re done.

    * Ubuntu Installer imports your Windows OS settings, so some things come configured when you install it – just like you had on Windows. For instance, your XP Firefox profile could be imported.

Although Ubuntu comes with excellent packages that help you alter the default settings and customize the distro for yourself, tweaking a few settings however requires you to go deeper into the system. Plus if you do something wrong, you’re probably going to end up making a mess of your Ubuntu installation. That’s where a program called Ubuntu Tweak comes in handy. Ubuntu Tweak is a little GUI based tool and it lets you edit some hidden settings on your Ubuntu installation very easily. It’s similar to Tweak UI for Windows XP.

Here’s how you can install it:

In the terminal, type:

    sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

    In the file that opens, add the following lines to the end of the list:

    deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/tualatrix/ubuntu gutsy main
    deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/tualatrix/ubuntu gutsy main

    Save the file, go back to the terminal, and type:

    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install ubuntu-tweak

Once installed, you should see a ‘System Tools’ sub menu in your Gnome Menu List from where you can access Ubuntu Tweak.

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screenshot-ubuntu-tweak-1.jpg

Open the program, and you get access to instantly modify a lot of hidden settings. You can change the splash screen in one single click; remove items from Auto Start; hide Computer, Home, Network icons from the desktop; adjust active window opacity; and lots more.

screenshot-ubuntu-tweak.jpg

Besides that, Ubuntu Tweak also lets you disable some services for a higher level of security. For instance – you could disable user switching, printing, run application dialog, etc. – in just a few clicks.

  1. Eamon
    January 24, 2010 at 6:48 am

    Hi Nice article, unfortunately this app no longer works with 9.04 / 9.10.

  2. Name (required)
    December 3, 2008 at 12:31 am

    Why is this whole site; ubuntu this, ubuntu that. How about more LINUX things. Most of us that have been running linux since the late 90's don't use and never will use ubuntu.

  3. Dave
    March 24, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    When I try to open Ubuntu Tweak under system tools, it does not open. What could be the problem?

  4. Mike
    March 7, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Wow, nice little tip. Thanks!

  5. JC John SESE Cuneta
    February 26, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    @Tim: I don't think telling the "virtues" of the newer versions will appease the fears of the non-Ubuntu users who are mostly people who never tried GNU/Linux or was discouraged to go back because of the how hard it is setup with the distro they tried before. (And they are not aware that there are many distros to begin with.)

    @Verdican: If I remember correctly, Compiz and Beryl are actually two independent group. Compiz is still alive, but some of its supporters and Beryl joined together and created Compiz-Beryl. Which was later renamed to Compiz-Fusion their current name (dropping the Beryl project). So there is "Compiz" and there is "Compiz-Fusion". I use Compiz-Fusion because it is more featured and most updated than Compiz.

  6. Verdican
    February 25, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    @Tim: Although Ubuntu has been out for a long time, it doesn't mean that everyone already know about it. Most of the non-geeky people I know believe that Ubuntu or any other Linux distribution for that matter is for nerds and geeks only. They think that playing around with Ubuntu involves messing with the command shell which is something they don't want to do because it might risk "damaging their computer". A tool like Ubuntu Tweak just makes things easier for those beginners who want to give Ubuntu a chance before giving up because things are 'too complicated'.

    For anyone who is using Ubuntu; I highly recommend the program Compiz (Formerly Beryl). It's this amazing program that gives such good eye candy that it makes Vista's Aero seem like something from the 1800's. You can download it here (http://compiz.org/Home/Start) and see a demo here (http://youtube.com/watch?v=E4Fbk52Mk1w).

  7. Tim
    February 25, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    This is dumb...ubuntu has been out for a long time..
    your post is extremely late, i have been using it for over 1 yr
    why not tell the virtues of the newer versions..and how to install it from dvd

  8. Jonathan Bennett
    February 25, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Ack. I don't agree when people say stuff like "Doesn’t crash often like Windows." I suppose that might have some truth for the average user, but for technically knowledgeable people like ourselves, the idea of Windows crashing should be something left in the past. My Windows operating systems have almost never crashed in the past six years, and I'm including my two years with Windows ME. Oh well.

    Ubuntu is pretty cool, although I've always had a sweet spot for Linspire/Freespire.

  9. Dara
    February 25, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    Very cool, are there any screenshots of the actual OS?

  10. Ashutosh Mishra
    February 25, 2008 at 9:13 am

    That's a nice Ubuntu post! I use Ubuntu full time, so it feels good that MakeUseOf is giving a bit of attention to Linux as well. However, I don't agree with you that installing apps requires any command (be that even one). It is completely GUI based using Add / Remove or Synaptic. Most software makers are also offering .deb packages which are automatically installed by GDebi.

    :)

  11. felinesophy
    February 25, 2008 at 7:39 am

    This is cool, thanks for sharing the Ubuntu information. A friend suggested me Ubuntu few weeks ago, and I had no idea what it was at that time.
    I make your site as my favourites!

    cheerz,
    felinesophy
    http://felinesophy.blogspot.com
    "Intertwining fate between cats and human...loss in bedazzlement"

  12. dave
    February 25, 2008 at 5:10 am

    here is more screenshots for ubuntu tweak http://www.ubuntugeek.com/howto-tweak-ubuntu.html

  13. trent
    February 24, 2008 at 11:52 pm

    Hey thanks for posting this! I have been trying to tell people this for a long time. Much appreciated!

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