Things to do after installing Kubuntu

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Kubuntu offers one of the best Plasma and Linux experience. It is heavily customizable so you can personalize your desktop the way Counting Cars personalize cars!

Kubuntu has fully matured and stabilized and comes with the brand new KDE Plasma workspaces and other KDE technologies. Like any other operating system Kubuntu also needs a little bit of work to get it ready for you. There are a few things which are optional and I have added them here based on my own usage, you may not need them.

#1. Install proprietary drivers

The first thing you need to do is install drivers if you are using proprietary GPU. Kubuntu comes with free drivers so it will work out of the box on a majority of machines, but if you need better and smoother performance than you may want to do it.

Hit Alt+F2 to fire Krunner and then type Additional Drivers.

kubuntu13-10-krunner-additional

Open the tool and it should show the drivers available for your GPU. Go ahead and activate it.

kubuntu13-10-additionalYou will need to reboot your system in order for the driver to work.

#2. Install non-free codecs

If you watch online videos or listen to patent incumbent MP3 music you may want to install drives and codecs which are not pre-installed due to licensing and patent issues.

Open Muon Package Manager from Krunner and then search for kubuntu-restricted, it will show two packages, select them and install them. Once installed you should be able to play all video and audio formats.

kubuntu13-10-muon-package-restricted#3. Install Chrome browser

Kubuntu comes with a free browser Rekonq, which respects user’s privacy; the latest version of Kubuntu also comes with Firefox pre-installed and you can choose either one. You can also install Google’s open source Chromium or non-free Chrome browser.  Chromium is available in the official repositories of Kubuntu so you can install it by searching in the Muon Package Manger or from the Konsole. However, if you want to install Google Chrome, go to this link and download the appropriate version (32 or 64 bit .deb) and the click on it to install it just like you would install .exe files on Windows.

#4. Install VLC

VLC is more or less like Swiss Knife when it comes to play videos. It supports virtually ever video format available out there. VLC is also available in the repositories (aka repos) so you can easily install it from Muon Package Manager. Once VLC is installed, you won’t have to worry about playing videos on Kubuntu.

#5. Install more fonts

Kubuntu come with a decent set of fonts. However if you want you can increase your font collections – for free. Google has made available its Web fonts for free. If you want only a few of Google fonts then you can download them manually from here. But if you want to grab the entire collection, go ahead and open Konsole (terminal for KDE):

First you need to install Mercurial by running this command:

sudo apt-get install -y mercurial;

Once done, run this command to clone the font repo on your KDE system:

hg clone https://googlefontdirectory.googlecode.com/hg/ googlefontdirectory;

The command will create googlefontdirectory folder in your home. That’s where all the fonts will be downloaded.

Once the fonts are downloaded you have to install them. Stay in the home directory and hit Alt + . to view hidden folders. If you already installed some fonts manually you will see a folder called .fonts in home; if not then create a folder named ‘.fonts’. Now copy the fonts folder that you downloaded to this folder and all Google fonts will be enabled on the system.

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Swapnil Bhartiya
A free software fund-a-mental-ist and Charles Bukowski fan, Swapnil also writes fiction and tries to find cracks in the paper armours of proprietary companies. Swapnil has been covering Linux and Free Software/Open Source since 2005. You can follow him on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Arnie? Are you Swapnil’s evil twin?

    >Use common properties for all folders’

    THATS what I forgot to do on my wifes computer this week. This is the sort of article you have to bookmark for future use (and I have dozen family members running Kubuntu 12.04LTS already.)

    her mobo died so I installed a new one, cpu and ram and got to install Kubuntu 14.04 on a new hard disk.
    What a breeze!

    I got my youngest to press Enter a few times as well as add username and few more Enter and it was done.
    I then did the updates while we had supper, added her old directory and she got to choose again what she wants in terms of wallpaper, fonts, icons (cute Futurama ones), themes (pink fluffy doesnt seem to work) and windowing. She then put panels all over the place and had them all disappear when not used and fixes the 4 virtual desktops with different widgets.
    Its her computer.

    It looks nothing like the kids laptops or her moms Kubuntu. Its hers, to her taste and use (yes, I like big icons on the desktop she says… thats what I WANT!) and it works how she wants it too.
    Needless to say, she despises the work Windows with a passion after using Kubuntu for the past few years.

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