linux tech tip

you decompress a tar file by right clicking it in the file browser and then clicking "extract here" or for more options "open in archive manager"

linux tech tip

you can generate an SSH key by opening "passwords & keys" app, clicking the + button, and selecting "openssh key"

once you create the key you can install it on remote servers you wanna ssh into with the following prompt

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linux tech tip

you can get all your google microsoft or whatever accounts in one place, open the settings app and click "online accounts", then log into yr accounts
this will automatically enable the email, cloud storage files, cloud printing, contacts, calendar, task lists, etc

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linux tech tip (also for windows and mac)

tired of zoom security bugs and crappy video conferencing software that doesn't work

type in a name for your meeting and click go. then share the link with yr friends and you have a full meeting solution with audio, video and screen sharing

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linux tech tip

to fill out pdf forms, there is no need to download Adobe Software or anything

simply open the pdf in the default "Document Viewer" app, fill out the form, and then click the menu > save a copy when you're done

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linux tech tip

to search for files, apps, settings, contacts, calendar entries, notes, unicode characters, etc
just press and release the super key (the one next to space that isn't ctrl, alt, or fn -- it might have a windows or a mac logo on it). then start typing your search terms

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linux tech tip

need to run a linux VM? install the "Boxes" app from the app store, open it, and click the plus button to select from a range of linux (and BSD and stuff!) distros to create VMs from. once you make a selection, the VM will automatically be downloaded and installed for you

need windows? no problem, just download the windows ISO from microsoft, and open it in Boxes. it will still automatically install and set up the OS for you, so you can go grab a cup of tea (windows takes a good bit to install) and get straight to work when it's all done!

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note: if you want to play games in a windows VM, you won't be able to just use Boxes directly. playing games needs a dedicated GPU for the game, so you'll need 2 GPUs in your computer (for example, if you have a desktop with both integrated graphics and a dedicated GPU card). then you'll need to make sure your linux OS boots using integrated graphics leaving the dedicated GPU free, and tweak the VM config to assign the free GPU to it. talk to me if you need help with this!

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(if you have an amd card this works very well. if you have an nvidia card you'll need additional hacks to make the card think you're not in a VM, because if it detects that you're in a VM it'll tell you to purchase nvidia's enterprise gpu line and refuse to work)

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linux tech tips

want to sync your android phone and your linux computer? install kde connect on the phone, and gsconnect on the computer, and then pair your devices
this enables you to share files, urls, and text snippets as well as control your computer's mouse and keyboard, media player if you're currently playing something (handy for controlling movies when your computer is far away connected to a big screen!), and slideshow controls if you're currently presenting a slides. you can also read and send sms from your computer using a nice messenger-like GUI (it sends the sms through your phone)

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linux tech tips

need to write a disk image to a USB drive? no need to install additional software, just right click the ISO file and click "open with" > "disk image writer"
then select the correct the device to write to (it will display an easy description of the devices, like "SanDisk 16GB USB Drive") and confirm
wait for the progress bar to reach 100%, then click the eject button in the app title bar and you're done!

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linux tech tips

don't want to write that ISO file yet, just want to see what's inside it? right click open with and select "disk image mounter"
then it'll show up just like a real drive! and you can browse the contents (but you won't be able to edit anything)

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linux tech tips

want to monitor your system? surprisingly, the app for this is called "system monitor" and it displays a tree of the programs currently running and their stats, along with graphs of your CPU, RAM, and network usage

you can also search for open files currently used by any programs using the menu

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@haskal @syntacticsugarglider
Gui is great!

I think there are real reasons that linux help rarely uses the gui though:

You can install so many different guis that the command line is the most uniform method of delivering info

Commands are a more direct way to communicate (rather than screenshots or videos)

And finally, legacy. People use command lines because it's familiar. It's familiar because it's how things are taught.

@polyphonic @haskal consistency is key. it matters very little how ergonomic something is as long as it's the most consistent alternative: people will adapt.

@haskal There's a GUI for copying SSH keys around?? Sweet!

@haskal ...I wonder what KDE's equivalent is, if it has one.

@haskal Turns out KWallet is, as usual, much less "dumbed down"!... and unusually, doesn't seem to have that feature at all.

@haskal Although it seems everything's integrating with it, like Chromium (we use it for Zoom, ugh) and... /Steam/ of all things??

@haskal i literally do not have graphical applications for any of these tasks and have never felt the need to make my user environment less consistent

you're going to corrupt the youth of athens



aha don't perpetuate data siloing and oppressive digital power structures you're so sexy

@haskal bernie says linux users can have a little bit of surveillance capitalism

@haskal On Mac, it'll be labeled ⌘! No Mac logo. (:

@haskal *perks ears* Oooh we've been wondering how to turn off our discrete GPU for a while!

Nvidia gives us issues.

@Frost do you have one of those laptops with a discrete nvidia gpu in it
bumblebee/bbswitch can at the very least turn the gpu off when not in use (along with the main purpose, turn the gpu on when it is in use and direct games to use it)

if you install manjaro (it has a kde edition!) then it'll set up the drivers and bumblebee automatically

@haskal Yyyep...

but it's a Mac so we're /not sure if Bumblebee works./

I think we installed it once and it said "couldn't detect an integrated GPU" or something.

@Frost i had it in my head that macs used amd graphics,
do they ship with nvidia now?

@haskal Nah. Before ours they used AMD... AFTER ours they used AMD... nope, Nvidia for us.

Our /new/ mac uses AMD but it's got a /bar of glass/ instead of the function keys, and other stuff like barely-functional wireless drivers, so it's a Windows gaming device currently.

@haskal i'm gonna go dd a bunch of files around to console myself while i cry about the state of software

@haskal tbh that probably wouldn't help, i dd'd an entire partition the other day to move my partner's boot drive from an HDD to an SSD and i didn't know that UUIDs are part of the partition and not the partition table so it ended up not having a deterministic boot process because GRUB was resolving by UUID .-.

even dd isn't simple and nice enough when it contacts the real world .-.

@haskal On my arch laptop I prefer to use htop because it is more minimalist (BTW I use Arch)


> if you have an amd card this works very well

caveat: if your card does not suffer from the reset bug

caveat for caveat: i have an nvidia card to pass though to VMs i have no idea which cards have it and which ones dont

@haskal An *awful* lot of these tips are specific to one distro or another and probably aren't going to apply to any majority of Linux users.

@varx they're specific to gnome
that was kind of the intention. i don't think kde is viable for end usage for the most part

@varx like for example, pop_os! which is hands down the distro i would recommend for beginners

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