The Perfect Desktop – Ubuntu Studio 12.04

The Perfect Desktop – Ubuntu Studio 12.04

The Perfect Desktop – Ubuntu Studio 12.04

This tutorial shows how you can set up an Ubuntu Studio 12.04
desktop that is a full-fledged replacement for a Windows desktop, i.e.
that has all the software that people need to do the things they do on
their Windows desktops. The advantages are clear: you get a secure
system without DRM restrictions that works even on old hardware, and
the best thing is: all software comes free of charge. Please note that Ubuntu Studio 12.04 uses Xfce as the default desktop environment.

I want to say first that this is not the only way of setting up such
a system. There are many ways of achieving this goal but this is the
way I take. I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!

 

1 Preliminary Note

To fully replace a Windows desktop, I want the Ubuntu Studio desktop to have the following software installed:

Graphics:

  • The GIMP – free software replacement for Adobe Photoshop
  • Shotwell Photo Manager – full-featured personal photo management application for the GNOME desktop

Internet:

  • Firefox
  • Opera
  • Chromium – Google’s open-source browser
  • Flash Player
  • FileZilla – multithreaded FTP client
  • Thunderbird
    email and news client

  • Evolution – combines e-mail, calendar, address book, and task list management functions
  • aMule – P2P file sharing application
  • Transmission BitTorrent Client – Bittorrent client
  • Vuze – Java Bittorrent client
  • Empathy IM Client – multi-platform instant messaging client
  • Skype
  • Google Earth
  • Xchat IRC – IRC client
  • Gwibber Social Client – open-source microblogging client (Twitter, Facebook, etc.)

Office:

  • LibreOffice Writer – replacement for Microsoft Word
  • LibreOffice Calc – replacement for Microsoft Excel
  • Adobe Reader
  • GnuCash – double-entry book-keeping personal finance system, similar to Quicken
  • Scribus – open source desktop publishing (DTP) application

Multimedia:

  • Amarok – audio player
  • Audacity – free, open source, cross platform digital audio editor
  • Banshee – audio player, can encode/decode various formats and synchronize music with Apple iPods
  • MPlayer – media player (video/audio), supports WMA
  • Rhythmbox Music Player – audio player, similar to Apple’s iTunes, with support for iPods
  • gtkPod – software similar to Apple’s iTunes, supports iPod, iPod nano, iPod shuffle, iPod photo, and iPod mini
  • XMMS – audio player similar to Winamp
  • dvd::rip – full featured DVD copy program
  • Kino – free digital video editor
  • Sound Juicer CD Extractor – CD ripping tool, supports various audio codecs
  • VLC Media Player – media player (video/audio)
  • RealPlayer – media player (available for i386 systems only)
  • Totem – media player (video/audio)
  • Xine – media player, supports various formats; can play DVDs
  • Brasero – CD/DVD burning program
  • K3B – CD/DVD burning program
  • Multimedia Codecs

Programming:

  • KompoZer – WYSIWYG HTML editor, similar to Macromedia Dreamweaver, but not as feature-rich (yet)
  • Bluefish – text editor, suitable for many programming and markup languages
  • Eclipse Extensible Tool Platform and Java IDE

Other:

  • VirtualBox OSE– lets you run your old Windows desktop as
    a virtual machine under your Linux desktop, so you don’t have to
    entirely abandon Windows

  • TrueType fonts
  • Java
  • Read-/Write support for NTFS partitions
  • gDebi – package installer taking care of dependencies
  • gedit – text editor

Lots of our desired applications are available in the Ubuntu
repositories, and some of these applications have been contributed by
the Ubuntu community.

As you might have noticed, a few applications are redundant, for
example there are two CD/DVD burning applications in my list (Brasero,
K3B). If you know which one you like best, you obviously don’t need to
install the other applications, however if you like choice, then of
course you can install both. The same goes for music players like
Amarok, Banshee, Rhythmbox, XMMS or browsers (Firefox, Opera, Chromium).

I will use the username howtoforge in this tutorial. Please replace it with your own username.

 

2 Installing The Base System

The installation of the base system is easy as 1-2-3 because the
Ubuntu Studio installer doesn’t offer a lot of options to choose from,
so you cannot go wrong.

Download the Ubuntu Studio iso image from http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/ubuntustudio/releases/precise/release/, burn it onto a DVD, and boot your computer from it.
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Then select Install Ubuntu Studio:

The installer is started afterwards:

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Select the installer language:

On the next screen you see a few requirements for the Ubuntu-Studio 12.04
installation (the system should have at least 7.6 GB available drive
space and should be connected to the Internet). Please check the Download updates while installing and Install this third-party software (this will
install the software necessary to process Flash, MP3, and other media
files) checkboxes and click on Continue:

Now we come to the partitioning of our hard disk. Usually Erase disk and install Ubuntu-Studio is a good
choice, unless you need custom partitions and know what you’re doing. Erase disk and install Ubuntu-Studio will create one
big / partition for us:

Select the hard drive that you want to use for the Ubuntu-Studio
installation:

Then choose your time zone:

Change the keyboard layout, if necessary:

Type in your real name, your desired username along with a password,
and click on Continue:

Afterwards, Ubuntu-Studio is being installed. This can take a few minutes,
so be patient:

After the installation, you will be asked to reboot the system.
Click on Restart Now. At the end of the shutdown process, you are asked to remove the
Ubuntu-Studio installation CD from the CD drive. Please do this and press ENTER:

Your new Ubuntu-Studio system starts. Log into the desktop with the
username and password you provided during the installation:

The base system is now ready to be used.

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