apt-get update only required translations

apt-get update was updating translation for so many languages which I’m not concerned about and found that it can be controlled using apt.conf[1].

  • Added the following line to /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/70debconf
    Acquire::Languages { "environment"; "en"; "ta"; };

  • next immediate apt-get update still got translations for many other languages, I had to clear /var/lib/apt/lists as mentioned in [1] after which apt-get update pulled only the translations mentioned in the conf.

for more information check
man apt.conf
[1] http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2011/09/msg00059.html

carte blanche ’11

Its 7 years since cs-mit started the carte blanche event in ’05. Of all the events I like the Free/Open Source demos in our hangar. Every year its a new learning for me at the demos and this year almost in every stall our juniors had something new.

  • Kreceipes

    A KDE/mysql based recipe manager, the following are the highlights

    • can show the cholesterol, sugar etc. based on the ingredients.
    • can show recipes based on the items we have
    • can prepare shopping list for the recipes

    I hope this would be useful for bachelors :). My wish list for this is a global database of recipes so that we can pull and push recipes, rate them, mark as favo/like.

    GNOME alternative:

  • Basket note pads

    Another KDE based applciation for note taking. More than a simple text editor or a word processor, we can add any image, to do list, links, app launchers (ie. short cut to files) so on.

    GNOME alternative:

  • sweet home 3d

    Are you planning for building your own home? Try sweet home 3d using which can design/model it, including furniture, flooring so on. I have been looking for this.

  • Amaya

    w3c’s web development tool. Easy, user friendly and good for HTML beginners. I have just learned, how to show mathematical formulae on web pages. For more info, check this page.

  • Keryx

    Python based offline package management tool for debian based systems. When could this be useful, here is a scenario, I have desktop in my home (erode) which has basic GNU/Linux installation that comes with ubuntu. We have dial-up (limited download) connection, can be used to download a few packages but not the all we need. Using keryx, I can search and download the packages I need. Keryx allows us to download packages along with their (uninstalled)dependencies. A good demo by Kanchi LUG.

    A good work juniors :). Hope to see you on next carte blanche.

gnome-do plugin [part 1]: create an action

I started trying out gnome-do when I read an article about the upcoming ontology based tools (gnome-do and ubiquity) in Linux for you. There are many plug-ins available for gnome-do (official and community). I am using Debian(lenny) and had a hard time in setting it up. Setting up do from source was easy, but setting up the plug-ins from source was hard. Do plug-ins (0.8.3) depends on banshee (>=1.4.3), but debian lenny had a lesser version. Then I tried to set up banshee from source which again asked for gstreamer-* > 0.10.3 which was not available in Lenny. Moreover the first step for building banshee in Lenny has failed (apt-get build-dep banshee). Finally, I migrated to debian testing and got gnome-do and its plug-ins from debian repository without any problem. Its time to start our own plug-in, before proceeding to this step, I tried to build a plug-in( EOG-Slideshow ) that is available already in launchpad. All you have to do is,

1. run gnome-do from terminal

2. open the project file in monodevelop

3. build it from Monodevelop.

4. Now, open the plug-ins list by clicking on do in system tray and selecting the preferences. The list of plug-ins available are listed here.

5. We have to drag the dll (which we had compiled just now) and drop it in.

6. Terminal should show the status that the plug-in is getting installed. once it is installed then we shall enable it and start using.

Now, lets start writing the plug-in, the simplest plug-in that I found on net is Google-Search. There are few changes required (we need to include .addin.xml for the plug-in and we should inherit Act etc..).


using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using Do.Universe;
namespace HelloWorld
class HelloWorldAction : Act
public override string Name {
get { return "HelloWorld"; }
public override string Description {
get { return "Say Hello World."; }
public override string Icon {
get { return "search"; }
public override IEnumerable SupportedItemTypes {
get { return new Type[] { typeof (ITextItem) }; }
public override IEnumerable Perform (IEnumerable items, IEnumerable modItems) {
string query = (items.First() as ITextItem).Text;
System.Diagnostics.Process.Start("/usr/bin/xmessage", " -center -default okay hello, " + query);
return null;


namespace= "Do"
description="Say Hello World."
author="SatheeshKumar Mohan"

how to compile it?

$ gmcs -target:library -r:/usr/lib/gnome-do/Do.Universe.dll HelloWorld.cs "/res:HelloWorld.addin.xml"
That’s it, add the plugin to gnome-do as we did earlier and enable it. Just launch do, type anything say, sathyz and select the action “hello world”, it will display an xmessage saying “Hello, sathyz”.

The principle is this action is supported for any text item, (so the source here is text) and action to perform is show a dialog saying hello, # that text#. In the next part l am trying to get data from a specific source, say the data for Rhythmbox comes from rhythmbox.db,for ssh connect it is ~/.ssh/config.

problem in starting nm-applet

nm-applet fails to start and shows

** (nm-applet:3006): WARNING **: nma_dbus_init(): could not acquire its service. dbus_bus_acquire_service() says: 'Connection ":1.17" is not allowed to own the service "org.freedesktop.NetworkManagerInfo" due to security policies in the configuration file'

The following solution worked for me,
user (skumar) is not a member of group netdev.

Reference : http://forums.debian.net/viewtopic.php?p=205475&sid=1675a9fa3162153fd40654f2b72cb4a8