How To Use The Arc Theme On KDE Plasma Desktop

Arc is a great GTK theme that many people love, but what if you’re a KDE Plasma user? As it turns out, KDE Plasma users can now enjoy Arc thanks to the Arc KDE project. In this article, we’ll go over how to install the Arc theme on KDE and enable it for use in the Plasma desktop.

Note: To use Arc KDE, please ensure you have a fairly recent version of KDE Plasma 5 (at least version 5.7).

Ubuntu

Ubuntu users who are looking to install the Arc KDE pack have it easy, as there is a PPA available. Open up a terminal and enter the following command to enable the Arc KDE PPA.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:papirus/papirus

After adding the new PPA, you’ll need to update Ubuntu’s software sources. Using the apt update command, refresh the new Papirus PPA.

sudo apt update

Running the apt update command often reveals that software updates are ready to install. Don’t ignore this step. Instead, use the apt upgrade command to ensure that Ubuntu’s software is fully up to date.

sudo apt upgrade -y

When the upgrades finish installing, it’s safe to install the Arc KDE theme stuff.

sudo apt install --install-recommends arc-kde

Arch Linux

Arch Linux users can get quick access to Arc KDE by grabbing the package directly from the Arch AUR. The first step in the process of installing Arc KDE is to sync the latest version of the Git program with Pacman.

sudo pacman -S git

Next, use the Git tool to clone the latest version of the Arc KDE snapshot package to your Linux PC.

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/arc-kde-git/

At this point, it’s time to build the package. Please keep in mind that though makepkg generally collects all important dependencies, it doesn’t always work. In the event that a dependency fails to install, visit the official AUR page, and scroll down to “Dependencies”.

makepkg -si

The Arc KDE Aur package is built and installed, but we’re not done. Next, you’ll need to install the companion Kvantum theme for Arc KDE. Luckily, this package doesn’t require any interacting with the AUR. Instead, sync it with Pacman.

sudo pacman -S kvantum-theme-arc

OpenSUSE

Thanks to the OBS, OpenSUSE users can easily install the Arc KDE packages. Follow this link, find your version of OpenSUSE, and click the download button next to it. Selecting a download next to any release will automatically launch YaST.

When YaST launches, follow the instructions to enable the new repository and software.

Generic Instructions

Are you a Debian user? Fedora fan? Use a version of Linux that doesn’t have a nice native package for Arc KDE? Not to worry, the project as a generic Bash script that any Linux user can run to quickly install the software. To install it, open up a terminal and run one of the commands below.

Install Arc KDE System-wide

The best way to install Arc KDE is to do it system-wide. Going this route ensures that Arc KDE is accessible to multiple users, rather than just a single user.

sudo wget -qO- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/PapirusDevelopmentTeam/arc-kde/master/install-arc-kde-root.sh | sh

Install Arc KDE For One User

Though not recommended, it is very possible to install Arc KDE for a single user. However, please understand that you’ll need to repeat this process for each user that wants to use Arc KDE.

wget -qO- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/PapirusDevelopmentTeam/arc-kde/master/install-arc-kde-home.sh | sh

When the Arc KDE theme is installed, the next step is to install Kvantum. In the terminal, search for “kvantum”, or “kvantum engine” and install the software. Then, run “kvantummanager”. Alternatively, build it from source here.

Uninstalling Arc KDE

If you’re looking to get rid of Arc KDE and have installed it with the generic script, you’ll need to run a separate script to get rid of it. In the terminal, do the following:

Root

sudo wget -qO- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/PapirusDevelopmentTeam/arc-kde/master/remove-arc-kde.sh | sh

Single user

wget -qO- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/PapirusDevelopmentTeam/arc-kde/master/remove-arc-kde.sh | sh

Applying Arc KDE

Applying Arc KDE is quite easy, thanks to the KDE “Look and feel” app. Go to the application menu, search for “look and feel” and click on it. Inside of “Look and feel”, you should see “Arc KDE” in the list of themes to apply. Highlight the theme and click “OK” to instantly enable it.

After applying the Arc KDE theme with the Look and Feel manager in Plasma 5, you’ll need to enable the theme in Kvantum. All installation methods should install Kvantum. However, if for some reason the Kvantum tools didn’t install, open up your Linux distribution’s package manager, search for “kvantumengine” and install it.

Press Alt + F2 on the keyboard to bring up the Plasma command launch dialog, write “kvantummanager” in it and press enter.

Inside the Kvantum Manager app, look for the “Arc” theme and apply it to enable the theme on your Linux PC.

With Kvantum set up, your Linux PC is now using Arc KDE!

Read How To Use The Arc Theme On KDE Plasma Desktop by Derrik Diener on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Switch From Bash To Fish Shell On Linux

In the terminal, many users stick with Bash. As a result, their terminal experience isn’t as good as it could be. It’s very basic, with no modern features out of the box. If you want a better terminal experience, consider switching from Bash to Fish Shell.

Install Fish Shell

Before switching from Bash to Fish Shell as your primary terminal Shell, you’ll need to install it on Linux. Luckily, its very popular and there are packages of it on pretty much every Linux distribution out there. Open up a terminal and enter the command below to install it.

Ubuntu

sudo apt install fish

Debian

sudo apt-get install fish

Arch Linux

sudo pacman -S fish

Fedora

sudo dnf install fish

OpenSUSE

sudo zypper install fish

Other Linuxes

Fish has been around for a while, despite being fairly modern in features. Due to its age, it’s pretty easy to get it on just about any Linux distribution. To install it, open up a terminal and check your package manager for “fish” or “fish shell”. Alternatively, check out the official Github page and build it from source with the program code.

Switch Bash To Fish Shell

Using Fish as the primary shell may take some getting used to, as it is very different from Bash. Unlike a lot of other alternatives (like Zsh, Ksh, etc), Fish isn’t using the Bash system as a base. Since Fish has this design, some commands may flat out refuse to work due to a different syntax, and you’ll likely have to change some habits when using the terminal.

Lucky for you, there’s a great page that outlines all of the intricacies of the Fish Shell and environment to look over. It outlines the Fish Syntax, how it handles piping, and so many other things. If you’re considering making the switch, do yourself a favor and give it a read.

Once you’ve looked the cheatsheet over, it’s safe to open up a terminal and change your user’s default shell from Bash to Fish Shell. In the terminal, run the chsh command. However, do not run it with sudo, or you could potentially swap the Root user’s shell to Fish instead of your own.

chsh -s /usr/bin/fish

Running the chsh command will assign your user the new shell. To gain instant access to Fish with your user, write fish into the terminal. Otherwise, restart your Linux PC to finalize the switch. After rebooting, log back in and open up a terminal again. If everything goes right, Fish will be the new default, and you’ll be greeted with the Fish Shell, rather than Bash.

Configuring Fish

Though you’ve switched to the Fish Shell, it’s not fully ready to use. The next step is to configure it. In the terminal, create a new configuration folder.

mkdir -p ~/.config/fish

Next, create a new configuration file, inside of the new Fish config folder:

touch ~/.config/fish/config.fish

Using touch creates a blank Fish Shell config file with nothing in it. At this point, it’s safe to add any custom configurations into the shell. For most users, the only modification needed is one to permanently disable the welcome message. Add the modification to the Fish config by running the following command:

echo 'set fish_greeting ""' >> ~/.config/fish/config.fish

Backup Fish Config

Setting up Fish on multiple computers can be quite annoying, as you’ll have to create a new config for each PC. A quicker way is to create a backup of the file and restore it on each PC you plan to use Fish on. To back up the config, run this command in the terminal

cp ~/.config/fish/config.fish ~/Documents/

To restore the config, move the file to the new PC, place it in the Documents folder and run:

mkdir -p ~/.config/fish

cp ~/Documents/config.fish ~/.config/fish/config.fish

Customization

For the most part, Fish is all set up and ready to use. However, if you want to customize and configure it further, there’s a way to do that. Go into the terminal and run this command:

fish_config

Running this command will automatically open up a new tab in your web browser, with it’s possible aspects of Fish.

In the Fish_Config window, you’ll be able to apply preset shell themes, assign variables, set custom functions, view command history, assign abbreviations, aliases and more!

Fish Autocomplete

By far, the most attractive feature in Fish is the autocomplete feature. It’s so far ahead of everything else, and this one feature alone is enough to convince even the most diehard of Bash fans to check it out. The best part about this feature is that it doesn’t require a lot of know-how to take advantage of. Even terminal noobs can get a lot of use out of it.

To use the Fish autocomplete feature, go to the terminal and start typing a command. As you type, you’ll see the shell try to guess as you go. It corrects as it receives more information. At any time you can auto-complete a command by pressing the right arrow key on the keyboard. After pressing the correct key, your half-finish command will be automatically completed.

Read How To Switch From Bash To Fish Shell On Linux by Derrik Diener on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Install LPlayer On Linux

Minimalism is fashionable on Linux, as its an operating system known for simplicity. When it comes to music players, there are a lot of lightweight ones. Unfortunately, a lot of the lightweight music apps on Linux don’t look very nice and don’t feel very modern. If you love minimalism and want a music player on Linux that doesn’t use a ton of system resources yet stays modern, you may want to install LPlayer.

Ubuntu

Ubuntu users will have the easiest time installing LPlayer as it’s the developers target this operating system. There’s a PPA anyone can add and it’s compatible with Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Elementary and other Linux OS’s that use Ubuntu as a base.

To add the PPA, open up a terminal window and enter the following command to add the new software source.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:atareao/lplayer

Now that the new PPA is added to Ubuntu, you’ll need to run the apt update command to download package information for it. If you skip this step, LPlayer won’t be found or be able to install, even though the PPA is on your Ubuntu PC.

sudo apt update

While running the apt update command, you might have noticed that there are some updates for Ubuntu. Using the apt upgrade command, install these updates. Don’t skip this step, as LPlayer will likely run better with all software on the PC up to date.

sudo apt upgrade -y

Now that everything is up to date, it’s time to install the LPlayer app on Ubuntu. Using the apt install command, get LPLayer:

sudo apt install lplayer

Debian

Ubuntu and Debian have an identical core (Ubuntu uses Debian as a base), and because of it many of the programs ported to Ubuntu work on Debian. Despite this, installing LPlayer on Debian proper proves to be a challenge. There are no specific software repositories to speak of. To get this app working, you’ll need to download a Debian package file directly from the LPlayer Launchpad site.

In our testing, we can confirm that this version of LPlayer works well on Debian 9 Stable. We cannot confirm if it works on Unstable and Testing, as these versions of Debian are under development and have newer, changing library files. For best results, use Debian Stable.

To get the latest version of LPlayer that works on Debian, use the wget tool and download the package directly.

wget https://launchpad.net/~atareao/+archive/ubuntu/lplayer/+files/lplayer_0.3.4-0extras16.04.3_all.deb

After downloading LPlayer from Launchpad, use the dpkg tool to install the file directly to your system.

sudo dpkg -i lplayer_0.3.4-0extras16.04.3_all.deb

Installing LPlayer on Debian works fine, but you may need to run install -f to fix any dependencies that refuse to install.

sudo apt install -f

Source Instructions

If you don’t use a Linux distribution that is Debian, Ubuntu, or something similar, the only way to install LPlayer is by building it from source. The first step in the building process is to install all of the dependencies that the compiler needs to build the code. There are many different dependencies required to build LPlayer from source. Go to the official GitHub page and install all of the items on the list.

Note: keep in mind that the developer lists the Ubuntu names of these packages. Your operating system may have different names for these packages.

With all the dependencies working, it’s time to install Lplayer. Start off by cloning the latest version of the LPlayer software from Github.

git clone https://github.com/atareao/lplayer

Next, use the CD command to move into the newly cloned lplayer directory on your Linux PC.

cd lplayer

Fortunately, though the developers primarily focus on Ubuntu, the software works on pretty much every Linux desktop, thanks to the LPlayer Github repo. To run the LPlayer music app right away, cd into the bin sub-folder, and run the binary.

cd bin

./lplayer

Desktop Shortcut

LPlayer works, but running it is inconvenient. To fix this, create a custom Desktop shortcut. Open up a terminal and use the touch command to create a new lplayer.desktop file.

touch ~/Desktop/lplayer.desktop

chmod +x ~/Desktop/lplayer.desktop

Open the LPlayer Desktop shortcut in the Nano text editor:

nano ~/Desktop/lplayer.desktop

Paste the following code into the Desktop shortcut file.

Note: change “username” under Icon and Exec to your Linux PC’s username.

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Lplayer
GenericName=Music Player
Comment=A Simple Audio Player
Keywords=Audio;Podcast;MP3;Song;
Exec=/home/username/lplayer/bin/lplayer %u
TryExec=lplayer
Icon=/home/username/lplayer.png
Type=Application
Terminal=false
StartupNotify=true
Encoding=utf-8
Categories=GNOME;GTK;AudioVideo;Audio;Player;
MimeType=application/x-ogg;application/ogg;audio/x-vorbis+ogg;audio/x-scpls;audio/x-mp3;audio/x-mpeg;audio/mpeg;audio/x-mpegurl;audio/flac;audio/m4a;audio/x-m4a;audio/mp4

Save the Nano editor with Ctrl + O, and exit it with Ctrl + X. Then, use the wget tool to download the LPlayer shortcut’s icon.

cd ~/lplayer

wget https://i.imgur.com/NwMq3u2.png

mv NwMq3u2.png lplayer.png

Now that the icon is inside ~/lplayer, the new shortcut will work correctly. To run the app, go to your desktop and double-click on the LPlayer shortcut to use the app!

Read How To Install LPlayer On Linux by Derrik Diener on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Set A Static IP Address On Linux In Network Manager

Though many may not know this, your Linux desktop is perfect for hosting network applications. Things like a quick Linux gaming server, TeamSpeak, or a network share for other computers come to mind. The trouble with hosting a network share, is that you need a dedicated IP address. The easiest way to set up a static IP address on the Linux deskop is with the network management tool that comes with most desktop environments.

The Network Management tool is a tool that makes working with network settings on Linux way easier. Start off by finding the network icon in your system tray, panel, etc. Click on the icon, and find an option that says  “Network Connections”. Select the “Network Connections” option to open up a menu that shows different network devices.

In the menu, find your default network device. For example, if you’re using a Wifi connection, your default device may be “Wlan0”. Ethernet may be “Enp3s0”, or “Eth0”. Usually, there’s only one network device, so it won’t be difficult to find. Not sure which one is the right one? A good way to find out is to run this terminal command:

ip addr show

The network device that has a local IP address (like 192.168.X) is the one you want in network manager. Once you’ve determined the correct device to edit via terminal, move back to the Network Connections window, highlight the device and click the gear icon.

At this point, determine if your network is using IPv4 or IPv6. For the most part, consumer routers don’t take advantage of IPv6 yet, so it’s not likely you’re using it. Consult with your Router manual to be sure.

Move to the IPv4 tab and find the menu that says “Automatic”. Change it to “Manual”, then move down to the “Addresses” section. Click the “Add” button and start out by filling in the IP address you want to give your PC in the “Address” part.

Note: a good way to set up a static IP address on Linux is to make the one you already have permanent.  Run ip addr show again to find it.

After filling out an IP in “Address”, move to the “Netmask” section. To find your netmask, open up a terminal and run this command:

ifconfig | grep netmask

Enter the IP that shows after the red “netmask” text. An example of a netmask would be 255.0.0.0. When you finish filling out the “Netmask” section, move on to “Gateway”.

Typically, a Gateway is your router’s IP address. If you access your router’s web interface over the network with 192.168.1.1, that’s the IP that needs to go into the gateway. Not sure what your router’s IP address is? Look into the manual included with the router, as it will have information on it. Alternatively, look on the internet, or open up a terminal and try ip route.

Running ip route will tell you the route your current network connection is connected over. This is a great way to isolate information on your network Gateway, and etc.

ip route

The Gateway address is the IP address that appears after “default via”. Enter that information into the Gateway section of the Network Manager tool.

Filling out “Address”, “Netmask”, and “Gateway” are done so it’s time to set the DNS settings. Typically Linux uses DHCP to automatically determine network information and automatically assign everything, including DNS. Since the plan is to set a manual IP address, you’ll need to specify a local DNS server. Luckily, the local DNS server is the Gateway.

Under Additional DNS servers, fill out the IP address you added to the “Gateway” section. When all the information looks good, click the “save” button to finish up.

Finding Network Info

Using the above commands in the terminal to quickly figure out the Netmask, Gateway and local DNS may come across as complex. If you want to set up a static IP address, but don’t feel like dealing with the terminal, there’s an alternative way, via Network Manager.

To find this information, click the network icon in your panel, then select “Network Settings”. It will show all information on the side. It’ll show your internal IP address (IPv4/.IPv6), Gateway and DNS.

Enabling Changes

New network settings usually apply automatically within Network Manager. If you’ve clicked save and nothing happened, select the network icon once again, and click “Network Settings”.  This shows the network, as well as devices connected to things. Under the network device you set up a static IP address, look for an on-off slider. Click it in the off position to quickly turn off the device. Wait a couple seconds, then click it back on.

Turning the device on and off will force it to reconnect to the network and use the new settings. Alternatively, after setting up the new network connection settings, restart your Linux PC to start using the new settings.

Read How To Set A Static IP Address On Linux In Network Manager by Derrik Diener on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

The 5 Best Empathy Chat Plugins For Linux

If you’re looking to spice up your chat client on Linux with some plugins but don’t know where to start, don’t freak out! Check out our list of the 6 best Empathy chat plugins.

To be clear, the Empathy chat client doesn’t have an official plugin directory, and as a result, there aren’t many third-party plugins for the app. That said, it can easily make use of Pidgin plugins. Before going through this list, it’s a good idea to make sure that you’ve got the Telepathy Haze plugin installed. With this Empathy plugin on your Linux PC, you’ll be able to take full advantage of pretty much any plugin or extension written for the Pidgin IM client inside of Empathy.

If you’re not sure how to get the Telepathy Haze plugin working, check out our guide all about how to enable Pidgin Plugins on Empathy.

1. SkypeWeb Plugin

 It’s not hard to dislike the official Linux Skype client, as it’s a web wrapper, and crashes a lot, due to the limited time Microsoft spends on it. That’s where SkypeWeb Plugin comes in: it’s a plugin that allows users of the Empathy chat client to interact with Skype. To be clear, this plugin doesn’t make it possible to make video and audio calls to your contacts. With how Skype works, that’s just not possible.

Still, if you use Skype to keep in contact with friends over messages, installing this plugin is a good way to go as it gives you what you want out of the service on Linux, without needing to deal with the official program.

2. Purple Hangouts

Along with Skype, Google Hangouts is one of the more popular chat tools in the world. Many people use it to keep in touch. Unfortunately, there’s no native Linux application, so the only way users can take part in the Hangout service is by using Google’s web browser or using the web version. This is fine, but Chrome uses a lot of memory, making it impossible for some Linux users to use Hangouts.

To get around the need to use Google Chrome, Empathy users can install the Purple Hangouts plugin. It gives users full access to their friend’s list and access to the Hangouts service.

3. Steam

Steam has been a native application on Linux for at least 4 years now, so there’s hardly a justification for using a third-party plugin to access Steam Chat via instant messenger, right? Wrong. As it turns out, even though many Linux users are happy that Valve brought Steam over to Linux, they still choose to dual-boot windows for video gaming. As a result, those that use Windows for games often don’t install Steam on Linux, as they aren’t gaming with it and don’t see a point.

If you miss your Steam friends on Linux but don’t want to deal with the official Linux app, there’s another way: the OpenSteamworks chat plugin. It’s a third party addition to chat clients like Empathy and Pidgin that make it possible to add Steam friends to your buddy list.

4. Battlenet V2 And Battlenet Classic

Aside from Steam, EA Origin, and Ubisoft Uplay, Blizzard’s Battlenet client is one of the largest gaming apps on PC. Unfortunately, it’s not available on Linux as a native application. Not having a Linux Battlenet app makes it tough communicating with friends while using Linux — until now.

Introducing Battlenet V2. It’s a plugin for Linux chat clients (like Empathy). The plugin interacts with the Battlenet API and lets users communicate with friends on the service. The V2 plugin only works with new Blizard games like Overwatch, Diablo III, and others.

In addition to Battlenet V2, there is Battlenet Classic. It’s a similar plugin with the goal of connecting users to the Blizzard Gaming service, via chat apps like Empathy and Pidgin. Battlenet V2 handles the modern games, while Classic does the same but for old-school Blizzard games like StarCraft, Diablo 2, etc.

5. Gnome Phone Manager

The Gnome Phone Manager is an excellent addition to Empathy that allows users to send and receive SMS text messages. Unlike a lot of other plugins on this list, Gnome Phone Manager isn’t a Pidgin-based plugin. Instead, it’s a Telepathy extension that brings SMS functionality directly to Empathy.

The way the app works is interesting. Instead of using an email address and sending messages to Text like some other plugins, or relying on third-party applications to do the work, Gnome Phone Manager takes advantage of Bluetooth. By connecting to your PC over Bluetooth, it allows Empathy (or any other app using the plugin) to send SMS directly to your phone, wirelessly.

Overall, Gnome Phone Manager is a necessary addition to the Empathy chat client for those who want to bring text friends into their chat buddy list.

Read The 5 Best Empathy Chat Plugins For Linux by Derrik Diener on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter