How to make Gimp look like Adobe Photoshop on Linux

The Gimp image editor is Linux’s best alternative to Adobe Photoshop. The problem is that while the app offers some similar features to Photoshop, it looks and behaves much differently. As a result, many users that switch to Gimp from Photoshop feel lost and unhappy.

Thankfully, there are a few easy steps you can take as a Gimp user on Linux to make your installation look more like Adobe Photoshop. Here’s how to do it on your system.

Before we begin

It should go without saying, but for this guide to be successful, you must have the Gimp image editor installed on your Linux PC already. If you are not sure how to install the Gimp image editor, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered! Just follow this guide to get Gimp working on your system.

Alternatively, check out the Gimp website for more information on the app, how you can get it working, etc.

Enable single-window mode

The single best feature to enable in Gimp to make it more similar to Adobe Photoshop Linux is the single-window mode. The reason? By default, Gimp has two detached toolbars and a workspace. This way of doing things is incredibly annoying, inconvenient, and makes those switching to Gimp from Photoshop uncomfortable.

Enabling Gimp’s single-window mode is very easy to do. Launch the Gimp app on your desktop by searching for it in the app menu. Or, by pressing Alt + F2 and typing out gimp into the command box.

Note: on some installations of Gimp, you may not need to enable single-window mode as it is turned on by default.

Once the Gimp app is open on your Linux PC, follow the step-by-step instructions below.

Step 1: In the app, find the main workspace in Gimp, and click on it with the mouse to put it into focus.

Step 2: Find the “Windows” menu at the top of the main Gimp workspace and click on it with the mouse.

Step 3: Locate the “Single window” mode option in the “windows” list, and click on it with the mouse. Upon clicking on this option, Gimp will change from the disjointed toolbars/separate window layout to one that is more like Adobe Photoshop.

To disable Gimp’s single-window mode, simply go back to the “Windows” menu, locate the “Single window” option, and uncheck the box next to it.

Installing Photoshop themes into Gimp

Setting Gimp into single-window mode does a lot, but it only goes so far. To really make Gimp look like Photoshop, you need to install a Photoshop theme for the Gimp app.

There are many themes for Gimp that purport to make it look more like Photoshop. However, the best and most complete theme is GIMP2Ps. Here’s how to install it to make your Gimp look like Adobe Photoshop.

First, head over to the GIMP2Ps page on Gnome-look.org and locate the “Files” button. Once you’ve found the “Files” button, click on it with the mouse to reveal the download options.

In the “Files” area, download GIMP2Ps.tar.xz by clicking on the blue button next to it. Then, launch a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard.

Once the terminal window is open and ready to go, use the CD command and move the terminal session from the home directory (~) to the “Downloads” folder where GIMP2Ps.tar.xz is located.

cd ~/Downloads

Using the tar xvf command extract the GIMP2Ps.tar.xz archive, as it needs to be fully decompressed to interact with the theme files inside.

tar xvf GIMP2Ps.tar.xz

With the GIMP2Ps.tar.xz file extracted a folder with the name of “GIMP2Ps” will appear in the “Downloads” directory, use the CD command to move into this folder.

cd GIMP2Ps

Now that you’re inside of the GIMP2Ps directory, the installation can begin. Run the transform-it.bash script with the command below.

./transform-it.bash

Alternatively, run the transform-it-and-remove-toolbox-text.bash to make the “You can drop dockable dialogs here” message disappear.

./transform-it-and-remove-toolbox-text.bash

When the script is done running, open up Gimp. It will look very close to Adobe Photoshop!

Replace Gimp’s keyboard shortcuts with Photoshop ones

If setting Gimp to the single-window mode and installing a theme that makes it look more like Photoshop with the GIMP2Ps, replacing Gimp’s keyboard shortcuts with Photoshop-friendly ones might.

To replace the default, Gimp keyboard shortcuts do the following. First, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, use the CD command to move into the Gimp configuration directory.

cd ~/.config/GIMP/2.10

For Flatpak users:

cd ~/.var/app/org.gimp.GIMP/config/GIMP/2.10

For Snap package users:

cd ~/snap/gimp/current/.config/GIMP/2.10

Once inside of the configuration directory, rename the menurc file to menurc-backup with the mv command.

mv menurc menurc-backup

With the default menurc file renamed, download the new menurc file. This file has Adobe Photoshop shortcuts.

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/doctormo/GimpPs/master/menurc -O menurc

When the menurc file is done downloading, open up Gimp, and start using Photoshop keyboard shortcuts!

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How to install the Snow GTK theme on Linux

Snow is a light theme for Linux that follows a Mac-like design spec with greyish color gradients. While fans of popular Material Design themes like Adapta or Arc may not like it, Snow fills a void for people who love Mac, use Linux, and want something modern.

Downloading Snow

The Snow GTK theme is available to download for all Linux users via the Gnome-look theme website. To get your hands on this theme, follow the step-by-step instructions outlined below.

Step 1: Head over to Gnome-look.org and locate the “Files” tab, and click on it to access the download options available on the site for the themes.

Step 2: In the Snow download area (Files), there are two download options. The first option is Snow.tar.xz, the main snow theme. The second one is Snow-alien.tar.xz.

Pick one of the options (Snow or Snow alien) by selecting the blue button next to the file.

Step 3: Upon clicking on the blue button, a download message will appear on the screen. Click on the “Downloads” option to instantly download either Snow or Snow alien to the “Downloads” folder on your Linux PC.

Once the download for Snow is complete, move on to the next section of the guide.

Extracting Snow

The Snow GTK theme, as well as Snow alien, must be fully extracted from their TarXZ archives before attempting to use them as system themes on the Linux desktop.

Extracting TarXZ archives on Linux is best done with the tar command in the Linux command-line. Why? The command-line is very fast, efficient and will allow users to manipulate and deal with files with a single command, rather than dealing with the tediousness of Linux file managers.

To start the extraction process, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, follow the step-by-step extraction instructions below.

Step 1: The Snow and Snow alien files, when downloaded, are stored in the “Downloads” folder. However, when the terminal window is open, it is not in this folder. So, you must move the terminal session there with the CD command below.

cd ~/Downloads

Step 2: Once inside of the “Downloads” directory, run the ls command in combination with the grep tool to verify that you’ve indeed downloaded Snow or Snow alien.

ls | grep Snow.tar.xz

ls | grep Snow-alien.tar.xz

Assuming the command outputs a printout that shows Snow.tar.xz or Snow-alien.tar.xz, you’ll be able to move on to the next step. If not, re-download it.

Step 3: Fully extract the contents of the Snow or Snow alien TarXZ files by executing the tar xvf command below.

tar xvf Snow.tar.xz

or, for Snow alien:

tar xvf Snow-alien.tar.xz

When the extraction process is complete, you will see a Snow or Snow-alien folder in the “Downloads” directory. Confirm it with the ls command below.

ls | grep Snow

or, for Snow alien

ls | grep Snow-alien

After confirming the new folders, move on to the next section of the guide.

Installing Snow on Linux

Installing the Snow GTK theme on the Linux desktop, much like extracting it from the TarXZ archive, requires the terminal. To start the installation, open up a terminal window. Then, follow the instructions outlined below that correspond with the method of installation you prefer.

Single-user

Installing the Snow GTK theme on Linux in single-user mode means that only one user has access to the theme (the user that installs it). This method is perfect if only one person has access to your Linux PC, and you do not plan on adding any other users.

To install the Snow GTK theme on your Linux PC as a single-user, start by opening a terminal window and moving it to the “Downloads” folder with the CD command.

cd ~/Downloads

Once inside of the “Downloads” directory, use the mkdir command to create a new folder called ~/.themes in your home directory (~).

mkdir -p ~/.themes

Finally, move the Snow GTK theme folder from the “Downloads” directory to the newly created ~/.themes folder using the mv command.

mv Snow/ ~/.themes

Alternatively, to move the Snow alien theme, enter these commands instead.

mv Snow-alien/ ~/.themes

System-wide

Installing the Snow GTK theme system-wide, do the following. First, open up a terminal window and move the terminal session to the “Downloads” directory with the CD command.

cd ~/Downloads

Once in the “Downloads” directory, move the terminal from a standard user to the root user using sudo -s.

sudo -s

Finally, install the Snow GTK theme to the /usr/share/themes/ directory with the mv command.

mv Snow/ /usr/share/themes/

And, for Snow alien, do the following:

mv Snow-alien/ /usr/share/themes/

Enabling Snow on Linux

The Snow GTK theme is installed on your Linux PC. However, just installing the theme isn’t enough to make your Linux desktop start using it. You must modify the appearance settings so that the default theme is changed to Snow or Snow alien.

To enable Snow or Snow alien as the default GTK theme on your Linux desktop, start by opening up the “Settings” app. Then from there, look for “Appearance” or “Themes” and change the default look to Snow or Snow alien.

Having some issues changing the default look of your favorite Linux desktop environment? Check out the links listed below. They’ll walk you through how to customize your favorite desktop environments.

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How to play Plex media from the Linux desktop with Girens

Plex Media Center has a pretty good web interface. It works very well with Linux, and there are no issues using it on lesser-known open-source browsers like Falkon, Midori, and others. Still, for as good as the Plex web interface is, not every Linux user loves to use it.

If you’re not a fan of the Plex web interface and don’t like using a web browser to access and watch the media on your Plex server, there’s a better way! It’s called Girens, and it’s a native GTK plex client for the Linux platform!

Girens allows users to have quick access to any media in their Plex library. So, if you want to watch a movie or TV show on your server, you can do it just like you would with the Plex web UI, but from the comfort of a stylish, speedy Linux app.

In this guide, we’ll go over how to install the Girens GTK Plex app on Linux. We’ll also show you how to log into your server with it, and how to watch your favorite media.

Installing Girens on Linux

Girens can be installed on most Linux distributions through Flatpak. However, in addition to Flatpak, it is also possible to get the app working by downloading the source code here.

To start the installation of the Girens application on your Linux PC, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, with the terminal window open, follow the step-by-step instructions below to get Girens working on your system.

Step 1: As Girens is installed as a Flatpak, you must enable the Flatpak runtime on your Linux PC. To install the Flatpak runtime on Linux, search for the “flatpak” package and install it.

If you can’t figure out how to get the runtime working on your own, don’t worry! We can help! Just follow along with our guide on how to install the Flatpak runtime on Linux.

Step 2: After installing the Flatpak runtime, you must subscribe to the Flathub app store. It’s the largest Flatpak distribution outlet for Linux and where the Girens app is distributed.

To subscribe to the Flathub app store, use the following command below in a terminal window.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

Step 3: Once the Flatpak runtime has access to the Flathub app store, you will be able to quickly install the Girens program on your Linux PC with the command below.

flatpak install flathub nl.g4d.Girens

Setting up Girens

With the Girens app installed on the Linux desktop, setup can begin. Launch the Girens application by searching for “Girens” in the app menu. Alternatively, it can be run directly from the command-line with the following flatpak run command.

flatpak run nl.g4d.Girens

Once the Girens tool is open on the Linux desktop, follow the step-by-step instructions below to set it up.

Step 1: As you first launch Girens on the Linux desktop, a “Plex – Account info” window will appear on the screen. In this window, you will see a “User” and “Url” option.

Click on “User” and use the box to log into your Plex user account and password. Alternatively, if you prefer to access the server on your LAN directly, without an account, click on the “Url” box, and paste the local server URL into the box.

Step 2: After filling out your user account in the Plex box, click the “Login” button to load your Plex server via the user account.

Alternatively, if you choose to connect via the “Url” option, locate the “Connect” button and click it with the mouse to start the connection.

Upon successfully adding in your user credentials to Girens, the app will load your server and display the Plex home page.

Watching movies

Want to watch a movie in the Girens app from your Plex server? Here’s how to do it. First, maximize the app so that the sidebar is viewable. Then, locate “Movies” in the sidebar, and click on it.

Note: if you do not have a “Movies” section, click on the category normally reserved for movies on your Plex server.

Once in the “Movies” section, scroll through the list of media for a movie to watch. Then, when you’ve found something to watch, click on the play button to start it. Alternatively, watch a random movie by clicking on the shuffle icon.

Watching TV

Trying to watch a TV show you’ve added to your Plex server in the Girens application? Here’s what to do. First, maximize the Girens app so that the sidebar is visible.

When the app is fully maximized, find the “TV Shows” section in the sidebar and click on it with the mouse. Selecting “TV Shows” should take you to TV programs on your Plex media server.

Note: if you do not have a “TV Shows” section, click on the category normally reserved for TV on your Plex server.

Inside of the “TV Shows” area in Girens, scroll through and find something to watch. Once you find something, click on the play button to start it. Alternatively, watch a random TV show by clicking on the shuffle icon.

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How to play Sega Master System games on Linux

The Sega Master System is an 8-bit home video game console. It was initially sold as the Sega Mark III, the third iteration of the SG-1000 in Japan. However, the name was changed.

Master System was released in 1987. However, you’ll still be able to enjoy the game in 2020 if you install the Blastem emulator, an app that can play Sega MS games on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Note: Addictivetips in no way encourages or condones the illegal downloading or distribution of ROM files for the Sega Master System. If you choose to install Blastem, please use game ROMs that you own and have backed up to your PC, legally.

Installing Blastem on Linux

The Blastem emulator is one of the best apps for playing Master System console games on Linux. To get the app working on your Linux PC, start by opening up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T.

Once the terminal window is open, follow the command-line installation instructions down below that correspond with the Linux desktop environment you currently use.

Ubuntu

On Ubuntu, the Blastem emulator app can easily be installed on Linux with the following Apt command.

sudo apt install blastem

Debian

Debian Linux users have an easy way of installing the Blastem app, as it is available in the “Main” software repository. However, only Debian Sid and Debian 10 users will be able to get it using the Apt-get command below.

sudo apt-get install blastem

Arch Linux

Arch Linux users will be able to get the Blastem emulator up and running on Arch Linux thanks to the AUR. To start the installation, use the Pacman command to download the “Git” and “Base-devel” packages to your computer. These packages are required to interact with the Arch Linux AUR.

sudo pacman -S git base-devel

Once both the “Git” and “Base-devel” packages are done installing on your Arch Linux PC, use the git clone command to download the Trizen AUR helper tool. This program will make it very easy to build and install Blastem on Arch as it takes care of the dependencies automatically.

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/trizen.git

Move into the “trizen” folder with the CD command and make use of the makepkg command to install the Trizen AUR helper onto the system.

cd trizen 

makepkg -Sri

Use the Trizen tool to install the Blastem emulator on your Arch Linux system.

trizen -S blastem

Fedora

Fedora Linux does not have the Blastem emulator on the system, for whatever reason. However, it is still possible to get the Blastem emulator up and running on Fedora with Flatpak. Follow the Flatpak instructions later in this guide.

OpenSUSE

OpenSUSE, like Fedora Linux, cannot install Blastem directly from their software repositories. Instead, SUSE users looking to get the emulator up and running must follow the Flatpak instructions in this guide.

Flatpak

To get Blastem working through the Flatpak system on Linux, you must first ensure you have the Flatpak runtime installed and enabled on your system. Once that is taken care of, enter the following terminal command to get the app working.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

flatpak install flathub com.retrodev.blastem

Playing Games with Blastem

Playing Sega Master System games with Blastem is very straightforward, thanks to its UI. To start, launch the app by searching for “Blastem” in the app menu. Then, when the app is open, look for the “Load ROM” button and click on it with the mouse.

Upon clicking the “Load ROM” button, a file manager inside of Blastem will appear. Use the scroll button on your mouse to find your Sega Master System ROM folder. Then, once you’ve found the folder, press the Enter key to access it.

Inside of the ROM folder, click on the ROM you’d like to play with the mouse to start playing!

Configuring a controller

As the Blastem emulator is a modern program, it is possible to set a controller to play games with it. Here’s how to do it.

First, locate the “Settings” menu in the Blastem main menu and click on it with the mouse. Once in the “Settings” area, find the “Controllers” option and click on it with the mouse.

Inside of the “Controllers” area, locate your controller in the menu. Blastem should automatically detect it. Then, click on the “Remap” button to customize the controls for your controller.

When the controller’s bindings are set, exit the settings area. It should then work in any Master System ROM game!

Saving and loading

Need to save the current state of the Master System ROM you are playing? Here’s how to do it. First, press the Esc key on the keyboard to pause the emulation. Then, once it is paused, find the “Save State” button, and click on it to save your game.

Want to load a previous save for your Master System ROM? Press Esc to open up the menu. After that, select the “Load State” button to load your game!

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How to stress test your Linux PC

Want to push your Linux PC to the limit? Want to see how well it can perform under stress? Check out GTKStressTest. It’s an easy to use GUI tool that will let you stress your Linux PC with almost no effort.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to install the GTKStressTest program on your Linux PC, and how to use it to perform stress tests.

Note: you may experience system errors and slow-downs when running the GTKStressTest tool as it is designed to push your hardware to the limit.

Installing GTKStressTest on Linux

Installing GTKStressTest on Linux is possible no matter what distribution you use, and the developers do a good job of documenting the dependencies required to compile the software. It is also supported via Flatpak on Flathub, for those that do not like building software from source.

To get the GTKStressTest app working on your Linux PC, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, follow the command-line installation instructions that correspond with the OS you use.

Ubuntu

On Ubuntu, if you want to get GTKStressTest working, you’ll need to compile the source code from scratch. To start, install the dependencies required to build on Ubuntu.

sudo apt install appstream-util dmidecode gir1.2-gtksource-3.0 git libcairo2-dev libgirepository1.0-dev libglib2.0-dev meson python3-gi-cairo python3-pip stress-ng git

After installing all of the required dependencies, use the git clone command to download the source code to your system.

git clone --recurse-submodules -j4 https://gitlab.com/leinardi/gst.git

Move into the gst folder with the CD command.

cd gst

Use the pip3 command to install the required Python3 requirements for building the software.

pip3 install -r requirements.txt

Use the meson command to set the build prefix to “/usr.”

meson . build --prefix /usr

Compile the code with the ninja build command.

ninja -v -C build

Finally, install the program with ninja build install

ninja -v -C build install

Debian

On Debian, it is possible to build the software with the source code, but the development page doesn’t specifically reference the operating system. If you’d like to build the code on Debian, follow the Ubuntu instructions. Otherwise, follow the Flatpak installation instructions for an easy way to get GTKStressTest set up on Debian.

Arch Linux

GTKStressTest is available as an AUR package on Arch Linux. To get it working, on your system, do the following.

First, download and install the Trizen AUR helper tool as it makes it easier to get AUR packages built without dealing with dependencies manually.

sudo pacman -S git base-devel

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/trizen.git

cd trizen

makepkg -sri

With the Trizen tool set up, use it to install the GTKStressTest app.

trizen -S gst

Fedora

On Fedora, it is possible to build the code from source. However, on Fedora Linux, Flatpak is deeply integrated into the system. For this reason, we suggest Fedora users make use of the Flatpak instructions below.

Flatpak

Flatpak is a great way to install GTKStressTest, as it requires no source-code compilation. To get the app working on your system with Flatpak, ensure the runtime is set up on your Linux PC. Then, enter the commands below.

flatpak --user remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

flatpak --user install flathub com.leinardi.gst

Using GTKStressTest to stress test your Linux PC

Stress testing with GTKStressTest is quite simple, thanks to its thoughtful, well laid out UI. To start the stress testing process, open up the app on your Linux desktop by searching for it in the app menu. Then, follow the step-by-step instructions below.

Step 1: Once GTKStressTest app is open, look for the “Read all” button at the top left section of the window and click on it. This button, when clicked, will allow GTKStressTest to view system info that is only obtainable with the root user.

Step 2: Locate the drop-down menu with “CPU: All methods” written on it. Click on the drop-down menu and choose the best type of stress test to use on your CPU.

If you’re unsure about what type to choose, leave it at “All methods.” This option will go through all kinds of stress tests for the CPU.

Step 3: Locate the drop-down menu with “30 mins” on it, and click on it. Then, change “30 mins” to the desired time you want to stress test for. Or, leave it at 30 minutes.

Step 4: Find the “Start” button to start stress-testing the CPU on your Linux PC.

When you press the “Start” button, GTKStressTest will begin rigorously testing your Linux system for the time you selected. Sit back, watch the graphs, and wait.

When GTKStressTest is done testing your Linux PC, you will see a notification that the test is complete.

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