How to convert an MOV file to MP4 on macOS

QuickTime is the stock video player on macOS and it’s one of the least popular apps that Apple has developed. That said, up until Sierra, it had one saving grace; it could convert a MOV file to an MP4 file. That feature is gone now so if you’re running a macOS version that is Sierra or later, you don’t have a simple way to convert an MOV file to MP4. You’re going to have to use iMovie. It comes pre-installed on most recent versions of macOS so you should already have it on your system. Unfortunately, it’s complicated to use so much so that it might be enough to send you looking for an alternative. Here’s how you can use iMovie to convert an MOV file to MP4.

Convert MOV to MP4

Open iMovie and create a new project. Add the MOV file to the project’s library by dragging and dropping it on to the My Media area. Once added, drag & drop it onto the timeline. That’s all you need to do.

You can now export the file as an MP4 file. Go to File>Share>File.

In the panel that opens, select a resolution and quality for the video. Do not select ProRes because you’ll end up with an MOV file again. All other qualities will give you an MP4 file. Click Next and give your file a name and save it wherever you like.

The process isn’t complicated but iMovie is hardly intuitive to use. The feature that lets you convert a file to an MP4 file is hidden under a ‘Share’ option. You wouldn’t really expect to find a save feature there.

MOV files can be converted using online apps but if you explore the export option, you will be able to change the quality freely and select any resolution you want. You get an estimate of the output file’s size and it will change to match the quality you’ve set. It’s handy if you need the file to be below a certain size. As for the ‘Compress’ option, you can choose whatever you want. It won’t change the format.

As to why you need to convert MOV files specifically to MP4 files, it’s because the built-in screen recording utility on macOS saves the recordings as MOV files. MOV files aren’t as universally supported as MP4 files, in fact, they don’t even come close. Additionally, these files tend to be larger in size and if you have a size limit to be careful about, the MOV file can be a problem.

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How to use a Bluetooth mouse with the iPad and iPhone

iPadOS focuses a great deal on multi-tasking and has features specifically to make it easier. It also has support for a Bluetooth mouse. You can connect one and use it like a pointer device much like on your desktop. It also seems to work on the iPhone. The only condition is that you’re running iOS 13. You can use a mouse that can connect directly via Bluetooth, or one that requires a dongle however you will need an adapter in order to connect it to your tablet or phone.

Bluetooth mouse with dongle

If your Bluetooth mouse comes with a dongle, you need a female USB to lightning connector. Apple has official ones but they’re labelled as lightning to USB camera adapter. Connect the dongle to it, and then connect it to your iPhone/iPad. If you have a mouse that can connect directly via Bluetooth, you only have to pair it with the device. Just make sure Bluetooth is On.

Enable Bluetooth mouse

Open the Settings app and go to Accessibility. Tap Touch and turn on AssistiveTouch. Scroll down to the Pointer Devices section, and tap Devices>Bluetooth Devices. Select your Bluetooth mouse. If you’ve connected the mouse via a dongle, you won’t have to tap anything.

You will see a pointer/cursor appear on the screen. The left-click button will let you select items and the right-click button will open the assistive touch menu which features buttons like ‘Home’ and ‘Control Center’. You can also click and drag with the mouse to open various menus.

This will work with most Bluetooth mice but there will be exceptions. I was able to use a Logitech keyboard and mouse, but not an old A4 tech one. For any mouse that comes with a keyboard, the keyboard will work just fine on both an iPad and an iPhone.

There’s no way to tell which mouse will work or not if it connects via a dongle. A Bluetooth mouse will work without any problems though they tend to be more expensive than the ones that come with a dongle. In some cases, the pointer may not show up right away so give it a few minutes or two. Make sure you’ve paired the mouse correctly and that it isn’t already paired to a different device.

This feature works on the iPhone but it’s not much use there. On an iPad though, it does make it much easier to interact with the device, especially if you have a keyboard connected to it.

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How to control music players from the Linux command-line

Do you listen to music while working in the Linux terminal? Do you find it annoying to have to exit the terminal, even for a minute, to skip a song, pause something, or stop music playback altogether? If so, you’ll be interested to know that it is possible to control music players from the Linux command-line. Follow along as we go over two easy ways to use the Linux command-line to control music players!

Method 1 – PlayerCTL

PlayerCTL is a command-line application that, when used, can control music players from the command-line, as long as they support MPRIS (Media Player Remote Interfacing Specification).

Installing PlayerCTL

Sadly, PlayerCTL does not come pre-installed on any of the mainstream Linux distributions. So, before we show you how to use it to control your music player via the command-line, we must demonstrate how to install it. Luckily, PlayerCTL is a favorite in the Linux community, so getting it is not difficult.

To install the PlayerCTL application 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 instructions outlined below that corresponds with the distribution you use.

Ubuntu

To get PlayerCTL working on Ubuntu, use the following Apt command.

Note: PlayerCTL is only in the Ubuntu software repositories for version 19.10 and newer.

sudo apt install playerctl

Debian

On Debian, an older release of the PlayerCTL program can be installed from the “Main” software repository using the following apt-get command.

sudo apt-get install playerctl

Keep in mind that this version of PlayerCTL is only available to Debian 10 Buster and Debian Sid users. If you want to gain access to this app and are on Debian 9, you must first upgrade your operating system. To upgrade from Debian 9 to Debian 10, follow our guide on the subject. Also, be sure to consult the official documentation.

Arch Linux

On Arch Linux, you’ll be able to install the PlayerCTL program via the “Community” software repository. Be sure to edit your Pacman.conf file to include the “Community” software repository, or it will not be possible to install the app.

When “Community” is enabled on your system, use the following Pacman command down below to get PlayerCTL working on Arch Linux.

sudo pacman -S playerctl

Fedora

As of Fedora 30, PlayerCTL is available to all Fedora Linux users. To install the software on your system, use the following dnf install command.

sudo dnf install playerctl

OpenSUSE

As of OpenSUSE 15.1, it is possible to get the PlayerCTL app working. To start the installation, use the following zypper install command.

sudo zypper install playerctl

Can’t get PlayerCTL working on your release of OpenSUSE? You may be using an outdated version of LEAP. Be sure to upgrade from 15.0 to 15.1!

Generic Linux

The PlayerCTL application is available for installation for all Linux users via the source code on GitHub. If you are using a Linux operating system that does not have PlayerCTL readily available, click here to learn how to build it from scratch.

Using PlayerCTL to control music playback

PlayerCTL can pause, play, stop, go to the next song, and skip back to the previous song. Open up a terminal window and follow the command-examples below to learn how to use it to control music playback.

Note: do not run PlayerCTL as root with sudo! The commands will not work!

Pause

Need to pause a song that is currently playing? Make use of the playerctl pause command.

playerctl pause

Play

Trying to start up playback of a song again from the command-line? Use the playerctl play command.

playerctl play

Stop

Want to stop music playback altogether? Run the playerctl stop command.

playerctl stop

Next

Need to skip to the next song in your playlist? Execute playerctl next in the command-line.

playerctl next

Previous

Accidentally skip too many songs? Go back to the previous song with playerctl previous.

playerctl previous

Method 2 – Omnipause

Omnipause is another command-line application that can control music from the command-line. However, unlike PlayerCTL, it doesn’t work with any player that supports MPRIS. Instead, it works with D-Bus, which only some music apps support.

Installing Omnipause

Sadly, Omnipause is not nearly as popular as PlayerCTL, so the app isn’t present in any popular Linux distribution’s software repositories. Instead, you’ll need to download the source code from GitHub and compile it from scratch.

To start the installation of Omnipause, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, use the commands below to set up the Git app on your system.

Ubuntu

sudo apt install git

Debian

sudo apt-get install git

Arch Linux

sudo pacman -S git

Fedora

sudo dnf install git

OpenSUSE

sudo zypper install git

With the Git tool installed, use the git clone command to download the Omnipause source-code.

git clone https://github.com/mel00010/OmniPause.git

Move the terminal window into the “OmniPause” folder and install the program with sudo make install.

cd OmniPause

sudo make install

Use Omnipause to control music playback

With Omnipause, you can pause music, start or resume it with play, stop playback with the stop command, go forward a song with next, and go back with previous. To learn how to control your favorite music player with Omnipause, follow the command-examples below.

Pause

To pause music playback with OmniPause, use the omnipause pause command.

omnipause pause

Play

Need to start playback or resume it? Use the omnipause play command in a terminal window.

omnipause play

Stop

Looking to stop music playback altogether? Run the omnipause stop command.

omnipause stop

Next

Want to go forward a song in the playlist? Execute the omnipause next command.

omnipause next

Previous

Need to go back a song in your playlist? Run omnipause previous

omnipause previous

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Best USB Gaming Controllers With Linux Support (Review) in 2020

Are you looking to get a new gaming controller for your Linux PC?

Not sure which one to buy so that you don’t run into any issues? We can help, because we’ve done the research for you and our in-depth analysis can reveal which is the best product for the buck.

Here’s our list with the top USB gaming controllers for Linux.

#1 – Xbox One Controller

  • Stay on target with textured grip
  • Excellent wireless range (compared to previous models)
  • Standard headphone jack

If you’re looking for a modern gaming controller to use on a Linux PC, the Xbox One controller is the best one to use. The reason? Not only does it “just work” when plugged into any Linux PC running kernel 4.0 or newer, but thanks to the XOW project, Microsoft’s Xbox wireless dongle works on Linux and allows for first-class wireless gaming.

Aside from it’s excellent Linux support, another reason to consider using the Xbox One controller is that most games on Steam use the Xbox driver, so there is no need to fuss with options to get everything working.

In our testing of the Xbox One controller, we found that it works on Linux via Bluetooth connection, as well as USB. We also tested the XOW driver for the Xbox One wireless dongle and found that it works, though it has issues as it is still under development.

Notable features

  • The Xbox One gaming controller can connect to a Linux PC over Bluetooth, Micro USB, or Microsoft’s wireless USB dongle, ensuring the ultimate choice in connectivity.
  • The Xbox One controller is coated with a textured plastic, ensuring you’ll be able to keep a good grip on it.
  • Although the controller is battery-powered, it takes conventional AA batteries, which allows users to swap out while gaming easily.
  • As it is an Xbox controller, all Steam games with controller support automatically detect it.
  • In addition to playing on your Linux PC, the Xbox One controller also works on any Xbox One console.

Cost

The Xbox One controller is not cheap. It is relatively expensive as far as gaming controllers go, as it comes packed with lots of advanced features. However, if you love the idea of being able to play your games in wired or wireless mode, it’s worth it.

#2 –  PDP Rock Candy Xbox 360 Controller

    • Integrated headset/communicator port
    • Sleek, ergonomic concave thumb stick design
    • Comes with detachable 8 foot Micro USB cable

If the Xbox One controller is a bit too much for you, the second-best to use for a Linux gamer is the PDP Rock Candy Xbox 360 controller. Why? It has all the same benefits of an Xbox One controller, like auto-detection for most video games and official driver support in the Linux kernel, without the premium cost that comes with the Xbox One.

There’s not a lot to say about the wired Xbox 360 controller, as it doesn’t have a lot of the fancy features that the Xbox One controller has. Still, it’s reliable and works on every Linux computer we’ve tested it on with zero issues. Just plug in, turn on your favorite game, and go!

Notable features

  • The PDP Rock Candy Xbox 360 controller’s USB cable has a breakaway cord, which means that gamers don’t need to worry about ruining a USB port if the controller is tugged on too hard.
  • The controller cord is 8 feet long, ensuring you’ll always have a lot of cord slack while you play.
  • The PDP Rock Candy Xbox 360 controller has an ergonomic design and feels good in the hand.
  • As it is an Xbox 360 controller, virtually all PC games will automatically detect it and set up gaming controls with no configuration required.

Cost

PDP Rock Candy Xbox 360 controller is designed for a console that is no longer being sold. As a result, it is very inexpensive to purchase. If you’re in the market for an excellent wired controller, this is your best bet!

#3 – PlayStation DualShock 4 Controller

  • Built in speaker and stereo headset jack
  • Recharges easily via USB
  • Greater sense of control, thanks to its new design.

Those that don’t like Xbox and prefer the PlayStation control scheme should get the PlayStation DualShock 4 to use on Linux. It’s great! For starters, the PS4 controller has official support in the Linux kernel (like the Xbox One and Xbox 360 controllers). The PlayStation DualShock 4 controller also has excellent support in Steam for Linux and can make use of the Xbox controller features in most video games. You can even use it as a wireless controller, provided your Linux PC has Bluetooth support!

In our extensive testing of the PlayStation DualShock 4 controller, we found that it works in both Bluetooth and USB modes very well. We also found that the light bar on the back of the controller works, so long as you configured in Steam.

Notable features

  • The PS4 controller’s touchpad gives users a mini, mouse-like touchpad which is perfect for top-down strategy games, simulation games, etc.
  • The PS4 controller has a built-in rechargeable battery, so there is no need to spend money on batteries.
  • Users can connect the PS4 controller to Linux wirelessly over Bluetooth, or wired via a micro USB cable.
  • The PlayStation controller form-factor is one of the oldest in gaming and is very comfortable for long hours of play.
  • Aside from using it on PC, the PS4 controller also works with any Sony PlayStation 4.

Cost

As Sony designed the PlayStation DualShock 4 controller for the PlayStation 4, it costs a little more than ones created for the PC. That said, console manufacturers spend a lot of time crafting their controllers, and because of this, you get a well-designed product that lasts for a long time. So, if you’re a fan of Sony PlayStation and need a new gaming controller for PC, check this one out!

#4 –  Steam Controller

  • Features dual trackpads
  • HD haptic feedback
  • Dual-stage triggers
  • Back grip buttons.

The Steam controller is no longer in production by Valve. Still, it remains one of the best gaming controllers for Linux users to date. The reason? It has dozens of features, like wireless gaming (via the included USB dongle), is compatible with the Xbox gaming driver used in most PC video games, and has a click-pad, which makes it excellent to use with PC games that require a mouse.

In our testing, we found that the Steam controller works out of the box on any computer running Linux. We also found that the Steam controller does not require Steam to play games. It works well with all video games on Linux!

Notable features

  • The Steam controller was designed and manufactured by Valve and will work with any Steam game with controller support.
  • The Steam controller is wireless but does not require the user to buy a Bluetooth dongle. Instead, it comes with its wireless connector.
  • The Steam controller comes with dual, clickable trackpads. These trackpads can act as a mouse and are perfect for mouse-heavy games like real-time strategy games, simulation games, etc.
  • Both trackpads have haptic feedback so you can feel the inputs you make in the game you are playing.

Cost

The Steam controller is no longer being manufactured by Valve and is considered discontinued. Still, it is possible to purchase the controller on Amazon, and there are still thousands of Steam controllers in circulation.

As Valve is no longer making the Steam controller, the cost isn’t cheap. Still, if you use Steam on Linux a lot, this is the best controller for it bar-none.

Conclusion

In this list, we covered four great USB gaming controllers that support Linux. However, these aren’t the only gaming controllers out there with excellent Linux support. What is your favorite Linux gaming controller to play with? Let us know down below in the comments!

The post Best USB Gaming Controllers With Linux Support (Review) in 2020 appeared first on AddictiveTips.

How to set the program defaults in Mate

Mate, like all other desktop environments on the Linux platform, has what are called “Preferred Applications.” These “Preferred Applications” are the apps that the creators of Mate set as default. For example, on Mate, the preferred web browser is Firefox, and the preferred image viewer is Eye of MATE Image Viewer.

For most Linux users, these defaults are sensible, and there’s no need to change them. However, if you’re very particular with your apps, you’ll probably want to change the defaults. Here’s how to do it.

Accessing the “Preferred Application” window

To change the default programs on the Mate desktop environment, you must open up the “Preferred Applications” window on the desktop. To open up the “Preferred Applications” window, follow the step-by-step instructions below.

Step 1: Open up the Mate Control Center. To do this, press Alt + F2 on the keyboard.

Step 2: By pressing Alt + F2, the Mate “Run Application” window will appear on the screen. From here, write out the command below into the text box.

mate-control-center

Step 3: Locate the “Run” button and click on it to open up Mate Control Center.

Step 4: Inside of Mate Control Center, locate the text box below “Filter,” write “Preferred Applications” into the text box, and press the Enter key.

Step 5: Look through the search results for “Personal.” Directly under “Personal,” you will see “Preferred Applications.” Double-click on it to access Mate’s “Preferred Applications” window.

Web browser

The default web browser on the Mate desktop environment is Mozilla Firefox (or Mozilla Firefox ESR on Debian-based distributions). If you would like to change the default to a different web browser, do the following.

First, find the “Internet” tab and click on it. Then, locate the “Web Browser” area. From there, click the drop-down menu and change it from Firefox to the browser you prefer.

Mail reader

On many Linux distributions that use Mate, Evolution Mail and Calendar is the default email app. To change Evolution as the default email client, find the “Internet” tab, and click on it. After that, locate “Mail Reader” and click on the drop-down menu.

Inside of the drop-down menu, change Evolution to your preferred email application.

Image viewer

The default image viewer for the Mate desktop is Eye of Mate Image Viewer. It does the job, but some may not like the app. If you’re not a fan of Eye of Mate Image Viewer and want to change it, do the following.

First, locate the “Multimedia” tab and click on it. Then, locate the “Image Viewer” section. Once you’ve found “Image Viewer,” click on the drop-down menu and change Eye of Mate to the image viewer you prefer.

Multimedia Player

Rhythmbox is set as the default multimedia player on Mate, as it is a good music player that can also handle podcasts and even some video files. If you’d like to change the default media player from Rythmbox to something else, do the following.

First, find the “Multimedia” tab in “Preferred Applications.” Then, locate “Multimedia Player” and click on the drop-down menu with the mouse and select another multimedia player in the list to replace Rhythmbox.

Video Player

The Totem video player is the default on the Mate desktop. It’s a solid video player, but many Linux users may prefer to use something else (VLC, SMplayer, etc.) If you want to change the default video player in Mate, do the following.

First, find the “Multimedia” tab in the “Preferred Applications” area, and click on it with the mouse. From there, locate “Video Player,” and click on the drop-down menu, and use it to change the default video player.

Text Editor

Not a fan of Mate’s Pluma text editor? Change it by clicking on the “System” tab in “Preferred Applications.” One in the “System” tab area, click the “Text Editor” drop-down menu and change it from “Pluma” to your preferred text editor.

Terminal Emulator

The Mate Terminal is pretty standard and doesn’t have any standout features compared to terminals of other desktop environments. That said, it does the job, and many Mate fans love to use it. However, not everyone likes it. If you dislike Mate Terminal and want to change it out for another terminal, do the following.

First, find the “System” area in “Preferred Applications” and click on it with the mouse. Then, locate the “Terminal Emulator” section, and select the drop-down menu under it. Use the drop-down menu to choose a new terminal app.

File Manager

Caja is the default file manager on the Mate desktop. It’s pretty great and has a lot of features. That said, not everyone loves Caja, so thankfully, it’s possible to change out the default file manager in Mate.

To swap the default file manager in Mate, start by accessing the “System” area in “Preferred Applications.” After that, find “File Manager” and click on the drop-down menu next to it. Using the drop-down, change it from “Caja” to the file manager of your choice.

Document Viewer

Atril is the default document viewer for Mate. It gets the job done. That said, if you would prefer to use a different document view, it is understandable. To change the default document viewer on the Mate desktop environment, do the following.

First, find the “Office” tab in “Preferred Applications.” Once you’ve made it to the “Office” tab, locate “Document Viewer” and click on the drop-down menu to change the default from Atril to the document app you prefer.

Word Processor

Libre Office Writer is the default word processor on the Mate desktop, and it’s an excellent one to boot. It has many great features, and even works well with Microsoft Word and Google Docs. However, if you’re not a fan of Libre Office Writer, you’ll be happy to know that it is possible to change the default to another word processor.

To change the default word processor in Mate, find “Office” in “Preferred Applications” and click on it with the mouse. Then, find the drop-down menu next to “Word Processor” and click it to change the default from Libre Office Writer to the one you prefer.

Spreadsheet Editor

Libre Office Calc is the Mate desktop environment’s spreadsheet tool of choice. As it is part of the Libre Office Suite, it is an excellent program and supports many features, including integration with MS Office and even Google Docs. That said, you may not want to use Libre Office Calc as your spreadsheet tool of choice on Mate. Here’s how to change it.

First, find “Office” in “Preferred Applications.” Then, look for the drop-down menu next to it, and change it from Libre Office Calc to your spreadsheet tool of choice.

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