Manjaro 17 testing

First….making bootable media for installation

Okay…I don’t know why, but, virtually none of the directions for creating bootable USB media for installing Manjaro worked for me (actually, see the next paragraph – I think I have an idea what might be causing this problem). I tried programs, the command line (using dd), etc. I did not do anything wrong – I followed various how-tos, including the one on the Manjaro website. The only thing which worked was using a program called WintoUSB on a Windows XP partition, and, choosing certain options (which I will note at a later date). Even Unetbootin and the Suse Image Writer (installed with a default Manjaro installation) failed to make a working, bootable USB install disk for the Manjaro distribution. Go figure.

The problem, I think

As I’ve said, I used the command-line “dd” method, various pieces of software, etc. and I could absolutely not come up with a bootable USB stock for manjaro.  Well…..I know damned near zero about hardware, but I think my problems with creating usable, USB installation media for Manjaro is because I have five, older, HP dc7800 and dc7900 desktop PCs (released in in 2007 and 2008) which do not have UEFI support. From an HP forum:

Hi:
The dc7600 does not have a UEFI BIOS.
The first model in that series that came with a UEFI BIOS, was the 8200 Elite with the second generation Intel core processor.

Again (to be redundant):For whatever reason, using a Windows program called WintoUSB (on an XP partition) I was finally able to create a working USB installer.

Problem with grub & dual booting

Sometimes, either right after installation or after an update, my dual-boot menu at boot (for Windows) was missing. Running the following fixed the problem:

And…..

Sometimes, even after running the above, the normal grub dual-boot menu still didn’t appear – strangely, though, it was still available. I’ve found the following: If I press (and hold) the down arrow key as the computer boots, the boot-menu options screen appears. It’s as if the computer is booting too fast to display the menu – I dunno. I just know that pressing the down arrow key works, in this situation. Also, after restoring a partition image, you might be able to use the following code (from a Manjaro live disk) to rebuild grub – this terminal command ran from a normal install:

An extension I like….

I like to use plank, at the top of my screen, and docky at the bottom. However, plank doesn’t really work with Gnome if the top taskbar doesn’t auto hide. I found this extension which worked perfectly to fix this issue – the README file gives a series of shell commands for installation. The only thing that varies from the instructions is the path to the directory where the gnome extensions are contained. Basically, the following are the edited commands I used

My experience was that things went a bit wonky with the desktop until I rebooted, after which things were fine. The following preferences worked well for me, accessed from the Tweak Tool > Extensions menu.

My “alien” desktop, with Plank and Docky:

You can download it here.

Overview of my experience so far

  1. Manjaro (17.06) Gnome is a very attractive desktop, but, it’s sluggish on an underpowered machine. For instance, I have Mint 17 on an ancient laptop next to my bed and it’s very slow, but, it works – no system crashes nor hangups. I was working on my desktop computer when I first installed Manjaro (on an HP dc7800). At the time, it only had 2 gig of RAM installed, and, Manjaro would barely run with this configuration – it frequently required a hard reboot as it would freeze. When I bumped the PC up to 8 gig of RAM Manjaro started running respectably.
  2. Opera Web Browser: I really prefer the Opera web browser, but, on Manjaro 17.06 Gnome it seems to cause the system to freeze completely.UPDATE: Actually, one site was causing Opera to freeze the system – ThePirateBay, where I download documentaries. As it turns out, in early 2017 that site began mining data, with ads, in a way which stresses site visitors CPUs. By installing AdBlock on Opera this quit happening. Some pages, on that site, showed as many as 15 ads blocked!
  3. VLC causes the entire system to freeze – even making dropping to a shell impossible – when playing .mp4 files. This is a bug which is documented around the web. It’s not a huge issue, because parole video player can play mp4s with no problem.
  4. Deluge is a bit weird. Magnet links require copying the location and going to File > Add > URL. Too, choosing to open a folder from a download, when the download is a video, results in the video being opened in Audacious……and just playing the audio.
  5. Problems with dual booting: Manjaro, on one test installation, looped back into Manjaro. I’ve installed Manjaro, in a dual-boot setup, about four times and it only happened once. But, a web search revealed that others have experienced the same issue.

Manjaro 17.x – Notes

Copying files without being asked to confirm overwrite

Little thing, drives me batshit crazy….. In Manjaro, you will be prompted to overwrite every freaking file in a directory if you’re copying to a directory where identically named files exist. Here’s a workaround:

Making Firefox Open Magnet Links

network.protocol-handler.expose.magnet – set to false

Some Conky “Stuff”

Here’s a small .zip archive and a script to install Conky: download
Here’s a conky grayscale file: download
Here’s an alternate Conky setup called Vision Conky – copy the ttf file to your fonts directory and update…..
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Update Issue with Python

Explanation later – for the time Remove nautilus-admin and python2-nautilus by

I answered “yes” to removing the python 2 version….
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Problem with update

You need to do the following after install:

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Resync databases

Recently running pacman -Syy returned some errors – failures to connect. I resolved this by running the following, then trying again:

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Unetbootin

Unetbootin will not install and work via pacman. Make sure you have installed mtools and use this binary: download unetbootin. As noted at the top of this page, however, Unetbootin nor the Suse Image Writer (included with Manjaro) will create bootable media for the Manjaro distro, itself.

And again – this is required:

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Clementine

I’ve had two experiences with Clementine…. In one case (who knows why) it only required the following prerequisite:

On a second occasion I needed to do the following – for some reason:

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Image Handling is weird – install Shotwell

When I got my system up and running with Manjaro 17, there was a peculiarity: clicking on image files (.png, gif. etc.) resulted in those files being “handled”, or opened, by various web browsers……. I installed Shotwell and it became the default image handling program.
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Samba, and, getting it to start at boot….

I did virtually no research on this topic, so, maybe there’s am easier way to to this……but: (1) An old smb.conf file I used only had one, non-fatal error (which involved a deprecated log directive), and, (2) I could figure out how to get samba to start at boot. I finally did 4 or 5 things, and, it finally worked.

  1. Ran visudo and did this (the “reboot” and “shutdown” commands were earlier edits – note the addition/modification to /usr/sbin/smbd):
  2. I created a samba.desktop file at /home/user/.config/autostart that contained the following:

Maybe there’s another way to do this, but, this worked.
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Google Chrome

Okay….this was a pain in the ass. From the software manager (or whatever it’s called) – which can be launched thusly…..

….I found the “preferences” area by clicking a tab in the upper-right-hand corner and enabled the AUR repo – but it absolutely refused to show up under the “Repositorys” section. I rebooted, etc., but it never appeared. So, I did the following based upon a post on the web.

Then, as an unprivileged user (NOT ROOT) I ran the following:

I was then prompted to:

  1. Select from 3 versions – I chose “1”
  2. Asked, once or twice, if I wanted to edit the package build – I chose “No”

It proceeded to succesfully install Google Chrome……..
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VLC “hink”…..

Okay, I think this happened after I installed Kdenlive, choosing the qt-5 option…. VLC started playing videos with audio only; I found a page that said you should uninstall VLC, then reinstall using vlc-nightly. I did not un-install, I just reinstalled over the existing install using:

Here’s a page with info:
https://forum.manjaro.org/t/fresh-install-vlc-sound-but-nothing-else/25861/15
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Deluge “hink”

Clicking on magnet links causes Deluge to open, but the torrent file is not added. To get it to work, you need to copy the magnet link and go to File > Add Torrent….and something else I cannot recall, but, which was obvious….
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VLC (with a Nvidia card)

First, VLC would not install until I updated the entire system, thusly:

Once installed, there was no graphical output in VLC, just audio. I found the following on the web:

I see you are using the Nouveau (free driver) for your Nvidia Card, and i think it will perform better with the Proprietary Driver installed.
From Manjaro Settings Manager > Hardware click on Auto Install Proprietary Driver and let detect and configure it. Do a reboot and test again if VLC is working.

Doing the above, after a reboot, fixed the graphics problems in VLC……
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Opera – major problems

Note/Update: I’ve made a note at the top of this page; installing AdBlock seems to reduce the behavior described below:

Opera frequently causes the entire system to freeze. The following post, from the web, have me some hope – but I followed the instructions and it Opera still kept freezin….

Hey everybody, I might have a solution.

In Opera, go to opera://gpu (or chrome://gpu). You will likely see that video encode and decode are done by software, not hardware accelerated. Probably some other things as well.

Go to opera://flags (or chrome://flags), and enable the option, “Override software rendering list”. Close and re-open Opera. You will see that videos are now hardware-accelerated.

More info: http://www.webupd8.org/2014/01/enable-hardware-acceleration-in-chrome.html

While you’re at it, you could also go ahead and enable hardware acceleration in Firefox. Google “Ubuntu Firefox enable hardware acceleration”, it’s one of the first results.

I don’t know for sure whether this really fixes our problem. It did solve stuttering issues for me, which I continued to experience on my desktop PC on 17.10 after uninstalling Opera, and then again after switching to Mint 18.3. After my switch to Mint, I also had stuttering in ZSNES, which went away after I did the following:

Open NVidia settings
In “OpenGL Settings”, disable “Allow Flipping” and move “Image Settings” slider to the right until it says “Performance”.
You could also try disabling VSync (also in OpenGL Settings). If you get no screen tearing afterwards, leave it off.
In “PowerMizer”, set “Preferred Mode” to “Prefer Maximum Performance”.
The “PowerMizer” setting is automatically reset after reboot. To make it permanent, open the “Startup Applications” app and add the following as a new startup application:

nvidia-settings -a ‘[gpu:0]/GPUPowerMizerMode=1’

Name and describe as you see fit. More info: https://devtalk.nvidia.com/default/topic/832288/how-to-automatically-set-powermizer-to-prefer-maximum-performace-with-340-and-346-drivers/?offset=3

Since I’m no longer on 17.10 on my desktop and I still use my laptop for daily work, I can’t tell for sure whether any of the above fixes our problem. It would be awesome if one of you guys could report back.

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Optional Edit to /etc/sshd/sshd_config:
PermitRootLogin yes
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OpenShot didn’t work until I updated the system:

sudo pacman -Syyu

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Install fonts for Wine with this command:

curl -L https://github.com/caarlos0/msfonts/raw/master/install.sh | sudo sh
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pacman -Sy
pacman -Ssy
sudo pacman -S net-tools
sudo pacman -S mlocate
sudo pacman -S mtools
sudo pacman -S vlc qt4
sudo pacman -S pavucontrol
sudo pacman -S audacity
sudo pacman -S guvcview
sudo pacman -S audacious
sudo pacman -S isousb (update: this is worthless….)
sudo pacman -S guvcview
sudo pacman -S simplescreenrecorder
sudo pacman -S filezilla
sudo pacman -S python2-service-identity python2-mako
sudo pacman -S pygtk
sudo pacman -Sy python-gobject2 pygtk (req’d for deluge)
sudo pacman -S deluge
sudo pacman -S opera
sudo pacman -S transmageddon
sudo pacman -S samba
#sudo pacman -S thunderbird
#sudo pacman -S icu
sudo pacman -S isousb
sudo pacman -S yaourt
sudo pacman -S winetricks
sudo pacman -S wine
fc-cache -fv

Links:

Install Lamp on Arch linux

Install LAMP, MariahDB, & PHP on Manjaro

Downgrade to PHP5.6 from PHP7 on Arch

Printing from a Windows Virtual Machine

This was all new to me – I’d never tried this before. And, I never knew anything about a local, CUPS web page from which you can configure printers….long story.

  1. First, of course, plug your printer in and get it configured on your Linux box.
  2. I don’t know if this even mattered, but in the Settings section for my virtual OS I enable the serial port as I have a serial printer….may not even matter, I don’t know.
  3. First, go here: http://localhost:631
  4. You’ll see three, blocks sections of links – go to: CUPS for Administrators > Adding Printers and Classes
  5. Under “Printers” choose Add a Printer – you’ll be prompted for username and password (root, and, password)
  6. Your printer, if already installed, should be listed – knowing nothing, I accepted the default values on a few consecutive pages.
  7. In a virtual machine – in my case XP – you can add a network printer by simple beginning with \\10.0.0.x\ and it will fill in the rest….it will see the printer on that computer.
  8. I received a Windows prompt that the drivers for my new printer were not installed in my virtual machine; from a list, I found my HP LaserJet2100 and added the drivers.
  9. So far, so good…right? Well, not really. If your try to print in your virtual machine, it won’t work – you’ll get an access denied error.
  10. To get rid of the above error, run the following command:

    Near the top, you’ll see a line that looks like this:

    Change it to this:

    I also changed the following (not because anyone said to) from this:

    to this….
  11. On one of the pages where I found some of this info it said that – after all of this – you should restart
    CUPS with the following:

    Well, this made no sense to Manjaro and I had no idea how to restart CUPS. I shut down the virtual machine, rebooted Linux and fired up the virtual machine and the bastard finally worked…..!

Installing Virtual Box – what a pain!

A couple of quick notes – I;; clean this up tomorrow. First, do:

You will have something like : 3.7.4-1-MANJARO. It means that the kernel is linux37. I would then recommend opening the pamac-manager and searching for the correct headers – install from there. Then search for virtualbox and install it and dkms, too. Watch this video – this is what worked……

Froma terminal:
A user:
sudo modprobe vboxdrv
then:
sudo gpasswd -a $USER vboxuser