Fixing proftpd in Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala)

Most of Ubuntu fans and users already know that a new version of this wonderful operating system was released on 29 October 2009. Karmic Koala (a fancy name isn’t it?) has lots of new features and improvements, but I will not bother to list them here cause this blog entry is not about that. Just navigate to an official webpage if you want to find out more about Ubuntu 9.10.
I have a long history of using various Ubuntu versions on my private SSH/HTTP/FTP/etc box and wonderful tool do-release-upgrade was already installed. I didn’t actualy remember any major problems migrating from older versions of Ubuntu so I typed sudo do-release-upgrade and hit enter. Process of migrating from Jackalope to Koala went as smooth as a breeze although I was upgrading through an SSH session.
Logging in to the system was succesful after issuing a required reboot. I started screen (somehow all tweaks and bits like status line in a bottom of terminal windows were gone), created few virtual windows and ran usual programs such as rtorrent, Midnight Commander, silc, irssi, nano editor etc. Everything just worked…
… for a several days. I received IM from a friend of mine then. He was wondering why my FTP was down. Interesting part was that proftpd config files and default directories were there, but running sudo /etc/init.d/proftpd start|stop|restart failed everytime with no output whatsoever. It seemed like actual software just wasn’t installed at all. sudo apt-cache search proftpd showed me that proftpd package is called by a different name – proftpd-basic – now (as opposed to proftpd in Ubuntu 9.04). sudo apt-get install proftpd-basic was next step but proftpd -n showed an error:
Failed binding to, port 21: Address already in use
Check the ServerType directive to ensure you are configured correctly.
After googling arround I found that possible solution for this problem can be switching FTP daemon from standalone to inetd mode in configuration file /etc/proftpd/proftpd.conf at ServerType directive. I edited corresponding line in a proftpd configuration file mentioned above and restarted server with sudo reboot. This helped bringing FTP service back to life.
I hope these simple tips and tricks will help you too!

Tor/Privoxy/Karmic Koala

So the other day I upgraded to Karmic Koala (for the non-techies – thats the new Ubuntu (for those who have no idea what Ubuntu is – I’m proud that I write the only website you ever read) ).  Most of what I needed to work, worked – no problems.  My tablet?  The pen works – the buttons don’t – but so what – I didn’t use them anyway.  It boots quickly, it looks nice, and doesn’t crash.  I’m not sure why they went from a default IM client of Pidgin to Empathy unless its because Empathy has potential.  But its not there yet, so I’m sticking with Pidgin for now.

Now this post isn’t called, Karmic Koala – A Review.  What I wanted to share is how to get Privoxy working with Tor again after the upgrade.  Now if you’re like me when you initially installed Tor, you replaced the Privoxy config file ( /etc/privoxy/config ) with the one from .  If you kept this config file during the upgrade, your Privoxy is now broken.  Luckily this is easy to fix.

First, you need to edit /etc/privoxy/config . Look for the 3 lines that look like this:

actionsfile standard  # Internal purpose, recommended
actionsfile default   # Main actions file
actionsfile user      # User customizations

You need to add “.action” to the end of each of these because that is how the files they refer to are named.  So after editing it should look like this:

actionsfile standard.action  # Internal purpose, recommended
actionsfile default.action   # Main actions file
actionsfile user.action      # User customizations

Now you need to edit each of the files named above.  Its a simple search and replace (without quotes): “hide-forwarded-for-headers” with “change-x-forward-for”.

That’s it – Privoxy will now be working again.

How to recover grub2 in Ubuntu 9.10, Karmic Koala

This is a common problem you will face often. Even thought it was my first encounter with grub2 it wasn’t as simple as I expected. May be its because things are handled a bit differently in grub2 as compared to the old grub. Anyways, in this article I will tell you how to recover grub2 when you have lost it after windows installation, got some error while installing linux or somehow messed it up while changing its configuration. The below is good example.

If you have a live CD, using it boot into a live session and follow the following steps (don’t skip any unless you are know you are doing).

1) Open a terminal (Applications->accessories->terminal) and run this command

[ubuntu]$ sudo fdisk -l

2) The above command will list out the partition table of your hard disk. After identifying your linux installed partition. Run this command, I will use the partition as /dev/sda1 you will have to replace it with yours.

[ubuntu]$ sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

3) If you have /boot on a different partition other then you need to mount it too. After identifying your /boot partition run this command (i am assuming it to be /dev/sda2)

[ubuntu]$ sudo mount /dev/sda2 /mnt/boot

4) Now, mount the rest of the devices

[ubuntu]$ sudo mount –bind /dev /mnt/dev/

5) Now, using chroot we will be allowed to run commands considering a specified root directory.

[ubuntu]$ sudo chroot /mnt

Now, we will be chrooted as root considering /mnt as the root directory. So, from now we won’t need sudo to execute commands as root

6) If you need to make some changes to /etc/default/grub, open the file in your favourite editor ( i will use vim)

[root]$ vi /etc/default/grub

7) Make whatever changes you want to make and run update-grub to create the configuration file.

[root]$ update-grub

8) If you want to install grub2 to MBR run this command.

[root]$ grub-install /dev/sda

If you want to install it to some partition then use that partition name instead of /dev/sda e.g. /dev/sda1 for the second partition etc. Or if you want to install grub2 on another drive then you may use that name e.g. /dev/sdb for an external hard disk.

You will have to resolve the names using fdisk -l command. (be careful while doing that)

9) If you faced some error while installing grub2 then you may want to run it with –recheck attribute.

[root]$ grub-install –recheck /dev/sda

10) Once you are done with this either press Ctrl-D to exit chroot or type exit.

11) And then umount the partition you have mounted starting from /dev

[ubuntu]$ sudo umount /mnt/dev

[ubuntu]$ sudo umount /mnt

Ubuntu Karmic Koala NBR on Asus EEE 901

The release of Ubuntu Karmic Koala is finally here.

Yesterday I downloaded both the desktop x86 & Netbook Remix ISO’s from the NZ mirror (all up took 10min – sweet bandwidth!) and pretty quickly burnt out the NBR CD and installed it onto the work Asus eee 901. 900mhz Celeron, 1GB ram, 4gb SSD + 16GB SSD.

Karmic works like a treat – everything ‘Just Worked’ – wireless supported (that worked in Linux Mint 7 & Ubuntu NBR 9.04 also), the web camera worked (didn’t in 9.04, but did in Mint with some fiddling), the netbook frontend’s icons work nicely this time as under 9.04 I had to do a kernel hack to get the acceleration out of the video card.

Very nice, very simple install with perfect results.

Well done Ubuntu!

My next attempt with Karmic will be when Mythbuntu release their next version based on 9.10 – can’t wait!

Enable Horizontal Scrolling and Disable Touchpad in Karmic Koala

Karmic Koala makes it very easy to customize touchpad and therefore makes it more useful. Now you can disable touchpad while typing to avoid your cursor jumping all over the place and/or enable horizontal scrolling with just few clicks. Believe me I’ve tried to disable my touchpad while typing in Jaunty and it involves editing files that’s hard to pronounce. So lucky for all of us, it’s far easier now, no editing (and magic spell) required.

  • go to System -> Preferences -> Mouse
  • then go to touchpad tab,
  • here you can find option to enable horizontal scroll, disable touchpad among other options.

That’s it. It’s more and more human in every release 🙂

Order your Free Ubuntu 9.10 ( Karmic Koala) CD | Ubuntu Geek

The next ubuntu stable version is going to be released on 29th October  2009.If you want to order your free CDS use the following link


Ubuntu  9.10 new Features

  • Upstart
  • Boot Experience
  • Software Center
  • GNOME 2.28
  • Application development with Quickly
  • Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud Images
  • Ubuntu One file sharing
  • Linux kernel 2.6.31
  • hal deprecation
  • ext4 by default
  • GRUB 2 by default

And many more for more details on each one check here