Archive for the ‘Gnome’ Category

Configure GNOME 3 to support dual / multiple monitors / Fix broken workspaces

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

gnome3 dual 2 monitors not showing right workspace display issue how to fix

If you're using some GNU / Linux distribution with GNOME 3 and you would like to show output of screen in two connected Monitors to the machine you will stumble upon really unusual behavior. For some unknown reason GNOME environment developers make second monitor to keep fixed on on First Workspace, so whether you try changing Desktops to second / third etc. Virtual Desktop you end up with your secondary monitor focused on Workspace 1. Logically the use of Dual monitor configuration is to show all GUI output identically on both monitors so this behavior is "wrong" ….

Fortunately there is setting that control this weird behavior in GNOME through gconf-editor and simply changing that switches monitors to show properly.

To fix it:

Start Run Command or Press Alt + F2 to invoke GNOME Run menu

Navigate to registry path Desktop -> Gnome -> Shell -> Windows and Uncheck selection on workspaces_only_on_primary 


To make new changes take effect its necessary to Log Off or Restart PC.

There is another easier way for command line oriented people to apply changes without using / having installed gconf-editor by issuing:

gsettings set workspaces-only-on-primary false 

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How to disable GNOME popup notification in Debian Wheezy Linux

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

how to disable remove GNOME 2 / 3 popup e mail notification  Debian Ubuntu Linux screenshot

I found it very annoying to have a pop-up notification every time I receive a new email it is just pointless there especially, when I already use Thunderbird (IceDove) to fetch my email via pop3. This pop-up notification though planned to be useful messes with my Desktop and breaks the habit on how I'm used to old GNOME interface…. I remember same popup notification was present on older Fedora releases (back in time when I used Fedora Linux for my Desktop).

disable Gnome popup notification new email Debian GNU Linux Wheezy 7 screenshot

My logical guess was in order to disable popup notification in GNOME 3 I had to tamper with gconf-editor. In gconf-editor config database there is:

Apps -> Notification daemon

Problem it is not possible to turn it off. Only available change options are:

default-sound, popup_location, sound_enabled, and theme

After some time of try / fail attempts I found the solution on linuxquestions forum, its quite raw solution but it works, all I had to do is change permissions of /usr/lib/notification-daemon/notification-daemon;

debian:~# chmod 0000 /usr/lib/notification-daemon/notification-daemon

Another thing that is handy to disable is POP UP Window with warning that you have low disk space on Hard Drive.

The warinng for Disk space is very annoying and popups up on every GNOME boot. Actually the hard drive with Low disk space is and old mounted partition in NTFS and I only use it to read data.

Here is how to disable HDD Notification Warnings in GNOME:

debian:~# chmod 0000 /usr/lib/gnome-disk-utility/gdu-notification-daemon

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Remove password prompt on GNOME Shutdown / Restart on Debian and Ubuntu Linux

Saturday, June 1st, 2013

It is ultra annoying, that in newest Debian and Ubuntu releases with GNOME 3 Desktop environment on every shutdown or restart you need to type in Super User (root) password, to authorize shutdown / restart.

Generally prompting for root password on GNOME restart is obviously a good think from security point of view, but from usability one – especially on notebooks it is useless annoyance…

So after changing this behavior I came up with this tiny article on how to get rid of GNOME Shutdown / Restart password prompt.

There is a click button (on left of Auth prompt on Shutdown showing URL to XML policy rule from where this behavior is controlled. A really good hint to where to look for to change those annoying behavior…

 Here is how to change this new annoying behavior to old GNOME 2 default restart with no root password prompt .
linux:~# gedit /usr/share/polkit-1/actions/org.freedesktop.consolekit.policy

Find in XML source sections:

Restart the system when multiple users are logged in System policy prevents restarting the system when other users are logged in no auth_admin_keep
Stop the system when multiple users are logged in System policy prevents stopping the system when other users are logged in no auth_admin_keep

To change Restart and Shutdown GUI behavior to not prompt for password, you need to modify in above code:



After changes both sections should look like so:

<action id="org.freedesktop.consolekit.system.restart">
<description>Restart the system</description>
<message>System policy prevents restarting the system</message>

<action id="org.freedesktop.consolekit.system.restart-multiple-users">
<description>Restart the system when multiple users are logged in</description>
<message>System policy prevents restarting the system when other users are logged in</message>

That's all you finally get rid of the annoying prompt for root password. Enjoy 🙂

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Save ( Extract ) only images from PDF files on GNU / Linux in console and in GNOME nautilus

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

extract only pictures / ( images ) from PDF / PDF save only images

Some time ago, I've blogged how it is possible to dump a PDF individual pages into JPG / PNG etc. pics.

Today interestingly, I've learned it is possible to not only dump single or whole PDF document pages into pictures but also to selectively dump only the pictures contained within  PDF file into JPEGs.

Dumping only PDF (contained) images into external JPEG files is doable on GNU / Linux with pdfimages.

1. Extracting pictures from PDF in text console / terminal

pdfimages is part of poppler-utils deb package, if for some reasons you don't have pdfimages on ur system install poppler-utils with;

apt-get install --yes poppler-utils

To extract images of a certain PDF from terminal / console command line it is as simple as:

pdfimages -j pdf-file-name.pdf prefix-of-output-file

will extract all pictures, but bear in mind with some PDF versions it might incorrectly dump some text pages thinking it is pictures too. Also with some PDFs which contain scanned very old paper documents (as pictures) trying to force pdfimages to dump it will just provide you with all pages of the PDF in JPGs. Option -j instructs dumping images from PDF in JPEG picture format, whether the second argument will save pictures in files like: prefix-of-output-file-000.jpg, prefix-of-output-file-001.jpg, prefix..-file-002.jpg etc.

2. Adding GNOME nautilus capability to extract images from PDF files

Enabling extracting images in nautilus is possible with one non-default nautilus plugin  nautilus-scripts-manager

nautilis-scripts-manager is very nice, but I'm sure many Linux users did not know it yet. It makes possible to add any custom shell script that does an opeartion to be visible in nautilus via one extra menu Scripts. As not normally needed on most Linux distributions, it is not installed by default so you have to install it:

noah:~# apt-get install --yes nautilus-scripts-manager

Below is a Screenshot from my nautilus Scripts menu (my locale is in Bulgarian), so Scripts word is in Cyrillic "Скриптове" 🙂

nautilus scripts menu screenshot - allowing users to add custom shell scripts to run in GNOME desktop extract pictures from PDF Linux

After nautilus-scripts-manager is installed. To use it in your user home directory you will have to create ~/.gnome/nautilus-scripts, i.e.

$ mkdir ~/.gnome2/nautilus-scripts

Any script placed inside can be then invoked via the newly appeared nautilus "Scripts" menu. Thus to use from GUI place it there.

Download the following shell script

$ cd ~/.gnome2/nautilus-scripts
$ wget -q
$ chmod +x

If you prefer to copy paste script content:

$ cat ~/.gnome2/nautilus-scripts/
# Extracts image files from PDF files
# For more information see
## Added check for $1 existence and $1_images dir
existence check by hip0
if [ $1 ]; then
if [ ! -d ./$1_images ]; then
mkdir -p ./"$1_images"
pdfimages -j "$1" ./"$1_images"/PDFimage
gdialog --title "Report" --msgbox "Images were successfully extracted!"
exit 0


Well that's all. Once you select a PDF and you click with last mouse button on it selecting Scripts -> a new directory containing the filename prefix of the selected PDF with _images will appear. For exmpl. if pictures are extracted from PDF named filename.PDF in same directory where the file is present you will get new filename_images folder with all pictures dumped from the PDF.

I've learned about pdfimages existence from Sven Boekhoff's blog which btw has plenty of interesting other stuff


Well that's it hope this helps, someone. Comments are welcome 🙂

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How to make GNOME 3 Desktop icons to work as in GNOME 2 on Debian GNU / Linux

Saturday, February 4th, 2012

If you're using Debian GNU/Linux wheezy/sid, you have already figured out GNOME3 settings to start GNOME in Classic mode (like in GNOME 2), starts gnome in a mode where the desktop is not showing the usual Computer, Home, Trash etc.

Besides that in that strange back-compitability Classic GNOME mode its impossible to add any program as a link in desktop like in the good old GNOME 2.

Thanksfully this abusive behaviour of the backwards compitability mode is easily fixable by two simple steps, here they are:

1. Install gnome-tweak-tool – (Tool to adjust advanced configuration settings for GNOME

root@debian:~# apt-get install gnome-tweak-tool

2. Start gnome-tweak tool

Press ALT+F2 and run gnome-tweak-tool or run it via xterm / gnome-terminal:

moonman@Moon:~$ gnome-tweak-tool

Change in Desktop, Have file manager handle the desktop the settings to ON

gnome-tweek-tool Debian GNU Linux wheezy sid screenshot

gnome-tweak-tool Debian wheezy/Sid GNU Linux screenshot handle desktop on

Once the Screenshot Handle Desktop is set to ON, further drag and dropping any application to the Desktop will be working.
Something really irritating is that launching applications in GNOME 3 does not work properly if you just press ALT+F2 and type in lets say gnome-terminal , to work around this weirdity you will have to install gnome-shell package.

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