Category Archives: GNU / LINUX

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Howto add PPA in debian

I am back with some more scripting fun.

I have been working on configuring my new debian machine and found one utility very lacking in debian and that was add-apt-repository.
So i set down and took my time out and finally i am able to mix match this simple script.

Disclaimer: I know adding ppa can have adverse effects on debian machines

At this point the work that this script performs is

  1. add the repository of the ppa. (here i am using lucid as the distribution of choice, coz i am using squeeze as my debian version)
  2. add the gpg key to the keyring.


  • This script is at this pointed tested only on one machine. debian Squeeze (mint Flavoured.)

File :

Steps to install this.

  1. Download file

$ wget

2.  Save this file in /usr/sbin/

$ cp /usr/sbin/add-apt-repository

3.  Change permissions to execute

$ chmod o+x /usr/sbin/add-apt-repository

4.  Change ownership to root

$chown root:root /usr/sbin/add-apt-repository

5.  Now when ever you need to execute command type

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ppa-name

Opening this script to larger audience so that we can crowdsource efforts if someone likes it.

hope this can help someone

File :

Change Log

7 – Jan – 2011 : Updated the tutorial to place the file @ /usr/sbin as suggested at various during comments.

6 – Aug – 2011 : Updated the script to deal with the security hole (although not easily exploitable) as suggested by 7eggert at comment no 23

10 Sep – 2011 : bin corrected to sbin in step 3 and 4..  : thanks toCraig for pointing that out

Innovative and interesting usage of Linux Live Disk's


Photo by bulinna

While searching for some stuff on Internet i came across this post about interesting usage of ubuntu livecd and was wondering how many more methods are possible.

So some basic usage of live cd that everyone understands and atleast expects from a live disk.

  • Bootable Operating system disk

On top of that a large array of disk’s also work in various ways possible some of them listed here :

So Here is a non exhaustive list of innovative usage of Live CD’s (already implemented or non implemented.)

  • Banks Providing Live CD with Browser Homepaged to Bank Website.
  • Internet Cafe’s operating on Live CD, Refer Internet Kiosk link here
  • To Setup Diskless dumb terminals / Thin clients booting on Live Disk for cheap workstation alternative. LTSP will be a good alternative
  • Ethical Hacking
  • Un Ethical Hacking or Cracking.
  • Disaster Recovery.
  • Forensic evidence collection.
  • Testing any Distro before switching to it.
  • OS on the RUN (when using Live USB mode)(or custom build)
  • Portable Electronic Workbench. <- Preinstalled toolkit for electronics development.
  • Portable Testing Workbench. <- complete with software testing tools installed
  • Portable bio informatics workbench
  • Quick Deployable bastion host
  • Quick Deployable / Easily Resettable Firewall.
  • Portable WebServer with demo (for web development organizations.) (Browser opening and showing the webpages)
  • Live Gaming Disc for LAN parties / Software Demo.
  • Backup O.S. in case of Hardware failure.
  • Backup, rescue and recovery of files from corrupt OS / Corrupt Partition / deleted files.
  • mass setup / replication of system in corporate or other large scale setup
  • System Migration. (burn a disk in one and reinstall in second)
  • Dedicated partitioning tool for hardware vendors and enthusiast’s
  • Cluster on Live CD / Load balancer on live Disk.
  • Virus cleaning Kit. (antivirus, rootkit checker, togen and malware detector.)

some other very innovative usage that came in during discussion including

  • Coasters
  • Wheels
  • Frisbee

I large number of usage have been collected by the community effort using following threads in various forums :

So what do you thing what else could be done if you have to opportunity to create a  Live Disk

Better UBUNTU : menu customization and hotkeys

Last few Days i was busy customizing GNOME to match up with my windows 7 setup as i like to have similar interface

One of the most important part of this customization will be the Menu.

Gnome menu with three icon interface is standard (“Application” “Places” and “System”) But then at times i found looking for a unified menu, i used to satisfy my needs with a gnome-main-menu on taskbar giving me a unified menu. but with windows vista and windows 7 quick search feature in place i was finding lack of facility in ubuntu-main-menu too.

Menu interface similar to Windows 7 menu

My Search finally took me to UBUNTU System Panel.

available @ <- This also has some plugin’s to display on

Its Launchpad Link is

Next Stop : Enable hotkeys

In Windows I use hotkeys a lotmost common keys are

Win + E – Open Explorer

Win + D – Minimize all and show desktop.

and one shortcut which i thought i must add in linux

Win + T – to open terminal window

So i started with search on how to add such keys.

Win+ D => gconftool-2 -t str –set /apps/metacity/global_keybindings/show_desktop “d”

Win + T => gconftool-2 -t str –set /apps/metacity/global_keybindings/run_command_terminal “t”

For more details we can refer this simple post :

I know it’s not exactly what your after but if you go to…

System > Preferences > Keyboard Shortcuts

…and select “Launch home directory”, you can assign Win+e to load your home folder. If you’ve set up the sidebar in nautilus as directory structure, you should be set.

Hope that’s of some use.

set browser to Win W

set terminal to Win T

Also you can map windows Key to the Menu but then it will not be available for other actions.

so i went ahead and marked my right Win key for menu an left winows key remain intact for my shortcuts to work.

Note : to mark right win key as USP_Hotkey  use Super_R a the identifier.