Ubuntu 16.04 running MPD with the Cantata client

Configuring the MPD Music Server on Ubuntu Linux

Linux has a ton of options when it comes to media players. Many of them are just as feature packed as their proprietary counterparts on other operating systems. What most Linux users don’t realize is that there are additional options that utilize one of Linux’s greatest strengths, servers. MPD(Music Player Daemon) is a lightweight server for sharing a music library both locally and over a network.

The best aspect of MPD is, by far, its flexibility. Not only does MPD allow music to be shared and played over the network, but it also allows for numerous different front end clients. These clients range from full graphical music players to minimal command line options.

Ubuntu 16.04 running MPD with the Cantata client

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Getting The RX 480 Running With AMDGPU on Linux

AMD’s RX 480 has been out for a little over a week now, and in that week Linux gamers have been clamoring or information on whether and how the card works on their favorite distribution. Sure, Ubuntu 16.04 is officially supported by AMD’s proprietary Pro drivers, but what about everyone else, and what if you want to use those AMDGPU open source drivers that have been in the works for so long? Well, it’s definitely possible, but it’s not all that easy.

WARNING: Here be dragons, big ones. They’re pretty much the kind you’d expect to see flying around Mereen, so if you don’t want to take the chance of breaking your install and some singed eyebrows, turn back now.

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Basic PHP 7 and Nginx Configuration on Ubuntu 16.04 Linux

Nginx is quickly overtaking Apache as the favorite web server. For web apps built in languages like Rails and Python it’s virtually ubiquitous, but it’s a bit slower to catch on in the PHP world. Part of the reason for that is how easily PHP and Apache go together. However, PHP and Nginx can cooperate nearly as easily, and with the release of PHP 7, combining the two can be a fairly speedy option.

The Packages

First thing’s first. Update Ubuntu and get the the Nginx and PHP packages.

# sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade
# sudo apt-get -y install nginx php7.0 php7.0-fpm

When the installation is finished, the packages should all be in place, and actually running. To make sure that this is the case, you can check that both Nginx and the PHP-FPM services are running in Systemd.

# sudo systemctl status nginx
# sudo systemctl status php7.0-fpm

If Systemd confirms that both services are running, the server should actually be up, and you should be able to see the default Nginx welcome page by navigating to localhost in the browser.

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Ruby on Rails running on Ubuntu 16.04

Ruby on Rails Development On Ubuntu 16.04 Linux

Ruby on Rails is one of the most popular web development platforms today, with some of the hottest start-ups and tech giants employing it in their software stacks. One of the biggest selling points of Ruby on Rails is the ease of development. It is just as easy to get set up and start developing, especially on Linux.

Ruby on Rails running on Ubuntu 16.04

Installing the Packages

There are a couple of packages needed before Ruby can be installed in set up, and no, Ruby isn’t one of them. Since this tutorial is going to be using the Ruby Version Manager, or RVM, to manage Ruby, there’s no need to install the package through Ubuntu. There are a couple of packages that RVM needs in order to work and one that never seems to get pulled in by gem installs(nodejs).

# sudo apt-get install build-essential curl nodejs

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The default Fedora 24 desktop

Fedora 24 Workstation Review: All Work and Very Little Play

Fedora 24 brings with it a number of technical improvements, software upgrades, and under the hood. It’s clear that the Fedora developers have been working closely with upstream sources to tightly integrate advances in everything from the kernel to GNOME, Systemd, NetworkManager, and GCC6 which have all been forged into a powerful core. However, that’s about where it ends.

When it comes to a being a full fledged desktop distribution, Fedora 24 falls a bit short, and that’s mostly due to the Fedora project’s limited repositories.

The default Fedora 24 desktop

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Basic NFS Installation and Configuration on Linux

Sharing files between computers and servers is an essential networking task. Thankfully, Linux’s NFS(Networked File System) makes it extremely easy. With NFS properly configured, moving files between machines is as easy as moving files around on the same machine. Since NFS functionality is built directly into the Linux kernel, it is both powerful and available on every distro, though the configuration differs slightly between them.

Setting Up The Server

Installing The Packages

Linux NFS uses the Client-Server model, so the first step in getting NFS set up is setting up the server. Because the core NFS capabilities are rooted in the kernel, there isn’t much required in the way of packages, but there are still a few regardless of the distribution as well as some configuration.
Almost all major distributions have NFS enabled, so unless you’re running a custom one, it should already be set up. The next step in getting the server set up is to install the packages.

On Ubuntu/Debian:

$ sudo apt-get install nfs-kernel-headers

On Fedora

$ sudo yum install nfs-utils system-config-nfs

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Acer C7 running Gentoo

How to Install Any Linux Distro on a Chromebook

WARNING: This process will erase all information from the Chromebook hard drive. As with all firmware flashes, there is a chance of something going wrong, rendering the device useless. Proceed at your own risk.

Chromebooks are everywhere. Google’s little Linux based PCs have been booming since their introduction several years ago in everything from homes to businesses, and even educational settings. Many users, especially Linux users, can’t get past the fact that the devices are hopelessly hamstrung by their ChromeOS operating system which both cuts down on the number of apps the device can run and makes it dependent on an Internet connection to get anything done.

Acer C7 running Gentoo

So, what does a Linux user believing in the potential of their little (sort of)Linux laptop do? Break everything Google did.
In many cases, Chromebooks are supported by the FOSS Coreboot project, meaning that there is a completely unlocked, free and open source version of the Chromebook BIOS just waiting to be installed. With a few relatively simple steps, that $300 Chromebook can become a full fledged Linux laptop running just about any distribution. It should be noted that you should check which type of processor your Chromebook is running first, this method only supports Intel based Chromebooks. Another thing to keep in mind before getting started is that there are a ton of different Chromebooks. This method was tested with the extremely common Acer 7XX series, but it should work(maybe with subtle differences) on other Chromebooks as well.

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The clean and modern Plasma desktop

Plasma 5: Loaded With Useful Features

Current State of Plasma 5

Most Linux users know that KDE is a feature rich desktop environment with a whole suite of applications for nearly every task imaginable. What many Linux users don’t know is how far the KDE team has stepped up the level of completeness in the latest releases in Plasma 5. As of the latest release of KDE Plasma 5(5.6 at the time of this article), the KDE team has been packing Plasma with a ton of interesting and convenient features that show just how modern and convenient the Linux desktop experience can be.

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Install LXD with apt-get install lxd

Getting Started With LXD containers on Ubuntu 16.04

Why LXD?

It’s no secret that containers are hot right now in the Linux world. They are quickly becoming the backbone of the Cloud and are making DevOps dreams come true. Even so, at first glance, it seems a bit redundant for Canonical to develop a new container system for Ubuntu in a world easily dominated by Docker. So why, then, did they do it? To fill a middle ground between traditional virtual machines and Docker. Canonical said it themselves, “By combining the speed and density of containers with the security of traditional virtual machines, Canonical’s LXD is the next‐generation of container hypervisor for Linux.” Not only that, but Docker containers can be run within LXD containers, adding another dimension to potential container configurations.

LXD is an enhancement of the existing LXC Linux container hypervisor with it’s own toolset, sharing a similar relationship to the original project as Ubuntu does with Debian with the goal of taking existing great software and streamlining it for easier use. On Canonical’s latest Ubuntu LTS release, 16.04, LXD is well integrated and easy to use with clear and concise CLI tools that make container creation and management seamless.

Initial Setup

Getting started with LXD on Ubuntu 16.04 is as close to effortless as could be expected. Canonical condensed the install to a single package, making this a one command install. A simple sudo apt-get install lxd will get everything needed to get started.

Install LXD with apt-get install lxd

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