Archive for February, 2008

Ubuntu and Kubuntu aren't the same?

February 28, 2008

I thought the are the same except the look.

Just proved that last night they aren’t the same. I started off recently again from Ubuntu 7.10, turned it into Kubuntu. KDE 4 looks very attractive but I ended up with duplicated applications at the user interface. I learnt also how to improve font rendering etc.

I then decided to install just the Kubuntu to get rid of duplicated applications. Downloaded the latest image and installation went OK. To my surprise I got all sort of troubles when activating the restricted NVidia driver and even software updates by KDE’s Adept Manager. I ended up updating the installation at command line.

To prove my point I got my ubuntu CD which was dated December 2007 and installed it again. Everything went smoothly without any issues at all.

Ubuntu and Kubuntu aren’t the same perhaps it is KDE vs Gnome. If you like history this is a good read. [Edited] The firefox in ubuntu has no trouble finding and installing Flash and Java SE plugins while I can’t do that without downloading and installing at command line for Java SE in Kubuntu.

I’ll try Sabayon tonight just to have a feel of Beryl.

Fonts look ugly on Firefox 3

February 26, 2008

Below is Firefox 2 which looks good like other applications


This is Firefox 3 which shares the same config file I believe, it’s terrible


Firefox 3

February 22, 2008

I messed up the config of the default Firefox 2 in my ubuntu installation so I followed this post to install Firefox 3 beta 2. Type below in terminal in one line

wget -P ~
linux-i686/en-US/firefox-3.0b3.tar.bz2 && tar xjf ~/
firefox-3.0b3.tar.bz2 -C ~

Run your Firefox 3 by ~/firefox/firefox or double click the shell command in your KDE Dolphin.

Once I got Firefox 3 running I could then get into about:config and locate layout.css.dpi and reset it to the default ‘-1’. Changing this to ‘0’ was supposed to force Firefox to use system font setting for menu and toolbar. The trick didn’t work for me.
[Edited: a setting between 100~110 looks good to me]

Better font rendering

February 20, 2008

One of my first impression on Ubuntu is their ugly fonts. It turns out to be my ignorance, there are tons of way to improve the font rendering. First of all I want fonts rendered like what I see in OS X so I followed this quick start. I got marked improvement following simple steps there. A good reference is here if you are new to ubuntu.

If you are in love with fonts available from Microsoft of course you could install msttcorefonts at command line or simply add fonts from fonts folder in your Windows partition.

From Ubuntu guide you could also add extra fonts repositories

deb feisty fonts
deb-src feisty fonts

to /etc/apt/sources.list then

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install libfreetype6 libcairo2 libxft2
then reconfigure the fonts by

gksudo dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig-config
gksudo dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig

my selections were ‘Native’, ‘Automatic’, ‘No bitmapped fonts’ during the interactive configuration. After that reboot the system or press Ctrl+Alt+Back Space.

I have also added some fonts from my Windows XP installations.

If you are really hungry for more fonts you could add 3rd party fonts by

sudo apt-get install cabextract gsfonts-other msttcorefonts
t1-xfree86-nonfree ttf-f500 ttf-isabella
sudo apt-get install ttf-larabie-deco ttf-larabie-straight
ttf-larabie-uncommon ttf-staypuft ttf-summersby
sudo apt-get install ttf-ubuntu-title ttf-xfree86-nonfree
xfonts-artwiz xfonts-intl-european

At the end I jumped from 102 to 496 fonts available to me. I would say fonts look 95% like OS X now.

Last but not least the font size still looks odd in firefox they are just too thick and bold. From this thread it seems it has nothing to do with system font, I guess tweaking firefox config is a solution.