Community Blogs

EA hunting crowd-funding, bringing Origin for Linux?

Recently Electronic Arts published a press release about its new program with benefits for the development studios funding games with the help of crowdfunding platforms such as KickStarter. Accordingly to the program these game studios don't have to pay distribution fees for the first 90 days of using the digital gaming platform Origin. One of the first KickStarter game projects, which is going to be sold on Origin and also to be available for Linux, will be Wasteland 2 from inXile Entertainment.



Latest Games for Linux

While other big publishers, such as Blizzard and Ubisoft, ignore Linux as a gaming platform Electronic Arts pushes its first Linux games into Ubuntu Software Center: Command and Conquer Tiberium Alliances and Lord of Ultima. Although these games are only a couple of browser games, among Ubuntu users they came to very positive reviews.



Electronic Arts talks at Ubuntu Developer Summit

In this phenomenal times for Linux Gaming there are even more great things to come for Linux soon. As some of you know, Ubuntu Developer Summit is going to take place in California on 7–11 May this year.



Phenomenal times for Linux Gaming

Although the Linux gamers are experiencing a phenomenal time nowadays, even better times are waiting for them. While Steam for Linux is being developed by Valve at the moment, more Linux games than ever before are being published now.

The latest HumbleIndieBundle introduced again a great new game for Linux a few day ago - Botanicula:



GuitarPro6 on Fedora 64 bit


Guitar Pro 6 on Fedora x64



After I've had a lot of trouble to get this working, I will show you the step by step guidance to run Guitar Pro 6 on a 64 bit version of Fedora (it should be almost the same on  all 64 bit versions of Linux though -> Notice, if you're using a x64 Debian based distribution, it's easier by using getlibs)




1.) First download the guitar pro 6 installer for linux from the website

2.) The downloaded file is in .deb container format (for Debian distributions). Simple extract the deb file, and open the extracted folder.

3.) You can find two tar.gz files inside of it: control.tar.gz and data.tar.gz as well as debian-binary. The only file which we need is data.tar.gz, so delete the other two files.

Extract the data.tar.gz file.

Corresponding Shell-Command: tar -xf data.tar.gz


4.) Open up the data folder - again you see two folders opt and usr. Open the opt folder and copy the GuitarPro6 folder inside of it to /opt/. (You need sudo rights to do this, so either you do it directly over the terminal, or you call nautilus with root privileges: sudo nautilus /opt)


Corresponding Shell-Command: sudo cp -R GuitarPro6 /opt/



Ok basically that's it, but Guitar Pro 6 doesn't start up yet. It needs some dependencies. So let's see which ones it needs. Open up a terminal and change the directory to /opt/GuitarPro6

Corresponding Shell-Command: cp /opt/GuitarPro6

6.) start the shell script by typing: sh It should give you the following output:

./GuitarPro: error while loading shared libraries: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory


So we need all these dependencies (and we need the 32 bit Libraries!!!) So instead of let you find out each dependency after another here are the needed packages you have to install:






Corresponding Shell-command: sudo yum -y install libstdc++.i686 mesa-libGL.i686 alsa-lib.i686 portaudio.i686 pulseaudio-libs.i686 libXrender.i686 glib2.i686 freetype.i686 fontconfig.i686 libgnomeui.i686 gtk2-engines.i686


7.) We're almost done, there's one more problem: After installing these libs and trying to start guitarPro6 with sh the following error will occur:

./GuitarPro: /opt/GuitarPro6/./ version `ZLIB_1.2.3.3' not found (required by /usr/lib/


This means GuitarPro6 tries to use a wrong version of libz. The trick is to remove the libz lib in the GuitarPro6 folder and let GuitarPro use the libz version of the system.


sudo rm


After that GuitarPro6 should be able to start.

8.) Soundbank-Installation:

For some reasons (which I didn't find out yet) the soundbank installation doesn't work. However there's a workaround for this:




  1. Download the file Soundbanks.gpbank directly from the website and copy it to your GuitarPro6 folder (again you need root privileges to do this)

  2. Run sudo /opt/GuitarPro6/GPBankInstaller /opt/GuitarPro6/Soundbanks.gpbank /opt/GuitarPro6/Data/Soundbanks/

     (notice the blanks after each directory argument)

  1. It should sucessfully import it, doing it this way.



I hope everything worked out fine. You can also add a Desktop link to GuitarPro6 by adding a file in /usr/share/applications.



If you have questions you can ask here, I'll respond asap: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Buy me a beer :)





Enabling DVD playback in Ubuntu 9.10 to 11.04 - Updated Version.

How to enable DVD playback in Ubuntu 9.10 - 11.04

I like to keep things brief and to the point. Here is how to configure Ubuntu to play DVDs. Tried the procedures on Ubuntu 9.10 up to 11.04, once installed, you will be able to use any proprietary or open-source media player.
Using the Terminal
Install the libdvdread4 package (no need to add third party repositories) via command line:

# sudo apt-get install libdvdread4

libdvdread4 is the decryption mechanism that decodes DVD content. This must be installed or you will not be able to play DVDs.
Then run this program only once:

# sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/

libdvdread4 and libdvdread4/ must be installed first before you install your desired media player. Once the above packages has been installed then you are free to install any media player, for instance, vlc and banshee.
# sudo apt-get install vlc

Installing with the Synaptic Package Manager
To open Synaptic, go to System>Administration> and click on Synaptic Package Manager. Or you can use the shell and type:

# sudo synaptic

Within the synaptic package manager box, click on the "search" button and type: "ubuntu-restricted-extras". A list of possible packages will be displayed. Right-click "ubuntu-restricted-extras" and choose "Install". Search for VLC by typing "vlc" in the "search" bar. Once found, right-click and choose install.  
After the initial install, go to the terminal to download and install /usr/lib/ with this command: "sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/". After all is complete, enjoy the entertainment.


How to download RSS feeds with a simple script

After a bit of studying and testing, I have found a  very simple way to download RSS feeds from the command line. It works very well, except (in some cases) with encoding. The whole script with explanations is here. Thank you in advance for any help with the encoding problem!


Major gaps of Open Office Impress versus Microsoft Power Point: what do you think?

Yesterday Sergio, a user of OpenOffice Impress, sent to the discussion list his list of the “Major Gaps of OpenOffice Impress 3.3 vs. Microsoft Office PowerPoint” because “after struggling for over 1 year, sadly he had to stop using Open Office Impress and go back to Microsoft Power Point”. After speaking with Sergio, I reformatted and put online his list of complaints to gather more feedback. Please have a look at it. I am particularly curious to know if with LibreOffice it would be different.


Seven photo-archiving tips and the Linux tools to help you

I recently posted my favourite seven rules to manage digital photographs under Linux. What are yours?




Video: How to install applications in Fedora 15

The new GUI for Fedora (Gnome 3) can be at times a bit confusing for new users, specially if they are used to other operating systems. During the last couple of weeks i have seen a raise of people asking on the IRC challnel #fedora-latam regarding how to install *.exe files or how to install programs in general.

The main advantage of using applications from an official Fedora repository is that all programs that are placed there have a 'digital signature' that validates and warranties the authenticity of this program. This means that the program or application that you install from the repositories is 100% compatible with Fedora and that it has passed a quality control and test period. So if you are coming from windows, you don't have to worry about cracks, or having to click on ten thousand websites before beginning the download. It is that simple.


Here is a short video of how to install applications on Fedora using the user interfaces:




Source (spanish): ¿Como instalar programas en Fedora 15?

Video URL:


Install stock VMWare Player on Gentoo without portage


If you've followed my previous virtualization articles you've already seen a lot of material related to VMWare and Gentoo as well.

I use Gentoo as my primary desktop distribution and I often use it on servers as well, one of the biggest problems on Gentoo portage is VMWare support for the player, if you're using an AMD64 release (Gentoo on x86 with 64bit support) you're stick with v2.x but recent 3.x version has introduced a lot of cool things (VM machine creation and better HW support), if you want to install it you're on your own.

It's not a complex installation but on Gentoo there're few tips to remember for a clean installation/uninstallation. Here's what I've did on my own:


Download and Install

First of all just download the package you're looking for from VMWare download area, you need to be registered to get something from them but it's not a problem, at the time of this writing version 3.1.4 it's the latest one but I don't think this procedure would not change later on


Now follow few HTML pages (vmware player link, registration area and then you'll be redirected to the download area) and you'll see something like this:



You need to download proper binary file according to your architecture (32bit or 64bit), I've downloaded for example “Vmware-Player-3.1.4-385536.x86_64.bundle” in my /tmp directory


now add executable bit to it:

chmod +x VMware-Player-3.1.4-385536.x86_64.bundle

So you'll get something like this:

# ls -la Vmware-Player-3.1.4-385536.x86_64.bundle
-rwxr-xr-x 1 andrea software 103561067 May 18 19:51 Vmware-Player-3.1.4-385536.x86_64.bundle

now just execute the bundle file (as ROOT)



Select NO if you don't want to check for products updates (like me)


and select NO if you don't want to send anonymous data to them (like me)

These choices are up to you, but they're not important for this installation.


Then click INSTALL to install this program, this is a fairly clean installation as in a Windows environment, wait for a while until the installer program will stop with a pop-up like this one:


Don't worry about that, installer is complaining about a missing vmware service file, maybe because it thinks to be running in a mainstream distribution like Fedora Core or Ubuntu, simply ignore the warning and continue with your own installation. At the end of the process you'll see a screenshot like this one



Now Some tweaking

Installer ended its job, now it's time to tweak few things in your system to get everything working

First of all: we need to create a service file and put it under /etc/init.d, I've grabbed a good skeleton from /usr/portage/app-emulation/vmware-player/files/vmware-3.0.rc but I've adapted it to be fully compliant with the VMWare .bundle file, particularly I've payed attention to the uninstallation process. Don't copy vmware-3.0.rc, take mine because it works:

# Author: Andrea Benini (2011-05-18)
# Distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License v2
# Original script taken from /usr/portage/app-emulation/vmware-player/files/vmware-3.0.rc
# Slightly modified so I can use it with stock VMWare Player Bundle file from their download area
# This scripts fixes troubles for services installed from scratch as well as vmware manual uninstallation
# script.
# Report me problems if they occours (andrea benini GMAIL com. No dots, between name and surname, add @ where needed)

depend() {
need localmount
use net }

start() {
ebegin Starting VMware USB Arbitrator
#start-stop-daemon --start --exec /usr/bin/vmware-usbarbitrator
/usr/bin/vmware-usbarbitrator eend $?
ebegin Starting VMware services
modprobe -a vmmon vmci vsock vmblock vmnet eend $?
/usr/bin/vmware-networks --start
eend $?

stop() {
ebegin Stopping VMware USB Arbitrator
start-stop-daemon --stop --exec /usr/bin/vmware-usbarbitrator
eend $?
/usr/bin/vmware-networks --stop eend $?
ebegin Stopping VMware services
modprobe -r vsock vmci vmmon vmblock vmnet
eend $?

stoppable() {


Tweaking considerations

I've just added few things if you compare mine with the original one: usbarbitrator is needed from version v3.x and above (according to vmware docs) and it needs to be run as a service. I've also added the stoppable status because if you'd like to have a clean uninstallation you'll run into troubles without it, I've fixed it to avoid troubles and have a nicely installed package (with a nice uninstallation as well...)

Now copy my own vmware service file reported above and name it /etc/init.d/vmware, and place executable bit on it

# chmod +x /etc/init.d/vmware


Now if you run it you'll see something like this:

# /etc/init.d/vmware
Usage: vmware [ flags ] < options >

Normal Options:
start stop restart pause zap
Default init.d options.

Additional Options:
Extra options supported by this init.d script.

Suppress output to stdout, except if:
1) It is a warning, then output to stdout
2) It is an error, then output to stderr
--verbose Output extra information
--debug Output debug information
--nocolor Suppress the use of colors

Configuration files:
/etc/conf.d/vmware /etc/rc.conf

For more info, please run '/etc/init.d/vmware help'.




Did you noticed the “Additional Options: stoppable” area above ? It needs to be there if you'd like to have a clean uninstall, if you don't have it (like original Gentoo script file) or if you don't understand what I'm writing just drop me a note for it


Final steps

We've done a lot of the job, now it's time to link vmware modules to your own running kernel, you need to have linux kernel source code and headers (emerge sys-kernel/linux-headers sys-kernel/gentoo-sources) installed in your system. Well if you're an average Gentoo user you'll probably have them already installed (if you follow the installation handbook and you compile the kernel by yourself you already have them where needed). By the way just check if you've them in your system:

emerge --search sys-kernel/linux-headers
emerge --search sys-kernel/gentoo-sources

Now it's time to link vmware modules to the kernel, always as root user just run:

# vmplayer

You need to wait for a while until modules and sources won't finish their compilation process, at the end you'll see this nice window:



And that's it, you're set and you don't need anything else, just add vmplayer command to your favorite menu in your Window Manager (Gnome, KDE, Fluxbox, ...)

if you can see this VMWare main window you've successfully installed everything fine, if you cannot see it you're stuck somewhere else, just drop me a note if you need some help



Final considerations

  • This procedure is tailored on Gentoo but it could be easily ported to other distros as well: Slackware, Arch, LFS and so on

  • Use my /etc/init.d/vmware service file, this works and it's fully compatible with Gentoo and VMWare as well, I've payed a special attention to the installation/uninstallation process. A lot of people are complaining about troubles when uninstallation process is run, it seems VMWare player uninstaller is looking for a particular feature to stop running services, that's why I've added “stoppable” status

  • To manually uninstall the VMWare Player just issue this command: vmware-installer --uninstall-product=vmware-player, always inside an XWindow command shell, a graphical installer starts and their procedure is really easy

  • You may start/stop virtual ethernet cards with the /etc/init.d/vmware file (/etc/init.d/vmware start|stop|restart|status|...), you don't need to fire up this service when your machine boots, when you run vmplayer networks interfaces are automatically started for you

  • If you're using a different distribution please pay attention to the lack of support when you're using a distro that is not RPM or DEB based, you just need to place a service file for starting up virtual network services (in /etc/rc.d or /etc/init.d or something like that), also add the status “stoppable” to your service file so you may have a nice clean uninstall if needed

I guess I've covered everything, please let me know if you need further information


Andrea (Ben) Benini


Page 3 of 11

Upcoming Linux Foundation Courses

  1. LFD320 Linux Kernel Internals and Debugging
    03 Nov » 07 Nov - Virtual
  2. LFS416 Linux Security
    03 Nov » 06 Nov - Virtual
  3. LFS426 Linux Performance Tuning
    10 Nov » 13 Nov - Virtual

View All Upcoming Courses

Who we are ?

The Linux Foundation is a non-profit consortium dedicated to the growth of Linux.

More About the foundation...

Frequent Questions

Join / Linux Training / Board