Ubuntu 9.04 'Jaunty' Desktop Addendum

Everything I'd do to an out-of-the-box installation to make it what I'd consider more complete. This guide is for Ubuntu, not Xubuntu, or Kubuntu. This guide applies to i386 and amd64 architectures.

Introduction

Ubuntu 8.10 had so many issues when first released that I resolved to not install a new Ubuntu for six weeks after a release. There were a lot of ieesues and they were eventually fixed, at least those issues that bugged me. This doesn't seem the case with 9.04. There was a flurry of updates in the first week or so after release and then it calmed down completely.

Changes Since the Last Guide

Partitioning

Don't accept the default partitioning method because there isn't a separate /home partition. With /home separate you can re-install Ubuntu without wiping out your own files. Use this partitioning scheme:

Usage Size Partition Type Filesystem Type Options Bootable?
/ 6GB is comfortable, 8GB is very comfortable primary ext3 relatime (the default) bootable
home Remaining space primary ext3 relatime (the default) not bootable
swap Depends on usage but typically 2 x RAM (to a max of 2GB?) + 1 x RAM (+ 1 x VRAM?)for suspend/hibernate primary swap area not bootable

Theme

Get rid of Ubuntu's brown theme, instead choose the Clearlooks theme: System → Preferences → Appearance → Theme → Clearlooks.

Additional Repositories

Medibuntu

Medibuntu (Multimedia, Entertainment & Distractions In Ubuntu) is a repository of packages that cannot be included in the Ubuntu distribution for legal reasons (copyright, license, patent, etc). They provide for example libdvdcss2 (which enables you to watch commercial DVD movies) and Skype.

Add Medibuntu repository:
sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/jaunty.list --output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

Add the Medibuntu GPG Key (not whilst Synaptic or Update Manager are running):
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

If you want to exclude getting packages from the non-free component of the Medibuntu repository (acroread, alsa-firmware, AMR and FAAC support in MPlayer and FFmpeg, googleearth, restricted video codecs (ppc-codecs, w32codecs, w64codecs) and Skype), then do this:
sudo sed -e 's/ non-free//' -i /etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

Software Installation

Updates

Install updates using Update Manager.

Packages Recommended For Most Regular Desktop Systems

Install these (note it includes Adobe Flash and Sun JRE) from the command-line with: sudo aptitude install adblock-plus flashplugin-nonfree gimp-data-extras gimp-ufraw gnash gparted gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad-multiverse gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly-multiverse gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg sun-java6-plugin libdvdcss2 libsane-extras liferea regionset scribus scribus-doc scribus-template

Packages For Further Microsoft Windows Compatability

Install these from the command-line with: sudo aptitude install ntfsprogs samba smbfs wine

Archival

Support for a wide range of archive formats

Install these from the command-line with: sudo aptitude install arc arj cabextract lha lzop nomarch p7zip-full pax tnef unrar unshield ytnef zoo

Miscellaneous

Install these from the command-line with: sudo aptitude install traceroute lynx

Software for Laptop Computers

Alternative Applications in case the default applications don't work for you

More Software, Less Necessary

Software and Configuration When Deploying in an Organisation

To Do - Potentially Worth Adding To This Guide

User Accounts

The first account you create will have super user privileges, via the sudo capability. If you want to create user accounts that do no have such privilege then create another user with the following suggested restrictions:

Issues

KompoZer has bitrotted and so is broken in Ubuntu 8.10 and probably 9.04. It could be a long wait for BlueGriffon.