Ubuntu is a Linux distribution with an emphasis on ease of use and installation. Note that http://askubuntu.com is specifically dedicated to Ubuntu questions.

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102
votes
14answers
327k views

How do I set my DNS when resolv.conf is being overwritten?

Most of the info I see online says to edit /etc/resolv.conf, but any changes I make there just get overridden. $ cat /etc/resolv.conf # Dynamic resolv.conf(5) file for glibc resolver(3) generated by ...
65
votes
20answers
11k views

Root access that can't change root password?

We are having a little problem on a server. We want that some users should be able to do e.g. sudo and become root, but with the restriction that the user can't change root password. That is, a ...
61
votes
7answers
26k views

What is the Linux equivalent to C:\Program Files?

I understand that in Windows as well as Linux and Unix, a program|application|software can be installed in any directory. Also if packages are installed using the distribution's packaging system, it'...
57
votes
4answers
62k views

How can I update to a newer version of Git using apt-get?

I've just set up a new machine with Ubuntu Oneiric 11.10 and then run apt-get update apt-get upgrade apt-get install git Now if I run git --version it tells me I have git version 1.7.5.4 but on my ...
49
votes
2answers
111k views

Sorting down processes by memory usage

I am able to see the list of all the processes and the memory via ps aux and going through the VSZ and RSS Is there a way to sort down the output of this command by the descending order on RSS ...
48
votes
2answers
147k views

How can I restart the SSH daemon on Ubuntu?

When I type in service sshd restart I get a sshd: unrecognized service error. I do have, in /etc/ssh/ a file sshd_config that I use to set config. I can also putty into the Ubuntu box (it is remote). ...
45
votes
6answers
88k views

File permission issues with shared folders under Virtual Box (Ubuntu Guest, Windows Host)

I am using Ubuntu on Virtual Box and I have a folder which is shared between the host (Windows) and the VM (Ubuntu). When I open any file in the share folder in Ubuntu, I can not change it as its ...
42
votes
2answers
52k views

How do I run 32-bit programs on a 64-bit Debian/Ubuntu?

I have a 64-bit (amd64 a.k.a. x86_64) Debian or Ubuntu installation. I need to run 32-bit (i386/i686) programs occasionally, or to compile programs for a 32-bit system. How can I do this with a ...
40
votes
8answers
18k views

List explicitly installed packages

In Gentoo there is the file /var/lib/portage/world that contains packages that I explicitly installed. By explicit I mean, packages that I choose, not including anything installed by default, or ...
38
votes
6answers
41k views

rsync all files of remote machine over SSH without root user?

I have this command to backup a remote machine. The problem is that I need root rights to read and copy all files. I have no root user enabled for security reasons and use sudo the Ubuntu way. Would I ...
38
votes
1answer
11k views

What is $debian_chroot in .bashrc?

What is the debian_chroot variable in my bashrc file? and what is it doing here? PS1='${debian_chroot:+($debian_chroot)}\u@\h:\w\$ '
37
votes
4answers
151k views

“Input/output error” when accessing a directory

I want to list and remove the content of a directory on a removable hard drive. But I have experienced "Input/output error": $ rm pic -R rm: cannot remove `pic/60.jpg': Input/output error rm: cannot ...
36
votes
2answers
32k views

What does adduser do that useradd doesn't?

In addition to the more widespread useradd, Debian based systems also contain an additional adduser command which provides a higher level interface for adding users and some related tasks. There are ...
35
votes
4answers
125k views

SSH login with clear text password as a parameter? [duplicate]

I need to login to a user that I've created on a remote host running Ubuntu. I can't use an ssh key because the ssh login will happen from a bash script ran within a server that I won't have access to ...
35
votes
8answers
30k views

Differences between Debian and Ubuntu

I'm getting sick of Ubuntu's seemingly random changes. I'm thinking of switching to Debian permanently. Does anyone know if there's a list of changes between the two distros somewhere? I want to know ...
32
votes
5answers
89k views

Trying to SSH to local VM Ubuntu with Putty

I have set up a VM of Ubuntu server, have installed OpenSSH, and am now trying to connect to it using Putty. Within Putty, under "Host name", I put "Ubuntu", given this is what I thought it was called ...
29
votes
5answers
91k views

Shell script fails: Syntax error: “(” unexpected

I've been working on a script that automates setting up a development environment for Raspberry Pi development (step by step details that work are here). The script is linked in that article but ...
29
votes
2answers
30k views

Zip everything in current directory

I'd like to compress and package everything, including files and folders in current directory, into a single ZIP file on Ubuntu. What would be the most convenient command for this (and name of the ...
29
votes
2answers
12k views

Run script on screen lock/unlock

I'd like to run a screen if the Gnome session is locked and unlocked. Is there a way that I can intercept this and perform certain actions when the desktop is locked or unlocked?
29
votes
7answers
9k views

Force directory to always be in cache

I've been testing out different methods to improve the time it takes to compile my entire c++ project. Currently it takes ~5 minutes. I experimented with distcc, ccache, and others. Recently, I ...
28
votes
5answers
14k views

What is the difference between ls and l? [duplicate]

I accidentally typed l instead of ls today and found that the command still printed a list of the files in my current directory. Trying l --help brings up the help file for ls suggesting that l is ...
28
votes
5answers
27k views

How can I play a sound when script execution is ready?

I am executing every now and then some python scripts which take quite long to execute. I execute them like this: $ time python MyScript.py How can I play a sound as soon as the execution of the ...
27
votes
9answers
7k views

Uninstalling programs on Linux

I've been using Windows and Mac OS for the past 5 years and now I'm considering to use Linux on a daily basis. I've installed Ubuntu on a virtual machine and trying to understand how I can use Linux ...
26
votes
3answers
46k views

VirtualBox: two network interfaces (NAT and host-only ones) in a Debian guest on Ubuntu

I created a Debian VM on VirtualBox with two interfaces: a NAT one (for accessing internet) and a host-only one. However, I do not know how to make both interfaces work at the same time. If I the ...
25
votes
1answer
5k views

Meaning of colours in htop

Given the option: [ ] Detailed CPU time (System/IO-Wait/Hard-IRQ/Soft-IRQ/Steal/Guest) In htop (Version 1.0.1) what are the meanings of the colours? In the following image, I'm seeing rather a lot ...
24
votes
2answers
40k views

Use shared libraries in /usr/local/lib

I have build some libraries from sources, and the files after make install are in /usr/local/lib For example, in my case I have the file libodb-2.2.so which is in this directory. However when I ...
24
votes
3answers
49k views

Creating an user without a password

I'm trying to create user without password like this: sudo adduser \ --system \ --shell /bin/bash \ --gecos ‘User for managing of git version control’ \ --group \ --disabled-password \ ...
23
votes
6answers
71k views

How can I look up a username by id in linux?

The command id can be used to look up a user's uid, for example: $ id -u ubuntu 1000 Is there a command to lookup up a username from a uid? I realize this can be done by looking at the /etc/passwd ...
23
votes
4answers
13k views

What doesn't need defragmentation? Linux or the ext2 ext3 FS?

Why don't you have to defrag a Linux system? Because it's using the ext2/ext3 file system or because it's Linux? That's relevant, because a have a double boot system (W7 / Ubuntu) and a common ...
22
votes
5answers
56k views

delete line in vi

How can I delete a line in VI? Here what I am doing right now: Open up the terminal alt + ctrl + t vi a.txt I move my cursor to the line which I wan to delete, then what key-combination is should ...
22
votes
4answers
26k views

How to copy-merge two directories? [duplicate]

I have two directories images and images2 with this structure in Linux: /images/ad /images/fe /images/foo ... and other 4000 folders and the other is like: /images2/ad /images2/fe /...
22
votes
4answers
27k views

How to record Skype video calls on Linux?

I'd like to conduct recorded video interviews with Skype and am looking for a reliable tool to accomplish that. Is there anything out there that's not slow or buggy? I'm running (K)Ubuntu.
21
votes
7answers
54k views

Ubuntu12.04: How to disable a daemon process at startup

I normally use service start/stop or initctl start/stop to start or stop a daemon process but now what I am looking for is to disable a daemon process from starting at startup example mysqld. ...
21
votes
2answers
3k views

Is there an online/web interface to search and list apt-get packages and see summaries and recommendations?

I'm looking for sort of an 'app-store' or Google Play store type functionality for apt-get packages. What I'd really like to do is select a category, like 'Music' or 'Internet' and see the list of ...
20
votes
6answers
124k views

mount.nfs: access denied by server while mounting on Ubuntu machines?

I am a linux newbie and I have a very basic question. I have three machines in production - machineA 10.66.136.129 machineB 10.66.138.181 machineC 10.66.138.183 and all those machines ...
20
votes
2answers
8k views

(SSH) Is it dangerous to close terminal without “exit”?

This happened many times. While the SSH active, I'm so tired and just close the terminal without exit Is it dangerous to doing like that?
20
votes
3answers
2k views

How to prevent shutdown when an SSH user is logged in?

I'm administrating a networked environment and I had an interesting situation arise yesterday. When a host is required to shutdown by a regular user, it refuses to do so if other users are logged in ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

What makes CentOS “enterprisey” compared to “generic” distributions like Ubuntu?

What makes CentOS "enterprisey" compared to "generic" distributions like Ubuntu? When I say "enterprisey" I actually mean "better for server deployments". Just a general question, because I was ...
18
votes
6answers
40k views

keyserver timed out when trying to add a GPG public key

I am trying to add a public key for installing a program with CPG. But i am pretty new to this but every command i found gave me the same error: gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys ...
18
votes
2answers
58k views

How to start a service automatically, when Ubuntu starts?

I am using Ubuntu 12.04 and want to have a service starting, when the system is booted normally. As 'service' I understand some code, for example cd my_directory; my_command -host 0.0.0.0 -port ...
18
votes
5answers
19k views

LXC: How do I mount a folder from the host to the container?

I'm trying to mount a folder on the host to an LXC container. The host has a folder /mnt/ssd/solr_data created (this is currently on the root filesystem, but later I'll mount an SSD drive there, so I'...
18
votes
1answer
2k views

How do command-line tools have their own autocomplete list?

How does Bash in Ubuntu know a tool's specific list of actions? For example if I type apt-get and tab twice I only see remove, update, upgrade ...etc, but not the actions for another command or the ...
18
votes
6answers
21k views

How can I switch between different audio output hardware using the shell?

I use my laptop with an external monitor which has speakers. When the monitor is attached through HDMI I can switch (using the GUI: Sound Setting --> Hardware) between the normal laptop audio output ...
18
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I make my laptop sleep when it reaches some low battery threshold?

I'm using Ubuntu, but I have i3 as my window manager. Under i3, when my battery reaches 0%, the computer will just abruptly shut down, no warning or anything. Is there a simple script or ...
17
votes
5answers
5k views

Advantages of Debian over Ubuntu

What are the main advantages of using Debian instead of Ubuntu?
17
votes
4answers
7k views

How is Ubuntu based on Debian?

Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu. Ubuntu is based on Debian. Like this, there are several other linux distributions that are based on Ubuntu, Debian, Slackware, etc. What confuses me is what does this ...
17
votes
4answers
34k views

What program do I use to check mail?

I'm receiving "You have mail" messages and according to How to remove “You have mail” welcome message I should read my mail with mail. However I cannot find the command in my system (Ubuntu 10.04 ...
17
votes
7answers
45k views

Finding files that use the most disk space

Is it possible to list the largest files on my hard drive? I frequently use df -H to display my disk usage, but this only gives the percentage full, GBs remaining, etc. I do a lot of data-intensive ...
17
votes
2answers
4k views

Can I unfreeze bash or vim when SSH session freezes from timeout? [duplicate]

When my SSH session times out, the whole terminal freezes. Is there any way to break out of that connection? CTRL+C doesn't cut it.
17
votes
3answers
16k views

Overflow /tmp mounted when there is free space on /

I recently faced an "overflow" issue on /tmp. I don't have a separate /tmp partition, and there is 17% free in / – then why did I get an overflow tmp filesystem? # /etc/fstab: static file ...