Posted by: reformedmusings | December 9, 2008

Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid full-function setup

While my production system is a Kubuntu 8.04 (Hardy) setup, I like to toy around with other setups. I generally use virtual machines under VMWare Workstation, I cannot test 3-D window managers in those. You can read about my Kubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex tests here, minus the 3D desktop effects.

For full-up testing beyond what a virtual machine can do, I turn to one of my other hard drives. My system has 4 hard drives: two in a Raid 1 setup that’s my production system, one that’s a data mirror/backup for the production system’s ‘/home’ directory. The last is a legacy WinXP installation that hasn’t been booted in a long time. So, I simply installed Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid on the backup drive using the backup ‘/home’ for the Intrepid installation as well. Piece of cake.

So, after downloading the Live CD image from Ubuntu and burning it to a blank CD, I ran a standard install. During installation, I manually partitioned the disk with a separate 15GB ‘/’ partition, selecting the existing home partition as the Intrepid’s ‘/home’ being sure NOT to format it, and the remainder as the swap partition. Installation proceeded without incident.

After install, the first smart step is to wait a few minutes after booting the system to allow the update manager to run in the background. There are usually about a hundred packages that need updating, possibly even the kernel itself. This first update may need the user to restart the system. After doing that plus adding a weather applet and terminal shortcut to the top bar, this is what I get:


After the update and any necessary restart, it’s time to get busy. Out of the box, Ubuntu will not play music, video, or commercial DVDs in proprietary formats because of their commitment to the free and open source (FOSS) mantra. That’s easily fixable. First, we have to add some repositories to the default list. On the Ubuntu menu bar, click on System -> Administration -> Software Sources (in Kubuntu, you can add these through the Adept or KPackage KDE package managers as well. With one exception noted below, all the packages in this post work for Kubuntu):


Ensure that the boxes are checked as show above.  The restricted and multiverse repositories both hold golden goodies. After checking the boxes, choose the Third-Party Software tab:


Only the top two lines will be present initially. We need to add the rest. Simply click the Add… button as necessary and cut-and-paste the below addresses into the box (one line at a time)  that comes up:


The first address that you need is for the Medibuntu respository (Multimedia, Entertainment & Distractions In Ubuntu), which has updates for Ubuntu software that allows them to play some proprietary-formated music and videos:

deb intrepid free non-free

The next addition will give us access to the latest Wine version. Wine allows you to run some Windows programs under Linux:

deb intrepid main #WineHQ – Ubuntu 8.10 “Intrepid Ibex”

I like to have the latest BibleTime version as well, so we need to add Ralph Janke’s repositories:

deb intrepid main
deb-src intrepid main

Disappointingly, Intrepid Ibex doesn’t include the latest version of the office suite. For reasons with which most of the community seems to disagree, OOo 2.4.1 ships with Ubuntu Intrepid rather than OOo 3.0.  We can update to the latest by adding these repositories:

deb intrepid main
deb-src intrepid main

UPDATE (12/10/2008): This openoffice repository is up and running again. It seemlessly updated my Ubuntu 8.10 setup last night through the normal update manager. FWIW, this repository set also works great with OOo 3.0 in Kubuntu 8.04.1 Hardy with KDE 3.5.10.

These additions should get us what we need. At this point, click on Close to exit Software Sources. It will offer to reload the file list, and you should accept that generous offer. The red “updates available” icon may appear on the top bar in a few seconds telling you that you have new program versions available. Simply click on the icon and install the updates.

But, you aren’t done. In order to get the latest codecs to play proprietary music and videos, as well as some Windows fonts, Adobe flash browser support, and other excellent goodies, we must install some new packages. Some of this can be done using Synaptic Package Manager, but not all, so I’ll use the terminal here. Open a terminal window by clicking Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal. First, we’ll get the public key for the Medibuntu repository (you can cut and paste these lines directly into the terminal), and will answer “y” to any questions asked in the process:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

Next, we’ll update office suite:

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Here comes the obligatory warning: Not all the packages listed below may be legal in your location due to copyright or other limitations. You are responsible for discerning the rules and your extent of conformity thereunto. (Insert your favorite lawyer joke here.)

Now we’ll install the library to play the commercial DVDs for which you’ve already paid:

sudo aptitude install libdvdcss2

Next, we’ll add the huge set of restricted packages that includes Adobe flash support, the Sun Java engine, and a few popular Windows fonts, again answering “y” to all questions. Also, the Sun Java package requires accepting their license agreement. To do so, hit Tab once to get to the OK button and then tap Enter. (For Kubuntu, the package is called kubuntu-restricted-extras.)

sudo aptitude install ubuntu-restricted-extras

This package set takes a while to install, so be patient. Lastly, we’ll install Wine if you want to run some Windows programs under Ubuntu. Wine has a compatibility list posted here for stuff that will run under it. I run iSilo to update the news for my PDA every morning. This time, we’ll use System -> Administration -> Synaptic Package Manager for the task:


When the package manager loads, type “wine” in the search box, click on the open box next to Wine in the package list, then “Mark for installation” in the popup box.  Synaptic will then ask if you want to include several support libraries, which you should accept by clicking OK. The net result will look like the above screenshot.  Next click Apply in the toolbar and you’re off and running.

At this point, you have reached full functionality for Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid. You can play all standard DVDs (not the evil Blue-Ray), most music files, videos, etc., run some Windows programs under Ubuntu, and use some popular Windows fonts in your documents.




  1. […] I installed Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid to another hard drive, I merely intended to explore the workings of Compiz Fusion and Sun […]

  2. […] Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid full-function setup « Reformed Musings (tags: ubuntu) […]

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