Friday, 22 May 2009

Things you learn..

It's only 10.30 and I have already had to learn a few new things, so all in all, not a bad day at the office. Except some of this stuff is a bit annoying.

Let's start with Gnome. Which managed to completely lock up. Quick googling on an other computer reveals that Gnome is really dead, because ctrl+alt+backspace did nothing. But I was able to connect to the Linux machine from the other comp, so more googling and

sudo /etc/init.d/gdm restart


Did the trick, Gnome restarted. Of course everything I had open in desktop closed but at least I didn't have to reboot the machine.

I did remember I can somehow open other tty's but couldn't remember the shortcut before after that. Then I remembered: ctrl+alt+f[1-9] opens it, so I could have fixed the problem locally as well. Oh well, I'll remember the next time.

What else?

Oh yes, Thunderbird doesnt' support OpenGPG keys, you have to install the Enigmail plugin for that. After that it's a snip, just run a wizard and select whether you want to use an existing key or create a new one. I had to switch over to Thunderbird from Evolution, because Evolution just doesn't work. Twice now it has decided there is no connection to the mail server when there clearly is. Restarting doesn't help, last time I just kept trying all sorts and finally it started working again. I don't know what I did and didn't want to figure it out either so I switched to Thunderbird which I use at home as well and has worked well enough for years.

I need digital signatures so I can report the bug mentioned earlier to Launchpad. But for some reason it's not accepting my key fingerprint, at least not so far. I tried to to add my key to Ubuntu's key server with gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --send-keys and Ubuntu's key server says it's there. Another annoying thing: that command requires a parameter, the key id. Now, the command is "send-keys", i.e. in plural which suggests it sends all the keys. Nope, if you omit the key id, gpg says nothing. Very helpful, because you don't know that you needed to supply it and don't get any hint that nothing was actually done. This begs the question: what sort of propeller head writes these programs?

Ah, now it worked. There was a delay before Launchpad realised I had sent the key.

EDIT: Yipee! I managed to report this bug after a few tries (like, you need a space before the "affects" line in the email -> not good). Direct link to bug.

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