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5 Minutes on Linux: eclipse 3.5.1 on Ubuntu

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Buying into the hype of ubuntu, recently I moved away from openSUSE 11.1 to ubuntu (on a urge to use Empathy as my default IM client).  Migrated most of the data and things seem to be going well so far.

What I liked?

  • gwibber client (can finally work in one console for twitter and Facebook)
  • Empathy (need not switch to Skype for voice chat, I can now talk to my Gmail contacts).   This was a failure on OpenSUSE, didn’t work as expected.  Hopefully this is fixed in 11.2 and I can move back soon.
  • SBackup (works well, so far data has not got corrupted)
  • Evolution (works fine as before)
  • VirtualBox (the latest release is very stable, the performance is good.  So far the virtual image works like a charm).

What needed to be added explictly?

Thinkpad fingerprint reader was not enabled, had to install libpam-thinkfinger (used synaptic package manager).  OpenSUSE is been good at this, the integration of fingerprint reader with authentication is a seamless experience.

Refer http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/Installing_Ubuntu_9.10_%28Karmic_Koala%29_on_a_ThinkPad_T61 to enable fingerprint reader.

What’s buggy and annoying?

The major glitch I found is with Eclipse, the buttons in most of the dialog boxes became unresponsive and was unable to find out what was going on for a while.  Did few experiments and then found that using open jdk messed up things a little – some of the contextual menu items seemed to be missing (for importing the projects and few of the import sources missed), and this prompted me to move to SUN JDK, which got back the lost context menu and import source items.  However, the glitch continued with buttons in most of the dialog boxes.

Solution:

  • Focus the button with a mouse and then hit the good old keyboards “Return/Enter Key”
  • Launch eclipse with GTK+ client side windows enabled.  This flag when set, will let GDK create all windows as native windows. This can help applications that make assumptions about 1-1 correspondence between GDK windows and X11 windows.  (This is better than the first proposal)
export GDK_NATIVE_WINDOWS=true
eclipse&

Eclipse installed from ubuntu repo and eclipse downloads has been tried with these solutions.

Configuration: IBM Thinkpad T60p, Dual Core, 3GB RAM, Ubuntu lucid lynx

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