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Post-Install Configuration (MATE)

Below is a collection of commands and snippets I have put together over the years. Pick out the parts you find useful, and create your own one-click system configuration shell script.

Ubuntu MATE screenshot

A Few GUI Shortcuts...

While you're tweaking things in the Terminal, you might want to do some configuration through the graphical user interface.

# Software settings

# Set up monitors

# Change keyboard layouts

# Audio settings

# Set the locales

# Show the control centre


This will enable some extra repositories

# This will add the My Weather Indicator repo
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:atareao/atareao

# This will add the repo for Monkey's Audio, Nero AAC, tsMuxeR, The Odio, Unity Mail and some others
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:robert-tari/main

Update the Package List

You must do this if you have made changes to your repository lists.

sudo apt-get update

Update the Whole System

This will pull all available updates, so be patient.

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Popularity Contest

Help developers by allowing your system to report anonymous statistics.

sed -e 's/PARTICIPATE="no"/PARTICIPATE="yes"/' /etc/popularity-contest.conf > /tmp/popularity-contest.conf && sudo mv /tmp/popularity-contest.conf /etc/popularity-contest.conf

Install Additional Software

This is what I usually add to a system, change the list to suit your needs.

sudo apt-get install -y smplayer unity-mail aisleriot my-weather-indicator trash-cli ffmpeg gnome-gmail cryptsetup inkscape samba gimp ubuntu-restricted-extras chromium-browser default-jre keyfault cajarename clementine odio mkvtoolnix-gui

About the SpiderOak Cloud Storage

This is something I had been using instead of Ubuntu One long before it became extinct. I needed something that worked on both Ubuntu and Debian, so I tested it, and I've been using my free 10GB happily ever since. SpiderOak integrates well into all systems, it has an indicator and fantastic UI with tons of great options. Give it a try, you will not regret it.

# Uncomment the one you need
# ARCH="i386"
cd /tmp
wget "https://spideroak.com/getbuild?platform=ubuntu&arch=$ARCH" -O spideroak.deb
sudo apt-get install ./spideroak.deb

Remove Unwanted Software

These are the ones I never use - you make your own list

sudo apt-get remove --purge plank thunderbird rhythmbox vlc deja-dup

Favourites Menu

This recreates the favourites list shown in Caja and File Dialogs. Below is just an example, change it to your liking.

echo "file://$(xdg-user-dir DOCUMENTS) $(xdg-user-dir DOCUMENTS | cut -d "/" -f 4)" | tee "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$(xdg-user-dir DOWNLOAD) $(xdg-user-dir DOWNLOAD | cut -d "/" -f 4)" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$(xdg-user-dir MUSIC) $(xdg-user-dir MUSIC | cut -d "/" -f 4)" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$(xdg-user-dir PICTURES) $(xdg-user-dir PICTURES | cut -d "/" -f 4)" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$(xdg-user-dir VIDEOS) $(xdg-user-dir VIDEOS | cut -d "/" -f 4)" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$HOME/FOLDER1 FOLDER1" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file://$HOME/FOLDER2 FOLDER2" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"
echo "file:///FOLDER3 FOLDER3" | tee -a "$HOME/.gtk-bookmarks"

Configure the Web Server

This set of commands configures Apache. This is merely a bunch of examples - you will need to adjust them to suit your needs.

# Set your server name
echo "ServerName localhost" | sudo tee -a /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

# If you already have your site definitions stored, activate them
sudo cp --target-directory /etc/apache2/sites-available /SOMEPATH/default.conf /SOMEPATH/SOMESITE1.COM.LOCAL.conf /SOMEPATH/SOMESITE2.COM.LOCAL.conf ...
sudo a2ensite SOMESITE1.COM.LOCAL
sudo a2ensite SOMESITE2.COM.LOCAL
echo " SOMESITE1.COM.LOCAL" | sudo tee -a /etc/hosts > /dev/null
echo " SOMESITE2.COM.LOCAL" | sudo tee -a /etc/hosts > /dev/null

# Restart the server
sudo service apache2 restart

Configure MATE

Here are some settings for the UI. Change them to whatever you see fit.

# Set the wallpaper
gsettings set org.mate.background picture-filename "/SOME/PATH/IMAGE.jpg"

# Set the visibility of some icons on your Desktop
gsettings set org.mate.caja.desktop home-icon-visible false
gsettings set org.mate.caja.desktop volumes-visible false

# Set the date format of files in Caja to yyyy-MM-dd hh:mm:ss
gsettings set org.mate.caja.preferences date-format "iso"

# Tell Caja to use detailed lists by default
gsettings set org.mate.caja.preferences default-folder-viewer 'list-view'

# Enable the Delete command in Caja
gsettings set org.mate.caja.preferences enable-delete true

# Disable sound preview
gsettings set org.mate.caja.preferences preview-sound 'never'

# Show hidden files in Caja
gsettings set org.mate.caja.preferences show-hidden-files true

# Disable window animation effects
gsettings set org.mate.interface enable-animations false

# Set the order and position of window controls
gsettings set org.mate.interface gtk-decoration-layout "close,minimize,maximize:"

# Hide input-related menus
gsettings set org.mate.interface show-input-method-menu false
gsettings set org.mate.interface show-unicode-menu false

# Set toolbars to display icons with text below
gsettings set org.mate.interface toolbar-style both

# Disable keyboard sounds
gsettings set org.mate.Marco.general audible-bell false

# Set the order and position of window controls
gsettings set org.mate.Marco.general button-layout "close,minimize,maximize:"

# Center new windows on screen
gsettings set org.mate.Marco.general center-new-windows true

# Disable software compositing manager
gsettings set org.mate.Marco.general compositing-manager false

# Get green titlebar buttons
gsettings set org.mate.Marco.general theme "Ambiant-MATE"

# Maximise new windows (except the ones listed below)
gsettings set org.mate.maximus exclude-class "['mate-terminal', 'galculator']"
gsettings set org.mate.maximus no-maximize false

# Disallow autorun on media insertion
gsettings set org.mate.media-handling autorun-never true
gsettings set org.mate.media-handling automount-open false

# Show this number of items in the places menu
gsettings set org.mate.panel.menubar max-items-or-submenu 10

# Always show notifications on the specified monitor
gsettings set org.mate.NotificationDaemon monitor-number 1
gsettings set org.mate.NotificationDaemon use-active-monitor false

# Set Pluma's colours to classic
gsettings set org.mate.pluma color-scheme "classic"

# Disable right margin in Pluma
gsettings set org.mate.pluma display-right-margin false

# Tell Pluma to convert tabs to spaces
gsettings set org.mate.pluma insert-spaces true

# Disable wrapping in Pluma
gsettings set org.mate.pluma wrap-mode GTK_WRAP_NONE

# Disable the suspend button
gsettings set org.mate.power-manager button-suspend "nothing"

# Always show power icon
gsettings set org.mate.power-manager icon-policy "always"

# Turn off monitors after specified number of seconds
gsettings set org.mate.power-manager sleep-display-ac 3600

# Disable screensaver
gsettings set org.mate.screensaver mode "blank-only"

# Disallow user switching when screen is locked
gsettings set org.mate.screensaver user-switch-enabled false

# Set window manager
gsettings set org.mate.session.required-components windowmanager "marco-compton"

# Disable keyboard sounds
gsettings set org.mate.sound input-feedback-sounds false

Mono icon set tweaks

This preserves a consistent "Ubuntu look" in the Notification/Indicator area.

# Uncomment the one you need
# THEME="dark"

# Clementine
mkdir -p "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/22x22"
mkdir -p "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/32x32"
mkdir -p "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/48x48"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel-grey.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/22x22/clementine-panel-grey.png"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/22x22/clementine-panel.png"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel-grey.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/32x32/clementine-panel-grey.png"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/32x32/clementine-panel.png"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel-grey.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/48x48/clementine-panel-grey.png"
ln -sf "/usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-$THEME/apps/24/clementine-panel.png" "$HOME/.config/Clementine/customiconset/icons/48x48/clementine-panel.png"

Marco + Compton configuration

This will give you hardware accelerated window shadows and fading. You can change the numbers if you don't like what you see.

cat > "$HOME/.config/marco-compton.conf" << EOL
backend = "glx"
vsync = "opengl-swc";
detect-rounded-corners = true;
paint-on-overlay = true;
glx-no-stencil = true;
glx-swap-method = "undefined";
unredir-if-possible = true;
inactive-opacity-override = true;
mark-wmwin-focused = true;
shadow = true;
shadow-radius = 6;
shadow-offset-x = -6;
shadow-offset-y = -6;
shadow-opacity = 0.7;
no-dnd-shadow = true;
shadow-exclude = ["window_type='tooltip'", "window_type='notify'", "! name~=''", "name='Notification'", "name='Plank'", "name='Docky'", "name='Kupfer'", "name*='compton'", "class_g='Conky'", "class_g='Kupfer'", "class_g='Synapse'", "class_g?='Notify-osd'", "class_g?='Cairo-dock'", "class_g='Cairo-clock'", "_GTK_FRAME_EXTENTS@:c"];
xinerama-shadow-crop = true;
fading = true;
fade-delta = 4;
fade-in-step = 0.03;
fade-out-step = 0.03;

Tidy up your SpiderOak

This removes all incremental backups, leaving only the latest version of your cloud files - thus freeing up space.

SpiderOakONE --purge-historical-versions all
SpiderOakONE --purge-deleted-items 1
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