Monday, May 27, 2013

Essential programs for my Lenovo Z570 with Ubuntu

Leading off from my last blog post about Optimizing Ubuntu 13.10 for the Lenovo Z570, I thought I would talk about what I consider Essential programs & tools in Ubuntu, especially for my laptops.

1. Psensor

First and foremost is Psensor. This is an excellent program for monitor device temperatures. You can even set it to warn you if any of your devices (CPU, GPU, Motherboard, etc.) exceed a set temperature. This tool has not only been invaluable in monitoring my system, but also diagnosing issues. Click here to install Psensor.

2. Indicator-cpufreq

Next, indicator-cpufreq is fantastic for not only viewing your laptop's current processor load, but also limiting it appropriately. So if you are on the go and would like to conserve some power, you can switch it down to powersave. If you are plugged in and are doing something processor intensive, you can set it to performance, or even "turbo". Click here to install indicator-cpufreq.

3. Ubuntu-tweak

Ubuntu tweak is a great little application that is all about making it easier to tweak the settings of Ubuntu and Unity, as well as install many popular titles, like Chrome, that you would otherwise have to search for and install manually. This is a must have for making Ubuntu run the way you want it to! Installing is as easy as adding a ppa and running an install script.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:tualatrix/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install ubuntu-tweak

4. Oracle Java 7

Oracle Java vs OpenJDK is one of the great linux debates. For most people, installing Open Java is as simple as clicking on this link for OpenJDK 7 and this link for IcedTea browser plugin. For Oracle Java, it takes a few extra steps to pull it off. You can either manually download and install Oracle Java, or, take advantage of webupd8team's PPA.
sudo apt-get purge openjdk*
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/java
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install oracle-java7-installer

5. Other programs

I am confident there are more I am not thinking about at the moment. I'll update this post as I remember them!

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