Tag Archives: Linux

Firefox 3 Beta Downloads Always Open in the Same Application

As I mentioned in the previous post, I’ve been using Firefox 3 Beta 5 quite a bit lately. When I used the Downloads dialog to Open Containing Folder for a document I had downloaded, Firefox asked me what program to use to open file links. Naturally, I selected the application for opening documents, oowriter. Bzzzt! Wrong answer.

Now, it wants to use oowriter to open every file and folder. Firefox wasn’t really asking for which application it should use to open a file, but a file link. So, I should’ve picked a file manager such as Konqueror, Dolphin, Thunar, etc. To fix this, go to Preferences (in the Edit menu on Linux), then Applications and scroll down to file in the Content Type column. In the Action column, select Use other… from the drop down list and choose your favorite file manager. Since I’m using Kubuntu, I chose Dolphin since it’s lighter and loads more quickly.

Is your Applications list empty? You can fix that problem by reading my previous post, “Firefox 3 Beta Applications Preference Empty on Kubuntu / Xubuntu“.

Firefox 3 Beta Applications Preference Empty on Kubuntu / Xubuntu

I’ve been checking out Firefox 3 Beta 5 since it’s the default browser in Kubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron. When I went to Preferences and looked in the Applications section to fix the action for the file content type, it was empty. That’s not good.

If you’re running into the same problem, there’s a very easy fix for it. Open your favorite package manager (Adept is the default one for Kubuntu) and install the firefox-gnome-support package. A few other support packages will be installed to resolve dependencies. Then, restart Firefox and all will be well.

OpenOffice.org Doesn’t See New Fonts on Ubuntu Linux

On one PC, I’m running Kubuntu Linux Feisty (haven’t upgraded it to Gutsy yet). It already had the Bitstream Vera (ttf-bitstream-vera) and DejaVu (ttf-dejavu) font packages installed but not the MS fonts that Windows users are familiar with. So, I installed the msttcorefonts package to add Times New Roman, Arial, Trebuchet, etc., to OpenOffice.org.

After installing the new font package, the font drop down list in OpenOffice.org’s toolbar showed all the new fonts. However, when modifying a style, very few fonts appeared in the Font tab. Even the Vera and DejaVu fonts were missing despite the fact that they had already existed in the system prior to my adding the MS fonts.

After much digging online, I found a quick and easy fix on the Ubuntu Forums. Simply run the following on the command line:

sudo fc-cache -fv

I couldn’t find a man page for fc-cache but it essentially refreshes the central font cache so applications can use the fonts.

Bingo! All the fonts suddenly appeared in the OpenOffice.org style editor without even having to restart the editor.

VirtualBox USB Proxy Service on Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon

When accessing the settings dialog in VirtualBox on Ubuntu/Kubuntu 7.10 Gusty Gibbon, I would get the error, “Could not load the Host USB Proxy Service (VERR_FILE_NOT_FOUND). The service might be not installed on the host computer.” I found a variety of fixes from different forums and blogs so here’s a consolidated guide to resolve the issue based on my installation of VirtualBox 1.5.6 on Kubuntu 7.10.

  1. Open the file /etc/init.d/mountdevsubfs.sh with your favorite text editor (be sure to use sudo or open as root so that you have write permission).
  2. Look for the following comment:# Magic to make /proc/bus/usb work
  3. Remove the hash mark, #, from the four commands (mkdir, domount, ln, mount) following that comment. The result should look like the following:#
    # Magic to make /proc/bus/usb work
    mkdir -p /dev/bus/usb/.usbfs
    domount usbfs “” /dev/bus/usb/.usbfs -obusmode=0700,devmode=0600,listmode=0644
    ln -s .usbfs/devices /dev/bus/usb/devices
    mount –rbind /dev/bus/usb /proc/bus/usb
  4. Save the file and run it with sudo (or as root) appending the parameter “start” to the end:sudo /etc/init.d/mountdevsubfs.sh start
  5. Next, create a new user group called usbusers. On Kubuntu, you can do this with the User Management tool in the KDE Control Center.
  6. Add your username, and anyone else who uses VirtualBox on the computer, to the usbusers group. Save the changes.
  7. Open the file /etc/udev/rules.d/40-permissions.rules (again, using sudo or as root). 
  8. Change the following lines:# USB devices (usbfs replacement)
    SUBSYSTEM==”usb_device”, MODE=”0664″


    # USB devices (usbfs replacement)
    SUBSYSTEM==”usb_device”, GROUP=”usbusers”, MODE=”0664″

  9. Save the file.

Now it should work fine and you don’t even have to reboot.

Firefox Can’t Download Anymore

Yesterday, someone at work was having a problem where his Firefox would no longer download files. The Downloads dialog was empty but Firefox refused to downloading anything even when selecting to save manually.

This is usually caused by a corrupt completed-downloads file. Here’s how to fix this download problem:

  1. Close Firefox
  • Open your favorite file manager and go to your profile folder:Windows XP: C:Documents and Settingsyour_Windows_login_nameApplication DataMozillaFirefoxProfilesa_bunch_of_letters_and_numbers.profile_name

    Linux: ~/.mozilla/firefox/a_bunch_of_letters_and_numbers.profile_name


  • Delete the file named downloads.rdf
  • Start Firefox

That’s all, folks!