Category: Fedora

Fedora: Install Microsoft Fonts on Linux

I had a problem a while back with a Word document needs the Verdana font, and I didn’t have it installed on my machine.  A quick search revealed an easy package to install for Ubuntu.  I found some more complicated instructions for Fedora. It looks like they were repeated here, but I found a better solution futher on down.

For some reason, I could not figure out where the rpmbuild directory was supposed to come from. Then, I found this article that was very helpful:
Mauriat Miranda:Personal Fedora 15 Installation Guide — Install Microsoft Truetype Fonts

I just downloaded his msttcore-fonts-2.0-3.noarch.rpm and ran:

sudo rpm -ivh ~/Downloads/msttcore-fonts-2.0-3.noarch.rpm

Note: I just peaked in my currently installed Ubuntu, and I do see Verdana listed in LibreOffice Writer.  So, I think it installs by default for Ubuntu.

Troubleshooting: Firewall Blocked Printing in Fedora 15

I had trouble printing from my laptop to the printer on my Ubuntu server. It took me a bit to figure it out, but I finally figured out that it was the Firewall.

When I looked in the Printer properties, I saw the message:

Stopped – /usr/lib/cups/backend/ipp failed

To troubleshoot, I ran “system-config-printer” on my server (I ran it through ssh so I didn’t have to walk into the other room). Then, I unchecked “enabled” on the printer so I didn’t waste any paper.

Then, I tried to print from gedit. It wouldn’t work at first.

Next, I opened “Firewall Configuration”. You can launch it from the command line with “system-config-firewall”. On the toolbar, click “Disable” and “Apply”. Then, I tried to print again. For me, I was able to print with no problem.

If that is the same for you, try checking these two options:

  • Network Printing Client
  • Network Printing Server

Printing Services in Firewall Configuration

For me, these two options were already checked. I had removed and re-added the printer, and somewhere along the way it asked if I wanted to open the printing ports in the firewall. That’s what made me check the firewall in the first place. Well, I found a post that suggested that it configures the firewall but doesn’t apply the changes. Sure enough, when I re-enabled the firewall and hit apply, I was able to print from gedit!


Tips for WebEx on 64-bit Fedora 15

Things are settling down now on my Fedora 15, and it is time to get WebEx working.  After a few Google searches, I came across instructions on using 32-bit Firefox on 64-bit Fedora.

I had WebEx working in my 64-bit Ubuntu installation, so I decided to not settle for a 32-bit hack. I didn’t get a good how-to going, but here’s some tips that might help:

First, get Java working. I have Sun’s JDK 1.7 installed. I am not sure the version matters. Open JDK or Sun’s JDK should work, and the 1.6 should be fine. From this posting, I found the command to link the Java plugin to Firefox:

sudo /usr/sbin/alternatives –install \
    /usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins/ \ \
    /usr/java/default/lib/amd64/ 20000

For Chrome, I used this command:

sudo ln -s \
   /etc/alternatives/ \

If this still doesn’t work, you can troubleshoot with these commands:

ls -l /usr/java/default/lib/amd64/
ls -l /usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins
ls -l /etc/alternatives/

Now, make sure this page comes up and says that the Java plugin is working: How do I test whether Java is working on my computer?

If that works for you, move on to WebEx:
WebEx Join Test

Update: Unfortunately, while the Join Test works, it is not a good test. The 64-bit will not work with Desktop Sharing. If you plan to try to view someone’s desktop, you will need to fall back to the 32-bit version of Firefox and Java. You can view the requirements here, and notice that 27.27 has updated to requiring 32-bit.


Skype on Fedora 15

I found a couple of good instructions for installing Skype from their repository. The advantage is that it should keep it up to date assuming Skype publishes updates to the repository.

The repo file I got from here, and I just uploaded it so that I could use wget to install rather than gedit as the other instructions use. Maybe someday I can build an RPM to make it even easier.

Install Steps:

su -c "wget -P /etc/yum.repos.d/"
su -c "yum install skype"

Unfortunately, this didn’t work for my 64bit system:

Running Transaction
  Installing : skype-                                     1/1

  skype.i586 0:

[skp@pecan ~]$ locate skype
[skp@pecan ~]$ which skype
[skp@pecan ~]$ ls -l `which skype
> `
-rwxr-xr-x. 1 root root 18621060 Jan 18  2010 /usr/bin/skype
[skp@pecan ~]$ /usr/bin/skype
bash: /usr/bin/skype: /lib/ bad ELF interpreter: No such file or directory

So, I installed the dependencies mentioned in this thread:

yum install alsa-lib.i686 dbus-libs.i686 e2fsprogs-libs.i686 expat.i686 fontconfig.i686 freetype.i686 glib2.i686 glibc.i686 keyutils-libs.i686 krb5-libs.i686 libcap.i686 libgcc.i686 libICE.i686 libpng.i686 libselinux.i686 libSM.i686 libstdc++.i686 libX11.i686 libXau.i686 libxcb.i686 libXcursor.i686 libXdmcp.i686 libXext.i686 libXfixes.i686 libXi.i686 libXinerama.i686 libXrandr.i686 libXrender.i686 libXScrnSaver.i686 libXv.i686 openssl.i686 qt.i686 qt-x11.i686 zlib.i686

Then, that finally worked!
Skype starting up for the first time (showing the license screen)


Kernel 2.6.40 and Broadcom Wireless Broken!

Unfortunately, I don’t have any fixes at this point. But, I do have some links. If you have any ideas, please comment below. I am sure I am not the only one with this problem.

I have updated the kernel with YumEx, and now I have two different 2.6.40 kernels. When I boot into either of those kernels, my wireless is gone! Currently, the only way I can make the wireless work is to select the 2.6.38 kernel at the grub menu during boot.

That is not a good long term solution because I believe that yum only saves the last two kernels previous to the current one. So, if I update the kernel one more time, I think 2.6.38 will fall off the list! That’s is why I haven’t just updated the /boot/grub/grub.conf to make the 2.6.38 kernel default.

Here are some links that may help:

One link that I found suggested adding a line to the modprobe configuration to blacklist bcma. Unfortunately, that didn’t work for me. That module doesn’t seem to be installed. Do I need to install it?

[skp@pecan ~]$ sudo modprobe bcma
[sudo] password for skp: 
FATAL: Module bcma not found.

Another post suggested blacklisting b44. That one didn’t work for me either. It just made the Wired connection not work.

In my old kernel, here is what things look like:

[skp@pecan ~]$ echo 'Kernel Version: ' `uname -r` && echo 'lspci Info:' && lspci -v | awk '/Ether|Net/,/^$/'
Kernel Version:
lspci Info:
03:00.0 Ethernet controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4401-B0 100Base-TX (rev 02)
	Subsystem: Dell Device 01f2
	Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 64, IRQ 17
	Memory at fe5fe000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=8K]
	Capabilities: <access denied>
	Kernel driver in use: b44
	Kernel modules: b44

0c:00.0 Network controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11b/g LP-PHY (rev 01)
	Subsystem: Dell Wireless 1395 WLAN Mini-Card
	Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 17
	Memory at fe8fc000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16K]
	Capabilities: <access denied>
	Kernel driver in use: wl
	Kernel modules: wl, ssb

In, the new kernel, here is what it looks like:

[skp@pecan ~]$ echo 'Kernel Version: ' `uname -r` && echo 'lspci Info:' && lspci -v | awk '/Ether|Net/,/^$/'
Kernel Version:
lspci Info:
03:00.0 Ethernet controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4401-B0 100Base-TX (rev 02)
	Subsystem: Dell Device 01f2
	Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 64, IRQ 17
	Memory at fe5fe000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=8K]
	Capabilities: <access denied>
	Kernel driver in use: b44
	Kernel modules: b44

0c:00.0 Network controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11b/g LP-PHY (rev 01)
	Subsystem: Dell Wireless 1395 WLAN Mini-Card
	Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 17
	Memory at fe8fc000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16K]
	Capabilities: <access denied>
	Kernel driver in use: b43-pci-bridge
	Kernel modules: ssb

Installing MS Office on Fedora 15 — try 2

This is my second attempt at writing this article.  Office hasn’t been playing nicely with Fedora, but I finally have it working!  This How-To is not as clean as I would like, but it works.

First, let’s explore the motivation for installing Microsoft Office on Linux.  I would venture to guess that most if not all Linux distributions have LibreOffice in their repositories.  That is a full-featured office package that will probably do most of what you want.  In my opinion, Microsoft Office is just a little bit better, but that comes with a huge price tag!  The value is definitely on LibreOffice’s side.  But, here are some reasons you may consider Office instead:

  • if you can get Office cheaper — many times you can get Office much cheaper through student licensing or corporate licensing
  • if you do a lot of work on Office documents in conjunction with other Microsoft users — LibreOffice can open, edit, and save MS Office documents, but when you go back and forth, you will probably have to constantly fix small formatting issues

My motivation comes from working with textbooks.  I was working with large Word documents, and since they were so large, reformatting images and screenshots were not feasible every time we passed them back and forth between LibreOffice and MS Office.  Plus, Office was bought for me so the cost was not an issue!
So, with no further adue, let me walk you through what I did to install it on my Fedora 15 OS:

Read More

Installing Microsoft Office 2007 on Fedora 15

I needed to install Microsoft Office 2007 on my Fedora 15 installation, and my first step was to look for a tutorial that might help clear up any gotchas before I hit them. Unfortunately, the closest I found was these two articles:

So, my thought was to create my own how to.  Instead, I think I have created more of a how NOT to!  By the time I was done with all of this, it didn’t work.  So, don’t bother with this article if you are trying to figure out how to make it work.  If you are looking on something to develop to make the world better for Linux users, look no more.  We need help!

Read More

Installing Flash on Fedora 15

I found a plethora of information about installing Flash on Fedora 15, so I am not going to go into detail. Here’s the decision I made though: I had to decide between going with the standard 32bit plugin wrapped to work on 64bit or use the experimental native 64bit plugin. I chose the 32bit plugin because I have made enough bleeding edge choices that haven’t worked out easily. Flash is just one of those things that you don’t expect a lot of features from, you just want the web pages to work.

So, below are the commands I used. Please follow the links at the end for better instructions. If you have trouble, maybe these commands will help give you an idea of what worked for me.

Downloaded from

Downloading Flash

Then ran:

su -c "yum update"

su -c 'yum install nspluginwrapper.{x86_64,i686} alsa-plugins-pulseaudio.i686 --disablerepo=adobe-linux-i386'
su -c 'yum install flash-plugin'

su -c "ln -s /usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins-wrapped/ /usr/lib64/chromium-browser/plugins"

I also did these extra Adobe things:

su -c "yum install AdobeReader_enu"

su -c "yum install gtk2-devel.i686 nss.i686 libxml2-devel.i686 libxslt.i686 \ 
gnome-keyring.i686 rpm-devel.i686 rpm-build rpm-build-libs.i686  \
libgnome-keyring.i686 \ nss-devel.i686"

su -c "yum install adobeair"


LogMeIn Hamachi on Fedora 15

The time has come to get my LogMeIn VPN working again. The learning curve was not near as steep as this time (I didn’t loose any hair!), but I did still have a few issues.

First, I downloaded the RPM from Logmein’s website: logmein-hamachi-

When I went to use the VPN, I got this message:

Hamachi does not seem to be running. 
Run '/etc/init.d/logmein-hamachi start' to start daemon. 

That seemed like an easy fix, but it wouldn’t start. I got this error message when I tried to start the service:

/etc/init.d/logmein-hamachi: line 28: /lib/lsb/init-functions: No such file or directory 

To fix it, I found a bug reference that suggested I should install a package like redhat-lsb-4.0-6.fc15. You should be able to do it with this command:

su -c "yum install redhat-lsb"

After installing that, the VPN service started fine:

su -c "/etc/init.d/logmein-hamachi start"
Starting LogMeIn Hamachi VPN tunneling engine logmein-hamac[  OK  ] 

One thing I did notice is that the service doesn’t automatically start like it did when I was using it on Ubuntu. I don’t know why, but this is actually what I want anyway. I can just start the service when I want to use it with:

su -c "/etc/init.d/logmein-hamachi start"

Great Links: Fedora 15 Quick Tips

By accident, I ran across several links that seemed very helpful for getting situated in Fedora 15:

Chrome Extensions Quick Fix

I was able to get Chromium installed, but it keeps mentioning that “Tampermonkey has crashed.” Thomas’ Blog suggested running this command to fix extensions:

restorecon -R -v -F ~

Hallelujah! My Tampermonkey works. I was hoping that it wasn’t my backing up the profile.


I went to this link as suggested:

Adobe’s Flash Page

Since, I am running the 64bit version, I opted to follow the 64bit link.

This looks a little complicated. I may save this for another day. Please comment if you have any advise here. I was hoping for an RPM I could install that would just stay up to date. Flash is something I just want to take for granted rather than tinker with. The tar bar for Flash 11 has a bunch of directories and files. I need to read up on it more.

Gnome Shell Tweak

Multiple sites recommended this tool. So, I installed it:

su -c 'yum -y install gnome-tweak-tool'

Here are some of the tweaks, I found useful:

  • Shell — Show date in clock (turned on)
  • Shell — Laptop lid close action (changed from Suspend to Blank)

More Packages and Stuff

Ok, I don’t want to go through each of these individually, so I’ll just throw them out there the same way the Chema did on his blog:

su -c 'yum -y install gnome-tweak-tool gstreamer-plugins-bad gstreamer-plugins-bad-free-extras gstreamer-plugins-bad-nonfree gstreamer-plugins-ugly gstreamer-ffmpeg audacious audacious-plugins unrar java-1.6.0-openjdk java-1.6.0-openjdk-plugin gparted vlc gimp gimp-data-extras gimp-fourier-plugin gimp-lqr-plugin gimp-resynthesizer gimpfx-foundry yum-plugin-fastestmirror'

–Thanks Chema

I also did the DVD support thing:

su -c 'yum -y install libdvdread libdvdnav'

And, I have the 64bit installed, so I ran this:

su -c 'rpm -ivh'

Check out this page for the 32bit command.

SELinux and Performance

I have been struggling with my laptop running slow. It comes to a crawl when I run my Java/Swing application and VMWare at the same time. I found this tidbit about performance on Chema’s blog: “If you are experiencing poor performance, you may want to check what the current SELinux status is”.

I edited the file /etc/selinux/config and changed it from enforcing to permissive:
Editing SELinux Status

Thankfully, it seems to have fixed my problem.

Gnome Shell Extensions

Chema’s command does a good job showing the list of extensions. It is a good start for seeing what is available already:

yum search extension | grep gnome-shell

I found a few other resources on extensions:

I like the alternative status menu. To me, it is kind of absurd to not have a shutdown option in your menu! But, this adds it back:

yum install gnome-shell-extensions-alternative-status-menu

Alternative Status Extension

Note: After installing this extension, I found on the cheat sheet that you can use the Alt key with the default menu to get a Power Off option.

The places menu is another good one:

yum install gnome-shell-extensions-places-menu

Places Menu Extension

The weather and a11y look good, too, but I may save those for another post since they look a little more in depth.

One more trick I learned is that after installing the extensions, you can restart the shell by pressing Alt-F2 and then typing r.

Gnome Do

I was able to easily install Gnome Do with Add/Remove Software, but I had several issues with getting it to work. One of the issues, I already talked about. You have to install an extra dependency: gnome-desktop-2.

Furthermore, you also have to change the Summons key. Digital Tool Company recommended Alt-F3. You can do that from the preferences menu option once you start Gnome-Do.

Launching Gnome-Do Preferences

Or, when you first open Gnome do, you can use the menu there:

Opening Gnome Do Preferences

Then, you can change the summons key here:

GNOME Do Preferences -- Summons Key

Stay tuned as I continue to get used to Fedora!