Open Containing Folder in Firefox under Linux

Posted by flori Tue, 11 Sep 2007 19:09:00 GMT

After Downloading a file in firefox and right-clicking on the filename in the download manager, you can choose the popup menu entry "Open Containing Folder". This should open a filebrowser for the directory this file was saved in. I have to admit, that this never worked for me under Linux, only under MacOS X and under Windows. I assume the reason for this is, that you have a lot of options under Linux, but no general default for a file manager. Firefox did never show a very smart reaction (and only displays an error) if no filebrowser could be found: Perhaps asking me what to do would be a good idea?

I finally couldn't take it anymore and researched how to configure this feature. I wanted XFCE4's file manager Thunar to be opened, so this is what you have to do: Open the about:config dialog in you location toolbar (or pick it from the Help menu). Now right click onto the configuration entry list, and choose New -> Boolean from the popup menu. Create the following two entries and set them both to true:

network.protocol-handler.expose.file = true (Boolean) network.protocol-handler.external.file = true (Boolean)

Now choose New -> String from the popup menu, and set the value to thunar:

network.protocol-handler.app.file = thunar (String)

This will start thunar with containing directory (with a file:// url) as an argument. You can as well use nautilus or konqueror or whatever here. Another possibility is to use open, which would cause firefox itself to open the directory as a file:// url.

Now type network.protocol-handler into the about:config filter. The resulting filtered list should now include these entries:

Configuration Entries in about:config

Now try it with a downloaded file, I hope it works for you.

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Automatically changing Background Wallpaper in XFCE4

Posted by flori Fri, 31 Aug 2007 13:41:00 GMT

I recently switched from the good, old trusty WindowMaker to XFCE4 as a window manager/desktop environment.

Before the switch I used xsetbg in the crontab to change my background from the standard wallpaper of my theme to another image every hour. Now I configured Desktop Preferences -> Image -> New list to create a list of desktop images to choose from. But how to swtich every hour or at all? xsetbg stopped to work under XFCE4 for some reason. It's also strange, that you can configure a list in XFCE4, but it is only used once after login in.

The solution

Put this line into your crontab:

0 * * * * killall -USR1 xfdesktop

This will reload xfdesktop's configuration and also switch to a new backdrop image. Yeah, it's that easy, but it took me a while to figure it out.

There is also the xfdesktop -reload command, but I had some problems to connect to the X server from the crond. Maybe this is caused by my paranoid X configuration, though.

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Bash reacting very sloooow to every command on Windows/Cygwin

Posted by flori Wed, 04 Jul 2007 11:57:00 GMT

I have just installed an openssh server with Cygwin on my Windows XP, in order to be able to login from some other machine. I followed the following tutorial to configure the service. I was pleasantly surprised, that after mounting my home directory on the mountpoint /home/flori via a smb share, the bash correctly parsed my .bashrc and .bash_profile files in my $HOME.

Unfortunately after doing this the bash paused for a rather long time after every command I entered. I first suspected some strange DNS timeout to occur, but that wasn't it. Then I noticed that the smbd on my file server was quite busy during all the pauses. I straced the smbd, while this was happening, and figured out the cause of bash's slow response time: The bash tried to check if new mail had arrived in my $MAIL repository to out output the usal "new mail has arrived" message!

MAIL was set to $HOME/Maildir and the bash searched through my inbox after every command. This is usually unnoticeable under Unixen (be it via NFS or on a local file system), but the smb share took quite some time (many seconds) to do it. This was aggravated by the fact, that the Cygwin bash didn't set MAILCHECK to 60 seconds or more, which caused the delay after every command. As a simple and radical remedy I just unset the MAIL environment variable, because I never cared much for the new mail message anyway.

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