Use a GUI version of vim

If you're a fan of the respected vim text editor then you might be interested in Gvim, which is a version of the vim text editor with an added GUI. To install it use Synaptic to search for vim-gnome.

The program doesn't add itself to any of Ubuntu's menus but can be run by typing gvim at the command-prompt. Once up and running you can use it just like any other version of vi/vim, typing a colon to enter commands and switching to text insert mode by hitting (T). However, the menus and icon bar offer access to all the usually hidden vi/vim features, as well as some new ones. Gvim is primarily built for programmers and offers the like of syntax highlighting and the ability to compile straight from the program window, but the fact it offers a GUI way of working and luxuries such as GUI file open/save dialog boxes should make it appeal to everybody!

Rescue a crashed GUI M 221

Very occasionally I find that a GUI program crashes and seems to lockup the desktop. If this happened under Windows I'd be reaching for the reset button on the case but Ubuntu is different. I'm able to switch to a virtual console and kill the errant program from there. Then, when I switch back to the GUI, everything is usually fine again.

If a similar thing should happen to you, first switch to a virtual console by typing (Ctrl]+Alt]+F2]. Then use the following command, substituting programname for the command-line name of the program that's crashed (tip: you can try to discern what the command-line name might be by typing the first part of what it's likely to be and using [Tab] auto-complete to get the rest): $ killall programname

To learn more about killing programs, see Tip 133, on page 176. ■■■

Back in the Unix days of old having a quote-of-the-day (QOTD) appear whenever you logged on was considered the height of fashion. Sadly it's no longer as popular but it can still be fun, and is easy to enact in Ubuntu.

Have a quotation appear at the command-prompt

Here are the steps to have a QOTD appear whenever you login at a virtual console, or open a terminal window:

1. Start by using Synaptic to install signify.28 This is a simple program that outputs lines from a text file whenever it's used. It's designed

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