Audacity audio editor and recorder 3.0.3 was released a few days ago. Finally it adds official Linux binary via Appimage.

Audacity 3.0.3 comes with minor bug-fixes, and binary changes. For Windows users, now it provides 64-bit EXE and 32-bit plug-ins will not work on the release.

The release introduced automatic app update checking. According to the updated Privacy Notice, Audacity needs a network connection for update checking. And this shares your IP address, OS, and Audacity version. You can disable the feature in the Preferences.

And when an app error occurs, error report dialog will pop up asking you whether to send report.

For Linux users, Audacity now provides Appimage package. It’s a single executable that launches the software directly without installation required. Just right-click on file, add execute permission in “Properties” dialog, and finally run it.

How to Get Audacity 3.0.3:

For the official binary and source tarball, you can download it from the github release page:

It’s also available to install via the universal Flatpak package which runs in sandbox. And here’s how to guide for those new to flatpak.

About the Ubuntu PPA:

Audacity adds Conan package manager as the its new dependency library. It make me crazy again since it’s not available in Ubuntu repositories, and so far I can’t find any compile instruction.

So may be it’s time to abandon my personal PPA for Audacity package. :)

For those prefer Gnome 3 style Activities overview, here’s how to bring back the vertical workspace thumbnails in Ubuntu 21.10.

Ubuntu 21.10 defaults to Gnome 40 and brings new design of the Activities overview screen. It now has large and horizontal workspaces locates across the center of screen. Along with thumbnails in the top, you can either click / use keyboard shortcuts or touchpad gestures to switch workspaces.

Personally I like the new design. But for those who are accustomed to the vertical view, here’s an extension to restore the change.

1. Prepare for installing Gnome Shell Extension:

Before getting started, make sure chrome-gnome-shell package is installed for GNOME Shell extensions integration for web browsers.

To do so, open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and paste the command below and hit Enter:

sudo apt install chrome-gnome-shell gnome-shell-extension-prefs

The command also installs the app for managing Gnome Extensions.

2. Install Vertical Overview extension:

Next go to the link page below in your web browser, then turn on the slider icon to install the extension:

Don’t worry if you don’t see the slider icon, click the ‘click here to install browser extension’ link to install browser extension and re-fresh the web page.

3. Configure Overview Appearance:

After installed the extension, you can press Win/Super key and search for and open ‘Gnome Extensions app’ to configure its settings.

Click on the gear button, then you can change the workspace thumbnail size, position, as well as toggle on / off the big central workspace.

That’s all. Enjoy!

Halfway through the year, many new apps released and many abandoned. Here are 6 weather apps that are still useful in 2021.

Without searching in web browser or watching an app on mobile, there are quite a few weather apps for Linux that display weather conditions and forecast either on desktop or via system tray applet.

And here are top ones still in active development and well working in all current Ubuntu releases.

1. Gnome Weather

The Gnome Weather app is always the first one you should try, since it’s well designed and integrated with Ubuntu Gnome Desktop.

It shows weather conditions via a desktop window and integrates forecast into the Clock (date & time) menu. Sadly forecast does not work in Ubuntu 20.04 due to bug.

Version 40 displays the current temperature, feel like temperature, as well as cloudy/sunny/rainy icon for current weather. And it shows forecast both hourly and daily (2 weeks). As indicates, it collects weather data from Norwegian Meteorological Institute.

To install the app, open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run command:

sudo apt install gnome-weather

For Ubuntu 20.04, forecast is not available due to libgweather bug. To workaround it:

  • either install Gnome Weather flatpak package which runs in sandbox.
  • or install patched version of libgweather from my personal PPA and restart Gnome Shell.

2. My Weather Indicator.

This is my favorite weather app from a Spain software developer. And it’s more than 10 years old that is still being maintained.

The app displays weather via both panel indicator and desktop widget. You can add 2 locations and choose weather services between OpenWeatherMap, Yahoo Weather, Wunderground.com, and WORLD WEATHER ONLINE.

It shows weather conditions including temperature, feels like, pressure, humidity, dew point, wind, and cloudiness. As well, it indicates the time of sunrise, sunset, and dawn/dusk.

The panel indicator offers forecast options for next hours and week days and forecast map. As well, a Moon Phase calendar is available for Waning Gibbous.

To install it, open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run commands one by one to get it from the developer’s PPA.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:atareao/atareao
sudo apt update
sudo apt install my-weather-indicator

3. Meteo


Meteo is a forecast application using OpenWeatherMap API. It comes with an indicator that shows weather information including temperature, pressure, wind speed and direction, sunrise & sunset.

It also provide app window with current weather and forecast for next 18 hours and next 5 days. With it, you can also check information about temperature, pressure, wind speed, clouds, and precipitation in map mode.

The software has an Ubuntu PPA. So you can open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run following commands one by one to install it.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:bitseater/ppa
sudo apt update
sudo apt install com.gitlab.bitseater.meteo

4. KWeather

This is a KDE weather app designed for plasma mobile. It however works good on Linux desktop even without KDE.

It shows the basic weather conditions as well as 10 days forecast in an adaptive app window. Which makes it different is the Dynamic mode that displays raining, shining, or snowing animation.

KWeather is available as flatpak package in flathub.org. To install it, first follow the setup guide and run bottom command in the link page.

5. OpenWeather Extension

This is an extension for Gnome that will work on Ubuntu, Fedora, and other Linux with Gnome Desktop.

It collects weather conditions from either OpenWeatherMap or darksky.net. And display basic info on top bar. By drop-down menu, you can see more details including:

  • sunrise / sunset time.
  • cloudiness, humidity, pressure, wind speed.
  • forecast (2 ~ 10 days).

The indicator position, icons, units, Geolocation provider etc are configurable via extension settings.

To install OpenWeather extension, firstly make sure chrome-gnome-shell is installed via command:

sudo apt install chrome-gnome-shell

Then get it from extensions.gnome.org/…/openweather/

6. wttr.in

For those looking for a weather app works in command line, wttr.in is a great choice.

Just make sure curl is installed via command:

sudo apt install curl

You can then run command to get weather condition as well as forecast for current location via command:

curl wttr.in

And you may specify a location, shanghai for instance, via command:

curl wttr.in/shanghai

It’s recommended to maximize your terminal window to make the forecast table display properly.

Besides the basic info, such as, temperature, pressure, humidity, it also supports for moon phase, different units, generate PNG, and more. To get more options, run command:

curl wttr.in/:help

Final Words

There are also a few other good weather apps that I know, but they are either not maintained or not well working in my machine. If you get any other good apps, feel free to leave comment below.

Gnome 40 automatically logs into ‘Activities’ overview screen instead of a blank desktop. Don’t like this feature? Just disable it!

Gnome 40 finally lands in Ubuntu 21.10, brings the new design of its ‘Activities’ overview screen. The workspaces are now horizontal and locate across the center of screen. Along with small boxes under the search box, all running app windows will be there. And it introduces new touchpad gestures to switch between workspaces.

Instead of a blank desktop, Gnome 40 shows you the redesigned Activities by default. It’s great for you to get start directly by searching items, or accessing favorite apps on the left dock.

But I don’t like the feature and want to disable it! Well, an extension is here to do the job.

“No overview at start-up” is the simple extension to revert the change, so Ubuntu 21.10, Fedora 34 or other Linux with Gnome 40 will log into a blank desktop just like before.

Install No overview at start-up Extension:

1. Firstly, press win/super key, then search for and open terminal. When terminal opens, copy and paste the command below and hit run.

The command will install the “chrome-gnome-shell” package to enable ability to install Gnome Shell Extensions from web browser. And install “gnome-shell-extension-prefs” (Gnome Extensions App) for managing extensions.

sudo apt install chrome-gnome-shell gnome-shell-extension-prefs

type user password (no asterisk feedback) when it asks and hit Enter. Then type ‘y’ if asked to confirm to install the packages

2. Next, go to the extension page via the link button below. Turn on the toggle icon to install it.

If you don’t see the slider icon, click the ‘click here to install browser extension‘ link to install browser add-on and reload the page.

The extension should function once you installed it. And you can click ‘Activities’ then search and open Gnome Extensions App to toggle on / off, or remove the extensions.

That’s it. Enjoy!

For those want to set the CPU TDP limit, a new Intel Controller app is available by Spanish Linux computer company Slimbook.

TDP stands for Thermal Design Power, in watts, and refers to the power consumption under the maximum theoretical load.

Similar to its AMD Controller app, the new app works by setting your CPU TDP value. That is, the amount of power measured in watts allowed for your CPU to either save battery or to improve the overall performance.

To use the app, you need to disable secureboot because it does not allow kernel access to CPU parameters.

As a new project, it so far supports for: i3-10110U, i3-1005G1, i5-8250U, i5-8265U, i5-10210U, i5-1035G1, i7-7500U, i7-8550U, i7-8565U, i7-1065G7, i7-10510U, i7-10750H, i7-1165G7.

You can however test your CPU by adding into the “~/.config/slimbookintelcontroller/slimbookintelcontroller.conf” file.

Search on the web to find out your CPU Specifications, including TDP, TDP-up and TDP-down. Then add your CPU and set the Low, Medium, and High performance in watts as the picture shows. You can then choose between them via either the desktop app or indicator menu.

NOTE: The software is still in early development, they may have bugs. And in higher performance, it drains the battery faster and makes your CPU hotter. USE it at your own risk!

Install Slimbook Intel Controller:

The slimbook PPA maintains the package so far only for Ubuntu 20.04.

1. Add the PPA.

Firstly open terminal either by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard, or by searching for and open terminal from system app launcher. When terminal opens, copy and paste the command below and hit Enter:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:slimbook/slimbook

Type user password, no asterisk feedback, when it asks and hit Enter to continue.

2. Install the controller app.

Next run command to install the Intel Controller:

sudo apt install slimbookintelcontroller

For AMD CPU, you can install another package instead:

sudo apt install slimbookamdcontroller

Once installed, open it from system app launcher. As I mentioned above, it won’t start if your process is not in the configuration file. For the source code, go to Github.

Uninstall:

For any reason, you can copy and paste the command below into terminal and hit Run to remove the software.

sudo apt remove slimbookintelcontroller

As well, do for removing the Slimbook PPA via the command below:

sudo add-apt-repository --remove ppa:slimbook/slimbook