Archives For Howtos

This is a step by step guide shows how to install the Lazarus IDE in Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 21.10 and their derivatives, e.g., Linux Mint, Elementary OS and more.

Lazarus is a free Delphi compatible cross-platform IDE for rapid application development using the Free Pascal compiler. User may install the project either from Ubuntu repository or by using the official DEB packages.

Lazarus IDE in Ubuntu

Option 1: Install Lazarus via Ubuntu repository:

Ubuntu includes Lazarus in its own repositories, but it does not provide updates for the package. So the package will always be old, though Ubuntu 21.10 has v2.0.12, most recent release at the moment.

The good side is that user may install the package on 64-bit modern PC, old 32-bit PC on Ubuntu 18.04, and/or arm64/armhf devices (e.g., Apple silicon and Raspberry Pi).

To install the package, press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal. When it opens, paste the command below and hit Enter:

sudo apt install lazarus

This command will install Lazarus, fpc compiler, as well as all other required packages:

Once installed, search for and open the IDE from activities overview and enjoy!

Option 2: Install Lazarus via its official DEB packages:

The IDE provides official Linux packages available to download at the sourceforge.net. You can always get the latest version from the link button below, though it’s only provides packages for modern 64-bit and old 32-bit PC.

The official deb packages are made up of:

  • fpc-laz – the Compiler, some command line tools, base units and non visual components like database access
  • fpc-src – the sources of fpc and its packages, needed for code browsing
  • lazarus-project – the IDE, visual components and help files

Grab all the 3 packages. Then, open file manager and go to ‘Downloads‘ folder, right-click and choose ‘Open in Terminal‘ to open terminal with that folder as working directory. Finally, run command to install them:

sudo apt install ./fpc*.deb ./lazarus-project*.deb

NOTE: the official package conflicts with the one in Ubuntu own repository. Though the IDE supports for having multiple package versions in same system, installing Lazarus via either way in this tutorial will remove another (if any) automatically.

And it will prompt to either upgrade or downgrade configuration when switching between different app versions on first startup.

Uninstall Lazarus:

To remove the Lazarus IDE, run command below in terminal will do the trick for the software installed via both methods.

sudo apt remove --autoremove lazarus lazarus-project fpc-*

That’s all. Enjoy!

Running applications via Docker in Ubuntu Linux? Dockeye is a free open-source tool to manage your containers and images via a graphical user interface.

Dockeye is written in Rust programming language. It provides a dark UI (light mode is also available) that list Docker containers and images in tabs. For each container, it provides options to control start, stop, pause, and remove operations.

User may also check the detailed information about a container, including ID, image, maintainer, labels, environment, network info, CPU, Memory and other system resource usage. And, app running log is available in tab for debugging purpose.

Also, it lists images with information about creation time, architecture, size, docker version, as well as delete and save as tar archive options. And, it offers the option to pull an image from a registry.

Toggle Dark and Light via top right corner button under title bar(min, max, close)

How to Get Dockeye in Ubuntu Linux:

Dockeye is a new project. It provides package for Arch Linux via AUR. User may use command to get it:

paru -S dockeye

For other Linux including Ubuntu, grab the package from the github releases page:

So far (Nov 2021), it provides only Linux tarball. Extract and navigate to the folder that contains the app executable. Finally, right-click on blank area and select ‘Open in Terminal‘ and then run command below to start it:

sudo ./dockeye

As new project, it may have bugs. To help improving it, please report issues at this page.

In Windows 10, user may right-click on the ‘File Explorer’ icon on panel to access pinned folders (e.g., Desktop, Downloads and Documents) quickly.

Ubuntu has first implemented this feature in Ubuntu 21.10, though it seems to be not working properly due to bug. Ubuntu 20.04 may manually add the context (right-click) menu options so user can right-click on the ‘Files’ icon to choose open favorite folders quickly.

Step 1: Copy File Manager .desktop file to local folder:

The file manager’s shortcut icon is handled by the relative .desktop file located in “/usr/local/applications” directory. It’s recommended to copy the file to local user directory, so the changes will function for current user only.

1. Press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal. When it opens, copy the file to local directory via command:

sudo cp /usr/share/applications/org.gnome.Nautilus.desktop ~/.local/share/applications/

2. The file pasted into local directory is still owned by root. You may change the ownership by running command:

sudo chown $USER:$USER ~/.local/share/applications/org.gnome.Nautilus.desktop

Here $USER returns your current username.

Step 2: Edit the .desktop file and add more actions:

Now edit the .desktop file by running command in terminal:

gedit ~/.local/share/applications/org.gnome.Nautilus.desktop

This command will open the file in Gedit text editor. When it opens, do following steps one by one:

1.) First, comment the “DBusActivatable=true” line by adding ‘#‘ at the beginning to disable it. Or, the ‘Exec’ value will be overrided.

2.) Add more values to “Actions“, such as downloads, documents, videos and whatever as you prefer. And, separate them via ‘;‘ without blank space.

Accordingly, add the “[Desktop Action downloads]”, “[Desktop Action documents]”, “[Desktop Action videos]” segments in the bottom. And, each segment has:

  • Name” to display in the right click menu.
  • Exec” command to open the desired folder, usually nautilus /home/USERNAME/folder

Step 3: Restart Gnome Shell to apply change:

After saving the file, restart Gnome Shell. In Ubuntu 20.04 default Xorg session, simply press Ctrl+Alt+F2, then try r in pop-up dialog and hit Enter.

The ‘Files‘ icon in left dock panel should now take use of the .desktop file in user directory and provide the quick access folders you set via right-click menu.

That’s all. Enjoy!

For people with dyslexia, scopic sensitivity, and related conditions, GNOME has an extension to adds a a translucent colored overlay over your desktop that may help.

It’s ‘ColorTint’ that adds an indicator applet in system tray area. User may click the drop down menu options to enable/disable the overlay, change the color via RGB slider bar, and adjust transparency via the Alpha slider.

How to Install ColorTint:

The extension works on GNOME 40 (Ubuntu 21.10) and GNOME 3.32 (Ubuntu 18.04), however lacks Ubuntu 20.04 support

1.) Firstly, press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal. When it opens, run command to install the ‘chrome-gnome-shell’ package to enable ability to install Gnome Extension via web broser:

sudo apt install chrome-gnome-shell

2.) Next, go to the link below and turn on the slider icon to install the extension:

Don’t see the toggle icon? Try installing the browser extension via the link in the page and then refresh it.

NOTE: The pre-installed Firefox in Ubuntu 21.10 is a Snap package that so far does not support for installing Gnome Extensions, use another browser or install Firefox as native Deb package via command:

sudo apt install firefox

And, to manage all installed extensions, install ‘Gnome Extensions‘ app either from Ubuntu Software or by running command in terminal:

sudo apt install gnome-shell-extension-prefs

That’s all. Enjoy!

Designers and website developers may sometimes need to check WCAG color contrast to make web content more accessible to people with disabilities.

Without using an online website each time, Linux has a stylish GTK4 app “Contrast” which allows to check whether the contrast between two colors meet the WCAG requirements.

The app has a simple user interface that displays one color as background and another as font color of the text. By clicking on the double arrow icon between two color codes, it reverses background color as text font and font color as background.

User may select color either by clicking on the circle icon before hex code (e.g., #F3F6F9), or by using the color picker tool after the code.

Contrast Select Color

The app will display color contrast result with text, such as “Awesome, Pretty Good, Not Bad, and Nope, along with short description tells whether the color combination will properly work.

It also displays a score bar tells that if the color contrast meets the 3 WCAG Levels: A, AA and AAA. And, a contrast ratio is displayed at the bottom.

Reversed colors

How to Install Contrast in Ubuntu Linux:

As a GTK4 app, Contrast so far only available to install as Flatpak which runs in sandbox.

1. Firstly, press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard and open terminal. When it opens, run command to install the Flatpak daemon:

sudo apt install flatpak

For Ubuntu 18.04 and Ubuntu 16.04, the flatpak PPA is required to get the package.

2. Next, run command to install the WCAG color contrast app:

flatpak install https://dl.flathub.org/repo/appstream/org.gnome.design.Contrast.flatpakref

Note: If you’re first time installing a Gnome app as Flatpak, it will install the required GNOME 41 platform as shared runtime libraries, which take hundreds of megabytes disk space.

Once installed, search for and open the app from activities overview screen.

How to Remove Contrast Flatpak app:

To remove the software package, press Ctrl+Alt+T and run command in terminal:

flatpak uninstall --delete-data org.gnome.design.Contrast

And use flatpak uninstall --unused command may remove useless run-times if any.