Sunday, August 30, 2009

4 apps new Ubuntu users should not do without

The amount of applications available in the Ubuntu repositories can sometimes be overwhelming for a new user who is used to scouring the net for very simple applications to run on their Windows platform. To make things simple for such users, I have compiled this short list of four applications that new users should start their Ubuntu life with whiles they get used to the abundance of programs they lacked in Windows.

App 1 VLC
This is simply the player that rules the rest. The trail blazer when it comes to media players. With its own internal codecs and the ability to play virtually any file format known to everyday people, I strongly recommend new users install this app so as to reduce the frustrations they have to go through to install multimedia codecs in Ubuntu. A full list of the features and file formats playable by VLC can be found here. To install the latest release nicknamed the Goldeneye, just follow these simple steps and you are done!

App 2 K3B
 I know a lot of people will disagree with my choice of disc burner but I believe this application is the best available to the Linux platform and I highly recommend it to new users. It is a KDE app that also runs flawlessly on GNOME and has all the features new users  might be used to in proprietary counterparts. The default Ubuntu installation comes with Brasero which is also a disc burner way behind K3B. Just go to Applications>Add/Remove and search for K3B. Mark it and hit apply changes.

App 3 Skype
You probably know Skype if you are an ex-Windows user. Well it's available on the Linux platform and you can download the .deb file here. I recommend it because so far I do not know of any Open Source application that can really replace Skype. Just double click the downloaded file to install it. 

App 4 Deluge
There are other alternatives, but to me, Deluge is the best Bittorrent client available for Ubuntu and I am still wondering why it is still not the default torrent client. It has every feature to make your torrent downloads a breeze and enjoyable experience. It also is very economical in terms of resource consumption. Go to Applications>Add/Remove, search for Deluge and mark for installation. That's it.

This list a a subjective list which I believe can help very new Ubuntu users settle in quite easily. All the other productivity tools you may need are already installed by default; Openoffice is a typical example. The above list is in no way complete and different people may prefer different apps. 
Let me know which ones you prefer that are not on the list and why. Share your thoughts.

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By Seraaj Muneer with 5 comments

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