Restricting Browsing with Mozilla Firefox for Business Scenario

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Its been long that I kept on thinking over starting a series on System admin tips & tricks that will not only facilitate my colleagues on workplace, but also for people looking out for a systematic dummies\ scratch level info in the same era.  But as these technologies and the way most of the workplaces are, it remained a due always …. from my side..

I already have written a number of dummies posts about some of the important elements related to System administration in corporate scenario like Windows Deployment Services, robust, systematic yet simplest approach over Squid Proxy Server and it reporting and Zabbix Mentoring Server.


Today I am here to share some tips that I learned through a very knowledgeable resource; Locking down Mozilla Firefox Browser …

Why lock down? What are the dangers?

Some might question that why I am talking about locking down Firefox. but my friends in corporate scenario might well understand that some security domains require you to lock things down up to a level that may enable you only to function as much required, not more than that.

Probably a reason that corporate love Microsoft technologies, is giving the administrator proper and well documented controls over the behavior of every aspect of systems throughout the organization via one or a few centralized servers. The method used is group policy; a set of rules which control the working environment of user accounts and computer accounts. Group Policy provides the centralized management and configuration of operating systems, applications and users’ settings in an Active Directory environment.

browser-wars

But as you all know, this is not same with third party apps like Firefox, Chrome or Opera. In fact, Chrome and Opera could be ruled out on Business scenario due to some very know issues and that leaves with Mozilla Firefox that been very stable about speed and various ASP .Net based CRMs (very specially for Linux based dialers). If you have a Dialer Scenario on your workplace (BPOs, IPOs), then sure its a read for you as you know that why to lock down Firefox.

danger

Now, coming over dangers …

You don’t want that the agent sitting with an opened CRM may be able to copy-paste something over somewhere. You might have restricted Notepad, WordPad, Office etc and might have restricted Internet as well, but there will always be ways, as you can’t control elements of Mozilla Firefox like you been able to manage Internet Explorer.

Flaws are many for business scenario .. I am taking count of just three …

  1. If you type c:\ in Firefox’s address bar, then it redirects you to file:///c:/ and displays all the content of C:\ drive. No matters you restricted the drive access from your Domain’s Group policy. It might be scary news for any security admin, but let me tell you, its the same with Opera and Chrome as well.
    Files
  2. You can’t control history setting, auto complete in forms and minor things like that.
  3. You can’t control opening source code of some page as that doesn’t open up in Notepad or something that could have been blocked and opens up in Firefox’s own reader.

What can you do about it? How to start? What practices to be followed?

Before starting, let me tell you one thing. Its not going to be some centralized management like you have in case of Internet Explorer, but you can have your ways, only if you use standard build all over and restrict user rights for installing and even updating anything.

You will create a standard build by installing updated Firefox with required add-ons and then distribute the same folder all over by replacing existing Install folder in program files.

 

The steps to restricting Access to Local Drives

First install updated Mozilla Firefox somewhere and then perform the following over the same.

  1. Open "c:\program files\mozilla firefox\chrome\browser.jar" in a zip program
  2. Browse to "content\browser" and extract "browser.js"
  3. Open "browser.js" in a text editor
    ( Note Notepad loses the formating, so open "browser.js" in firefox, select all, copy to notepad. >right click on .jar file > open with 7zip)
  4. Go to browser.js and drag it to the desktop. then drag the file from the desktop into firefox to edit (because notepad is crap and screws up the spacings). In Firefox select all and copy the text into notepad, to retain the correct spacing. Edit the file and save the file in notepad as browser.js Now drag that file back into 7zip (the overwrite the browser.js) and click close.
  5. Locate the line "var location = aLocationURI ? aLocationURI.spec : "";" (Applicable to v3.6 only)

    Save "browser.js" and copy back into "browser.jar" in the zip program and save "browser.jar"

    Add (below the above line):

if (location.match(/^file:/) || 
location.match(/^\//) || 
location.match(/^resource:/) ||
(!location.match(/^about:blank/) &&
location.match(/^about:/))) {
loadURI("about:blank");
}

This should now load a blank page when you try to go to a "about:" page, try opening "file/ / /c/" and also "c:"

You can just copy the firefox directory (c:\program files\mozilla firefox) to the machine you want to run it on and create a shortcut it. Also set permissions on the "Mozilla Firefox" directory for students as allow "Read & Execute", "List Folder contents" and "Read" only.

Note: There are options to control Firefox more closely via C:\program Files\Mozilla Firefox\defaults\profile\chrome\userChrome.css, but as I am not able to get them working exactly in way I want to, so not posting about that right now. Will post sometimes later on.

 

Programming ASP .Pages or other web pages in secure ways

So, you have solved the biggest trouble, access to local drives, now what about copy paste and viewing Source Code?

Might cause some frustration among end users, but if you are really that serious about security then the option is to restrict usages on Ctrl, Right Click keys on page and also Copy/Cut/ Paste options.

Two ways to do the same..

ASP .Net way – Use the following code on your ASP Page to restrict copy/ cut/paste/ right click

<asp:TextBox ID="TextBox1" runat="server"

oncopy="return false"

onpaste="return false"

oncut="return false"

oncontextmenu="return false;">

</asp:TextBox>

JavaScript way – For people familiar with JavaScript, this is the another way and this also gives the user a pop-up message if he\she did pressed the restricted keys\ key combination.

<head runat="server"> <title>Untitled Page</title>

<script language="javascript"> function DisableRightClick(event){

//For mouse right click

if (event.button==2){ alert("Right Clicking not allowed!"); }}

function DisableCtrlKey(e){ var code = (document.all) ? event.keyCode:e.which;

var message = "Ctrl key functionality is disabled!";

// look for CTRL key press

if (parseInt(code)==17){ alert(message); window.event.returnValue = false; }}

</script></head>

Note: you can place this function to MASTER PAGE, if we want this into many different pages. Now we have to call this function into our pages, using this coding

<body><form id="form1" runat="server">

<div><strong>Right click disabled</strong> textbox<br />

<asp:TextBox ID="TextBoxCopy" runat="server"

onMouseDown="DisableRightClick(event)"> </asp:TextBox><br />

<br /> <strong>Ctrl key </strong>disabled<br />

<asp:TextBox ID="TextBox2" runat="server"

onKeyDown="return DisableCtrlKey(event)">

</asp:TextBox><br /><br />


So, this was for now.. I will be updating more, once I test more methods to restrict the Firefox security options. Note that any update to Firefox will wipe of any changes you made to browser.jar, so its dead essential that you ensure that user might not have permissions to update Firefox. Watch out for security rights as well.

photo of Nitish KumarNitish Kumar

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Smile Nokia Fan Bloggers – Nokia Now is here

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Just got a a mail from Katie of Womworld/Nokia, about a new feature that is going to be added to Nokia site very soon. This new feature will be under the name “Nokia Now”. Nokia Now is being put in place to pull together Nokia-related content from all across the social web into one place where Nokia friends, fans and customers can find and access it easily.

nokia_logo2


This is the mail she wrote to many of bloggers like me..

Hi,
There’s a new feature being added to the Nokia site later this week under the name ‘Nokia Now’. Nokia Now is being put in place to pull together Nokia-related content from all across the social web into one place where Nokia friends, fans and customers can find and access it easily.

We’re hoping your site can be one of the places it pulls content from. In return, it should also send traffic your way so will hopefully have some benefits for you too. If you prefer that we didn’t use content from your site on Nokia Now then you can let us know at any time.

The site will be going live in beta for Nokia Ireland later this week, and we will of course send you the link once it’s up and running 🙂
Hope this finds you well,

Katie


Well!! soon we will see and hear many things about this new service, but this is sure gonna a happening place for people wishing to know about Nokia at one place. Till now, WomWorld/ Nokia been such a place, but bringing all their efforts from all social services like Twitter, Facebook, Buzz and various blog posts, will be an amazing phenomenon to watch out for.

Keep tuned in to know more about this service, look like with revamped Ovi Store, we are about to get many other surprises as well.

Update: Its live now on http://beta.nokia.ie/ | Date July 04, 2010

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Installing WordPress-Website for Dummies

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I have already written over this once, but even that time, I mentioned that “I am not expecting anyone to learn from this article that “How to make A Website out of WordPress” by this website, as my approach was kind of naïve and nursery kid’s learning”, but this topic was something that kept on tempting me and today I am back.

In fact, I was to design a website for my workplace for internal requirements, so I thought to revisit the instructions and pen them down for once, so that people wishing to do something like that could get the job done in one shot without much R & D.


Why a WordPress?

Reasons might be plenty.. from a Company to even a Coffee shop now days wanna have a site and their wordpressopinions on it. Yes!! blogs are here and they get recognition too, but a site is a little different thing look-wise and even bloggers wish to have their full control over their blogs, which online hosting like WordPress and Blogger couldn’t afford to provide for their right reasons.

Reasons are plenty for a WordPress based website. You may want to have a website to show off between your friends on the same LAN in some college like MNNIT, IIT, IIIT or some IIM or you may want to bring a community or even official platform for company insiders.

WordPress because, it seems to be the best solution against its competitors for Installation, Management, controls, scaling and even backup/ migration. In just few mins, even a Layman get a strongest of website running and he wonders that he never knew a single line of HTML.

Simplicity is power” That’s why WordPress. Otherwise technically speaking ..

WordPress is an open source CMS, often used as a blog publishing application powered by PHP and MySQL. It has many features including plugin architecture and a templating system (supports various themes that way). Used by over 300 of the 10,000 biggest websites, WordPress is the most popular blog software in use today.


My requirements this time ..

The purpose was be to build a one-stop website to provide a common platform for sharing information, internal news and more importantly a mean to interact with groups and individuals across the company (via group/ private chat solutions). The additional scope of the website was integrating all of our web modules running for different purposes mostly via web links only (easy way).

Additional features asked for were …

  1. All of the content needs to be secured via passwords and login would be required for access any of the content on website.
  2. Different pages required for different department/ groups, which will host posts from their side only (though all of the content would be subjected to moderation).
  3. Different levels and roles would be required to post/ modify the content like Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor and reader with their controlled set of privileges.
  4. Intranet Chat facility requires having group/ private messaging support.
  5. Email facility would be limited to contact form that one could use to submit some query to any department and it will be mailed to designate email ID directly without being post on Website. (provided Internet facility available on server).
  6. News flash system that will show significant information scrolling on sidebars all the time.
  7. Integration with our other services (mostly via hyperlinks opening in tab or new windows) like Ticketing system, Training Modules, Monitoring System etc. The target would be to implement a single-sign-on for the similar web services like Training, Helpdesk etc.
  8. There might be possibly different sites for different networks that would be kept in sync5 by end of day or twice a week (based on feasibility).
  9. Optional Documents hosting that could allow viewing Doc, XLS and PDF documents online without converting them into HTML This feature could be utilized for hosting various policy documents or similar things.

I guess very generic yet professional kind of requirements these are, though one can always find what they want with a WordPress.


Installation requirements

You know that installation requirements always vary around what you need and what you could put in. In itself, WordPress isn’t a huge software package that you might be thinking about this side, but yes.. what platform you are going to use, matter more. You can make use of XAMP installation to bring Apache, MySQL and PHP at a place on Windows or you may like to use the natural Linux Platform.

Here I am going to use WordPress MU (separate project build for multi user environment) in place of normal WordPress though requirements and instructions would be the same.

Hardware requirements

RAM Required: Minimum 512 MB (In favour of OS nto WordPress)
Disk space: Installation doesn’t take even 50 MB, but it’s suggested to keep 1-2 GB space at least.

Software Requirements

Operating System: Linux\ Windows (We are using CentOS here)
System Software: Apache with Mod_Rewrite, PHP , MySQL and related components.
WordPress-MU: WordPress-MU package from http://mu.wordpress.org/latest.zip

Note: Internet required for easy Installation of packages and plug-ins, though all the packages could be installed and managed offline as well.

The Basic Installation

halo_wordpress

The way is as simplest as it could be, but still sometimes, people unknown from Linux terms bring mess for them, so even if longer list of steps, I am trying to bring a completely detailed set of instructions .. (obviously assuming though that you got your OS installed right ways)

  1. Type on console yum install httpd php mysql mysql-server mysql-devel php-gd php-mysql
  2. Start the web service, if not started. On server console type service httpd start followed by chkconfig httpd on
  3. Start MySQL service, if not started. On server console type service mysqld start followed by chkconfig mysqld on
  4. Edit /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf and search for AllowOverride None and replace the second occurrence of the same with AllowOverride All (essential step for Permalink structure, you will know later on). Restart the httpd service by service httpd restart.
  5. On Server Console type mysql and then on MySQL prompt type create database wordpress to create a blank database to host WordPress database in next steps. You can chose any other name than wordpress as well.
  6. Install FTP by command yum install vsftpd, then chkconfig vsftd on followed by service vsftpd start
  7. Edit /etc/vsftp/ftpusers and /etc/vsftp/user_list to comment out root entry in both. By default root is not allowed to login into ftp.
  8. Download the zip file from http://mu.wordpress.org/latest.zip
  9. Extract the same and rename the folder wordpress-mu to something suitable to the name you wish to have in url (e.g. We have atstoday in our case). We also could install the same in web root but in that case, it might have issues in other web app installations.
  10. Copy the same folder in web root directory /var/www/html and provide appropriate modifications rights the same folder and /tmp folder. (Hint: use WinSCP)
  11. Open http://IP_Address/Folder_Name in any browser, where IP_Address is IP Address of the server, you are installing and Folder_Name is name of the folder, you copied into web root.
  12. If everything is fine, then it will provide you the installation page and will ask for Database Connection details. First select radio button for Sub-directories in Blog Addresses option, then in next keep Database Name as wordpress as we given the same in step 4, User Name will be root, password would be blank or if any password you given for MySQL user named root, Database Host would be localhost, Server Address would be the IP_Address, Site Title would be the text you want to be displayed on title bar and then it requires to give an email id essential for password recovery.
  13. If everything goes fine, then it will show success message and will provide a generated33 password for admin user. Note down the password or copy it.
  14. Press the login button, login into the site, go to users in left pane, edit the user and then change the password as per your convenience.

Customizations – Themes and Plug-ins

The above procedure creates the basic install of WordPress-MU. For customization as per needs, you have to go through themes and various plug-ins available for WordPress.

Theme: If online, then we could use the search facility under Appearance->Theme to search, preview and download themes available on WordPress Database. Once downloaded, it will be available in offline install. There is option for uploading themes as well that could be used if Server not connected to Internet. We are using theme named Atahualpa with a few advanced customizations in code here and there.

Plug-ins: Plug-ins provides extension of capabilities for basic WordPress Install though depends on many factors. Currently we are using a few crucial plug-in like: My Category Order, Announcement ticker highlighter scroller, WP-UserOnline, Dagon Design Form Mailer, WP Customized Login, Members Only, PHPFreeChat, WordPress Database Backup and User Access Manager.

Backup and Restore

wordpress-must-dos

Post/ Categories/ Tags/ Comments Backup/ Restore: For taking backup of these contents, there is option to export all these in form of .xml file, in Tools->Export.

Similar way, Tools->Import could be used for importing the same.

Settings Backup/ Restore: Inclusion of WordPress Database Backup plugin makes the job little easy. As per settings, it could keep on mailing core database files in zipped format (*.bz2) to designated email ID (provided the server is on Internet) or there are options for taking manual backups by pressing button. For restoring from backup, you need to unzip the backup file first that would be some blog.bak.sql and then needed to restore it via command line in following manner.

mysql -h mysqlhostserver -u mysqlusername -p databasename < blog.bak.sql

Enter password: (enter your mysql password)

 

Migration from one server to another

That’s the toughest part of the work and not suggested to be performed by someone having not proper idea about MySQL, Apache, PHP etc. I am trying to put all the steps in some easy way here. Though there are better ways around to do this and its not suggested to follow these steps for some online site.. I am talking about local installs only. (In fact, only this part of instruction is something I think needs much enhancement as this way is prone to be buggy in complex environment)

Our assumptions are,

  • You have a completely configured and working WordPress based website at one server.
  • You got another server with fresh installation.

First of all, you need to perform the first six steps of basic installation as those are preparing steps. Now, you will have a blank database named wordpress ready in MySQL.

First use core backup file from original server and use the steps mentioned in Settings Backup/ Restore to place the same database (including settings/ post/ username/ passwords everything) in new server. In next, copy all the wordpress files that would be in /var/www/html/Folder_Name, in the similar location at new server.

After the same, you need to edit a few options in /var/www/html/Folder_Name/wp-config.php as per the new environment. Then, you need to manually update the new IP Address inside many tables of new database, provided you always used absolute links in your website all the time.

Here is a list of few crucial tables and values to edit.

  • siteurl value in wp_1_options table (provided you have only one blog under WordPress-MU otherwise change accordinly)
  • domain value in wp_blogs table
  • domain value in wp_site table

So, this is whole thing.. any further question.. you can always come up here and ask. I really miss that while studying, I wasn’t aware of this great thing, neither do I was in my starting job days.. hope many of you starting earlier than me.. good luck..

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Android and Chromium OS running on Nokia Booklet 3G

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The bonus day adventures didn’t stopped over Ubuntu only, but I progressed further to get my hands on the other buzz making OS’s around. Chromium, MeeGo and Android are probably the lead generation of modern OS’s and though I failed to get MeeGo running on Nokia Booklet 3G, but for rest of the two at least Installation part was no-brainer.

AndroidChromium OS

I know not only me, but many people out there are surprised over no support of MeeGo over Nokia Booklet 3G. An OS developed by Nokia and Intel is not running over a Nokia designed Netbook that has Intel Processor, Chipset and Graphics hardware. Irony!!! But it is.. my attempts to get MeeGo booting on Nokia Booklet 3G are all going fruitless till now. Thanks the other two OS didn’t disappointed me the same way.


There been many discussions around Android on Netbooks and even the most popular blog over Google Operating system puts a comment over it. Searches point over some very complex installation methods that may scare the hell out of you. But the basic point of all is, currently not many drivers exists in real world to make all the inside components of a Netbook running perfectly with Android.

Yes, it is as disappointing as it sounds, but as much I felt after having hands on it, what I got is this. It was LiveAndroid as even after my tries, I haven’t go the version, ThunderSoft people talking about. May be my opinion will get a change when I come across that version or if get some netbook with complete touch screen support like the first video on this link.

Android on Nokia Booklet

Google Android still seems to be a Mobile Operating System only and Google seems to have no plans about porting it in any form to Netbooks as well. Though may be someday few geeks could come up with their custom solutions around this, but as of now.. check the video given below to know what I am talking about.

 

It may look snappy, but all the things keeps on crashing. This thing not detecting 3G Modem inside, most of the app as they are related to phone functions and probably made for touch usages seems to be useless here. May be you need to work around a lot to bring some of them running, but as of now, its not in shape of a Netbook OS as much I guess. But somewhere inside, I know the fault is of mine that I didn’t tried more harder as it was just an adventure of short time.

widgets on AndroidAndroid control center

Though as per interface, it sure gives you idea that Mobile OS’s of today sure has a very good chance to make into Netbooks due to their snappy nature and easy navigation styles. Though its true they will always keep you tempted to touch on the screen icons lol !!!


The other attempt was with Chromium OS, Google’s OS targeting to Netbooks only. Though honestly speaking, I didn’t liked the interface much. I mean its nothing more than a Chromium browser built upon some invisible built of Linux, some small icons in top for Network etc, but nothing more.

Chromium OS on Booklet

Though installation was easy and went exactly like the way, I did with Ubuntu, but still my opinion will remain the same that Google will be needed to push much harder to make people familiar with it.

 

May be I was not happy with Chromium OS more because I was not able to bring Network running over it that is something like essential to Chromium OS. Dear Google India is not ready for all time working Internet till now, its still a rare thing and top of that none of Network here or Wireless Cards of Nokia Booklet seemed to be supporting this OS. So, for me it was a failed attempt like Android. Though there is a console, so I think that there were more things to do for me.. which I didn’t ..

chrome ConsoleChrome Memory

Waiting for your comments, if you can link some positive experiences, I really want to hear some positives about these two OS’s and Nokia Booklet 3G …

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Ubuntu on Nokia Booklet 3G-Part 2-Full glory

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I am back again with Nokia Booklet 3G and this time Ubuntu running from HDD 🙂

Though it was the last day of trial and Albertine already had scheduled a pickup with DHL, but it was a saturday and though I kept on waiting whole day, but I didn’t got a call from DHL and it came out as a blessing as not only this post about Ubuntu on Nokia Booklet HDD (No USB) and its multimedia installation, but two more adventures will be posted on this blog very soon; Chrome OS on Nokia Booklet 3G and Google Android on Nokia Booklet 3G.

Ubuntu Install on Nokia Booklet 3G

As I wrote in my last post that there was a hurdle in my complete experience with Ubuntu running Nokia Booklet 3G. I was missing the best of the graphics as the drivers I was using were asking for a reboot and I was not allowed to do as after the reboot the changes I was making over USB boot were getting reset. Sure, there are workarounds for such things, but I am not a Linux Geek that way (now I realize) and neither did I had time as it was 3AM night here and I was to catch up for office on the day next 7:30 AM. So given up over that.

Thanks Kalpesh, for your suggestion about Wubi and in a way thanks to DHL as well for providing me one bonus day trial on Nokia Booklet 3G otherwise, I was going to miss many things.


Wubi was amazing thing about people, who wish to enjoy Ubuntu without altering their original Windows Installation like it was my case as I was not wishing to alter the installation that came from WomWorld on a trial. Here are instructions to have a full fledge Ubuntu Install over Noka Booklet 3G without altering your Windows Installation.

1-2-3 step – Installing Ubuntu on Nokia Booklet 3G with Wubi

Step 1: Download Wubi Ubuntu Installer (1.4 MB) from here.

Step 2: Just run the exe, choose the partition to install and set the Installation Size.

wubi

Partition here means the logical drive over which you want to have your Ubuntu folder, it doesn’t required whole partition and will not format anything of your HDD.

Step 3: Press Install and you are ready to go.

It will create a dual boot and when you will chose Ubuntu then for the first time, it will setup Ubuntu for you. It takes a little time, but not more than 15 mins I guess and pull your sleeves.. full Ubuntu is here in your service without altering your Windows Install. 🙂

installing Ubuntu

The most special thing about Wubi install is not only its creating easy and very familiar dual boot, but also keeping the option of un-Installing it from your windows at anytime like any normal application.

ubuntu uninstall

Here is the real thing, Ubuntu running on Nokia Booklet in dual boot with Windows 7 Starter. Though it took a 30 secs to start, but I guess the Netbook version of Ubuntu will take a little more less time in booting (Mine one is Ubuntu 10.04 Desktop version).


In the earlier attempt, while I was not able to get hardware acceleration and 3D graphics, there was also that full resolution and I was stuck up with just 800×680 thing.. but not this time…

Ubuntu resolution

There wiki was right on spot and though it mentioned that 3D support on Graphics drivers in Beta stage for 10.04 release, but for 9.10 it was full supported. Just mentioning to keep in mind, if you wish to have older version. Though for a normal user, it doesn’t matter much if its in beta or full till when it works and it works very well here.


Obviously, before the above video, I was install VLC, Mplayer etc, though for unknown reason, it didn’t worked through command-line for the first time, so I chosen the GUI way and as I earlier mentioned, after choosing Multiverse Repository it was easy as a pie.

vlc player1mplayer

More happy I was to know that Google Chrome now started support Ubuntu from their official install page and now normal user need not to struggle through Wiki pages.

Google Chromegoogle Chrome Installed

Is there anything left to do with my Ubuntu now?? I am waiting for comments from you all.

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JoliCloud running on Nokia Booklet 3G

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Though I heard only talks about Ubuntu on Nokia Booklet 3G now, but last night while searching on Intel GMA500 Chipset and its issues with Linux, I got to know via Wiki that there is a Netbook OS based on Chromium and Debian that supports Intel GMA500 natively. Moreover, as a cloud OS, it has own community, you can chat with and a decent App store too for holding even Windows Apps like Skype etc. Well.. it was worth a try for sure.

 

So, it demonstrate that on Nokia Booklet 3G with JoliCloud out of the box 3G Works, Multimedia works in full force and Windows Key responds to open the menu unlike most of the Linux flavour. I will come back with more updates in the same post after a break.


I should admit that while trying and posting my thoughts for the first time about JoliCloud, I was kind of thinking that I am one of the few to try it, but when collect info from some googling then got to know its not a very new thing, though it was pleasing that I got my video on top, when searched for “Jolicloud nokia”

joliCloud

There have been many mentions about JoliCloud in past like

  1. JoliCloud Compatibility page lists Nokia Booklet 3G as compatible device.
  2. OpenAttitude posted negative sentiments about JoliCloud Install over Booklet in late of January 2010
  3. Not only wiki, but there were mentions at many places that JoliCloud supports Intel GMA500
  4. There been mentions of JoliCloud and Booklet in forums, but saying that 3G doesn’t work over it
  5. Some excellent mentions from Engadget, vodpod and other sources as well.

3g

So, its not a new thing, but the new thing, I would like to mention in loud words, is JoliCloud supports Nokia Booklet 3G’s 3G Modem completely and there is absolutely no issue about that. You could check the above video to confirm the same. This video not even using 3G SIM and I just connected it via a normal Aircel 2G SIM in india, connect was slow as expected but was working flawlessly, so please take your words back that 3G SIM doesn’t work over JoliCloud, it does.

cloud

You can attach your Facebook Account over JoliCloud login and it will search for your friends on JoliCloud (as of now, I didn’t found any, but I am not a facebook hardcore user as well). Once logged in, you could access an App Directory that surprising showcase too manyof useful apps like Gmail, VLC, Skype, Google Reader, Twitter app etc. Cloud is great.


There are many exciting things about this particular operating system, which I will love to keep on exploring more, though today is probably last day of my Nokia Booklet 3G Trial from WomWorld/ Nokia, but still this OS is really really capable and I find it suiting Nokia Booklet better than Ubuntu. Pleasant was to see the option to change the processor settings, don’t know what effect, but having a new thing was cool.

processor

If you are thinking that it took more than a minute in booting, then leave that thought.. Man!! I was booting from a USB Stick, not a full install, so its obviously a limited preview.

kitesrajneeti

xmeniron man

Lovely was to see Multimedia working in full force, even with 3D acceleration out of the box. It played DivX content, Xvid content and .mkv files with dual audio. Just perfect. I was to install Skype from its own App store but got busy in other things, but it sure works over it. Only issue I found was again no default support for UK-79 or US-78 Keyboards. They should have thought of it if making an OS targeting cloud and Netbooks specially.

raM Usage

RAM usages were shown a bit extra than Ubuntu (350 MB around), but its providing graphics support out of the box as well. Worth it. Still much lesser than windows one.

Not saying much about this OS here as many details you could find from the site itself or other places, but just wanted to remind you that if you got any Netbook like this, then you have a much better choice. I have shown you just a USB Live Install not actual one, there are many real things still in store, when you install it full fledge.

Did I told you that it supports Multi-touch on touch-pad (though not on Booklet 3G)? 😉 Now think … do you really want to stuck with Windows 7 Starter on Nokia Booklet 3G?

photo of Nitish KumarNitish Kumar

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Ubuntu 10.04 on Nokia Booklet 3G

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Its always true that in place of complaining about something, one should rather act on behalf of that. Like I always say one doesn’t need to have a super brain, Just do your bit. After complaining hard about having Windows 7 Starter on this very real thing, its time to try the sweet heart Ubuntu (Latest edition 10.04) on it.

ubantu on Booklet3g

This was not new as Iain Wallace already succeeded once and many others might also would have tried out. Now, it was my time for doing the same, though with updated version of Ubuntu that I downloaded just by tonight 10.04.


I already mentioned that I was to try this for sure before this thing may leave me. Tried MeeGo first, but it was a total No-Go after a few of my tries. May be I should have attempted a little more, but it was better to check the thing that already tested before. Was that really much easy?

Ubuntu

Ubuntu didn’t bugged me a lot about the Installation part at least. It was a trial device and I didn’t got a DVD from them (not in package even, if I am right), so I was sure not thinking about going over a HDD Install for sure. I took the USB Stick way.


Install was kind of no-brainer to get it running right. I was to download ISO from this link and also Universal USB Installer (quite a handy tool for other OSs as well) from this link. Install the Universal USB Installer on your Windows, select the ISO and target a USB Stick of adequate size (at least 2GB would do). Follow the wizard and you are ready with bootable USB stick.

Insert it in Nokia Booklet 3G, press F12 while booting, choose USB Stick as first boot device and then here you go. An operating system that is asking for just 250 MB of RAM in comparison of 700-800 MB of RAM that a Windows 7 Starter takes. Sure, you could feel the instant performance benefits.

RAM

What’s now? You could spot easily that it go everything like perfect, either it be Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 3G, Battery monitor or anything. What’s more you expect? I even configured my SIM very easily to provide Internet. You haven’t even thought of installing any drive and all till now for sure as everything just going perfect.

MTNL 3G                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ..


But yes!! there were few minor issues as well.

I found that touch pad working but little bit less smooth than Windows 7 Starter, though after a while, I felt like it was only my perception. Next was keypad layout. As Nokia Booklet follow UK-79, while the detected one was US-101, sure the first thing to notice was location of ‘@’, but being a blind typing person, you don’t feel that anything going wrong very soon. Although I didn’t tried much, but there must have been some UK-79 Layout inside as well or it was my fault that I did an Install of Ubuntu Desktop Edition, Netbook one was expected to not having this problem and also would have been more lighter OS.

One more problem I found that Ubuntu or any other OS decreases the claimed 12 hour battery backup and we get a battery backup of around 6-7 hours only.

battery and 3G etcbrowsing and battery backup

Now, the biggest hurdle was as everyone seems to knowing about. The Intel GMA500 graphics chipset that is very famous for its resistance to Linux, even Wiki says that the support is not optimal. In fact, only Ubuntu seems to even trying otherwise all other Linux flavours seem to giving up including their own MeeGo. Funny na!! Chipset is of Intel, Booklet is of Nokia and Meego is of Intel+Nokia, but still MeeGo a no-go for Nokia Booklet 3G. Yes!! I have tried MeeGo on and it didn’t worked.

Next part was to install graphics driver and then VLC, mplayer etc.

Installing graphics over older versions might been a little bit harder, but Ubuntu really have tried hard to provide the support with newer version. May be it was a hard way to Ian Wallace and other to go through script way, but now it seems to be simplified much. Thanks to the Ubuntu Page, it was just so easy.


I tried a while for installing VLC or mplayer, but was struggling. After a while, I came to know that it was necessary to enable multiverse repository, before doing any kind of non-propriety install. Nothing harder, I was to System->Synaptic Update Manager-> Settings-> Repositories and then to enable multi-verse repository there. Just after the same usual sudo yum install mplayer etc worked lke a charm and I was able to watch the movies easily on my Nokia Booklet 3G running Ubuntu 10.04. Even if I don’t install these players, inbuilt player itself was able to download codecs and play such contents (with multiverse repository only).

Media Codecs

As my device was trial, so I was avoiding messing up with the Windows 7 Starter Edition provided with it. The option was to use USB boot only and so were the limitations. May be I was doing something wrong or I was creating USB Boot from a Live CD rather than some Ubuntu Install, whatever.. but I was loosing the changes I make in the OS. Sure, not an issue, if you wish to install OS directly on HDD. But I missed to axctivate 3D acceleration as it was asking for a reboot.

As I said its remarkable to have a light OS running on Nokia Booklet 3G to explore its true potential and as expected this thing is a tank, in build, in performance, if its not in Windows 7 Starter side. So, my complaints with OS end here.


At the end, here is my video of Ubuntu running on my Nokia Booklet 3G. Though it doesn’t involve steps related to Multimedia and multiverse repository, but shows the booting and configuring my SIM to make use of SIM slot for internet. Sorry for low light …

 

Later on I faced the issue with keeping my settings saved with the USB stick, but as I didn’t had an Ubuntu Install ready, so struggled a little to bring 3D support on it. Wiki suggested me a better alternative, Jolicloud, definitely worth trying. I will come up with a post of JoliCloud running over Nokia Booklet 3G soon.

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