F8 User Guide - Single page view for printing
Welcome to the Fedora 8 Desktop User Guide! This guide is intended for users who have a working Fedora 8 system and are able to use a mouse and keyboard.
This guide explains:
- The different desktops available to the Fedora user
- How to login to your computer
- The layout of the three main Fedora desktops (GNOME, KDE and Xfce)
- How to use the file and system navigator
- How to use the e-mail client
- How to use the instant messenger client
- How to use the web-browser
- How to use the Open
Office office suite
- How to customize your new Fedora desktop
About this Document
Volunteer contributors from the Fedora Documentation Project create this guide, and many others, for each release of Fedora. If you have questions or suggestions about the Fedora documentation, or if you would like to help document Fedora, please visit the Fedora Documentation Project web site.
For assistance installing Fedora 8 please read the Installation Guide:
Thank you for choosing Fedora.
|Previous Page - Table of Contents||Table of Contents||Next Page - The Fedora Desktops|
In contrast to most proprietary operating systems, Fedora 8 has several desktop environments or desktops. Desktops display menus and icons, launch applications, and allow you to control the overall screen appearance. The desktop environment is also referred to as a Graphical User Interface, or GUI.
The three major desktops included with Fedora 8 are:
- GNOME, which focuses on simplicity
- KDE, which includes a large collection of applications and customization features
- Xfce, which is appropriate for older PCs and laptops due to its low-memory requirements
Applications written for one desktop environment will work on other desktops. For instance, the Open
Office.org office suite runs on all three major desktop environments.
There are applications created specifically for each desktop environment. For instance, each major desktop has a preferred text editor. GNOME uses Gedit, KDE supplies Kedit, and Xfce provides Mousepad. However, even if you run GNOME as a desktop, you can install your favorite KDE or Xfce programs.
Fedora provides a large variety of applications to browse the World Wide Web, create documents, and display and edit photos. This guide describes the most commonly installed applications on each desktop environment, as well as useful alternatives.
|Previous Page - Introduction||Table of Contents||Next Page - Logging In to the Desktop|
This section of the Fedora Desktop User Guide explains how to identify yourself, or login, to your system. During the post-installation process, you created an identity with a user name and password, called an account. If you have forgotten any of your user account details, please read the section [#cannot-login I Cannot Login: HELP!] . For additional information about the login process, refer to the section [#login-explanation Logging In: An Explanation] .
When you restart or turn on your computer, it goes through a process called booting. During the boot process your computer hardware powers on and performs a series of self-tests. Immediately after the computer has finished booting, the login screen appears. The login screen displays one or more user names, depending on how many accounts are present.
To login, do one of the following:
- Type your username and then press the [Enter] key. The username is case sensitive.
- Select your user name from the list of one or more choices.
Next, type your password and press the [Enter] key again. The password is also case sensitive.
Next the desktop environment is loaded. In some desktop environments, a small box containing a logo and icons, called a splash screen, may temporarily appear. Any splash screen is then replaced by the default Fedora desktop.
The computer is now ready for use.
Logging In: An Explanation
Fedora is a multi-user operating system. Multiple users, each with different access privileges, can be logged into the computer at the same time.
During installation, you provided a password for the system administrator account, sometimes called the superuser. The username for this account is root.
After installation, Fedora asked you to set up a normal user account. Use that account, or another normal account, for daily use of the system. and the root account for administrative and maintenance tasks.
This design has many benefits:
- Limited privileges reduce the possibility of doing significant damage to the entire system.
- Each user account has individual settings.
- Each user account maintains its data separate and private from others.
- A problem in one user account does not put the entire system at risk.
I Cannot Login: HELP!
A common mistake during login is accidentally having the [Caps Lock] key turned on. This situation can cause the login process to fail because usernames and passwords are case sensitive. If problems persist, re-enter your username and password a few times to ensure you have typed them correctly.
Recovering the password for a user account is not a difficult process, but it is beyond the scope of this guide. For an explanation and details of how to do this, please refer to the User Accounts section of the Fedora Administration Guide.
|Previous Page - The Fedora Desktops||Table of Contents||Next Page - Tour of the GNOME Desktop|
This chapter introduces the GNOME desktop in Fedora. The desktop is easier becomes easier to use after you know some of the common terminology used, beginning with the GNOME desktop.
If you installed Fedora 8 from the Fedora 8 Live image, whether for Intel or compatible (i686), PowerPC (ppc), or 64-bit (x86_64), GNOME is the installed desktop. If you installed an alternative desktop, skip to the appropriate section: Tour of the KDE Desktop or Tour of the Xfce Desktop .
The GNOME Desktop
The GNOME desktop has three distinct areas. From top to bottom, the areas are:
The Menu Panel
This panel stretches across the top of the screen. The left side contains three menus and a number of default icons that start software applications, and on the right it provides a clock, fast user switching, a volume control, and a notification area.
This menu contains a categorized list of installed applications, which are updated as necessary when software is installed or removed. If you hold the mouse over a software entry, a brief description of its function appears. If you click one of these entries, that application starts.
This menu is divided into four subsections.
- The first subsection allows quick access to commonly accessed folders, and makes it easy to keep your file system organized.
- The second subsection allows quick access to the CD/DVD creator tool, and to the Computer window, which allows you to browse all data storage attached to the computer. This subsection also grows to include links to any removable media you attach to the computer. For example, if you insert a CD or a USB stick, it will appear in this menu.
- The third section provides links to tools that help you browse and manage network locations.
- The fourth section lists recently accessed documents, and provides access to a search function that helps you quickly access any file on the system.
This menu is divided into three subsections. The first provides access to configuration tools. The Preferences menu contains tools that affect only your account, and only require normal user access. The Administration menu contains tools that affect the whole system and require root access. These tools prompt for the root password when launched.
The second section provides access to the Help documentation, along with information about the Fedora project, and the different teams that make it up, and about the GNOME project.
The third section contains entries to pause or end the current session. Lock Screen starts the screen saver or blanks the screen depending on the session configuration. Enter your password to restore your session to the screen.
The series of icons next to the menus provide quick access to commonly used applications. These icons are called launchers.
|Mozilla Firefox web browser.|
|Evolution mail client and personal information manager.|
To add more launchers to a panel, right-click on the panel and select Add to Panel. If the application is already listed in the Applications menu, you can also navigate to the application in the Applications menu, right-click on it, and select Add this launcher to panel.
To access a calendar, clicking the clock on the right hand side of the panel. When you double-click a date, the Evolution personal information manager opens.
Fast User Switching
If you clicking the current username located next to the clock, a list of available users appears. To switch to a different user account, select the username.
The volume control allows you to quickly change the overall volume of sound on your computer. Click the icon to show a slider, and then use the mouse to drag the slider to the desired volume. If you double-click the icon, a volume control window appears in which you can separately change the volume of different sound sources.
The Desktop Area
The default desktop area, or workspace, contains three icons:
If you double-click this icon, a window appears that contains available storage devices on the computer. These are also listed in the Places menu. Computer is equivalent to My Computer on Microsoft Windows.
This icon represents the location is where all of the logged in user's files, such as music, movies, and documents, are stored by default. There is a different home directory for each user, and users cannot access each other's home directories by default.
If you delete a file, it is moved to this location. The disk space used in the Trash is not recovered until it is emptied. To empty the Trash, right-click the icon and select Empty Trash.
Using The Desktop
Right-click on the desktop area for a menu of actions related to the desktop area. For example, the Change Desktop Background action lets you choose a different image or photograph to display on the desktop.
The Window List Panel
The window list panel has three components:
Use the Show Desktop button to hide all open windows, and reveal the desktop area. This function is useful when the open applications obscure an important desktop file or icon. To restore the windows, click the Show Desktop button again. All windows return to the previous configuration.
Open applications appear as button icons in the middle part of the panel, the Window List. The Window List shows all application windows in use on the desktop workspace, whether they are visible or hidden.
A hidden window appears with its title surrounded in square brackets [ ] . The currently selected application window appears as a depressed button, and is said to have focus. Usually, this is the application whose window is on top of all the others on the screen. To switch from one running application to another using the mouse, click on the desired application's button in the window list.
The workspace switcher is situated on the far right and allows you to move between workspaces. Workspaces have long been a feature of UNIX and Linux desktop environments. Each workspace provides a separate desktop where applications can be organized, and a corresponding window list panel. By default there are four workspaces available. To change this number, right-click on the workspace switcher and choose preferences.
The Trash icon on the right end of the window list panel works the same way as the Trash icon in the desktop area.
|Previous Page - Logging into the Desktop||Table of Contents||Tour of the KDE Desktop|
This chapter introduces the KDE desktop in Fedora 8. It is easier to explain how to use the desktop throughout this guide after explaining some of the common terminology used with the KDE desktop.
The KDE Desktop
If Fedora 8 was installed from the KDE Live CD, KDE is the default installed desktop. If you installed Fedora 8 from the Fedora DVD image, GNOME is the default and KDE is available as an option. If you wish, you can skip this section and go directly to the Tour of the GNOME Desktop or the Tour of the Xfce Desktop .
The KDE desktop has two distinct areas. From top to bottom, the areas are:
- The desktop area
- The KDE panel
The layout and location of these items can be customized, but the term used for each of them remains the same.
The desktop area is the large space where windows are displayed. The Trash icon is located in the top left corner of this area; users more familiar with Microsoft Windows may equate this to the Recycle Bin.
The KDE Panel is located at the bottom, and spans the entire width of the screen. It features the K menu and application launchers, displays the running applications as buttons, and gives access to the workplace switcher and the clock.
The following sections discuss the KDE desktop area and the KDE panel in further detail.
The KDE Desktop Area
Before any additional icons are added to it, the desktop area is fairly empty and contains only the Trash icon.
Trash - Deleted files move here. Empty the Trash folder by right-clicking the icon and clicking Empty Trash.
Right-clicking on the desktop presents a menu of actions related to the desktop area. For example, selecting Configure Desktop lets you change the desktop background, configure the desktop behavior, or set a screen saver.
The KDE Panel (Kicker)
K Menu - This menu contains a variety of entries that start the installed applications, which are ordered by category. It is similar to the Microsoft Windows Start menu. K Menu is divided in to three Groups:
Actions:: This group contains common actions a user might use (such as Logout, Lock Session, Run Command). All Applications:: Here you will find a categorized list of all installed applications. Most Used Applications:: This is a list of the applications you use most. They're placed at the top of the menu for easy access.
Application Start Icons - Next to K Menu are the application start icons for some commonly used software. You can add applications by right-clicking the panel and clicking on "Add Applet to Panel".
by Pager Applet - The Pager Applet shows a list of the virtual desktops. You can activate one of these by clicking on it or by using the [Alt] +[Function] key combination. (For example, pressing [Alt] +[F4] will bring you to Virtual Desktop number 4.)
Taskbar - Next we come to the Taskbar. The taskbar displays all the running applications. You can bring an application into focus by clicking it's button. If the application already has focus, clicking it will cause it to minimize.
Clock - Clicking the clock on the right hand side of this panel provides access to a calender which, when a date is double clicked, opens the Evolution personal information manager. Clicking the current username, which is located next to the clock, presents a list of available users to which you can quickly switch by clicking on them with the left mouse button.
The appearance of the panel can also be customized: right-click on the panel and select Configure Panel.
|Previous Page - Tour of the GNOME Desktop||Table of Contents||Next Page - Tour of the Xfce Desktop|
This chapter introduces the Xfce desktop in Fedora. It is easier to explain how to use the desktop after explaining some of the common terminology used with the Xfce desktop.
The Xfce Desktop
One common reason for using the Xfce desktop is to provide a feature-rich desktop for a PC or laptop with limited memory.
The Xfce desktop has three distinct areas. From top to bottom, the areas are:
- The window list panel
- The desktop area
- The menu panel
The layout and location of these items can be customized, but the term used for each of them remains the same.
The window list panel is located at the top of the screen. It features the Show Desktop icon, displays the running applications as buttons, and gives access to the workplace switcher and the trash.
The desktop area is the large space between the two panels. The Filesystem, Home Directory, and Trash icons are located in the top left corner of this area; users more familiar with Microsoft Windows may equate these icons to the My Computer, My Documents, and Recycle Bin respectively.
The menu panel is located at the bottom of the screen. On the left part of the panel it contains a number of default icons that start software applications and, on the right, also provides a clock, fast user switching, volume control applet and a notification area.
The following sections discuss the XFCE menu panel, desktop area, and window list panel in further detail.
The Xfce Menu Panel
This panel contains a number of launchers for common software. To customize its appearance, right-click on the panel and select Properties.
Right-clicking the clock on the right hand side of this panel provides access to a menu that allows you to:
- Change the clock's display to and from a 12 and 24 hour format.
- Change to or from a digital clock style.
Logging out of XFCE provides a way to switch the current username, this is located next to the clock.
The Xfce Desktop Area
Before any additional icons are added to the desktop, the desktop area contains three icons by default:
- Filesystem - This contains all mounted volumes (or disks) on the computer; all of these are also available by clicking on the Applications menu and selecting Filesystem. Filesystem is equivalent to My Computer in Microsoft Windows.
- Home - This is where all files - such as music, movies and documents - belonging to the logged-in user are stored by default. There is a different home directory for each user and users cannot by default access each others' home directories. Home is equivalent to My Documents on Microsoft Windows.
- Trash - Deleted files are moved here. Empty the Trash folder by right-clicking the Trash icon and clicking Empty Trash.
Right-clicking on the desktop presents a menu of actions related to the desktop area. For example, clicking on Change Desktop Background lets you choose a different image or photograph to display on the desktop.
The Xfce Window List Panel
The Applications button consists of several components:
- Run Program...
- The Terminal
- The File Manager
- The Web Browser
- Program Type Headings
- Help, About, and Quit buttons.
Open applications appear as button icons in the middle part of the window list panel; these are the open windows being listed.
The application window that has focus appears as a depressed button. Usually, this is the application whose window is on top of all others currently on the screen. To switch from one running application to another, click on the desired application's button in the window list.
The workspace switcher is situated on the far left and allows you to move between workspaces. Workspaces have long been a feature of UNIX and Linux desktop environments; each workspace provides a separate desktop where applications can be organized, each with its own desktop area and corresponding window list panel. By default there are four workspaces but you can change this number by right-clicking on the workspace switcher and choosing preferences.
Clicking on the show desktop button (pictured at left) minimizes all open windows and reveals the desktop area; a window can then be displayed by clicking on the minimized window's button in the window list panel. This action is useful when open applications' windows becomes cluttered.
|Previous Page - Tour of the KDE Desktop||Table of Contents||Next Page - Using Media|
This chapter covers how to use media such as hard drives, DVDs, CDs, and flash drives in Fedora.
When you insert or connect a medium to your computer, Fedora automatically recognizes and makes it available for use: an icon is placed both on your desktop and in the Places menu.
When you are finished using your media alert Fedora that you would like to remove this volume. To do this, right-click on the device's icon and then select Unmount Volume or Eject, depending on what type of media you are using; during this process any remaining changes to the data on the media is written to the device, allowing safe removal without data loss.
To view the contents of a volume, double-click its icon on the desktop, or choose the volume name from the Places menu.
All of the contents of the volume are displayed in the window. Files on the volume can be opened with a double-click; further actions can be performed by right-clicking the file to gain access to the context menu.
Writing CDs or DVDs
Fedora includes support for writing to CDs and DVDs. To write to a CD or DVD:
Using Nautilus in GNOME
- Open a Nautilus window, by double-clicking Home or Computer (Nautilus is the graphical file manager).
- Select Places > CD/DVD Creator.
- Use the initial Nautilus window to navigate to the files you wish to burn, then drag and drop them into the empty CD/DVD Creator window.
- Click Write to Disc.
- In the dialog box, you can change the name of the disc and the write speed if they are incorrect.
- Click Write.
Using K3b in KDE
Both GNOME and KDE do not have K3b installed by default. To install using Pirut, refer to the chapter Managing Software With Pirut . With Pirut running, go through the menu Browse (tab) > Applications > Sound and Video, then click the Optional packages button and type
k3b into the search field.
To install K3b using the console:
su -c 'yum install k3b'
When installed K3b is found under Applications > Sound and Video > K3b
In K3b there are action buttons in the bottom of the window:
|To create a New Audio CD Project|
|To create a New Data CD Project|
|To create a New Data DVD Project|
|To Copy a CD|
When you are ready to burn the files or folders to disk click the Burn button.
To burn an ISO image file such as the Fedora 8 DVD installation image, use the Tools > Burn DVD ISO Image. Navigate to and select the
.iso image, then click the Start button.
Using GnomeBaker in Gnome
Baker is not installed by default. In Pirut, install via Browse (tab) > Applications > Sound and Video, then click the Optional packages button and type
gnomebaker into the search field.
To install Gnome
Baker using the console:
su -c 'yum install gnomebaker'
When installed Gnome
Baker is found under Applications > Sound and Video > CD/DVD Writer
Baker there are three primary 3 buttons in the bottom pane of the programs window:
|Data DVD Use this to burn files and folders to a DVD .|
|Data CD Use this to burn files and folders to a CD.|
|Audio CD Use this to create an audio CD.|
- To burn a specific file to a CD click the Data CD, then drag and drop the file from the top pane into the right hand side of the bottom pane. Entire folders can also be dragged and dropped. Click the burn button to burn the files or folders to the disc.
- Burning an ISO image file such as the Fedora 8 DVD installation image is done through the Tools > Burn DVD Image menu. If the
.isofile is for a CD, choose Burn CD Image. Navigate to the image, select it, and click the OK button, clicking the Start button in the next window.
|Previous Page - Tour of the Xfce Desktop||Table of Contents||Next Page - Connecting to the internet|
Fedora uses Mozilla Firefox by default in Gnome and Konqueror in KDE to access the World Wide Web (Web).
Beyond being excellent, standards compliant web browsers, Firefox and Konqueror have many features. This chapter explains how to use some of the more popular features, and provides links to further information.
To start Firefox in GNOME, select Applications > Internet > Firefox Web Browser or use the menu panel icon:
To start Firefox in KDE, select KMenu > Applications > Internet > Firefox Web Browser:
Fedora starts Firefox with a custom default home page that has links to useful Fedora-related sites. Navigate to other web pages by typing the address (URL) into the long navigation bar across the top of the Firefox screen, replacing the default "http://start.fedoraproject.org".
If the URL is not known, enter a keyword (or words) into the search bar on the right of the navigation bar, then press the [ENTER] key. The search engine used is changed by left-clicking the logo in the search box, presenting a list of pre-configured options including Google, Yahoo, eBay, Amazon, and Creative Commons.
Like other web browsers, Firefox makes it possible to save a web page for future reference by adding a bookmark to a list of bookmarks. Use the key combination [Ctrl] [d] to bookmark a page you are viewing. To manage bookmarks, or do other actions such as bookmarking all open tabs, use the Bookmark menu from the top of the Firefox window. Create a live bookmark (a feed) that automatically checks for updates from a page with an RSS or Atom feed. When a feed is available there is an orange icon at the right hand edge of the address bar. Left click the feed icon and a preview of the feed is displayed. Select the method you would like to use to subscribe to the feed.
Open a new tab with [Ctrl] [t] . A blank page is presented and a new bar is available under the navigation bar showing all open tabs; to switch between them left-click the desired tab. To close a tab you can either right click to access the context menu or press the red "X" on the tab.
Navigating a large number of open tabs can be difficult. To make it easier, use the arrow icon on the right hand side of the tabs toolbar. Click this to reveal a list of all open tabs that you can switch to by clicking on the relevant item.
Firefox is designed to be fast and lightweight. As a result some functionality found in other browsers may not be available by default. To solve this problem the Firefox team made the browser extensible, making it easy to create and integrate extensions that add new functionality to the browser.
To manage and install extensions, plug-ins, and themes, select the Tools > Add-ons menu entry. New extensions are found by visiting https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/. To install an extension from this site follow the Install link, and when prompted click Install Now.
To start Konqueror in GNOME, select Applications > Internet > Konqueror :
To start Konqueror in KDE, select KMenu > Applications > Internet > Konqueror or select KMenu > Favorites > Web Browser:
Firefox has many more features than discussed here; you can find more information on Firefox at:
|Previous Page - Connecting to Internet||Table of Contents||Next Page - Communications (Email, IM)|
Fedora can be used to send electronic mail and communicate in real time with people around the world. In GNOME, Evolution is used to send electronic mail (email), and Pidgin (previously Gaim) is used to send instant messages (IM) by default.
Evolution is more than an email program. It is also a personal information manager. You can maintain a calendar, manage a list of tasks, and keep an address book of contacts.
Pidgin is an instant messaging program (client) that can access MSN, AOL, Yahoo!, Jabber, and other IM and chat networks.
In KDE Kmail is used to send electronic mail (email), and Kopete is used to send instant messages (IM). While Kmail does not include calendaring functionality, a calendar software called KOrganizer is included in KDE as part of the KDE PIM suite. There is also an application called Kontact which groups KMail, Korganizer and other KDE PIM tools into a single interface (comparable with Evolution).
This information is specific to using Evolution on Fedora. Additional documentation for Evolution is available at:
To configure an e-mail account in Evolution follow these steps:
- Start Evolution in GNOME, using the Applications > Internet > Email menu entry, or use the application launcher icon from the menu panel:
- Start Evolution in KDE, using KMenu > Applications > Internet > Email menu entry:
- Running the software for the first time displays the Evolution Setup Assistant wizard. Answer these questions using information provided by the ISP or e-mail provider.
- The Identity screen relates to personal information about the account, including Name, Organisation and Address. There is also a Reply-To field, which will allow you to specify that recipients of mail from this account reply to a different address.
- The Receiving Email and Sending Email screens both require information from the e-mail provider.
- To add a new account in the future, or to modify an existing account, launch the preferences dialog from the Edit > Preferences menu entry. In the dialog that appears, press the [Add] button to launch the Evolution Account Assistant again.
Evolution allows you to create, store and send email by clicking the appropriate buttons located on the menu.
|Button||How the button functions|
|Send/Receive||This will allow Evolution to send and receive all email.|
|New||Open a new email message dialog box.|
|Reply||Reply to the person who has sent you an email.|
|Reply to All||Replace to everyone who was included in the email that you have received.|
|Forward||Forward the email message to another person.|
|Print the email.|
|Delete||Delete the email.|
|Junk||Mark the email as junk.|
|Not Junk||If you accidentally set the email as Junk, pushing this button removes the Junk tag.|
|Cancel||Cancel whatever you are doing.|
|Previous||Move to the previous email in your folder.|
|Next||Move to the next email in your folder.|
Kmail is the standard email client used in KDE it is installed by default from the live-cd and is also included in the DVD. Loading Kmail in KDE is done by clicking on Kmenu > Applications > Internet > Mail Client menu entry or alternatively Applications > Internet > Kmail in GNOME
- Running the software for the first time displays the main Kmail page with links to appropriate help locations.
- To configure your account you will need your email information from your internet service provider or your e-mail provider.
- Setting up your account requires you to open the Configure Kmail dialog box from the Settings > Configure Kmail menu entry.
- Selecting Accounts and pressing the [Add] button will launch a dialog that will ask you for the type of account you wish to configure.
- After selecting the appropriate account type you will be greeted with a dialog that shows the different settings available for your account. Add your personal email configuration information to Account Name, Login, Password, Host. The other default settings could be left alone.
To add a new account in the future, or to modify an existing account, launch the configure Kmail from the Settings > Configure Kmail menu entry. In the dialog that appears, select Accounts press the [Add] button to launch the Kmail Account Assistant again.
Kmail allows you to create, store and send email by clicking the appropriate buttons located on the menu.
|Button||How the button functions|
|New Message||Open a new email message dialog box.|
|Save as||Save the email.|
|Print the email.|
|Check Mail in||Sends the email.|
|Reply||Replace to the email.|
|Forward||Forward the email message to another person.|
|Previous||Move to the previous unread email in your folder.|
|Next||Move to the next unread email in your folder.|
|Trash||Delete the email.|
|Find Message||Search for a specific email.|
|Create Task||Creates a new task in KOrganizer.|
This section is specific for Pidgin in Fedora. For further information and documentation on Pidgin, refer to:
To start and configure Pidgin, select Applications > Internet > Internet Messenger from the menu panel in GNOME or KMenu > Applications > Internet > Pidgin in KDE. Starting Pidgin for the first time goes directly into the Accounts dialog. To configure a new account follow these steps:
- Click on the [Add] button to bring up the Add Account dialog.
- In the Add Account window, under Login Options, click on the right side of the Protocol dropdown menu to show the available protocols and select the network appropriate for the account being created.
- Enter details for the selected account, including Screen name, Password, and Alias. Select Remember password if desired. Click on the [Save] button to add the account to the account list.
- Once the account is added, the Accounts window displays the new account.
- New accounts can be added in the future by navigating to the Accounts > Add/Edit menu entry in the main Pidgin window.
Select one of the enabled accounts to see the Buddy List window. In this window, menus allow the user to add additional IM contacts.
All 15 supported protocols are available at the same time within Pidgin.
Pidgin also allows you to have multiple accounts, using the same protocol, connected simultaneously.
For more information on using Pidgin see:
Kopete is the Internet Messenger that is installed in KDE by default.
In KDE Kopete can be found in Kmenu > Applications > Internet > Instant Messenger
In GNOME Kopete can be found in Applications > Internet > Kopete
This section is specific for Kopete in Fedora. For further information and documentation on Kopete, refer to:
To start and configure Kopete, select Applications > Internet > Kopete from the menu panel in GNOME or KMenu > Applications > Internet > Kopete in KDE. Starting Kopete for the first time goes directly into the creating accounts dialog. To configure a new account follow these steps:
- Click the selected messaging service you desire.
- In the Account Information window, enter your details that you are using to connect to the services.
- Make sure to fill out the details on the other tabs.
- Once the account is added, click [Next] ' you should have an option to connect to the service tick then then click [Finish] .
- New accounts can be added in the future by navigating to the Settings > Configure > menu entry in the main Kopete window then clicking the [Accounts] button after it has loaded.
Kopete comes with a wide range of messaging services some examples are:
Gadu-Gadu AIM GroupWise ICQ IRC Jabber Meanwhile MSN Messenger Testbed WinPopup Yahoo
Accounts for the services can be added to kopete using the steps listed earlier.
|Previous Page - Accessing the Web||Table of Contents||Next Page - Office Tools|
Office productivity tools are available in the base DVD Fedora installation but not in the live-CD version. This group of office tools include presentation, spreadsheet, and word processing applications. These tools are available through Applications > Office or as icons on the menu bar.
If the office productivity tools are not installed, install them using Pirut. Using Pirut is covered in the chapter Managing Software with Pirut . To install the office productivity tools, go to Applications in the left menu of Pirut and in the right menu select the Office/Productivity group, clicking the Optional packages. Install the Open
Office.org suite of packages. Another option is to install using the console:
su -c 'yum groupinstall "Office/Productivity"'
To access the Open
Office.org suite of tools in GNOME go to Applications > Office and select the application you would like to use. The icons below identify the programs; similar information is available from the tool tip that pops up when the mouse arrow hovers over the icon in the Applications > Office menu. In KDE the location is slightly different, with Open
Office in KMenu > Applications > Office
The office tools available are:
Office.org creates documents in formats based on open standards, such as Open
Document (ODF), Rich Text Format (RTF), and HTML. It can also read, edit, and write documents in Microsoft Office formats, such as Word, Excel, and Power
Point, with a high degree of compatibility. Files can be exported in PDF format without the need of additional software.
KOffice productivity tools are available in the base KDE Fedora installation. This group of office tools include presentation, spreadsheet, and word processing applications. These tools are available through Applications > Office in GNOME or Kmenu > Applications > Office in KDE.
If the office productivity tools are not installed, download them using Pirut. Using Pirut is covered in the chapter Managing Software with Pirut . Install the koffice-suite package. Another option is to install using the console:
su -c 'yum install koffice-suite'
Access the KOffice suite of tools in GNOME via Applications > Office, selecting the application to use. The icons below help you choose the program you want. In KDE the location is slightly different, KOffice is in KMenu > Applications > Office
The office tools available are:
For Further Information
For more information on using Open
Office.org, refer to the following documentation and support pages:
For more information on using KOffice, refer to the following documentation and support pages:
For templates that can be used in Open
Office.org refer to the following websites:
For templates that can be used in KOffice refer to the following websites:
For more information on using Planner, refer to the following official project documentation and support site:
For more information on using Evolution, refer to the following official project documentation and support site:
|Previous Page - Communications (Email, IM)||Table of Contents||Next Page - Financial Software|
Fedora includes several tools for listening to audio and viewing video. You can access sound and video applications through the Applications > Sound & Video menu.
By default, Fedora provides the following applications for audio and video:
- CD Player is an application for listening to audio CDs in GNOME.
- KsCD is an application for listening to audio CDs in KDE.
- Sound Juicer is an application for converting CDs to music files (also known as ripping) in GNOME.
- Rhythmbox is a music player that features tools for organizing music, CDs, Internet radio stations, and more, and is included in GNOME by default.
- Amarok is a music player that features tools for organizing music, CDs, Internet radio stations, and more, and is included in KDE by default.
- Totem Movie Player is an application for viewing videos in GNOME.
- Kaffeine is an application for viewing videos in KDE.
Fedora Project's Approach to Multimedia Support
In short, the Fedora Project encourages the use of open formats in place of restricted ones.
Fedora includes complete support for many freely-distributable formats. These include the Ogg media, Vorbis audio, Theora video, Speex audio, and FLAC audio formats. These freely-distributable formats are not encumbered by patent or license restrictions, and provide powerful and flexible alternatives to popular yet restricted formats such as MP3 that are not legally distributable with Fedora. For more information, refer to the Fedora Multimedia wiki.
Playing Audio CDs (CD Player)
In GNOME, this program can be launched by clicking on the menu entry Applications > Sound & Video > CD Player. In KDE, this program can be launched by clicking on the menu entry KMenu > Applications > Multimedia > CD Player.
Playing Audio CDs (KsCD)
In KDE, this program can be started by clicking on the menu entry KMenu > Applications > Multimedia > CD Player. In GNOME, this program can be started by clicking on the menu entry Applications > Sound & Video > KsCD.
Converting Audio CDs to Music Files
Sound Juicer is an application in GNOME that rips the CD into audio files on your hard disk. Ripping is the word for converting audio files from CD to an audio file, with each music track on the CD being saved as a single file. The default file format is Ogg Vorbis, a free and open alternative to the MP3 format; Vorbis often offers better sound quality in a smaller file than MP3. While ripping from a commercially produced CD, Sound Juicer displays the music track names by downloading the information from a free database on an available Internet connection.
The Sound Juicer Manual is available within the application under the menu entry Help > Contents.
Organizing your Multimedia Files (Rhythmbox)
Rhythmbox provides a front-end for music services, Internet radio stations, podcasts, and your own library of multimedia.
To learn more about using Rhythmbox, you can access the Rhythmbox Music Player Manual through the Help > Contents menu entry.
Organizing your Multimedia Files (Amarok)
Amarok provides a front-end for music services, Internet radio stations, podcasts, and your own library of multimedia including any videos you have.
To learn more about using Amarok, you can access the Amarok Manual through the Help > Amarok Handbook menu entry within the program.
Playing Videos (Totem)
The Totem Movie Player can play a variety of videos. Found at Applications > Sound & Video > Movie Player, Totem plays any format that can be legally supplied with Fedora. For help with Totem, click on the Totem Movie Player Manual, accessible through the Help > Contents menu.
Playing Videos (Kaffeine)
The Kaffeine Movie Player can play a variety of videos. Found at Applications > Sound & Video > Kaffeine, Kaffeine plays any format that can be legally supplied with Fedora. For usage help, the Kaffeine Player Manual is accessed through the Help > Kaffeing Player Handbook menu.
The Fedora Project does not by default offer the ability to connect your iPod. To install the program required to do so, select Applications -> Add/Remove Software. Next, click on the Search panel and enter Gtkpod. Check the box next to the program name that appears, and then click the [Apply] box at the bottom of the window. After completing the installation, Gtkpod will enable you to connect your iPod to your Fedora system.
Alternatively, you may install Gtkpod using the console. To do so, type the following into the console:
su -c 'yum install gtkpod'
For more information on freely-distributable formats and how to use them, refer to the Xiph.Org Foundation's web site here.
For further help on iPod support, you can go to the Gtkpod website.
|Previous Page - Financial Software||Table of Contents||Next Page - Playing Games|
By default, Fedora installation includes a selection of games; you can select additional game packages during installation. Additionally, you can install more games after installation by using the Add/Remove program application, Pirut. More information about games on Fedora can be found at the Games' wiki.
Default GNOME Games
Installing GNOME Games is as simple as loading Pirut, searching for the program gnome-games, and installing it. You can also install GNOME Games by typing the following into the console:
su -c 'yum install gnome-games'
Below is a list containing the names and a short description of the games included in the GNOME Games pack:
||A collection of dozens of solitaire games|
|Blackjack||The classic casino card game|
|Chess||Play the classic board game against the computer or a friend|
|Five or More||A version of the popular Color Lines game|
|Four-in-a-Row||A four-in-a-row game played against the computer or another human opponent|
|FreeCell Solitaire||Another huge collection of solitaire games|
|Iagno||A Reversi-like disk flipping game|
|Klotski||A group of sliding block puzzles|
|Mahjongg||A tile-matching game with many variations|
|Mines||A clone of a popular puzzle game|
|Nibbles||A worm or snake game|
|Robots||The classic game of out-of-control robots|
|Same GNOME||A puzzle game involving the strategic removal of groups of marbles|
|Sudoku||The popular logic puzzle|
|Tali||A poker game played with dice|
|Tetravex||A simple tile-matching game|
For information about using these games, refer to the Help > Contents menu within each individual game. Additional games are included for your enjoyment and stress relief.
Default KDE Games
Installing the KDE Games program is as simple as loading Pirut, searching for the program kdegames, and installing it. You can also install KDE Games by typing the following into the console:
su -c 'yum install kdegames'
Below is a list containing the names and a short description of the games included in the KDE Games pack:
|Kenolaba||A board game inspired by Abalone|
|KAsteroids||An arcade Asteroids space game|
|KBlackbox||A game that finds black boxes|
|KMines||A game similar to Mines|
|KMahjongg||A Mahjongg game|
|Konquest||A galactic space game|
|Kolor Lines||A little game about balls and how to get rid of them|
|KPoker||Poker with style|
|Kolf||A little mini-golf game|
|Klotski||A strategic blocks game|
|KBounce||The classic game of segregating bouncing balls|
|KSmiletris||An adaptation of the famous Tetris game|
|KSnakeDuel||A snake game|
|KSnakeRace||A snake game with a small difference|
|KAtomic||An atomically entertaining game|
|KBackgammon||The classical game of Backgammon|
|KSpaceDuel||The challenging space duel|
|KFoulEggs||An adaptation of the Japanese game Puyo Puyo|
|KGoldrunner||A Lode Runner type of game|
For information about using these games, refer to the Help > Contents menu within each individual game. Additional games are included for your enjoyment and stress relief.
|Previous Page - Multimedia||Table of Contents||Next Page - Managing Photos|
Most USB-compatible cameras will work automatically with Fedora and require very little configuration. If your digital camera offers a choice of USB connection types, set the camera's USB setting to PTP, or point-to-point mode, before continuing with this tutorial. Consult your camera's user manual to determine if this option is available and how to choose it. If it is not available, the default settings should be sufficient.
Connecting Your Camera
To properly connect the camera to your Fedora system:
- Make sure your camera is powered off.
- Connect a USB cable from the camera to your computer.
- If your camera requires you to select a knob or dial setting before connecting it to a computer, make that selection now.
- Power the camera on.
After your camera powers on, an informational window should appear on your desktop. If you would like to continue to import photos from the camera, select the Import Photos button. If you decide you do not want to import photos, select the Ignore button. If you do not want to see this dialog each time you connect a camera, you can select the Always perform this action option in conjunction with the Import Photos or Ignore button to make one of the choices permanent.
Organizing and Importing Photos
After you make your selection, Fedora loads thumbnails, or previews, of the photos from your camera into a new window. From this new window, you can tell Fedora the destination of the imported images and how you want your images organized as it loads them from your camera. In this dialog, you can select and/or deselect photo(s) to import by clicking on the corresponding thumbnail. To select all photos, click any photo and then press the key combination [Ctrl] +[A] . To deselect all photos, press [Ctrl] +[Shift] +[A] . Once all desired photos for import are selected, click the Import button. To cancel the entire import process, click the Cancel button. For a more detailed explanation of the options available when importing images, see the information below.
Selecting a Filing Method
Use Destination to select a folder in which to keep your photo images. Within a destination folder, you can further organize your photos by date and time, or by any other method you wish. If you enter text into the Film box, Fedora uses this text to label and organize the photos you import.
If you want Fedora to delete the images from your camera after it imports them, select Delete imported images from the camera. If you want it to use the filenames from the camera, select Keep original filenames. If you do not select this box, Fedora automatically numbers your images using the order it imports them, starting with "00001."
Categorizing Your Photos
The Categories box shows any special category labels you select to mark the photos you import. If you want to select any categories for your photos, click the ... button, which makes the category selection dialog appear.
To label your images with a category, click the checkbox next to the category name. Select as many as you wish. If you do not see a category name you like, select the New button and enter a new category name to add to the list. If you want to remove a category name permanently from the list, select the category by clicking on its name and then select Delete.
As you select categories, they appear in the Selected categories box. When you are finished, select OK to save the category names, or Cancel to forget any category selection(s).
|Previous Page - Playing Games||Table of Contents||Next Page - Sharing Your Desktop|
Fedora provides a means to share a user's desktop remotely across the network. This is useful for receiving technical support from a remote location or for demonstrating a desktop feature to another user. You may also find it to be a useful way to remotely access files on your desktop from another computer.
To activate desktop sharing, select System > Preferences > Remote Desktop from the user menu. This opens the Remote Desktop Preferences window:
The following procedure describes the most secure method to share a desktop:
- Under Sharing, check the box labeled Allow other users to view your desktop.
- Next, check Allow other users to control your desktop.
- Make a note of the command listed under Users can view your desktop using this command:
- Under Security, check the box Ask you for confirmation.
- Next, check Require the user to enter this password and enter a password.
- Finally, click on the [Close] button.
Be sure to inform the person performing remote technical support/viewing the command from step three, as well as the assigned password. When the person connects to your desktop, click on the [Yes] button when asked for confirmation.
Once the remote viewing feature is no longer needed, turn off desktop sharing by completing the following:
- Select System > Preferences > Remote Desktop
- Uncheck the Allow other users to view your desktop box
- Click on the [Close] button.
This turns off the remote desktop sharing feature.
To activate desktop sharing in KDE, select KMenu > Applications > System > Desktop Sharing. This opens the Desktop Sharing control module window:
There are two methods by which you can share your desktop:
- You can create an invitation. By default, invitations are only valid for one hour. This lessens the chance of forgetting to disable Desktop Sharing, and is a good option if you only need it enabled temporarily.
- You can also leave Desktop Sharing on at all times.
To create a Desktop Sharing invitation, open the Desktop Sharing window as described above, and select Create & Manage Invitations; the Manage Invitations window will open. From here, you can select New Personal Invitation and give the information to the person you want to invite.
If you want to have Desktop Sharing running at all times, follow the steps below:
- In the Desktop Sharing window, check the box Allow uninvited connections.
- Next, check Confirm uninvited connections before accepting (optional, but recommended).
- Check Allow other users to control your desktop.
- A password should be set for security; enter one in the box at the bottom of the window.
- Select the Network tab at the top of the window and uncheck Assign Port Automatically and make a note of the port listed.
- Finally, click on the [Apply] button.
To connect to the machine, you'll need VNC Viewer (or a similar program) installed on the remote machine. Open it by selecting Applications > Internet > VNC Viewer in GNOME, or KMenu > Applications > Internet > VNC Viewer in KDE. When the window opens, enter the IP address or hostname of the machine followed by a ":" and the port number from step 5 above. When the person connects to your desktop, click on the [Yes] button when asked for confirmation.
Once the remote viewing feature is no longer needed, turn off desktop sharing:
- Select KMenu > Applications > Settings > Desktop Sharing
- Uncheck the Allow uninvited connections box
- Click on the [Apply] button.
This turns off the remote desktop sharing feature.
|Previous Page - Managing Photos||Table of Contents||Next Page - Customizing the Desktop|
It is possible to customize the look and feel of your desktop in several ways. All of the graphical elements of a desktop - window borders, buttons, scrolling sliders, and other control elements - can be adjusted, modified, or replaced. A theme is a collection of such graphical elements, designed to give a common look and to fit together, and bundled for the desktop.
Changing the Theme
Themes are a way to change your desktop to suit your personal preferences.
The default theme is Fedora GNOME theme. Fedora 8 comes with many other themes that can be installed using Pirut.
To change the desktop theme, choose System > Preferences > Look and Feel > Appearance. The Theme Preferences window appears:
To change the theme, select one from the list, the theme will be applied automatically.
Additional GNOME themes can be installed using Pirut and searching for
gnome-themes-extras or from the command line
su -c 'yum install gnome-themes-extras'
By default KDE uses Plastik as its theme, with many more available from http://www.kde-look.org/ .
To change the them, click KMenu > Applications > Control Center. When the Control Center window appears expand the Appearence & Themes item and click [Theme Manager] .
To change the theme, select one from the list and click the [Apply] button at the bottom of the window.
Additional icons and themes can be downloaded for KDE by searching in Pirut for
su -c 'yum install kdeartwork-icons kdeartwork
Changing the Background
To change the background image on your desktop, right-click on an empty area of the desktop, and select the Change Desktop Background option. The Desktop Background Preferences window appears. To change your desktop background, choose a new image form the list. You can add your own images by clicking Add Wallpaper.
To set a color or gradient, select No Wallpaper. Then change the color under Desktop Colors.
To change the background in KDE, right click and empty area of the desktop, and select the Configure Desktop option. When the Configure KDesktop window appears, you can select a new background image from the drop down, or use your own by clicking the Open File icon next to the drop down.
Customizing File Browsing Behavior
By default, Fedora uses the Nautilus file manager, which opens a new window each time you open a folder. You can change this behavior to use one window with [Forward] and [Back] buttons.
To change this, double-click on Computer on the desktop, click Edit and then Preferences. You can also select Places > Computer > Edit > Preferences from the menu panel. Click the Behavior tab and click on the box next to the text Always open in browser windows.
To install a program that modifies several aspects of using Nautilus. Install Gtweakui which enables you to modify your GNOME desktop quickly and painlessly.
Applications > Add/Remove Software then searching for gtweakui will provide the program to install. The program's location can be found under System > Preferences
The Compiz Fusion Project brings 3D desktop visual effects that improve usability of the X Window System and provide increased productivity though plugins and themes contributed by the community giving a rich desktop experience.
The Fedora Project does not enable Compiz Fusion by default and it therefore will need to be installed.
To install Compiz Fusion you will need to load Pirut by going to the Applications > Add/Remove Software, click on the Search tab and type compiz-gnome or compiz-kde depending on which desktop you have.
When Compiz Fusion has been installed you can launch the program by selecting System > Preferences > Look and Feel > Desktop Effects
Installing GDesklets in Fedora requires you to open Pirut which is located at Applications > Add/Remove Software then going to the Search tab and searching for gdesklets.
When searching for Gdesklets in Pirut you will come across a few packages:
gdesklets gdesklets-calendar gdesklets-goodweather gdesklets-quote-of-the-day
GDesklets is the program that needs to be installed and the other programs listed are the plugins. The example of setting up GDesklets will use the gdesklets-goodweather plugin. With that in mind you will need to install both GDesklets and the GDesklets-goodweather plugin.
You can install using the following command in the terminal.
su -c 'yum install gdesklets-calendar gdesklets'
When the software is installed you can access GDesklets by going to Applications > Accessories > Gdesklets. This will load up a program with all available plugins. Select the uncategorized category and double-click GoodWeather Display.
After a few moments the the desklet will appear on the desktop and allow you to move it to a preferred location on the desktop.
To configure the the weather gdesklet, right-click and select configure desklet. A dialog will appear with general settings. Modifying the location can be done by going to http://www.weather.com/ . At the very top of the weather.com website is a search box for local weather information. Type in the location. After searching the code for the location will be found in the url. For example, Perth, Australia weather is the following link: http://www.weather.com/outlook/travel/businesstraveler/local/ASXX0089?from=search_city .
To use that information, extract the location code: ASXX0089 and enter it into the weather desklet and select [Close] button. The weather information will be available after the next update interval.
|Previous Page - Sharing Your Desktop||Table of Contents||Next Page - Managing Software With Pirut|
This section explains Pirut, Fedora's graphical package management program. It demonstrates the different search facilities within Pirut and how to install a package. The Banshee music management package is used as an example.
Install Media Repository
Fedora 8 introduced an additional repository to Pirut that provides users with the ability to upgrade their version of Fedora using the dvd or cd iso. When opening Pirut for the first time after the install of Fedora Pirut asks for cd #1. This can be disabled by selecting Repository Manager and unticking Fedora Media Repository.
Pirut works the same in both GNOME and KDE, the only difference is the location of its menu item.
Start Pirut by selecting Applications > Add/Remove Programs menu, entering the
root password when prompted.
Start Pirut by selecting KMenu > Applications > System > Add/Remove Software, entering the
root password when prompted.
Pirut starts in Browse view by default. This view organizes packages into related groups, displaying top level groups on the left and sub-categories on the right. When a tick is present next to a sub-category, it indicates applications from that group are installed.
To install Banshee for example, select the Sound and Video sub-category and press the [Optional Packages] button. Locate Banshee in the list and queue it for installation by ticking its box. Any package can be queued for installation by ticking the appropriate boxes.
To add packages from other groups or sub-categories to the queue, browse to the desired group or sub-category and proceed as before. The [Optional Packages] button is only available when the desired sub-category is ticked. Ticking a sub-category automatically queues any required packages for installation within that sub-category.
To install the queued packages press the [Apply] button.
After applying changes, Pirut prompts to confirm the packages you have selected. Proceed if the list is correct, otherwise cancel and refine the selection.
Pirut now resolves any dependencies. A dialog informs you which dependencies have been found, which are automatically marked for installation. Confirm this list to proceed.
When the desired application's name is known, the Search tab is more efficient.
Select the Search tab from the top of the window and enter Banshee into the search box. Press enter to begin the search. Results, including related packages, are shown in the box below. To find more information about a package before installation, highlight it and press the Package Details text below.
To queue a package for installation or removal, toggle its box as appropriate. Once all the packages have been selected press [Apply] .
The list tab displays all available packages. Packages can be queued for installation or removal in the same manner as before. Once satisfied with the selections, press the [Apply] button to commit the changes.
|Previous Page - Customizing the Desktop||Table of Contents||Next Page - Updating Software With Pup|
This chapter explains how to use the Pup graphical update program, and how Puplet works to provide notifications of available updates.
Puplet works constantly in the background, checking for available software updates from the enabled repositories. When updates become available a package icon appears in the notification area, along with an alert which appears for a short time and reveals the number of updates available.
Once the notification tray icon is present, there are a number of possible actions it can perform:
- Refresh checks for new updates
- View Updates launches Pup providing more detail about the package(s) to be updated, allow de-selection of available updates and/or starts the update process
- Apply Updates starts the update process selecting all available packages
- Quit closes Puplet, no packages are updated
The Package Updater (Pup)
This program features a scrollable text window under the heading Updates Available. In this text window all of the available updates are listed and selected by default. If you wish to remove any of the packages queued for update, mark the box next to the relevant package.
Some updates have a circular arrow icon next to them, indicating that these changes won't be applied until the next system reboot.
Further information about each update can be found by selecting the desired package and left-clicking the Update Details text.
Once satisfied with the package selection, choose the [Apply Updates] button. Pup checks for dependencies, ensuring that the updated packages will have everything required to function correctly. If dependencies are added a dialogue will appear, with new packages to be installed. Review this dialog and select [Continue] to complete the update.
The packages will then be downloaded and installed. If a reboot is needed for some of the changes to take place, you will be informed of this at the end of the updates.
|Table of Contents|