Stackfolder Widget

Chakra 2011.11 is the second maintenance release of Chakra Linux, a KDE (desktop) distribution originally derived from Arch Linux. A detailed review of it will be published later tonight. While we await that publication, this article gives some customization tips. And there is much to customize because a new installation of Chakra 2011.11 is like bringing something home from IKEA.

The list of things to do on a new installation of Chakra 2011.11 that will be covered in this article are: enable the firewall, create folders in your home directory, install Takeoff Launcher, Stackfolder, the services and daemons manager, a Flash plugin, Java JRE and libdvdcss.

Enable The Firewall: The first and most important thing to do is to enable the firewall. That is the only security system that this distribution has. And doing that is easy. A graphical interface is installed. You can access it from System Settings, the KDE control center. You will find it under “Network and Connectivity.” This is a screenshot of it in its default state.
Chakra Edn Firewall

And this is what it looks like after it has been enabled. Enabling it is all you need to do to activate the default rule, which is to deny all incoming connection to local services except those that have an entry in the state table, while allowing all outgoing connections. Note that if you enable any service, ssh, for example, you will have to punch a hole in the firewall to allowing incoming ssh connections.
Chakra Firewall Enabled

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Create Folders: The usual folders that you typically see in other distributions or operating systems are missing from a new installation of Chakra, so your home directory, viewed from Dolphin, the file manager, looks like the one shown in the screenshot below. To create folders, just right-click in Dolphin and select Create New -> Folder

If all the right folders are created, your home directory should look like this:
Dolphin File Manager

Install libdvdcss, Flash Plugin, Java JRE, Takeoff Launcher and Stackfolder: Java JRE, a Flash plugin and libdvdcss are three applications that should be installed by default, but they are not. With libdvdcss installed, you can play any encrypted video DVD. Stackfolder provides a very cool way to browser your home directory, and Takeoff Launcher is an even cooler menu style. It (Takeoff Launcher) is much better than the Kickoff menu. To install the applications, launch AppSet-Qt, the graphical package manager (Menu-> Favorites -> Package Manager), and use the search box to find and mark them for installation. AppSet-Qt allows queuing multiple applications for installation, so you can search for them one after the other, mark them as you go, and install all at the same time. The confirmation window of AppSet-Qt should look like this:

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Add Stackfolder and Takeoff Launcher Widgets: After installing the applications, the next step is to add Stackfolder and Takeoff Launcher widgets to the panel. To do that, right-click on the panel and select Panel Option > Add Widgets.
Add KDE Widgets

For Stackfolder, typing “stack” should be enough for the widget to appear, and typing “takeoff” should bring up the corresponding widget. Double-click on the widgets as they appear to add them to the panel. Close the widget box when both widgets have been added. Note that if you need to move the widgets from the default positions, place the mouse cursor over a widget on the panel, and drag it to your preferred position. Do this before you close the widgets box.
Stackfolder Widget

This is what Stackfolder looks like. It is really nice. Now, you can browse the contents of your home directory without launching Dolphin, the file manager.
Stackfolder in Chakra Edn 2011.11

This is your desktop with the default menu.
Chakra Linux Desktop Kickoff Menu

And this is your desktop with the Takeoff Launcher. If you like it, you may remove the default menu. Just right-click on its icon and select the right option.
Takeoff Launcher


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87 Responses

  1. G’day Folks,
    I have Ubuntu 14.04 loaded on my internal 1 TB HDD on a Dell Inspiron One 2310 and triple booting with Windows 7 and Hackintosh Mavericks 10.9.4. I have now installed Ubuntu 14.04 to an external portable USB HDD with a / (root) partition, swap partition and Home partition with Grub installed to dev/sdb on the USB drive. I can boot to Grub via F12 key selecting my USB external HDD and it brings up the Grub menu for OS selection but it will not boot to anything including Ubuntu from there and just goes to a blank pink/mauve screen with no text.
    Is there some simple (for this Linux newbie) to edit files in Boot/Grub to complete booting to the OS?
    I’ll also mention that if I have the external portable USB HDD plugged in when attempting to boot to Ubuntu on my internal drive it fails to boot.
    Any help with this would be greatly appreciated as I would like to have the Ubuntu installation on the external portable USB drive to be bootable on any PC for various reasons.

  2. I seem to install everything I have on my external hard drive. It is really nice to be able to take my hard drive anywhere I want and have the stuff I need. It has come in handy more than once.

  3. HI,
    well from months myself looking around but couldn’t solve my question is about penetration testing KALI LINUX its a normal linux like normal my point of view i just wanted to install kali linux into my external USB HDD so that i need i can boot from my external USB HDD ok remember i am not taking about live boot.i am OK with that.i just wanted to complete install like windows.the problem comes when i make live USB PEN_DRIVE to install into my EXTERNAL USB HDD everything goes perfect with successfully but when i restart my laptop n boot from my USB HDD FROM BIOS its gives me a GRUB RESCUE even i had try to repair my grub but fail than i had remove my laptop internal HARD DRIVE than make a try with USB HDD live Kali Linux to select into my external USB HDD same everything goes perfect with last final grub installation than i reinstall my main INTERNAL HDD into my laptop and connect my EXTERNAL USB HDD n from bios boot from USB HDD
    same problem GRUB RESCUE even i cant repair with same live kali linux so kindly help me out how to fix this problem i don’t want to do DUAL boot just complete different .DO REPLY…

  4. I followed the insructions here for installing Ubuntu 13.04 on external hard disk. On trying to boot I got the error message “unable to find a medium containing a live file system”.

  5. Hi,
    I’m on a Macbook Pro, dual boot (W7/OSX on the internal ssd drive). I installed Xubuntu 12.1 on an external usb drive, using 4 partitions like outlined in your article. After installation I restart the computer, the rEFIt boot menu shows. I choose the linux pinquin, I see a screen with that pinguin for a few secs, the screen black out and after 30 secs or so I get the windows 7 login screen. Seems I cannot boot into Xubuntu at all… During installation I elected the external usb drive for Grub…
    What’s wrong here?

    1. Hi, just wondering if you ever got this ironed out? I’ve got a new pro retina and also hoping to boot Ubuntu (or Mint) from an external drive. I’m not finding much good documentation.

  6. Hi, i followed the installation as stated and a message pop-up at the end of the installation said it was successful. But I got a “Error: couldn’t read file. Press any key to continue …” before login into Ubuntu. Do you have any idea why ?

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