Monthly Archives: December 2008


During my daily browsing of the web, I read about a concept that I have never considered before: atomicity. This concept usually refers to database transactions and means that the transaction will either completely succeed or completely fail. Journaled filesystems make use of this system in the event of a crash. Before your computer commits data to the disc, it logs what it will do to a file, called a journal, before actually committing the change, called a transaction. If the computer crashes before it finishes writing the data to the disk then the log will be incomplete. When the computer restarts, the filesystem’s journal will be replayed; incomplete entries are ignored and reverted to the most recent complete entry. Thus, if the data was not written correctly and completely, it will not be written at all.
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Changing the default X11 Cursor

Very trivial.

Unpack your cursor package to ~/.icons/.

The directory structure should be:


Create a symbolic link between ~/.icons/default and the theme_name and restart X.

ln -s ~/.icons/theme_name ~/.icons/default

If you have any issues, remove the symbolic link:

rm ~/.icons/default

create a ~/.icons/default directory

mkdir ~/.icons/default

and insert the following file (index.theme) into the ~/.icons/default directory:

touch ~/.icons/default/index.theme
vi ~/.icons/default/index.theme
   1 [Icon Theme]
   2 Inherit=theme_name

Done; easy.

Using xbindkeys to manage media buttons

More often that not, a keyboard will have extra functionality keys that you can bind to different operations.  Xbindkeys makes it easier to make each key perform a specific task.

First, run “xbindkeys -k” to determine the code for a key.  For example:

"Scheme Command"
m:0x0 + c:160

Then change the “Scheme Command” section to the command that you want to run when the key is pressed.   For example:

"amixer set Master 5%+"
m:0x0 + c:176

Place your newly created command in ~/.xbindkeysrc and add xbindkeys to your ~/.xinitrc.


The latest Xorg video driver for Intel chipsets will probably cause a slowdown in rendering due to a switch from TTM to GEM. GEM is only supported in kernel 2.6.28 and above so it’s recommended that you stick with drivers released before 2.4.3.

More information: