Adding a Certificate Authority to the Trusted List in Ubuntu

Sometimes, working with SSL certificates isn’t all it’s cropped up to be. Heck, most of the time it’s not. It’s painful, time-consuming work.

However, it’s actually not so hard to install a self-signed certificate authority in Ubuntu, using a few commands.

First, install libnss3-tools, which contains the certutil command:

sudo apt-get install libnss3-tools

Next, we’ll copy the public certificate authority file to the certificate store:

sudo cp my_ca.crt /usr/share/ca-certificates/

We’ll now recompile the SSL CA list for Ubuntu, adding our certificate:

sudo dpkg-reconfigure ca-certificates

This will lead to a ncurses menu. In this menu, choose ask, and scroll through the long list of trusted CAs until you find your ‘my_ca.crt’ certificate authority file. Mark it for inclusion with Space, then hit Tab then Enter to finish up.

The last step is to install the certificate into Google Chrome’s registry. (If you’re using Firefox or otherwise, your mileage may vary.) Let’s add it with this command:

certutil -d sql:$HOME/.pki/nssdb -A -t "C,," -n "My Homemade CA" -i my_ca.crt

Great! Now restart Google Chrome and you should now see your sites signed with this CA as being trusted :)

Fix Bluetooth on a MacBook Pro 8,1/2/3 with B43

If you’ve been following the blog, you probably noticed that I recently had a lot of issues with Bluetooth on my MacBook Pro running Ubuntu, and then had them resolved by an awesome commenter. Apparently, if you disable Bluetooth coexistence protection in the B43 driver, then Bluetooth will be able to coexist with WiFi. I have no idea how this makes sense, so don’t ask :)

I demonstrated how to do this with modprobe:

# remove b43
sudo modprobe -r b43
# reinsert b43, with the right settings
sudo modprobe b43 btcoex=0

Unfortunately, this doesn’t work permanently, as whenever you reboot, the B43 driver is loaded with the evil Bluetooth coexistence setting enabled (again, this means that Bluetooth will not work). Thus, we need a permanent solution! Pop open your favorite text editor as root and edit /etc/modprobe.d/options and append the following line:

options b43 btcoex=0

Voila! Go ahead and reboot to test your settings. No more modprobing every time you boot!

Ripping DVD’s and CD’s to ISO format in Linux

There are many reasons why one would want to rip a disc to an ISO file. The ISO format stores the disc locally on your hard drive in a way that it can be easily and quickly burnt again to removable media. If you’ve ever wanted to keep a backup copy of some software on your computer, or you would like to store entire DVDs locally on your filesystem, Linux can help you out with that. The program “dd,” provided by most Linux distributions by default, allows for quick, simple ripping of CD’s and DVD’s from a terminal. Let’s get ripping. Continue reading

Music Management in Linux: Ripping CD’s with abcde

When one sets out to rip a CD in Linux, he is confronted by many options. The user can use a graphical music player such as Rhythmbox, Banshee, or Amarok to rip said CD, along with many other dedicated ripping solutions. I recently purchased Rosetta Stone Hebrew Levels 1 – 3 which comes with 12 (read ‘em, TWELVE) discs of audio companion material. Let’s just say I needed a way to rip 12 discs fast, preferably in a terminal. Enter abcde. Continue reading

Flash Player on Linux – Installing Native 64bit Flash Player

It seems that installing Flash Player on an Ubuntu desktop is getting easier and easier with every release of the popular Linux operating system. However, its still very apparent that there are still problems pairing the two together in some areas. In the past, it has been less-than-easy to install the 64bit Flash Player plugin in Linux. However, Adobe just released ┬árefresh to the alpha, so let’s see if it has taken care of some of the ease-of-installation problems. Continue reading

Music Management in Linux: Using EasyTAG

If you’re like me and you love music, you probably have thousands upon thousands of songs in your library. It’s good to have choices, right? If I want to listen to Led Zeppelin, then I should have that option. If I’m more in the mood for some instrumental folk music like John Fahey, I should be able to play it wherever I’m at. Managing the filenames and ID3 tags of such a library, though, is anything but easy. Enter EasyTAG, literally easy tagging and renaming for your entire music collection.

Continue reading