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Recently I updated my HP-Compaq nx6120 laptop with Ubuntu Dapper Drake alpha 6.06 release. Then I have updated to Beta-2 release. Here is the screenshot of this cute desktop. The first impression is Fantastic Performance and eye candy.

Following are the improvements over Breezy 5.10 version:
1. Faster booting – takes just 55 seconds to get complete desktop (with auto login) with default installation
2. Nice GUI shutdown
3. Faster GNOME – takes 3-4 seconds to get desktop from gdm.
4. Samba client and Server – I am able to connect to all my Windows PCs and Servers in LAN without any issues (in breezy, it was not so – the performance was not consistent). Shared Folder works just like that.
5. SMB Printer config – Able to configure easily, Windows (SMB) Printer through GUI tool without any issue.
6. Unicode in Firefox – Tamil fonts are perfectly displayed
7. SCIM Input for Tamil – Amazing integration with Text applications such as gedit and mousepad. This is first time I am able to successfully key in Tamil in phonetic keyboard layout on Linux. It is just a matter of selecting language from applet.
8. GNOMEBaker – import session works without any flaw.
9. OpenOffice – starts and works faster
10. GDebi Package installer – Double click .deb file to install it.
11. Power Management – Nice GUI tool for sleep, hibernate controls – (but sleep and hibernat not working in my laptop – to be tweaked)
12. Better font rendering – additional font settings
13. Simple Sound Preference tool

Other **not working** aspects (like Sleep/Hibernate) are yet to be analysed.

I have made the scim as default input module by replacing the /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90im-switch with the following script:

export XMODIFIERS=”@im=SCIM”
export GTK_IM_MODULE=”scim”
export XIM_PROGRAM=”scim -d”
export QT_IM_MODULE=”scim”

This script made me to enable the scim for firefox and applications also. Great Internationalization works, thanks to Mr.Mark Shuttleworth. I have typed the following tamil and hindi characters in firefox at’s edit post.
தமிழ் हिनदि ! How is it?

Hats off to Open Source – GNU- Linux – GNOME – Ubuntu team!



    • R (Chandra) Chandrasekhar
    • Posted October 1, 2006 at 7:51 pm
    • Permalink
    • Reply

    Thanks for your blog.

    I run Kubuntu Dapper on a PC and am trying out SCIM for Tamil.

    I have two questions:

    1. How does one select the default Tamil font in Kate for example?

    2. I am trying phonetic Tamil input. Most entries work as guessed, but how does one get the “n” that comes before “tha” as in Thanthai (father in Tamil)?

    I thought that the Itrans scheme would work, but did not find it to be so.

    I have other questions as well, but getting answers to these two would be a good start.

    Please reply to my email address.

    Thank you.

  1. that is good. where is your email id?
    1. I don’t use Kate. So no idea about it. But I use to have profiles in GEdit (in gnome). One profile for english and another for tamil. So I can define the fonts,size and other aspects also. I believe Kate also has profile feature.
    2. Use w for “ந்”; n for “ன்”; N for “ண்”

  2. Hi,
    How do i enable phonetic typing of tamil unicode in ubuntu draper.
    Say for instance Thanthai in tamil as it is pronounced


  3. Hi Sridhar,

    As per request, I have written a small HOWTO on Tamil typing in Ubuntu Dapper Drake 6.06 LTS. Here is the link:

  4. —————————————
    /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90im-switch with the following script:

    | export XMODIFIERS=”@im=SCIM”
    | export GTK_IM_MODULE=”scim”
    | export XIM_PROGRAM=”scim -d”
    | export QT_IM_MODULE=”scim”

    Can you please be more specific about the above instruction? I mean I’m very new in Linux and I don’t know how to replace the switch with the above script. Can you please tell me how to do that? Like what file I should open in text editor and replace which line with what, or what command I should execute from command line. It would be very helpful if you explain a bit more.

    Thanks in advance

  5. Hi Omi Azad,
    1. Backup /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90im-switch as /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90im-switch.bak
    2. Open /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90im-switch with any editor and delete all contents. copy and paste the below four lines in that file and save.
    export XMODIFIERS=”@im=SCIM”
    export GTK_IM_MODULE=”scim”
    export XIM_PROGRAM=”scim -d”
    export QT_IM_MODULE=”scim”
    3. Logout and Login.

  6. Uri Baba

    It was that simple!!!!

    Thanks bhai, I’ll try and let you know…

  7. Sorry for the late reply. Scim is now the default IME in my Ubuntu 6.10. But there ware no 90im-switch file. I just created one and it worked fine.


  8. Lovely blog and I really enjoyed visiting your blog!

  9. I wanted to pass on my thanks. I tried this method for other Indian languages and it worked. I used 8.04. I added commands to 80im-switch.. file and it worked. However, I have to press ctrl+space to get scim bar.


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