The Perfect Desktop - Fedora 16 i686 (GNOME) - Page 3

3 Update The System

Now it's time to check for updates. Go to Applications > System Tools > Software Update:

The Software Update wizard comes up and checks for the latest updates. Click on Install Updates to install them:

Afterwards the updates are being downloaded and installed:

Your computer is now up to date (in some cases, e.g. if a new kernel got installed, you might have to restart your computer for the changes to take effect - if this is necessary, the Software Update wizard will tell you to do so).


4 Grant Your Account sudo Rights

Fedora 16 is not able to call documents with gedit while you are logged in as root user by having typed su into a terminal. Therefore, we enable our current account to use sudo. Log in as root first:


Then open your /etc/sudoers config by entering


Look out for following part of the file, copy the line that grants root rights to root and paste it beneath with your username in it instead of root:


#Allow root to run any commands anywhere

root ALL=(ALL) ALL

howtoforge ALL=(ALL) ALL


Save and close the file afterwards.


5 Disable SELinux

SELinux is a security extension of Fedora that should provide extended security. In my opinion you don't need it to configure a secure system, and it usually causes more problems than advantages (think of it after you have done a week of trouble-shooting because some service wasn't working as expected, and then you find out that everything was ok, only SELinux was causing the problem). Therefore I choose disable it, although you might prefer to go with it. I haven't tested this setup with SELinux enabled - it might well be that it works without problems, but if it does not, you can try to turn SELinux off and see if the problem is gone.

To disable SELinux, open a terminal (Applications > System Tools > Terminal).

Open /etc/sysconfig/selinux as root (if you were logged in by having typed sudo, you must log out first by entering


) ...

sudo gedit /etc/sysconfig/selinux

... and set SELINUX to disabled:

# This file controls the state of SELinux on the system.
# SELINUX= can take one of these three values:
# enforcing - SELinux security policy is enforced.
# permissive - SELinux prints warnings instead of enforcing.
# disabled - SELinux is fully disabled.
# SELINUXTYPE= type of policy in use. Possible values are:
# targeted - Only targeted network daemons are protected.
# strict - Full SELinux protection.

To make the change effective, we must reboot the system:



6 Inventory Of What We Have So Far

Now let's browse all menus under Applications to see which of our needed applications are already installed:

You should find the following situation ([x] marks an application that is already installed, where [ ] is an application that is missing). NTFS read/write support is enabled by default on Fedora 16.

[ ] Gimp
[x] Shotwell Photo Manager
[ ] Picasa

[x] Firefox
[ ] Opera
[ ] Google Chrome
[ ] Flash Player
[ ] FileZilla
[ ] Thunderbird
[x] Evolution
[ ] aMule
[ ] Azureus/Vuze
[x] Transmission BitTorrent Client
[x] Empathy IM Client
[ ] Skype
[ ] Google Earth
[ ] Xchat IRC
[ ] Gwibber Social Client

[ ] LibreOffice Writer
[ ] LibreOffice Calc
[ ] Adobe Reader
[ ] GnuCash
[ ] Scribus

Sound & Video:
[ ] Amarok
[ ] Audacity
[ ] Banshee
[ ] MPlayer
[x] Rhythmbox Music Player
[ ] gtkPod
[ ] XMMS
[ ] dvd::rip
[x] Sound Juicer CD Extractor
[ ] VLC Media Player
[ ] Real Player
[x] Totem
[ ] Xine
[x] Brasero
[ ] K3B
[ ] Multimedia-Codecs

[ ] Kompozer
[ ] Bluefish
[ ] Quanta Plus

[ ] VirtualBox
[ ] TrueType Fonts
[ ] Java
[x] Read/Write Support for NTFS Partitions

So some applications are already on the system...


7 Adding Software Repositories

The official Fedora repositories don't provide all the software we need. Fortunately there are also third-party repositories for Fedora 16 that have what we need, and we can make our system use these repositories.

To do this, open a terminal window (under Applications > System Tools > Terminal)...

... and type in


to become root.

Then run

rpm -Uvh

This adds the RPM Fusion repository (a merger or Dribble, Freshrpms, and to our package manager.

Next we add the Adobe repository which provides the Flash player and the Adobe Reader:

rpm -Uvh

Then we add the Skype repository - as there is no rpm, we have to do it manually. Type


to log out as root and enter following afterwards:

sudo gedit /etc/yum.repos.d/skype.repo

name=Skype Repository

Finally we add the Google repository (which contains Picasa and Google Earth):

sudo gedit /etc/yum.repos.d/google.repo

name=Google - i386

name=Google Testing - i386


Next we import the GPG keys for software packages:

sudo rpm --import /etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY*


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7 Comment(s)

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From: at: 2011-11-13 23:58:55


Here is my article about how to install BlueJ which is used in my and others universities to learn Java programming language.

And also perhaps more detailed Bluefish installation guide :)

As for this particular  tutorial, I would like to recommend to install Gnome tweak tools as it is quite annoying not to be able to see any icons on a desktop :) It can be done using this command:

yum install gnome-tweak-tool

New menu item will appear - Applications>Accessories>Advanced Settings.

Thanks for these How To's, guys! I've been following them for years now.

Kind regards,

From: Anonymous at: 2011-11-17 23:20:50

it's a strange thing!!! Why can i only see 'activities' instead of 'application' and 'places' as can be seen in your screenshots? This is the one of the reasons why i hate Gnome 3. Any idea?

From: Anonymous at: 2011-11-18 21:57:30

I feel the same way.  To go to the same version of gnome 3 as displayed click the user name in the upper right, choose the "system settings" then  the "system info" and "graphics" on the left 

 change "force fallback mode" to "on".  logout and back in, and you're to something that represents the love child of gnome 2 and 3

From: Rainer at: 2011-11-14 10:35:32

I would suggest to use this repo spec, cause it´s more flexible with the ARCH (will work with i386 and x86_64):

name=Google - $basearch

name=Google Testing - $basearch

name=Google Earth $basearch

name=Google Chrome $basearch

From: SM at: 2012-01-12 14:00:26

correct !

From: at: 2012-05-26 12:25:17

April 20, 2012, Google announced it was dropping Picasa for Linux. At least, as of May 25, 2012, it won't download and install. 


From: Anonymous at: 2011-12-02 21:54:50

You can install most of those softwares and codecs by using Autoten's Autoplus+ ( )

So why don't use it?