Recover an unreadable flash drive

If you’ve ever tried installing a distro like OpenSUSE or Arch from a flash drive, or ever written to one using dd, you’ve probably discovered that it is a capital pain in the backside trying to read from that pen drive later. The reason is this – the drive gets converted to the RAW format, which is typically unsupported on a host of operating systems. According to Wikipedia, the term rawdisk refers to hard disk access at a raw, binary level, beneath the file system level, and using partition data at the MBR.

If that flies over your head, don’t worry. Today, I’ll be showing some Windows love, and showing how you can recover the disk when all hope is lost. Find out how!

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Clearing recent documents in GNOME 3

NOTE – The following technique works only on Fedora. This is because the location of the recently-used.xbel file varies from one distro to another. Refer this excellent post for an Ubuntu-specific guide

We’ve all had times of indiscretion where we’ve opened files on our computers that we’d rather not have others finding out about *cough*porn*cough*. Or maybe you’re here for genuine privacy issues. Anyway, here’s the lowdown on how you can go about clearing that pesky list of recent documents that pop up in GNOME 3’s search results (I would have added a rant about how this used to be a simple task in GNOME 2, but I’m trying to kick the habit :p) Find out how!

Solve video tearing on nVidia + GNOME 3

NOTE – Although I have tested this method on Fedora 16, it should work on any computer with an nVidia GPU and a Linux distribution that uses GNOME 3.

There was a time when video tearing on Linux was easily solvable by forcing your desktop environment and/or GPU to enable VSync, and turning compositing off in a window manager like Compiz. The introduction of GNOME 3, which relies on compositing, has made it a little more difficult than it used to be.

If you have an nVidia chipset, and are using GNOME 3 as your desktop environment, I will be detailing the steps necessary to get your videos working like they should have in the first place (yeah, smooth fullscreen flash isn’t a dream anymore!) Find out how!

Clearing all saved wifi connections in GNOME 3

If there’s one thing I absolutely detest about GNOME 3, it’s the lack of customizability. Yeah, I know improvements are on the way, but believe me, it feels like a really long wait when you have to bend over backwards to change anything around here. After all, one key area where Linux scores over Windows/OS X is the ability to customize almost anything to suit your needs.

Before this mini-rant takes it off topic though, here’s how you can clear all your saved wifi connections in GNOME 3. Find out now

Get GNOME Shell on ATI + Ubuntu 11.10

Ubuntu 11.10 (codenamed Oneiric Ocelot) was released a couple months back. Multiple reviews are available on the internet about how Unity (its default desktop environment) has been polished further among various other features, so I’m not going to go into depth on that here.

While a ton of people have complained about Unity, I’ve gotten used to it during the time that I’ve used Natty. However, I was drawn by Gnome Shell as well, and the fact that Ubuntu Oneiric has made it easier than ever to install it pushed me to try it out.

I’ve been using Gnome shell for about a week now, both in Fedora 15 as well as Ubuntu 11.10, and I’ve grown to like it just a little bit more than Unity, for whatever reason (IMHO, it just looks better, take the top panel for instance). Continue reading