How to delete WhatsApp permanently

Yes, you’ve read this headline right !

Well guys this is a trial and tested method/way in order to discard or delete the inseparable part of our digital life, yes, WhatsApp, the most popular and widely used IM which somehow does not allow a sign out or logout option, let it be on Mobile devices or the web version(well the web app does but again it switches back to mobile version, get glued anyhow) of it.

So, Before I begin remember I’ve uninstalled my WhatsApp after following the below steps only, so the steps given below are a must read and can say is a mandate or a protocol in order to terminate this popular app once and for all(again this is my own expereince and results matter for person to person, bottom line don’t get addicted to your digital cravings). More said then done, let us begin:-

  • Make last seen hidden, now this helps a lot since your friends and family/colleague won’t come to know when you have used your WhatsApp last time/last seen, online and also makes sense when there is no double tick mark when someone has send you a text etc.

 

  • Use a custom DP(huh! popular term said in India), display picture or whatever you call it say a profile image of WhatsApp say something like this. As I’ve done this.

  • Use an alternative source for example as of now I’m using the Facebook Messenger(huh well Facebook and WhatsApp are the same company right but at least let’s get practical about this, people need some alternatives somehow at an initial stage to switch over).

 

  • You may switch to any other IM say like Viber, Hike(which is made in India), Telegram etc. But try and minimise your usage to important and prioritise your chatting needs.

 

  • For many people WhatsApp is the de-facto standard of text communication after SMS, but remember SMS’s are not dead and there are many cell phone network operators out there who do provide unlimited or perhaps some descent amount of texts to be sent, note capping may be there, for me here in India, Reliance JIO provides me 100 SMS’s national and local free per day.

 

  • And last but not the least email communication which is legendary and the perhaps may be the oldest one is not dead yet, i mean everyone has Gmail on every Android out there and iOS has a Mail app too, so do consider emails as an important part of communication in your day to day needs. We all are aware how emails change the way we work in offices, similarly try and implement the above in personal lives as well.

 

Note:- The above mentioned post is just for a sake of advise to young and old and people of all ages. I’m not an expert or have an expertise to discard your tech savvy vices in this digital world.

Thank you for reading till here. May you find peace in life after taking the decision.

Remember:- Less talk(chat), more execution. Result speaks itself !

 

The CLI way to adjust monitor brightness in Linux !

We shall be using something called as “xrandr”.

As this tool is available on most of the distro’s out of the box so we are good to go here.

Using Xrandr, we can also display the current state of the system screen, change or set the resolution, disable disconnected outputs and enable connected ones.

To display the basic screen output enter this command:-

Now,

The brightness value must be between 0.0 to 1.0 where 0.0 refers the dimmest (full black) and 1.0 refers the brightest value. For example, to set screen brightness value as 0.7, run:

$ xrandr --output VGA-0 --brightness 0.7

Replace VGA-0, with your active display name. Here, 0.7 refers the 70% of the maximum display brightness.

To go back to normal brightness, run:

$ xrandr --output VGA-0 --brightness 1.0

Don’t use anything above 1.0. It might turn the display into full white and you may not clearly see anything in the screen.

Can IoT devices security and surveillance be considered as a hoax?

The Internet of Things, dubbed as “IoT” as we are all aware of in this digital age !

Now lets talk about the basics of it and the nitty gritty’s.

Statistics and know-how(the basics):-

The IoT is expanding at a rapid rate and is expected to grow over the coming years at a pace which makes previous technology adoptions look insignificant. Predictions are that by 2020 there will be some +20 Billion connected devices worldwide. The IoT promises to connect everything from CCTV cameras, medical devices, smart home products to smart enabled vehicles and many more devices.

The Security explained in a simpler way:-

As far as the security goes it’s quite nascent as of now, keep on reading below as it get more intriguing. There ain’t one single update to upgrade or downgrade the systems firmware. Things can get goofy with hundreds of different architectures, the micro-processors used, the SoC’s(System on Chip) etc. Also these devices always need to be connected and stayed online if not for hundred percent of the time. As the complexity of the architecture increases(which is the given fact as more and more such devices come up in the existing market and the innovation which keeps them driving) the amount of code to be written for devices gets fragmented and there are chances that the updates to be received or made to be pushed never gets to see the light of the day.

Most of the updates/upgrades are unpatched and this leaves it extremely vulnerable to hackers and folks with malicious intent over the internet. The effect as of now might not be that devastating but if not taken care by the user, they might be fatal. Also we need to consider it as a normal digital product, say like a smartphone which need to be kept updated as always like we do over the Wi-Fi most of the time.

The most common form of attacks that could be made are DDos, “Distributed Denial of Service” which can be simple in nature to the most complicated one wherein data of say tera bytes could be flooded in or injected to an IoT device which could make them useless or dead for a given period of time.

Now lets talk about surveillance:-

Take examples of best know IoT home devices like Amazon Echo or Alexa, or Google’s newly launched Hub, and the products like Google Nest, now as per reports these devices which have small form factor and IoT, ofcourse are being used to spy on people by collecting the users data. And yes the big brother is listening. This seems to be like a whiste blowing thing, for the peeps who are unaware of the revelations done by the Edward Snowden about NSA, but don’t get me wrong the reports from Forbes reveals these same things since 2015 from Google when it had acquired Nest to hand over surveillance data to governments and intelligence agencies.
As per facts and figures, After Google’s acquisition of Nest Labs, transparency reports released by the company shows nearly 60 requests for data were received in the first half of this year itself. In fact, the government has sought data for 525 different Nest account holders since 2015.
Another noteworthy point is that the company hasn’t received a National Security Letter yet. NSLs are generally filed by intelligence agencies whenever they are looking for company data.

It all finally boils down to the nation and country, states etc where the laws are made either to be adhered or to be let gone.

Ubuntu’s Snappy package manager – A brief introduction to Snapcraft.

Canonical, the UK based organisation which supports Ubuntu, has been developing a new method for working with software packages which many of us are aware of since April 2016. The new technology, which has appeared in some experimental editions of Ubuntu, is called Snappy. Snappy packages are supposed to have a number of advantages over software packages common to most other Linux distributions. Five characteristics of Snappy packages in particular stand out.

= > The OS and application files are kept completely separate, as a set of distinct read-only images.

= > Transnational, image-based delta updates for the system and applications that can always be rolled back.

= > Files are read-only, which means they cannot be tampered with and can be updated perfectly and predictably every time.

= > Delta management keeps the size of downloads to the bare minimum.

= > Signatures and fingerprints ensure you’re running exactly what was published by the developer.

As you keep on reading this article you may want to check this post about Snapcraft.

 

I had been reading a lot about Snappy being used on mobile devices and Snappy packages being developed for embedded devices and the much-hyped Internet of Things. I have also heard rumours Ubuntu’s desktop edition may move to using Snappy packages by default in the near future, depreciating APT and .deb packages. However, it was not until recently that I found time to experiment with Snappy and see how the new package manager compared against other Linux package managers. The Ubuntu website has a tutorial for setting up a virtual machine running a minimal edition of Ubuntu and the Snappy package manager, a brief introduction to snapcraft. I followed the instructions provided and soon had a virtual machine running with a bare bones, text console interface. I was able to sign into the minimal operating system and begin experimenting.

One of the first things I noticed upon logging into my virtual instance of Ubuntu was that there is a welcome message letting us know .deb packages were not being used on the system, instead we should use Snappy. Despite the message, I did find the low-level dpkg package manager was installed and I could bring up a list of about three hundred .deb packages which apparently made up the base system. However, trying to run apt-get to install or remove packages caused a message to be displayed letting me know I should be using Snappy rather than apt-get. I suspect running the two package managers together on the same system is not recommended.

While Snappy can perform several actions, I want to focus on seven core commands the Snappy package manager recognises. The first is snappy info. Running snappy info display some basic information about our operating system and what it is running. The summary is very short, but it can give us an idea of what kind of hardware we are running on and the applications installed. We can extend the command a little and run snappy info <package> in order to get a very brief summary of information concerning a specific package.

The second command I experimented with was snappy list. Running this command will show us a list of packages currently installed on the system. Modifying the command to snappy list -v will display all the installed packages along with their version numbers. Since we can have multiple versions of each package installed, the active version of a package is marked with an *. This means if we have, for example, two copies of a web server on our system, we can identify which version is actually running. We can further extend the list command a little to find out which Snappy packages can be upgraded. Running snappy list -uv shows our installed packages with an * next to items that can be upgraded from Snappy’s software repository.

Speaking of updates, the snappy update command will update all packages installed on the operating system. So far as I can tell, all packages are always upgraded to their latest version. I was unable to find a way to simply upgrade one specific package in my test environment. However, I was able to upgrade all packages and then rollback unwanted upgrades, which brings me to the next command.

When we have upgraded a package and found we preferred the older copy of the software we can rollback to a previous version. This is done using the snappy rollback <package> command. Without any further arguments, Snappy will rollback the given package to its previous version. However, we can also specify which version of the package we want to be using. We can do this by running snappy rollback <package> <version>. Perhaps counter-intuitively, it is possible to use the rollback command to upgrade to a newer version of an installed package. This means the rollback command can activate any version of a Snappy package, whether it is older or newer than the currently active version.

Snappy allows us to search through its repository of software using the search command. Running just snappy search will display all packages currently present in the remote repository. We can hunt for specific types of software by running snappy search <pattern> which will return packages with names similar to the provided pattern.

The two final, and perhaps most important, commands are snappy install <package> and snappy remove <package>. These two commands install software from Snappy’s repository and remove all versions of an installed package, respectively. So far as I can tell, there is no way to remove one version only of a Snappy package. I suspect this is because Snappy installs a base package and then applies delta updates to the package rather than maintaining multiple whole versions of an application.

I made a few observations while experimenting with Snappy. One is that Snappy appears to work fairly quickly. Transactions are not instant, but they do happen rapidly. The packages I downloaded and installed from the software repository appeared to be about an equivalent size to .deb packages. I did not find Snappy packages to be unusually large.

At the moment there appear to be very few Snappy packages available to try. I found a simple terminal echo program, a web server, some hardware specific packages for various embedded devices, but little else. It may be I was using a testing repository just for people who want to experiment, but at time of writing the range of functionality we can get from Ubuntu’s Snappy repository is limited. With regard to the packages in the demo repository, there is not much information to be had about them. The descriptions provided by Snappy for each package are quite short and do not tell us much about what each package does.

When we install new Snappy applications they are stored in the /apps directory. If we wish to, we can explore the /apps directory and browse or run applications stored in this corner of the file system. It appears as though each program gets its own sub-directory, isolating it from other programs and other versions of itself. Most Linux package managers will complain if the user modifies or removes files directly. I experimented to see what would happen if I deleted the directories containing Snappy applications. I found Snappy correctly identified when a piece of software had been manually removed and Snappy considers the package deleted. Snappy does not seem to care how the package was removed, merely that it is no longer present.

At this point I feel it is safe to say Snappy is in its early stages. While the package manager works, it feels limited in some ways. We can install packages, remove them and hunt for new software, but I feel some functionality is missing. Specifically, I wanted more documentation and to be able update just one package while leaving other items at their original versions. Hopefully this feature (or documentation on how to perform the task) will appear later. Locking packages at a specific version would also be a nice feature to have. I was happy to note Snappy does not appear to have any bugs. While Snappy may still need to grow, everything it does do appears to be done correctly and I encountered no problems.

Finally, I like how easy it is to rollback (or roll ahead) packages. Switching between active versions of packages happens quickly and smoothly. I think this will be a very welcome feature on servers and desktops as well as embedded devices.

Install Flatpak(Flathub) apps in Linux(any distro).

Flatpak (formerly xdg-app) is a software utility for software deployment, package management, and application virtualization for Linux desktop computers. It provides a sandbox environment in which users can run applications in isolation from the rest of the system. Applications using Flatpak need permission from the user to control hardware devices or access the user’s files.

Now let’s talk about installing all the variety, a plethora amount of free Apps on Linux, seamlessly on any distro. We shall also consider installing the flathub repo in ordered to get our feet accomplished. Visit here, Flathub home, Install Flatpak(Flathub) apps in Linux(any distro).

Install Flatpak for Ubuntu:-
The official Flatpak PPA is the recommended way to install Flatpak. To install it, run the following in a terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:alexlarsson/flatpak
sudo apt update
sudo apt install flatpak

Install the Software Flatpak plugin
The Flatpak plugin for the Software app makes it possible to install apps without needing the command line. To install, run:

sudo apt install gnome-software-plugin-flatpak

Add the Flathub repository
Flathub is the best place to get Flatpak apps. To enable it, run:

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

Now for Fedora:-

Flatpak is installed by default on Fedora Workstation. To get started, all you need to do is enable Flathub, which is the best way to get Flatpak apps. Just download and install the Flathub repository file.

For Arch:-

sudo pacman -S flatpak

For Solus:-

sudo eopkg install flatpak

Now, Enable Flathub

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

For rest of the Distros, you shall find the commands here.

 

Note:- That you shall compulsory need to reboot your system in order to get flathub apps running and then install the apps here. For Example Telegram on Ubuntu, via Flatpak.

So now i bet for our command line folks breathing inside the terminal to get those flatpak apps is easy. links here

Official flatpak documentation.

CLI user experience, github

Note:- At the time of writing this article the flathub platform was on beta, so you eager fellows the future may behold the stable very soon, till then enjoy installing flatpak’s. Cheers !

 

Errors while processing: /var/cache/apt/archives/apport_2.20.1-0ubuntu2.6_all.deb

This error is getting quite famous and incase you encounter it, then here is the solution to it :-

sudo apt-get upgrade

and you get this,

and if you try this in case you’re feeling lucky

sudo dpkg --purge --force-all apport
dpkg: warning: overriding problem because --force enabled:
dpkg: warning: package is in a very bad inconsistent state; you should
 reinstall it before attempting a removal
(Reading database ... 534968 files and directories currently installed.)
Removing apport (2.20.1-0ubuntu2.5) ...
/var/lib/dpkg/info/apport.prerm: 19: /var/lib/dpkg/info/apport.prerm: pyclean: not found
dpkg: error processing package apport (--purge):
 subprocess installed pre-removal script returned error exit status 127
/var/lib/dpkg/info/apport.postinst: 13: /var/lib/dpkg/info/apport.postinst: pycompile: not found
dpkg: error while cleaning up:
 subprocess installed post-installation script returned error exit status 127
Errors were encountered while processing:
 apport

Tired of solving this error, just run this :-

 

sudo dpkg --purge path/package.deb
sudo apt-get -f install
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade

That’s it, it should get resolved by now.

5G – The future and beyond, for the upcoming decade !

Dubbed as “Fifth Generation” or simply referred to as 5G. This upcoming technology beholds and unleashes a promising future for all the connected people(via World Wide Web) on the planet. At last year’s CES 2017(Consumer Electronics Show), Qualcomm CEO, Steve Mollenkopf described “5G” as the biggest thing since the introduction of electricity. In short you would have a better access to the internet, of course blazing fast speeds without any bottlenecks are some of the the key areas and this supersedes 4G as of now as a the current technology. The real advantages, however, boil down to these things:

Reliability: 5G doesn’t just deliver peak speeds in ideal conditions. The technology offers superhigh speeds that are reliable and consistent, even indoors or in congested areas.

Bandwidth: 5G can support a massive increase in connected devices. Ericsson forecasts 1 billion 5G subscriptions by 2023. Think sensors on everything.

Latency: Phones today have an annoying lag between when you send a request for a website or video and when the network responds. With 5G, that’ll be reduced to 1 millisecond. That’s 400 times faster than the blink of an eye.

VR & Entertainment:-

The millisecond ping time which is crucial and is also central to creating hyperreal virtual and augmented reality experiences. Haptic VR, which lets users touch and feel what they’re seeing in their virtual surroundings, relies on 5G’s low latency to detect where a user is in the virtual space. It then provides physical feedback in close to real time. The statements below are from Intel’s former head of Iot & connected devices networks. In few years there may be a device for viewing and experiencing live sports for example a basketball match where the wearable VR does the magic on a 4k streaming content viewed in a 360 degree wide angle.

The next wave of gadgets will all be connected on a “completely transformed network,”. The connectivity will be seamless, invisible and instant. No buffering, no lag, no clogged network.

“Kind of like magic behind the curtain,”

Self-driving cars or driver-less cars:-

This can be the same case as that of drones which can be used for carrying and shipping your next pizza order to Amazon delivering at your court-yard. For every smart city there is a requirement of smart cars or driver-less cars. Ford, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai, etc are already in the picture and are gearing up to make the dream come true.

Here you need not drive your car, just be seated and let the technology do the uplifting. Set location and the rest is taken care automatically like the traffic, best route, speed limits, traffic signals etc. It’s connectivity at it’s best. You could also become more productive by doing your work by sitting inside. Google is also doing this and we may see them in next few years.

 

Smart Homes:-

This category comes under IoT, consider a automatic juicer or a toaster, a ceiling fan or a microwave say all of them are connected together via internet and could probably be accessed by your smartphone. The smart house also consist of automatic door bells, proximity sensors, bio-metrics,  closed circuit tv’s etc. Intel’s Asha Keddy has some thoughts:-

 “We’re not just going to be connecting 6 or 7 billion people, we’ll be connecting tens of billions of things,” said Keddy. “It will be phones, lights, cars, buildings, appliances, you name it.”

Remember, a lot of work needs to be done for 5G to achieve mainstream recognition. But with networks set to go live by 2019 and coverage reaching 20 percent of the population by 2023, now’s the time to start caring about it.

[via:- cnet news]