jeltsch's blog

Deleting files with "illegal characters"

In the cross-platform environment of our university, at least three different OS connect to the smb shared group directories. Apparently Macs are able to save files with characters that are not allowed on other platforms and which cannot be easily deleted. Recently we had several files which ended with a '.' (dot) or a ' ' (space), and we were not able to remove them via the GUI. In Windows 7, I managed via the command line with:
delete "file." or
delete "file "

Windows changes my computers clock

If I am not mistaken, Windows is the only OS, that uses local time for the system clock (instead of UTC). This means that in multiple boot configurations, every restart of the system into Windows will screw up the system time. In order to reset it (in Ubuntu 16.04), use
sudo timedatectl set-timezone Etc/UTC

Accessing shared folders in VirtualBox (Linux guest)

Transferring files from the host to the guest OS and vice-versa doesn't work out-of-the-box when you install VirtualBox from the Ubuntu repositories and download an Ubuntu VirtualBox image (e.g. from After installing the guest additions, drag-and-drop didn't seem to work for me and I needed to set up a "Shared Folder". After setting it up via the GUI, it doesn't automatically appear on the guest desktop. You need to mount it:

Handbrake and protected DVDs

Ripping DVDs is a thing of the past, but occasionally I still need to do it. However, it happens so rarely that evertime I have either a new computer or a new Linux distribution and I need to install the necessary software. This time I am on Ubuntu 16.04. I usually use Handbrake and it is very comfortable, but handbrake sometimes fails to do the job. This time, I had to resort to MakeMKV. However MakeMKV only rips the video to an MKV container but it does not compress it.

ScanSnap iX100 support for Linux

Under Ubuntu 16.04, the ScanSnap iX100 is not supported yet by the sane package. In order to get it working, you need to install the ppa from Rolf Bensch:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:rolfbensch/sane-git
sudo update
sudo upgrade

Automated reinstall of software from package list

If I need to reinstall a Ubuntu/Debian-based Linux OS (or mirror a software selection to another machine), this is how it can be done. On the source machine:

dpkg --get-selections > ~/Package.list
cp -R /etc/apt/sources.list* ~/
apt-key exportall > ~/repository.keys

Then just copy the files to the target machine:


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