Configuring Media and Programs using the Medibuntu Repository

The Medibuntu Repository is a third-party repository contains many useful programs which are not true open source, allows one to enable DVD playback and to add the codecs for MP3 playing and ripping etc. It can be included by way of a few quick commands in a terminal.

It is often much easier and quicker to use text input rather than a Graphical User Interface and even in Windows one has to resort to it for complex system work. A terminal is opened by Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal. The terminal is very basic, for example Ctrl C and Ctrl V do not work for cut and paste but unusually clicking the center button of a three button mouse will paste. Up and down arrows scroll through the last commands used. Do not try to type any of the commands just cut and paste in turn from this web page and then hit enter. If they start with Sudo you will be asked to enter your password. Try it on the following.

sudo wget -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

This will add the Medibuntu repository, import the Medibuntu GPG key and make the new packages available for installing using the Synaptic Package Manager access by System -> Administration -> Synaptic Package Manager.

Using the Synaptic Package Manager to add programs including those from the Medibuntu Repository:

The Synaptic package manager is similar to Add/Remove but at a lower level and used more for adding services than main stream programs although it will do so just as well – we could have used it for Thunderbird we are gong to be adding a number of library routines to for playing and ripping media files. The package manager is clever and every program in Ubuntu carries the information on its dependence on any other services and automatically downloads them, if required.

Open the Synaptic Package Manager by System -> Administration -> Synaptic Package Manage.

When the Synaptic Package Manager has opened use Search to find the package/program you want, click the box and click Mark for Installation each one. When they are all marked, click Apply. The following is the list I use whe setting up a machine.

List of packages to install using the Synaptic PackageManager for a versatile Home PC

  • You should enable DVD Playback by installing the following libdvdcss2 libdvdread3 libdvdnav4
  • You should add the non-free Media Codecs for mp3 etc by installing w32codecs and ubuntu-restricted-extras
  • You should add support for UDF format CD/DVDs used by some Windows programs by installing libudf0 libudf-dev udftools
  • It is worth installing the gxine DVD player as it has DVD menu support gxine
  • There are other Media Players without stripped codecs but read about them first to see if you need them (amarok, mplayer, ffmpeg)
  • Whilst you are in the Synaptic Package Manager you should also add Microsoft True Type Core Fonts for the Web by installing msttcorefonts
  • You should also install the Simple Backup Program and you might as well do it here as go back to Add/Remove sbackup
  • If you are on a network you may want to add command line utilities for synchronisation and secure archiving for the distant future unison-gtk ssh rsync

If you want to play commercial encrypted DVDs using the Totem Movie Player there is more information in Ubuntu documentation on Movies, DVDs and Videos

Installing proprietary Programs using the Medibuntu Repository in Hardy Heron

Medibuntu can not only be used to add music and video codecs but also to load commercial/proprietary programs which can not be made available directly in Ubuntu due to legal restrictions in some countries. Use the Synaptic Package Manager and Search for the program you want. The list of programs possible includes:

  • Adobe reader acroread and mozilla-acroread
  • Google Earth googleearth-4.2 or googleearth-4.3
  • Skype skype
  • Real Player realplay

In most cases they will be added to your “Applications” menu.

If you load GoogleEarth its performance may be improved if one disables the atmosphere rendering by: View -> Atmosphere -> untick

1 Comment

  1. Jaelyn

    I wanted to spend a mitnue to thank you for this.


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