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Monitor your net traffic in Linux with Netspeed

There are times where everything so slow and nothing seems to load, at such time I always wonder if some activity is happening at all, sometimes thunderbird would be downloading the mails hence firefox takes time to load the pages, would it not be wonderful to have a traffic monitor which would show the upload and download speeds at that moment.

The traffic monitor applet for GNOME ‘netspeed’ provides just what I wanted, it shows the network traffic in Bytes or Bits per second (this can be set using the preference menu of the applet).

The netspeed applet updates the activity every N milliseconds, where N can be set to any value, I have set it to 1000, so it would update every second. This applet being in the gnome panel makes it easy to view and notice the network activity. There are a few customisation options which are available in the preferences, which could be used as per need so I would not discuss further on this, it is upto the user to explore.

To add the ‘netspeed’ applet to your gnome panel, right clicking on the panel and choose ‘Add to Panel’ option and in the list choose ‘netspeed’.

If ‘netspeed’ does not appear in the list then you would have to install it using the package manager provided by your distribution. For example in Ubunutu one could use Synaptic to install this applet.

Make Windows XP desktop look like Gnome

:: Image ::Working primarily on Gnu/Linux and just moving to Windows occasionally, I felt a need to make the Windows XP desktop look like Gnome. There are two aspects to this, one is to change the icons and the other is to change the visual styles. Here is a step by step procedure for converting your desktop to Gnome.

Installing Icon Theme

Icons are an essential part of the GUI (Graphical User Interface) world. We will be using Tango Patcher, which currently includes implementations of the Tango icon theme, the Tangerine icon theme developed by the Ubuntu art team, Gnome-Icon-Theme2 and NLD10’s Industrial-Icon-Theme. Download the patcher and installing it just involves running the software.

The Patcher before installing gives you the option of the icon theme you want to install from the various ones mentioned above, I choose the default Tango Icon Theme, you can choose anything else. An option to change you Login Screen and BootUp screen is also available, choose it based on your liking. Then continue with the process, it will install and then reboot your system to be greeted with the new icons.

Installing Clearlooks Visual Styles

The next step is to change the visual styles, we will be using the clearlooks option, available as ClearLooks for Windows XP.

For visual styles to work we would generally need a software such as styleXP, but there exists an alternative to enable external themes support in WindowsXP, download and install Neowin UXTheme Multi-Patcher v4.0 (alternative link for download) (it applies a patch to the UXTheme.dll, to remove this just run the software again).

Next to install the Clearlooks themes head over ClearLooks for Windows XP or directly download by clicking here. Unzip the file and copy the folder to your themes folder, which is usually located at “C:\Windows\Resources\Themes\”.

Now go through your usual procedure which you use to change your Visual Styles (right click on desktop, choose appearance tab) and choose the ‘Clearlooks’ option. and Viola, now we have a desktop which closely resembles the Gnome environment. See a couple of screenshots below.

:: my computer screenshot :::: Start menu ::

Hope you found this useful, do let me know your experience by commenting below.

Note: This post was written and published by me in Dec 17,2006. But since my old blog is no longer in existance republishing it in here.