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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

UsplashSmooth : TIme Based Usplash for smoother bootup bar

Usplash is an application that uses Linux framebuffer interface/direct vesa to display splash screen at boot up(or while shutting down) while all the daemons are loaded(unloaded during shutting down). Usplash displays a progress bar which shows how much the operating system is loaded, this progress bar increases in a non linear way(is not smooth) , it remains standstill for sometime and sometimes increases rapidly.Progress bar moves in a jerky way , which does sometimes look odd especially if some one is making the jump from MacOS to Ubuntu(or other operating system which have much more user friendly Boot Splashes).

UsplashSmooth tries to correct this problem , by displaying a progress bar that increases/decreases linearly and smoothly, showing you precisely the amount of time that is left for system to start or shut down. Though this is not without hitch , UsplashSmooth uses recorded time of boot/shutdown to synchronize animation of the progress bar , so if something goes wrong or lets say some daemon takes wee bit more time , progress bar animation goes out of sync with actualy boot process.

Installing UsplashSmooth

To install UsplashSmooth , issue the following command in the terminal(Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal) window:

wget http://ubuntu-art.org/CONTENT/content-files/93394-usplash-smooth-0.4.tar.gz

and
tar -xvzf 93394-usplash-smooth-0.4.tar.gz

The above commands would download and extract archive containing the UsplashSmooth package files ( deb files).

Finally to install i386 version of UsplashSmooth issue the following command :
sudo dpkg -i usplash-smooth_0.4_i386.deb

or if you are running 64bit Ubuntu on a AMD processor , issue the following command:
sudo dpkg -i usplash-smooth_0.4_amd64.deb

If above commands executed well , UsplashSmooth should be properly installed on your pc. Reboot your pc , the first time you reboot/restart your computer you will find Usplash progressbar to be terribly out of sync with the boot process. This is because UsplashSmooth records your bootup/shutdown time and uses this time to synchronize the animation of progress bar , so first time the progress bar is out of sync with the boot process.

Though Usplash is no where near perfect , one thing in particular I noticed was most of the times shutdown progress bar animation was out of sync with the shut down process(it moved slowly). Leaving these minor glitches aside UsplashSmooth is an interesting piece of addition to Ubuntu desktop , it's small addition like these that makes ubuntu experience complete and makes Ubuntu user friendly.

Article Written by : Ambuj Varshney (blogambuj@gmail.com)
For Linux on Desktop Blog , http://linuxondesktop.blogspot.com
(C) 2008 , Ambuj Varshney


References used:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=985390
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/USplashCustomizationHowto

1 comments:

Arun said...

Ambuj,

Thanks for the post. after reading that AIR is out of beta, i have installed few applications. But I can't figure out ways to uninstall it (cleanly!!). Is there any?

Cheers,
Arun

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