Adding some MATE Applications

Having installed a minimal MATE Desktop environment there are a few additional packages that I usually install just to give me a slightly more functional desktop.

Things like a screen saver that locks my desktop when I’m away; power management to allow me to manage the power settings on my laptop; an archive manager to allow me to extract files from tar, zip, and gz archives; and a chat client.

Mate Desktop

Before we can install anything we need to be running as root and it is a good idea to make sure that the installed packages are up to date, as this ensures we don’t get any problem with package dependencies due to out of date versions being installed.

$ su
Password:

OR

$ sudo -i
Password:

# apt-get update;apt-get upgrade
  :
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Fetched 388 kB in 2s (133 kB/s)
Reading package lists... Done
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
Calculating upgrade... Done
The following packages will be upgraded:
  libgnutls-deb0-28 libgnutls-openssl27
2 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 852 kB of archives.
After this operation, 0 B of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] 
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Setting up libgnutls-openssl27:i386 (3.3.8-6+deb8u2) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.19-18) ...
#

It is a good idea to repeat this regularly to keep your system up to date – to be notified of available updates automatically you can install the update notifier package (see below).

Screensaver

The screen saver is useful as you can use it to lock your desktop after a period of time if you are away from your machine, and besides they look good!

# apt-get install mate-screensaver
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  mate-screensaver-common
Suggested packages:
  xscreensaver-data rss-glx
Recommended packages:
  mate-power-manager
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  mate-screensaver mate-screensaver-common
0 upgraded, 2 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 4,642 kB of archives.
After this operation, 6,776 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] 
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Setting up mate-screensaver (1.8.1-2) ...
#

Power Manager

A bit of a must if you use a laptop on the move, you don’t really need to install this if you are using a desktop.

# apt-get install mate-power-manager
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  libgnome-keyring-common libgnome-keyring0 mate-power-manager-common
Suggested packages:
  gnome-keyring
Recommended packages:
  udisks
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  libgnome-keyring-common libgnome-keyring0 mate-power-manager
  mate-power-manager-common
0 upgraded, 4 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 1,193 kB of archives.
After this operation, 7,293 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] 
  :
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Setting up mate-power-manager-common (1.8.1+dfsg1-5) ...
Setting up mate-power-manager (1.8.1+dfsg1-5) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.19-18) ...
#

Additional Utilities

You will probably want to install an archive manager to allow you to create and open tar, zip, and gz archives; a document viewer to allow you to view pdf and ps files, and an image viewer to allow you to view images including png, jpg, gif, bmp etc.

# apt-get install atril engrampa eom unzip\
> --no-install-recommends
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  atril-common bzip2 engrampa-common eom-common libatrildocument3
  libatrilview3 libcupsfilters1 libcupsimage2 libdjvulibre-text
  libdjvulibre21 libgs9 libgs9-common libgxps2 libijs-0.35 libjbig2dec0
  libkpathsea6 libpaper1 libpoppler-glib8 libpoppler46 libspectre1
  p7zip-full poppler-data
Suggested packages:
  unrar bzip2-doc lha rpm2cpio sharutils ncompress binutils unace lzip
  lzma lzop rzip unalz zoo arj libspectre1-dbg p7zip-rar poppler-utils
  ghostscript fonts-japanese-mincho fonts-ipafont-mincho
  fonts-japanese-gothic fonts-ipafont-gothic fonts-arphic-ukai
  fonts-arphic-uming fonts-nanum
Recommended packages:
  xz-utils fonts-droid libpaper-utils
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  atril atril-common bzip2 engrampa engrampa-common eom eom-common 
  libatrildocument3 libatrilview3 libcupsfilters1 libcupsimage2
  libdjvulibre-text libdjvulibre21 libgs9 libgs9-common libgxps2 
  libijs-0.35 libjbig2dec0 libkpathsea6 libpaper1 libpoppler-glib8
  libpoppler46 libspectre1 p7zip-full poppler-data unzip
0 upgraded, 26 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 11.3 MB of archives.
After this operation, 50.0 MB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] 
  :
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Fetched 11.3 MB in 13s (814 kB/s)
Preconfiguring packages ...
Selecting previously unselected package libcupsimage2:i386.
(Reading database ... 52515 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../libcupsimage2_1.7.5-11+deb8u1_i386.deb ...
Unpacking libcupsimage2:i386 (1.7.5-11+deb8u1) ...
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Setting up libpaper1:i386 (1.1.24+nmu4) ...

Creating config file /etc/papersize with new version
Setting up libpoppler46:i386 (0.26.5-2) ...
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  :
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Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.19-18) ...
#

Chat client

If you want to use jabber or another XMPP compatible chat service like google talk, take part in discussions on chat forums using Internet Relay Chat (IRC) then you need a chat client.

# apt-get install pidgin --no-install-recommends
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  gstreamer0.10-nice libfarstream-0.1-0 libgssdp-1.0-3 libgtkspell0
  libgupnp-1.0-4 libgupnp-igd-1.0-4 libmeanwhile1 libnice10
  libnspr4 libnss3 libperl5.14 libpurple0 libsasl2-modules libzephyr4
  pidgin-data
Suggested packages:
  tcl8.5 tk8.5 libsasl2-modules-otp libsasl2-modules-ldap 
  libsasl2-modules-sql libsasl2-modules-gssapi-mit
  libsasl2-modules-gssapi-heimdal
Recommended packages:
  ca-certificates libpurple-bin
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  gstreamer0.10-nice libfarstream-0.1-0 libgssdp-1.0-3 libgtkspell0
  libgupnp-1.0-4 libgupnp-igd-1.0-4 libmeanwhile1 libnice10
  libnspr4 libnss3 libperl5.14 libpurple0 libsasl2-modules libzephyr4
  pidgin pidgin-data
0 upgraded, 16 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 9,549 kB of archives.
After this operation, 42.0 MB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue [Y/n]? 
  :
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  :
Setting up pidgin (2.10.9-1~deb7u1) ...
#

Update Notifier

Although there are quite a few package dependencies, unless you are going to be reasonably rigorous about keeping your system up to date you should install update notifier. It will display an icon in the notification area of your panel when software updates are available and then allow you to install the available updates.

# apt-get install update-notifier --no-install-recommends
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  dh-python file gdebi-core gnome-desktop3-data gnome-packagekit
  gnome-packagekit-data gnome-packagekit-session gnome-settings-daemon
  libcanberra-gtk3-0 libgeocode-glib0 libgnome-desktop-3-10
  libgweather-3-6 libgweather-common libmagic1 libmpdec2 libnm-glib4
  libnm-util2 libnspr4 libnss3 libpackagekit-glib2-18 libpython3-stdlib
  libpython3.4-minimal libpython3.4-stdlib libwacom-common libwacom2
  nautilus-data packagekit python-apt-common python3 python3-apt
  python3-chardet python3-debian python3-minimal python3-pkg-resources
  python3-six python3.4 python3.4-minimal
Suggested packages:
  xz-utils xz-lzma gnome-screensaver appstream-index python3-doc
  python3-tk python3-venv python3-apt-dbg python-apt-doc
  python3-setuptools python3.4-venv python3.4-doc binutils binfmt-support
Recommended packages:
  libcanberra-gtk3-module hwdata nautilus packagekit-tools lsb-release
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  dh-python file gdebi-core gnome-desktop3-data gnome-packagekit 
  gnome-packagekit-data gnome-packagekit-session gnome-settings-daemon
  libcanberra-gtk3-0 libgeocode-glib0 libgnome-desktop-3-10
  libgweather-3-6 libgweather-common libmagic1 libmpdec2 libnm-glib4
  libnm-util2 libnspr4 libnss3 libpackagekit-glib2-18 libpython3-stdlib
  libpython3.4-minimal libpython3.4-stdlib libwacom-common libwacom2
  nautilus-data packagekit python-apt-common python3 python3-apt
  python3-chardet python3-debian python3-minimal python3-pkg-resources
  python3-six python3.4 python3.4-minimal update-notifier
0 upgraded, 38 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 16.6 MB of archives.
After this operation, 90.5 MB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] 
  :
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Setting up update-notifier (3.14.0-1) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.19-18) ...
Processing triggers for dbus (1.8.18-0+deb8u1) ...
#

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