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Things to Do After Installing Ubuntu

Ubuntu Uses Firefox as Default Browser

Installed the latest version of Ubuntu or Fedora? Dual boot or otherwise? Good. Does it plays your movies? Where’s chrome? Can you code in Gedit? What about updates? Don’t worry! Here’s the ultimate guide on what to do after installing Ubuntu.

The article lists all the things you must do once you’ve installed Ubuntu Linux from bare essentials to the must-have apps for your OS and then detail on how to clean and keep up the software of your machine.

The Essentials

These are the administrative tasks that you must do before anything else. It involves updating your system and the apps cache so that you can install new apps. These actions lay foundation for the further tasks.

Update GRUB

For there are many new technologies that Microsoft is applying to Windows and PC manufacturers are adding to systems like UEFI and secure boot making it difficult to dual-boot the systems or installing a new operating system, it is possible that you’ve installed your Linux distribution reading around 50 blog posts, forum answers and wiki.

If you’ve installed in dual-boot  and Windows or another operating system is not listed in GRUB, or machine is booting in Linux without GRUB, run following command:

sudo update-grub

Update your System

Now you’ve a shiny new stable and faster than ever Ubuntu installed on your machine, it is possible that many updates have been released after you downloaded the image.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

Once you’ve updated your system, now add the essential apps and codecs for your daily use:

Unity Tweak Tool

Unity Tweak Tool to Customize Ubuntu
Unity Tweak Tool to Customize Ubuntu

First and foremost, install Unity Tweak Tool, with which you can do major customizations on your Ubuntu desktop. Read full tutorial: Customize Linux Desktop – Redesign Ubuntu.

For Your Files

Ubuntu uses Nautilus us default file manager, which is great. But you’ll still need few utilities for unzipping the zipped files and opening other archive files like rar and tar. Use the following command for installing p7zip, the 7zip alternative on Linux.

sudo apt-get install unace unrar zip unzip p7zip-full p7zip-rar sharutils rar uudeview mpack arj cabextract file-roller

For Your Music & Videos

Run the following command to install codecs for audio and video files. It’ll include VLC Media Player app and plugin for Mozilla Firefox among other codecs.

sudo apt-get install vlc flac faac faad sox ffmpeg2theora libmpeg2-4 uudeview mpeg3-utils mpegdemux liba52-dev mpeg2dec vorbis-tools id3v2 mpg321 mpg123 libflac++6 totem-mozilla  icedax lame libmad0 libjpeg-progs libdvdread4 libdvdnav4

Now, we’ll install a few extras  which include Adobe Flash, Microsoft Fonts (Arial, Georgia, Times New Roman etc) and other applications with restricted rights like mp3, avi, mpeg, TrueType and Java.

sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras

You can also download and install fonts in Ubuntu Linux from other sources.

Google Chrome Web Browser

If you don’t want to use Mozilla Firefox, the default web browser on most Linux systems, you can download Google Chrome or, the open source one, Chromium.

Chrome on Ubuntu
Things to Do After Installing Ubuntu – Install Google Chrome on Ubuntu

Google Chrome is available for Ubuntu in two flavors, 32-bit and 64-bit. Just go to Chrome  and select your version. Download and you can install it with Ubuntu Software Manager.

A Few Wallpapers, may be?

Who doesn’t love beautiful desktop wallpapers? While there are various free sources online to download high quality wallpapers, you can download the wallpapers packaged with older versions of Ubuntu.

sudo apt-get install ubuntu-wallpapers*

For Developers

If you’re a developer, you need some special apps too. We’ve taken care of your needs too in this list. There’s also a full list of best code editors for Ubuntu.

GNU Emacs

Things to Do for Developers - Install Emacs on Ubuntu
Things to Do for Developers – Install Emacs on Ubuntu

Originally developed by Richard Stallman and Guy L. Steele, Jr in mid-1970s, the development continues actively. You can install Emacs on Ubuntu with the following command:

sudo apt-get install emacs

GitHub’s Atom

Let’s start by downloading a great code editor. While you can certainly download Sublime Text, another great code editor but I just didn’t deem it important for this list as it is a paid software. Visit Atom to download and install the software with Ubuntu Software manager. Atom has a built-in package manager, a file manager and a flexible autocomplete.

Firefox Developer Edition

If you’re a web developer and want a really neat solution for testing and debugging your website, you probably need Mozilla’s Firefox Developer Edition.

Ubuntu uses Unity Desktop Environment
Firefox on Ubuntu

It’s an awesome free tool which comes with a lot of powerful features to improve your code and productivity. You can download it here and install it via Ubuntu software manager.


Eclipse is an IDE, most widely used for Java development. However, eclipse has various applications for developers including IDEs for PHP developers and C/C++ developer. You can download Eclipse for Linux  and install the software.

Android Studio

If you’re an android developer, you’ll need Android Studio, Google’s official IDE for Android Development.


Who doesn’t love Virtual Machines? Oracle’s VirtualBox comes in 2 flavors, 32-bit and 64-bit. You can download for Ubuntu from VirtualBox for Linux hosts page and install it via Ubuntu software manager.


If you’re an Android Developer, you can download Genymotion as an Android emulator for testing your application. Genymotion is free for non-commercial use. Install VirtualBox, then download Genymotion (You’ll need to register on the site first!) and install the app.

Clean Up

That was a lot of installation. Now you can start using your system — You can watch movies, listen to music, develop apps and websites. However, some maintenance would be great too, right? Install BleachBit, the CCleaner alternative on Linux. It frees your disk space by removing unnecessary, junk files and other temporary files. Bleachbit also takes care of your privacy. It wipes free disk space by deleting cache, Internet history, cookies and broken shortcuts and improves performance.

sudo apt-get install bleachbit

So this is the list of few initial things you must do after installing Ubuntu Linux on your machine. Bookmark this link as I plan to improve the list and include more essentials.

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