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Quick Review: Automatix2 for Amd64 Ubuntu Feisty

Automatix2 for Ubuntu 7.04 has just been released. What is Automatix2? From the site:

“Automatix2 is a free graphical package manager for the installation, uninstall and configuration of the most commonly requested applications in Debian based Linux operating systems. Currently supported are Ubuntu 7.04, 6.10, 6.06, Debian Etch and Mepis 6.

Our list of supported applications include a whole range of multimedia codecs, burning and ripping software, file sharing software, email clients, VoIP enabled chat clients, browsers, encryption software and a lot more!”

I am running 64bit Ubuntu Feisty. The selling point of Automatix2 for me is that it simplifies getting Flash player running (via 32bit Swiftfox), handling installation of codecs, etc… that can sometimes be a hassle using a 64-bit distro. It helps to make a true multi-arch system without any chroot hassles. It does all of the work. It also provides one place to get everything you want to install for a full featured operating system.

Installation was as simple as clicking a link and allowing Gdebi to install it. You can run it later from Application –> System Tools in Ubuntu and Main Menu –> System in Kubuntu.

Starting Automatix2 brings up an Information screen warning you that it is a crime in the United States to install w32 codecs, libdvdcss and other codecs without paying a fee to the concerned parties. It also advises not installing AUD-DVD codecs if you are a US resident. The land of the free and the home of the brave, baby. You have to agree to this screen to start.

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Automatix2 gives you software sections:

  • Burning and Ripping

  • Codecs and Plugins

  • Eyecandy

  • File Sharing

  • Miscellaneous

  • Web Browsers

  • Chat Clients

  • Drivers

  • Email Clients

  • Media Players and Edit

  • Office

  • Programming Tools

  • Utilities

Programs include Gaim 2.0 beta6 and Extras, 64-bit Multimedia codecs, 64-bit Sun JAVA 1.6 JRE, Azureus, Frostwire, aMule, Songbird, Mplayer, VLC, 32-bit Skype, Automatix read/write NTFS and FAT32 Mounter, Extra Fonts, KDE Extras, Google Earth, Krusader, OpenOffice Clipart, 64-bit Bluefish and Scribus, KFTPGrabber, 32-bit Swiftfox and Swiftfox Plugins, NDISWrapper, 64-bit Nvidia Driver, KDE Security Suite (includes ClamAV AntiVirus and Guarddog Firewall) and much more. There are other means of obtaining these, but Automatix2 makes it easy. Gnome applications are hidden by default, clicking the “Show gnome apps” button brings up a lot more choices, including VMware Player and Slab (the menu used in SLED 10). There is a description of each program, telling you what it is and what it does.

Everything installed without a hitch. A window opens showing a dialog of what is going on. My only complaint is that it does not provide version numbers, so there is no way of knowing if the Nvidia driver is newer than the one I am currently using, other than exiting the program and using Synaptic or something. Other than that, it couldn’t be simpler. You simply check what you want to install or uninstall, click “Start” and Automatix2 handles the rest.

There are a variety of ways to do what Automatix2 does, but I like its simplicity and ease of use. I continue to lack a lot of free time so I appreciate this program for what it does. If you lack the technical know how to get things installed, or even to know what you are looking for , I recommend Automatix2. It is a fine program. It is so simple, there isn’t much to say about it.

April 17th, 2007 Posted by admin | Ubuntu, automatix2, quick review | one comment