If you’re on a Desktop browser, it is easy enough to see the Mobile version of a Facebook Link. All one has to do is replace the ‘www‘ in the URL with ‘m‘ and press Enter. However, if one is sent the mobile version of a Facebook link, it is not that straight forward to convert it into the desktop format if you’re surfing on a Desktop browser. The default format of the mobile link that Facebook generates is as follows:


Unfortunately, just changing ‘m’ to ‘www’ will not get you to the desktop version of this Facebook link. Instead, it will give you “This page isn’t available” error. To actually get to the desktop link, it has to be converted into the following format:


The ‘id’ portion of the link became the first number in the above URL, while the ‘story_fbid’ portion of the link became the second number. However, it is painful to do this manually every single time. Since the time I started working on Alt News, I have had to do this exercise numerous times. To make it easier for me and everyone else out there, I created a small bookmarklet that can be dragged to the Bookmark bar.


Drag the above link to your Bookmark bar, and whenever you are stuck with the mobile version of a Facebook post on a Desktop browser, click the above link to instantly convert it into a Desktop Facebook post.

The code for this bookmarklet is as follows:

function getParam(param) {
  var url = window.location.href.slice(window.location.href.indexOf('?') + 1).split('&');
  for (var i=0;i<url.length;i++) {
         var params = url[i].split("=");
         if(params[0] == param)
          return params[1];
  return false;


The getParam function has been borrowed from here.

Bookmarklet creator at http://mrcoles.com/bookmarklet/ was used to convert the Javascript code into a Bookmarklet.

I have been using a MacBook Pro at work for the past 6 months. I’m not a huge fan of either the MacBook or Mac OS X. OS X according to me is highly bloated and a very poor unix platform. Try entering a command line option at the end of a command – For eg. ls * -l. Applications are installed in their individual directories and are almost never in the path when one needs to execute them from the command line. However one of the features that I grew to love about MacBook is the multi-touch trackpad, especially the two-finger scrolling. Having shifted to Arch Linux for the past month or so, I had been missing the two-finger scrolling. The trackpad that comes with my Lenovo Thinkpad recognizes multi-touch gestures. So I decided to look up how to get two finger scrolling to work and it was surprisingly simple.Continue reading

As I mentioned in my earlier blog posts, I have started using Unity on Arch Linux. However the packages that are hosted at http://unity.xe-xe.org/ haven’t been updated in a while and has resulted in some conflicts with the updates coming through the main repositories. I have written an email to the person who’s managing the repo, but decided to build my own packages as well. This is how I setup a pristine chroot environment to build the Unity PKGBUILDS created by Xiao-Long Chen. I’m not sure if its the prescribed way to do it, but it works!Continue reading

The first thing I want to do when I get a new laptop is install Linux on it. I usually don’t have rewritable CD/DVD handy and have to depend on USB flash drives to install Linux. Surprisingly, documentation for Arch Linux was sparse on this subject. However I looked up how its done on Ubuntu and it worked seamlessly for Arch Linux.Continue reading

Some might wonder, why would you do something like that? Install Unity on Arch Linux? Absolutely blasphemy. But really, I have fallen in love with this combination. Till a couple weeks back, I had been using Ubuntu for close to 4-5 years without experimenting with any other Linux distros. I usually resist the urge to install the alpha releases, but by the time the beta releases start coming out, I’m just itching to get hold of it, irrespective of how catastrophic it has turned out sometimes from the work perspective. So when Ubuntu 12.10 beta2 came out, I installed it. But I was sorely disappointed. Unity kept crashing for no good reason, generally not a very stable system. I know ‘beta’ versions aren’t supposed to be stable etc, but it shouldn’t crash as often as it did. Continue reading

A lot of Linux distributions are shifting to iproute2 instead of net-tools (aka ifconfig, arp, route). The main reason being net-tools package hasn’t been updated in a decade. However having used the trusted ifconfig, route and arp for so many years, I have never bothered to use ip and hence I now need to Google every time I want to see what my IP address is!

So here’s a short iproute2 primer for net-tools users (like myself).
Continue reading

Note to self. I keep forgetting the procedure and have to google it all the time.

  • Purchase a Mobifone sim card (ofcourse>
  • Setup the APN for Mobifone on your phone
    APN/GPRS access point: m-wap
    Username: mms
    Password: mms
    Proxy Settings:
    Port No: 8080
  • Activate GPRS by sending “Dk Gprs” in an sms to 994
  • Activate Data by sending “DATA_ON” in an sms to 999
  • Reboot your phone

This works for me.

While writing a post, I wanted to link a simple tutorial for creating custom keyboard shortcuts in KDE. However I couldn’t find a single tutorial! So here is one:

  1. Hit Alt+F2 (or your custom shortcut for the Run Dialog)
  2. Enter System Settings to start up the tool
  3. Double Click on Shortcuts and Gestures under Application appearance and Behavior
  4. Click on Edit towards the bottom of the screen which opens a popup menu
  5. Navigate to New => Global Shorcut => Command/URL and left click on Command/URL
  6. Change the default name New Action to anything of your choice
  7. Go to the Trigger tab and click on None and press a key combination of your choice
  8. Go to the Action tab and select/enter the path to the script/executable

Pictures speak louder than words..