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In today’s online world, we’re becoming more and more connected with web conferencing. School, work, and even friendships are taking place over platforms like Zoom, WebEx, and Google Hangouts. However, for those of us looking for an open-source option, there aren’t all that many. That’s where BigBlueButton comes in, which is an open-source web-conferencing and e-learning platform that you build yourself. Here we show you how to use BigBlueButton for web conferencing on Linux.

Before You Install BigBlueButton

I won’t quote the documentation page much, but there are a couple of things to note about installing BigBlueButton on Linux.

The first is that if you’re planning to use it in production, you will need more than the specs I’m using. Their installation page states that you should have the following to run an actual server:

Ubuntu 16.04 64-bit OS running Linux kernel 4.x

16 GB of memory with swap enabled

8 CPU cores, with high single-thread performance

500 GB of free disk space (or more) for recordings or 50GB if session recording is disabled on the server

TCP ports 80 and 443 accessible

UDP ports 16384 – 32768 accessible

250 Mbits/sec bandwidth (symmetrical) or more

TCP port 80 and 443 not in use by another web application or reverse proxy

A hostname (such as chúng tôi for setup of a SSL certificate

IPV4 and IPV6 address

Dedicated (bare metal) hardware

They recommend not running it as a VM for production use because of the audio packet processing program they use and time-syncing problems with recordings. Essentially, I’d recommend picking up an off-lease enterprise 1U server or something along those lines. That way you can have more requirements than necessary, including multiple bonded NICs, 8-16 CPU physical CPU cores, and lots of RAM.

However, I’m just going to be running it in a VM for the purpose of showing you how it’s done. Those requirements are as follows:

4 CPU cores/8 GB of memory

Installation on a local VM or LXC container

50G of disk space

IPV4 address only

BigBlueButton Installation

There are a couple of ways to install it: the easy way where you don’t learn as much of the inner workings or the hard way where you’ll be intimately familiar with how it works on the inside. The choice is yours, but I’m going with the easy way, as it’s a simpler installation and administration. If you’d like to go with the more difficult route, you can follow a step-by-step on the documentation page.

The easier way to install consists of using either a script from the website or an Ansible role to automate the installation process. I’d recommend the script for those just wanting to test things out.

To go with the script, you’ll need to clone it from GitHub with the following command:













Note that in the script above, HOSTNAME is the hostname of your server and EMAIL is an email address for setting up an SSL, and it’s a necessary step. Using the script should take about 30 minutes or so, meaning you have plenty of time to refill your coffee and take a break.

When you come back, everything should be all set. At that point, you can enter the domain name (or IP address with a virtual test server) and start the demonstration. You can continue to run the script you used to upgrade the packages on the server as well.

How to Use BigBlueButton

If you use the script, you will have the BigBlueButton demonstration package installed, meaning you can learn how everything works without committing too much. Note that this requires a valid SSL certificate, which will require a registered domain name. I don’t have that, so I’m going to use the BigBlueButton demo server.

You’ll be invited to join audio from your microphone or listen only. From there, you’re in the meeting.

In the chat, you’ll see the link to the tutorial videos on YouTube. They’ll be more useful later to learn about the platform.

Every slide is a whiteboard, but there are specific whiteboard slides in this demo server. You can draw whatever you need to. In this example, I drew a couple of network diagram symbols, but you get the idea. There’s also multi-user whiteboarding, which is great for students to show what they’re working on.

The Shared Notes section is also great because it allows you to type out some notes that you have or highlight questions from the chat and work out those answers. You could also copy/paste some of your lecture notes in there and let people work off of them.

BigBlueButton in a Nutshell

For teachers working remotely, there is nothing more exciting than a great new tool. BigBlueButton has many exciting features that make it great for an e-learning platform. If you’re interested in some other video conferencing content, check out our Zoom keyboard shortcuts cheatsheet, our top tips for video conferencing while working from home, and our guide on turning your Raspberry Pi into a video conferencing station.

John Perkins

John is a young technical professional with a passion for educating users on the best ways to use their technology. He holds technical certifications covering topics ranging from computer hardware to cybersecurity to Linux system administration.

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How To Access And Use Onedrive On Linux

Microsoft OneDrive is a popular cloud storage service that allows you to store and access your important files from any device. However, it’s worth noting that OneDrive doesn’t offer official support for Linux. Luckily, there are several ways for you to access and synchronize your OneDrive files on a Linux system.

This article guides you through various methods to integrate OneDrive with your Linux environment. With these methods, you can access and manage your OneDrive files seamlessly within your Linux file systems.

Table of Contents

Can You Use OneDrive on Linux?

Yes, you can access and use OneDrive on Linux in a few different ways. While there isn’t an official OneDrive client for Linux, several unofficial alternatives are available.

For instance, you can use an open-source, unofficial OneDrive client for Linux or a command-line tool like rclone instead. You can also access your OneDrive files quickly from your web browser.

Remember that these are unofficial solutions; your experience might vary depending on the tool and your Linux distribution. Regardless, these options allow you to integrate OneDrive into your Linux workflow.

Using the Unofficial OneDrive Client for Linux

The unofficial OneDrive client for Linux allows you to access and use OneDrive on Linux systems. Please note that this unofficial client isn’t supported by Microsoft in any way—you’ll need to use it at your own risk.

While it’s not officially supported, the OneDrive client for Linux is a free, open-source, and well-maintained option for Linux users to use.

Installing the Unofficial OneDrive Client for Linux

Follow these steps to download and install the Unofficial OneDrive client for Linux on a Debian or Ubuntu-based Linux system. Other distributions may need to follow different instructions.

Open the terminal on your Linux PC.

Update your package manager by typing

sudo apt update

and wait for it to complete.

Once your package manager is updated, run

sudo apt install


no-install-suggests ldc onedrive

in the terminal and wait for it to complete.

Configuring and Using the Client

At this point, you should have successfully installed the unofficial Linux OneDrive client. You’ll need to configure it next to access your files.

To run the client for the first time and generate the default configuration file, type


into the terminal.

You’ll be prompted to visit a Microsoft URL to authenticate and grant access to your OneDrive account. Open the URL in a web browser, sign in with your Microsoft credentials, and grant the necessary permissions.

After granting permissions, you’ll see a blank page—copy the URL, paste it back into the terminal, and press the



The client will alert you if you were successful. To start synchronisation, type

onedrive –synchronize

into the terminal. This should start synchronizing your OneDrive files to a local folder (


by default). You’ll need to allow time for this process to complete.

If you want the client to run in the background, type and run

onedrive –monitor

from your terminal.

For more information on the client’s features and settings, you can refer to the official documentation for the client on GitHub.

How to Access OneDrive on Linux Using Rclone

rclone is a powerful, open-source terminal tool for synchronizing and transferring files across local or remote systems on a Linux PC. By using rclone, you can set up your Linux PC to allow access to your OneDrive storage.

To use rclone with OneDrive on Linux, follow these steps.

Once Rclone is installed, type

rclone config

into the terminal to initiate the configuration process.

When prompted, select the


key to create a new remote, and then enter a name for your OneDrive remote (such as



Next, locate the number for

Microsoft OneDrive

as the storage provider (typically


), type it in, and press


to confirm.


client id


client secret

, leave blank and press



Choose your authentication region for OneDrive (typically by pressing


and hitting enter), then choose


to use the typical setup process to authenticate.

When prompted, press


to open a web browser to sign in. Enter your OneDrive account details and authorize Rclone to access your OneDrive account and storage by following the on-screen instructions.

After the configuration is complete, close the browser and return to the terminal.

Choose your OneDrive configuration—typically


for standard OneDrive access. Press the


key to continue.

Choose your OneDrive ID from the options provided, typically by pressing


and hitting the





again to confirm.

At this point, the configuration should be complete. Press


to confirm again and make it your default configuration.



to exit the configuration tool. You can use the


command to interact with your OneDrive files. For instance, to list the contents of your OneDrive account, run the command

rclone ls onedrive:

in your terminal.

To download a file from your OneDrive account, run the command

rclone copy onedrive:/path/to/file /path/to/local/directory

in the terminal. Replace the


paths with the file location and the location where you’d like to save the file on your local PC.

To upload a file to your OneDrive account, run the command

rclone copy /path/to/local/file onedrive:/path/to/remote/directory

. Replace the


paths with the file location and location in your OneDrive storage that you’d like to upload the file to.

You can also use the

rclone sync

command to synchronize all of the files between your OneDrive account and your local Linux filesystem. For example, to synchronize all files in your OneDrive account to a local directory called


, run the command

rclone sync onedrive: ~/onedrive


To synchronize a specific directory in your OneDrive account to a local directory, run the command

rclone sync onedrive:/path/to/remote/directory /path/to/local/directory

and replace the


paths with the correct remote and local directories.

How to Access OneDrive on Linux Using Your Web Browser

Don’t want to install any additional software? You can quickly access your OneDrive files from a Linux PC using your web browser.

You can also share your files with others by selecting the file and pressing the Share button.

Remember that changes made to files and documents on the OneDrive website will be synchronized with any other devices connected to your Microsoft account.

Managing Your Linux Files

Using OneDrive on Linux can be achieved using one of the tools above (or by using the OneDrive website). Although Microsoft doesn’t offer a native OneDrive application for Linux, these alternatives provide a similar experience.

Worried about your files? Remember to keep your file backups automated, ensuring your data stays secure and up to date. Be mindful of potential OneDrive sync issues that could arise, and always double-check your settings if you run into problems.

Three Other Web Browsers For Linux You Should Try

Most Linux users will be familiar with the Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox web browsers. As good as they are, these aren’t the only two browsers available. There are so many other browsers available for Linux, and it’s important to give them all at least a solid try. You’ll learn here about three alternative web browsers for Linux.

1. Opera

Opera Software’s browsers are used by some 350 million users to access the Internet from a wide range of platforms including PCs, smartphones and tablets. The native Linux version is primarily available as a Snap, which is probably the simplest way to install it.

2. Brave









I like Brave’s methods over Opera’s because of the repository setup. That way, you get updates sent to you through the repository, so when you run an apt upgrade or a dnf update, you get the newest version of Brave.

3. Midori

Midori is a lightweight and fast web browser that tries to do as much as possible with limited resources. The features are relatively limited, much like the other popular WebKit browser Safari, but what it lacks in features it makes up for in sheer performance. You can install it on Linux via the Software Center or by using the command line:

# Ubuntu/Debian





# Fedora





You can also install Midori as a Snap or Flatpak:



flathub org.midori_browser.Midori snap



Midori uses WebKit at its heart, the same HTML-rendering engine as Apple’s Safari browser, and many versions of Google Chrome. This means it is fully HTML5-compatible and passes the Acid3 browser test 100 percent. It has features like tabbed browsing, privacy browsing and the ability to restore recently-closed tabs. Interestingly, it uses DuckDuckGo as its default search engine; however, you can easily set Google or Yahoo as the default if you so desire.

John Perkins

John is a young technical professional with a passion for educating users on the best ways to use their technology. He holds technical certifications covering topics ranging from computer hardware to cybersecurity to Linux system administration.

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How To Use Access Control Lists To Control File Permissions On Linux

A very useful feature in Linux is the “Access Control Lists” which controls access to files and directories. Here is how the access control lists work to control the file permissions in Linux.

Note: To thoroughly grasp how access control lists work, we’re first setting up some users and groups on a working Linux system. The following exercise is carried out on a virtual machine running Kali operating system. The root user has the power to add new users to the system and allot them to groups.

Creating users and groups

Firstly, we will log in as root, create users and put them in respective groups as shown in the table below. The users have been given simple names to help comprehend the concept better.

User Group

john3 johns

jane2 janes

We will use the adduser command to add new users to the system.

The id command will display the details of the newly created user. It will show the user id (uid), group id (gid) and group name (groups). The user, upon creation, is automatically added to a group with the same name as the user name. That user would be the sole member of the group.

Likewise, users “john2” and “john3” are also created.

adduser john2 adduser john3

Once the three users have been created, use theid command to view the respective user and group ids.

We can see that the three users are in their own groups – 1000, 1001 and 1002. According to the table shown earlier, we want the three users to be in the same group: johns. Since such a group does not exist on the system currently, we will create it with the groupadd command:

The new group ID is specified as 5000. If the -g switch is ignored, then the system will automatically pick a group ID. The name of the new group is “johns.” Now the three users – “john1,” “john2” and “john3” – need to be added as members of this group. We will use the usermod command for this task.

The same process is done for users “john2” and “john3.”



johns john2 usermod


johns john3

Finally, details of the three users in the “johns” group can be viewed using id command.

We have successfully created three users and added them to the same group.

Similarly, users “jane1” and “jane2” are created and added to the “janes” group with gid 6000. Their details can be viewed using the id command as shown below.

What is the need for Access Control Lists?

Let’s assume user “john1” logs in,

creates a new file in the Home directory,

and adds some content to it.

Using thels command, we view the file’s metadata.

The first few characters in the output, - rw - r - - r - - account for the permission string. Let us dissect it.

– rw – r – – r – –

file type permissions john1 has on the file permissions members of johns group have on the file permissions given to others not in johns group

This article is a good primer on file permissions.

What if “john1,” being the file owner, wants to additionally give write permissions only to “john2” and “jane1” but persist with read permissions for “john3” and “jane2?”

rw – r – –

jane1 jane2

One option would be to create a new group with read, write permissions for “john1,” “john2” and “jane1” and another group with only read permissions for “john3” and “jane2.” In case john1 wishes to modify permissions further for any group member, then more groups need to be created. Creating and managing multiple groups is a burden to the system administrator.

Instead, an “Access Control List” can be created for a file which would clearly state the operations any user can perform on that file.

How to Create an Access Control List (ACL) for a file?

Every file upon creation has an ACL assigned to it. Using it efficiently is simply a matter of modifying it. Only the file owner and root user can modify the ACL of a file.

We can use the getfacl command to view the existing ACL:

Let us use the setfaclcommand to modify the existing ACL on the file.

entity name permissions

user (u) or group(g) or others(o)

the read,write,execute permissions are denoted by the letters r,w,x

“john2” is first given read, write access to the file,

followed by “jane1.”

Let us view the updated ACL for “secretfile.”

We can see that read and write permissions have been assigned to “john2” and “jane1.”

Verifying the authenticity of the ACL

We can see that “john2” is able to read the file and write to it.

The new information entered by “john2” has been appended to the file.

Likewise, “jane1” gets the same privilege – read access and write access.

But “john3” in the same group is unable to write to the file.

“jane2,” who belongs to the other category, is also unable to write to the file.


The same process can be extended to directories, too. Access Control Lists enable a system administrator to handle file and directory access in an adept manner.

Divya Lakshmanan

Divya divides her time between speculating the existence of aliens and writing about her technical findings.

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How To Get The Linux Gui App Support On Windows Subsystem For Linux (Wsl)

After a full Linux kernel was integrated into Windows 10, Microsoft had revealed at BUILD 2023 that it was working towards a complete Graphical User Interface (GUI) support for Linux apps on the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL). Thanks to this built-in Linux kernel, there was decent support for a variety of Linux features and tools. But there was no way to run, test, and use Linux GUI apps. 

That is, until now. Those enrolled in the Windows Insider program will now get a preview of GUI application support, allowing developers to build, test, and run their applications in a Linux environment.

The lack of GUI support had been a common issue over which many developers opted out of the Windows experience for its open-source counterpart. But with the latest Windows 10 Build 21364, Microsoft seeks to redress that by introducing support for Linux apps requiring a GUI, making this a crucial update for developers who had hitherto prized Linux over Windows due to the availability of extensive apps tools there. 

What can GUI application support do?

Before this update, developers had access to Linux command-line tools, features and functionalities, and apps, but no support for GUI apps. To get around the limitation, developers had to contend with third-party servers and tools. 

With GUI application support, Windows users won’t even have to start an X server themselves. As soon as a Linux GUI app is run, a companion system distro is launched automatically. As soon as you close the WSL, the system distro will close as well. 

Developers of different ilks will find GUI application support useful in different ways. Here’s a look at the things that the recent Windows (Insider) update brings to the table.

Test cross-platform apps

Other than allowing developers to test and run such applications in a Linux environment, the GUI app support will also let users run Linux-only GUI applications. Cross-platform app testing is also simplified significantly since one can test the app directly on Windows, and then in a Linux environment without having to switch systems. As there is no need for a virtual machine, the apps also load up faster and run reliably.

Develop and test Linux projects (with audio support)

The GUI application support on the WSL is a real boon for Linux developers that want to run or test apps requiring audio and microphone support. The out of the box audio-mic support is integral for many who have to develop,  test, or run video player apps and telecommunications apps. The feature is enabled through a Linux companion distribution and is disabled when you close the app. 

Run Linux apps 3D acceleration 

Developers can also run Linux apps with 3D acceleration, due in no small part to a native WSL and its easy access to your system’s GPU. That means complex 3D rendering will be possible for apps that require it which will make them run much faster and smoother.

The companion system distro hosts an X server, Wayland, pulse audio server, and anything else that Linux GUI applications need to interact with Windows. The whole experience has thus become much more fluid and interactive, giving Windows itself a higher level of flexibility.

How to get the Initial Linux GUI app support preview

In order to get a preview of the GUI app support for the WSL, you will have to make sure that you’re on the Windows 10 Insiders preview build 21364. If you are, simply update your Windows and restart for the feature to be available to you. 

If you have a WSL on your system already, you need only run the following command:

wsl --update 

If the same is not enabled yet, run the following:

wsl --install

GUI app support for WSL is an important feature that will make using Linux tools on Windows that much simpler and more inviting. Expect this feature to be part of the full OS update later this year. 

How To Monitor Network Bandwidth On Linux

Analyzing and monitoring the network traffic of an entire network infrastructure is a very important task for every Linux system administrator. Network admin needs to see what’s going on with the network, who’s using the bandwidth, and how their entire network infrastructure is handling the load. The good thing is there are many open-source network monitoring and traffic analysis tools available in Linux.

In this post, we will discuss some Linux command line tools that can be used to monitor the network usage.


Nload is a console application that allows users to monitor the incoming and outgoing traffic separately.

It visualizes the incoming and outgoing traffic using two graphs and provides additional info like total amount of transferred data and min/max network usage.

You can install nload by running the following command:


apt-get install


Now run the nload command:



Once the nload command is executed, you should see the following output.


Iptraf is an ncurses-based IP LAN monitoring tool that shows individual connections and the amount of data flowing between the hosts.

To install iptraf, run the following:


apt-get install


Once iptraf has been installed, issue the following command:



You should see the following output.


Vnstat is different from most of the other tools. It is a console-based network traffic monitor for Linux that runs as a daemon and keeps a log of network traffic for the selected interface. It can be used to generate a report of the network usage.

You can install vnstat by running the following command:


apt-get install


Now, run vnstat without any argument:



You can see the total amount of data transfer on your network.

If you want to monitor the bandwidth usage in realtime, use the -l option. It will display the total bandwidth used by incoming and outgoing data.

Now, run vnstat to monitor the bandwidth usage on the wlan0 interface:






You will see the following output.


Speedometer is a command line utility that can be used to monitor the current download/upload speeds of the network connections and the speeds of the file systems. Speedometer shows a graph of your current and past network speed in your console. You can also use speedometer directly on a file to monitor the download performance and history of a specific download instead of all the network traffic.

Run the following command to install speedometer in your system:


apt-get install


Now, run speedometer on wlan0 interface:







You will see an output similar to the following.


Iftop is a command line tool that listens to network traffic on a given interface (such as eth0, eth1, wlan0) and shows a table of current bandwidth usage by hosts. Iftop uses the pcap library to capture the incoming and outgoing packets of the network interface.

You can easily install iftop by running the following command:


apt-get install


Now, run iftop with the n option that prevents iftop from resolving ip addresses to hostname:




You will see the following output.


Over 5 years of experience as IT system administrator for IT company in India. My skills include a deep knowledge of Rehat/Centos, Ubuntu nginx and Apache, Mysql, Subversion, Linux, Ubuntu, web hosting, web server, squied proxy, NFS, FTP, DNS, Samba, ldap, Openvpn, Haproxy, Amazon web services, WHMCS, Openstack Cloud, Postfix Mail Server, Security etc.

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