23 Things You MUST DO After Installing Ubuntu 23.10. These actions include tweaking the system & user interface, installing useful apps or packages, speeding up the performance, improving battery life on laptops & enhancing the desktop experience, and more.
For demonstration, I will be using brand New Ubuntu 23.10, you can use any Ubuntu version such as 22.04.
The first thing to do after installing Ubuntu is to update the system. To do this, open the terminal and enter the below command to retrieve the latest package information from the sources and upgrade all the packages.
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
Ubuntu offers various software repositories, with the main one being enabled by default. The Universe repository contains open-source software maintained by the community.
While the Multiverse includes non-open source software, If necessary, you can enable additional repositories in the Software and Updates application..
There may be instances when you become frustrated with apt due to the slow download speeds. To fix this issue consider replacing apt with NALA. You can install NALA by executing this command.
sudo apt install nala
It offers features such as parallel downloads, faster download speeds, Colour-coded text & easy installation. To take advantage of Nala’s faster download speeds, run the below command, that filters the fastest mirrors.
By default, Nala will filter the top 16 mirrors, and you can add the top 6 to your source list.
sudo nala fetch
Install GPU Drivers
If you have a dedicated graphic card such as NVIDIA, it’s recommended to install Proprietary GPU drivers for graphic-intensive applications.
Ubuntu provides a secret command to install GPU Drivers. Within the terminal type this command to see a list of drivers.
sudo ubuntu-drivers devices
Look For the recommended driver and select its name. Then install the driver using APT or NALA. For Eg:
sudo nala install nvidia-driver-535
Use XORG 0r Wayland
By default, ubuntu uses the Wayland display server if you have installed NVIDIA drivers. If your PC or laptop has an Nvidia graphics card that is not functioning as intended, disable Wayland and use the XORG session.
To switch between XORG and WayLand, log out of Ubuntu. Then click on your username and select the settings gear icon at the bottom right to choose XORG or Wayland. After making your selection login in back with your password.
Customise Dock & Ubuntu Desktop
Ubuntu provides minimal customization to tweak your desktop. It offers light and dark themes as well as accent Colours in the “Appearance” settings. You can customize desktop icons and adjust the dock’s appearance.
Within the dock section, you can move the dock panel to the bottom or right side of the screen. You also have the option to turn off the panel mode, this way the dock looks much cleaner and better.
Use Nightlight & Adjust Display Settings
Night light is a key feature that is essential during the night times to reduce Eye Strain. It adjusts the Colour of your display according to the time of day, providing a warmer color in the evening.
To enable night light, navigate to settings, select displays, and click on night light. Here you can enable the nightlight, schedule the activation time, and adjust the Colour temperature.
You can also use fractional scaling to adjust the display size if you are running Ubuntu on a large monitor. It’s also recommended to increase the size of all text in the user interface using the accessibility feature.
Ubuntu comes with Firefox as a default browser. To Optimise your Firefox experience, adjust the specific settings. Go to Firefox settings, and navigate to the “General” section.
Enable options to open previous windows and tabs at startup and activate Performance mode for hardware-based acceleration. Under the “Browsing” tab, enable smooth scrolling, picture-in-picture functionality, and DRM content playback.
Gnome-Tweaks allows you to tweak and control the behavior of the gnome desktop environment. Install gnome-tweaks by running this command.
sudo nala install gnome-tweaks
Once installed, open the tweaks application. With this tool, you can customize the user interface based on your liking. For instance, you can enable or disable maximize & minimize buttons from the windows title bars.
Additionally, Choose the Windows section & enable Center new Windows, to have applications open in the center of the screen.
Install Gnome Shell Extensions Manager
An extension is software that allows you to take your GNOME customization to the next level. These extensions allow you to apply themes, add fancy app transitions, as well as additional features such as blur effects.
Install Gnome Shell Extensions Manager by running the below command.
sudo nala install gnome-shell-extension-manager
I recommend installing these extensions to create a more futuristic gnome experience.
Blur My Shell / Arc Menu / Just Perfection / Vitals / Caffeine / User Themes
Flatpak is a Distribution independent App Store that allows running GUI applications within an isolated environment. You can install Flatpak by running the below command.
sudo nala install flatpak
Then, add a FlatHub repository to gain access to thousands of GUI applications including Android Studio, VSCode, Google Chrome, and many more.
flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://dl.flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo
Must Install Packages
Installing essential packages can enhance your Ubuntu Linux experience. Run the following command to install Linux headers and additional useful packages:
sudo nala install htop neofetch bpytop clang cargo libc6-i386 libc6-x32 libu2f-udev samba-common-bin exfat-fuse default-jdk curl wget unrar linux-headers-$(uname -r) git gstreamer1.0-vaapi unzip ntfs-3g p7zip htop neofetch bpytop git
Must Install Apps
You can boost your Ubuntu workflow by installing GUI applications like LibreOffice, VLC, Transmission, OBS, Obsidian, and Spotify. Use Flatpak Or Nala to install them easily.
sudo nala install libreOffice vlc
flatpak install flathub com.spotify.Client
flatpak install flathub com.transmissionbt.Transmission
flatpak install flathub com.obsproject.Studio
flatpak install flathub md.obsidian.Obsidian
Ubuntu Restricted codecs
By default, Ubuntu cannot play video formats like MOV, AVI, MKV, and other media content due to a lack of codecs.
To popular media files, install media codecs by typing the below command.
sudo apt install ubuntu-restricted-extras
SimpleScreenRecorder is a Popular Linux program for screen recording the Ubuntu desktop. It’s very simple and easier to use than VLC because it has a straightforward user interface.
To set up a simple screen recorder on any Debian-based operating system including Ubuntu run the following command.
sudo nala install simplescreenrecorder
Minimize to click
When you click an application shortcut on the Dock panel, the system opens the application. However, when you click it again, nothing happens.
You can make GNOME Minimize the application if you click on its icon when the application is open. There is no app to do this, but you can use the below command to fix such an issue.
gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.dash-to-dock click-action 'minimize-or-previews'
Tweak TouchPad Settings
If you have installed Ubuntu on a laptop, you need to adjust the TouchPad settings. Go to Touchpad and mouse settings, and choose the touchpad.
You can adjust the pointer speed, and toggle on tap to click to simulate the selection without the need to press any buttons. Additionally, you can adjust the scrolling method and direction.
Setup QEMU / KVM To create Virtual machines
Running Virtual machines in Ubuntu is very easy. If your system supports high-end hardware, it’s recommended to set up QEMU KVM which allows to creation of virtual machines.
Go ahead and install QEMU / KVM and Virt-Manager by running the below command.
sudo apt install qemu-kvm qemu-utils libvirt-daemon-system libvirt-clients bridge-utils virt-manager ovmf
Once it’s done, open Virt-Manager & grab any operating system image, and start running it inside a virtual machine.
“Some users, on specific hardware, may notice a higher battery consumption rate on Ubuntu Linux than on Windows, especially on laptops. To address this issue, the easiest way is to solve this problem on Ubuntu by installing Auto-CPUFREQ.
This is a very useful tool that actively monitors the battery state, CPU usage, and temperatures, and improves battery life without making any compromises.
To set up autocpufreq, copy and paste the below line of code into the terminal.
git clone https://github.com/AdnanHodzic/auto-cpufreq.git cd auto-cpufreq && sudo ./auto-cpufreq-installer
Once it’s done, go to the app drawer and open the GUI tool. Now, activate it to run as a daemon service by clicking on the install button.
It uses a default Profile to optimize the performance and battery life. If you want peak performance you can enable Performance mode. If you don’t want High performance enable power save for longer battery life.
Setting up Firewall
UFW is a popular firewall that protects your computer from network traffic and blocks malicious software. It is recommended to set up a firewall on Ubuntu by running this command.
sudo nala install ufw
sudo systemctl enable ufw
sudo systemctl start ufw
UFW allows you to have full control over enabling and disabling ports. For example, if you’re running an SSH server on port 22, you can disable this port to prevent connections from remote computers.
sudo ufw deny 22/tcp
Run Windows Apps
If you have switched to Ubuntu from Windows, and looking for a way to run some Windows apps, you can use bottles. Bottles introduce a new way to handle Windows binaries using runner environments. You can choose between a Gaming and Software environment based on the type of software you want to start.
I have run specific Windows apps like IDM and NotePad++. Keep in mind, that you should not expect to run every Windows app, it’s just an experimental build and works with very few Windows apps. Setup Bottles With Flatpak:
flatpak install flathub com.usebottles.bottles
Customize Keyboard Shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts are one of the most useful things that speed up the user experience. For example, pressing ctrl + alt + T opens up a terminal. Likewise, ubuntu allows you to create shortcuts that trigger specific actions.
Head over to settings – choose keyboard and select keyboard shortcuts. Using this section, you can map a shortcut key to do something. For example, choose launcher – Home directory & set a shortcut to open the Home Directory.
Stacer is an open-source system optimizer and application monitor that helps users manage the entire system with different aspects. Stacer is an all-in-one system utility that allows you to manage system resources, software management, disk monitoring, daemon services, startup applications, and more.
Stacer also supports System Cleaner, which helps remove unnecessary log or cache files and empty the trash on your system. To install stacer run the below command:
sudo nala install stacer
That’s pretty much it, these are the 23 things to do after installing New Ubuntu. You can use this guide with any Ubuntu Version. Let me know what you think about it in the comments section below. Watch My Youtube Video