Oct 24, 2014

How to Schedule your Gmail Messages with a Google Sheet

Have you ever wanted to write an email now but send it a later date and time? Maybe you are sending birthday greetings and would like the email message to be delivered on the exact day. Or you have written the reply to an email but would like to schedule delivery in the recipient’s time zone when the message is more likely to get read.


Microsoft Outlook has a built-in scheduler to help you delay the delivery of email messages. After you are finished writing an email message and hit the Send button, the message isn’t delivered immediately — it stays in your outbox and is sent at the specified time automatically.


Gmail doesn’t let you schedule a later delivery of email messages but there are browser extensions — like Boomerang and Right Inbox — that let you specify a future send date for your outgoing email messages.


These are however subscription based services that allow you to send only a limited number of scheduled email messages for free per month. The other concern is privacy – you will have to grant read and write access to your entire Gmail account to a third-party to use scheduling inside Gmail.


How to Schedule & Send Gmail Messages Later with Google Sheets


If you are reluctant to provide access to your Gmail account to another service, there’s an alternative – Google Sheets.


What you can do is compose all your emails that you would like to be delivered later in Gmail and then specify the exact delivery date and time for these messages in the Google sheet. The messages would be delivered automatically at the time chosen by you. Internally, there’s a little Google Script that takes care of sending the messages at the appropriate date and time.


Schedule Gmail Messages


Schedule your Gmail – Step by Step


Go to your Gmail mailbox and compose a few test messages that you would like to be delivered later. Your draft messages can have rich formatting, you can add attachments, signatures and even inline images. Make sure that you have included the recipient’s email address in the TO field of the drafts.



  1. Click here to make a copy of the Gmail Scheduler sheet (v2.0) in your Google Drive.

  2. Change the default timezone of your Google spreadsheet. The emails will get scheduled in this timezone.

  3. Inside the sheet, choose Authorize under the Gmail Scheduler menu and grant the necessary permissions. This script is running in your own Google Drive and none of your data is accessible to anyone else.

  4. Choose Gmail Scheduler -> Fetch Messages to import all the draft messages from your Gmail account into the Google Sheet.

  5. Set the scheduled date and time for individual messages in column D of the sheet. You can double-click a cell and use the date picker or you can manually enter the date and time as m/dd/yyyy h:mm:ss in 24 hour format.

  6. Go to Gmail Scheduler -> Schedule Messages and run the scheduler. You can close the spreadsheet and it will send messages at the specified time automatically.


Video Tutorial – Schedule Gmail Messages


Here’s a detailed video tutorial (download) that will walk you through the steps.



Scheduling Gmail messages with Google sheets is easy. Please do note that once a message has been scheduled, you should not edit the corresponding Gmail draft message else that particular message would be removed from the queue.


If you wish to edit the draft or need to change the delivery time once the messages have been scheduled, you can repeat the steps #3 to #5 and reinitialize the queue.


Awesome Google Scripts → Custom Google Scripts →


How to Change the Spreadsheet Timezone


The scheduled date and time that you specify in the cells use the default timezone of the spreadsheet. If you wish to send mails in a different timezone, open the spreadsheet and pick a different timezone under File -> Spreadsheet Settings menu.




This story, How to Schedule your Gmail Messages with a Google Sheet, was originally published at Digital Inspiration on 24/10/2014 under GMail, Internet



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ownCloud Ubuntu Package Affected By Multiple Critical Security Issues, Nobody To Fix It




ownCloud developer Lukas Reschke has sent an email to the Ubuntu Devel mailing list, requesting that ownCloud (server) is removed from the Ubuntu repositories because the package is old and there are multiple critical security bugs for which no fixes have been backported. He adds that:





"Those security bugs allows an unauthenticated attacker to gain complete control about the web server process".



However, packages can't be removed from the Ubuntu repositories for an Ubuntu version that was already released, that's why the package was removed from Ubuntu 14.10 (2 days before its release) but it's still available in the Ubuntu 14.04 and 12.04 repositories (ownCloud 6.0.1 for Ubuntu 14.04 and ownCloud 5.0.4 for Ubuntu 12.04, while the latest ownCloud version is 7.0.2).



Furthermore, the ownCloud package is in the universe repository and software in this repository "WILL NOT receive any review or updates from the Ubuntu security team" (you should see this if you take a look at your /etc/apt/sources.list file) so it's up to someone from the Ubuntu community to step up and fix it. "If nobody does that, then it unfortunately stays the way it is", says Marc Deslauriers, Security Tech Lead at Canonical.



You can follow the discussion @ Ubuntu Devel mailing list.



So, until (if) someone fixes this, if you're using ownCloud from the Ubuntu repositories, you should either remove it or upgrade to the latest ownCloud from its official repository, hosted by the openSUSE Build Service:



For Ubuntu 14.04:


sudo sh -c "echo 'deb http://ift.tt/1mWPDcT /' >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/owncloud.list"
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install owncloud




For Ubuntu 12.04:


sudo sh -c "echo 'deb http://ift.tt/1avuss0 /' >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/owncloud.list"
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install owncloud








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Fix Brightness Getting Reset (To A Very Low Value Or Maximum) On Reboot In Ubuntu

If your laptop's brightness is not saved and is set to a very low value or to maximum, each time you reboot and / or when you log out, read on for a fix / workaround.







In both Ubuntu 14.04 and 14.10, my laptop's brightness is not saved between sessions and is reset to a very low value after every reboot or logout. I found a workaround (that works for both this issue as well as another issue which is basically the opposite: the brightness is set to maximum after restarting Ubuntu), but it was a bit confusing so I thought I'd improve the steps and share it with you.



Basically, the fix / workaround is to automatically set a custom brightness value each time you boot into Ubuntu. Let's proceed.



1. The first thing you need to do is to find out which ACPI interface (acpi_video) controls the brightness. This can be done by looking into your Xorg log file to see which acpi_video was loaded. To do this via command line, simply use the following command:


grep acpi_video /var/log/Xorg.0.log

The command above should display an output similar to this:


[ 7.385] (--) intel(0): Found backlight control interface acpi_videoX (type 'firmware') for output LVDS1

where "acpi_videoX" is "acpi_video0" or "acpi_video1". This is the acpi_video that controls the brightness, so remember it for the next steps.



If the command above doesn't display any output and you have a folder called "intel_backlight" under "/sys/class/backlight/", then use "intel_backlight" as the ACPI interface for the next steps.



2. Next, set (via keyboard Fn + brightness keys) your laptop's brightness to the level you want Ubuntu to use after when it starts.



3. Now we'll have to get the actual brightness value you set under step 2. To do this, run the following command:


cat /sys/class/backlight/acpi_videoX/brightness

where "acpi_videoX" is the ACPI interface which controls your laptop's brightness, which you find out under step 1.



Remember this value for the next step.



4. The next step is to create a file (as root) called fixbrightness.conf in your /etc/init/ directory - I'll use Gedit below:


gksu gedit /etc/init/fixbrightness.conf



And in this file, paste this:


description "Sets brightness after graphics device is loaded"

start on graphics-device-added
task
exec /bin/echo BRIGHTNESS_VALUE > /sys/class/backlight/acpi_videoX/brightness


here, you need to:


  • replace BRIGHTNESS_VALUE with the brightness value you got under step 3;

  • replace acpi_videoX with the ACPI Interface that controls your laptop's brightness, which you found out under step 1.




Then save the file.



5. Reboot and the low or maximum brightness issue after reboot / logout should be fixed.





via AskUbuntu but I tried to improve the instructions







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Oct 23, 2014

Ubuntu MATE Sees Its First Release (14.10)

Along with the other flavors, Ubuntu MATE 14.10 was released today. This is an unofficial (it will most probably become an official Ubuntu flavor in the near future) MATE-based Ubuntu flavor, "ideal for those who want the most out of their desktops, laptops and netbooks and prefer a traditional desktop metaphor".







MATE is a GNOME 2 fork which lets you use the old GNOME 2 desktop interface and applications but it also allows you to use new applications so for instance, you can use Gedit 3 if you want, etc.






Like the old GNOME 2, MATE (and thus, Ubuntu MATE) offers a traditional desktop layout with two panels and is highly customizable: themes can be installed or changed from the Appearance dialog (and there are quite a few themes available by default), the panels can be resized and they support autohide and a multitude of applets, the notifications position can be changed and so on:












Ubuntu MATE 14.10
Control center, window preferences and notification settings, with a test notification












Ubuntu MATE 14.10
Panel applets












Ubuntu MATE 14.10
One of the many themes shipped with Ubuntu MATE 14.10 by default



Ubuntu MATE 14.10 includes the latest MATE 1.8 which, compared to MATE 1.6 (available in the Ubuntu 14.04 repositories) includes support for Metacity as window manager, side-by-side tiling and more.



While it includes the default MATE applications such as Caja (file manager), Pluma (text editor) and so on, Ubuntu MATE 14.10 ships with some applications you'll also find in other Ubuntu flavors, like Firefox, Pidgin, Thunderbird, Transmission, LibreOffice, Totem or Rhythmbox, so users coming from Ubuntu w/ Unity should feel at home from this point of view. Also, for the display manager, LightDM is used by default, with the GTK greeter:






Furthermore, Ubuntu MATE uses the default Ubuntu icons and a GTK theme based on Ubuntu's Ambiance so besides the traditional desktop layout, things should look pretty close to Ubuntu's defaults.



It's important to note that because this is the first Ubuntu MATE release and it's not a LTS, the Ubuntu MATE team is going to make Ubuntu MATE 14.04 LTS ISOs available "shortly after Ubuntu MATE 14.10 is released", mentions the Ubuntu MATE FAQ.





Download Ubuntu MATE 14.10




Before installing Ubuntu MATE 14.10, make sure you checkout the official release announcement.






For changes shared with Ubuntu (like Linux Kernel changes, etc.), see our Ubuntu 14.10 release article.







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Ubuntu Flavors 14.10 Officially Released

All the Ubuntu flavors reached version 14.10 today. Let's take a quick look at what's new in Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME and Kubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn).





Xubuntu 14.10







Xubuntu is an Ubuntu flavor which uses Xfce, a fast, light desktop environment.



Changes in Xubuntu 14.10:


  • the display dialog has been updated and it now allows arranging multiple displays by drag and drop;

  • the Xfce power manager can now control the keyboard-backlight and features a new panel plugin, which shows the battery status, other connected devices with batteries and controls the display backlight brightness;

  • Setting-related menu items earlier available only under Settings manager are now shown and searchable in Whisker Menu;

  • the alt-tab dialog can now be clicked with the mouse to select a window;

  • updated GTK themes with various changes, including GTK 3.12 support;

  • changed desktop icon size to 48px, desktop tooltip size to 64px;

  • the number of desktops was reduced to 1 by default, but this can easily be changed (Settings > Workspaces);

  • saner defaults for DPMS timeouts;

  • enabled lock-screen on suspend and hibernate;

  • Light Locker is enabled and will lock on suspend, but not auto-locking after being idle;

  • to allow users to use pkexec instead of gksu(do), appropriate profiles are now included for Thunar and Mousepad;

  • enabled clutter as default videosink in Parole;

  • updated panel layout for login screen;

  • enabled minimize and maximize on GtkHeaderbars;

  • XChat is no longer included by default;

  • Inxi, a tool to gather system information, is now included by default.




Here are screenshots with some of these changes:












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Added minimize and maximize buttons for apps using header bars












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Inxi, a system info tool












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Xfce4 Power Manager












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
New Xfce4 Power Manager panel plugin












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Xubuntu 14.10 login screen (LightDM GTK greeter)












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Display settings












Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Running Thunar via pkexec



Also, Xubuntu 14.10 uses magenta highlights:






According to the release notes, this change (which they refer to as pink but it looks closer to magenta to me) was made to celebrate the 14.10 codename "Utopic Unicorn" and to demonstrate the easy customizability of Xubuntu.



That's because this change wasn't made to the theme - the pink/magenta highlights are applied via Theme Configuration (gtk-theme-config) and is used no matter what theme you're using. You can easily change this and other theme colors from Settings > Theme Configuration (simply turn "Highlight Colors" off to turn this off):













Ubuntu GNOME 14.10




Ubuntu GNOME tries to bring a pure GNOME experience in the Ubuntu "family". It uses GNOME Shell by default and this release ships with a combination of GNOME 3.10 and 3.12.












Ubuntu GNOME 14.10
Ubuntu GNOME 14.10 includes GNOME System Settings / Settings Daemon 3.12



Changes in Ubuntu GNOME 14.10:


  • many GNOME components, like GNOME Shell, GTK+, GNOME Control Center, etc. have been updated to version 3.12 which brings improvements (compared to 3.10, available in Ubuntu 14.04) such as:



    • proper HiDPI support;

    • improved network menus;

    • Jumplists (also known as Quicklists in Unity) support;

    • a geolocation indicator was added to the status menu

    • refined animations;

    • window previews are now keyboard navigable;

    • allow specifying monitor for OSD;

    • GNOME Online accounts has better Facebook and Google support and also, it now supports Pocket (a web service that lets you save videos, articles and pretty much anything from the browser for later use)

    • Google Cloud print support;

    • updated Adwaita GTK theme: new style for tabs and buttons, etc.;

    • GTK 3.12 introduces restyled tabs and "popovers", an overlayed bubble interface element;

    • for more information, see our GNOME 3.12 article (but keep in mind that some apps, like Nautilus, Totem or Gedit are still at version 3.10.x).



  • GNOME Maps (3.12.2) and GNOME Weather (3.12.1) are now installed by default.




Here are a few Ubuntu GNOME 14.10 screenshots:






















Lubuntu 14.10




Lubuntu is a lightweight Ubuntu flavor which uses the LXDE desktop environment, useful for old computers.






For Lubuntu 14.10, there's basically no changelog available - besides updated artwork, the wiki page mentions that many LXDE components have been updated with bug fix releases and that Lubuntu 14.10 is a "general bug fix release as we prepare for LXQt".








Kubuntu 14.10




Kubuntu is an Ubuntu flavor which uses the KDE Plasma Desktop as the graphical environment. Even though it's now sponsored by Blue Systems and not by Canonical, Kubuntu is still an official Ubuntu derivative.



For 14.10, there are two Kubuntu ISOs available for download: Plasma 4 Stable and Plasma 5 tech Preview.



The Stable Plasma 4 ISO includes KDE Applications and Platform 4.14.1 - check out the changes here: 4.14.0 | 4.14.1.



Here are a few Kubuntu 14.10 screenshots (mostly with the Plasma 5 ISO since the default Kubuntu 14.10 with Plasma 4 looks pretty much the same):












Kubuntu 14.10 Plasma 5
Kubuntu 14.10 with Plasma 5












Kubuntu 14.10 Plasma 5
Kubuntu 14.10 with Plasma 5












Kubuntu 14.10 Plasma 5
Kubuntu 14.10 with Plasma 5 (with Breeze window decorations - Oxygen is still default though)












Kubuntu 14.10 Plasma 4
Kubuntu 14.10 with Plasma 4





Download Kubuntu 14.10 (includes the official release notes)





For changes shared between all the Ubuntu flavors (Linux kernel changes, etc.), see our Ubuntu 14.10 article.







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