Multi threaded http download via terminal (aria2)

If you are fed up with downloading at snail’s pace with your web browser, you might be interested in getting into the terminal for better download speeds.  It seems that rather than wget, aria2 is a better option for multi-threaded / concurrent downloads.

If you’re using Ubuntu/Debian/Mint you can install aria2 like this:

sudo apt-get install aria2


To download your file as quick as possible and avoid http server connection limits:

aria2c -x 16  -s 16

This has been tested to download the latest windows 10 iso from Microsofts website, bringing an significant improvement from 2MB/s to 19Mb/s, maxing out the connection.

Exit frozen ssh session

Sometimes you’ll have connection issues or perhaps wake your computer from sleep and notice that you forgot to close your ssh sessions. The session will be unresponsive and killing the process in a pain in the arse. Here’s the proper way to handle this.


Firstly press the enter key, then the tilde, followed by a dot/period. You now have your local terminal back and can reopen the connection, much more elegant :)

OS X Yosemite dd very slow (copying iso/img to USB)

If you’re using OS X, eventually you might find that you need to copy a Linux or similar installer to a USB stick.  There are a lot of graphical interfaces which assist with this process however OS X already ships with it’s own tool to handle this named dd.  You will also find this tool on most nix systems.

For those familiar with Linux, a standard command might look something like this:

bash# dd if=FreeBSD-10.1-RELEASE-amd64-bootonly.iso of=/dev/disk2 bs=10m

After a while you’ll notice that this command will either hang or take a very, very long time.

On OS X, one letter can change everything.  Instead of using disk2, prefix this with an r and use rdisk2.

bash# dd if=FreeBSD-10.1-RELEASE-amd64-bootonly.iso of=/dev/rdisk2 bs=10m

If this was helpful please let me know in the comments!  Thanks

OS X Mavericks multiple monitors moving dock bar

If  you’re running OS X Mavericks with two or more monitors, you might be frustrated with what at first appears to be a bug with the dock bar positioning.  Seemingly at random when working with full size (not even screen) windows, your dock bar will appear on the wrong monitor.  You go to your display settings only to find that the dock bar is set to appear on the monitor you intended it to be on, even though it quite clearly is not.

Strangely this is feature of OS X Mavericks and can be easily fixed, I mean disabled..

Go to Settings/Mission Control and untick “Displays have separate Spaces”

Logout and the problem should be fixed.


Linux spotify artist page not loading

spotify linux client

As seen in the screenshot, you will probably at one point encounter Linux beta spotify client not loading certain pages properly, including the artist page.  This can be very annoying and pretty much limit the use of their service.  Having a quick search around, it seems people were able to temporarily remedy this by uninstalling and then reinstalling the client.  This seems like a lot of effort, so here’s a better solution.  First close your spotify client.

Open up a terminal and type the following:

rm -rf ~/.cache/spotify

Restart your client and this issue should now be resolved.. until next time!  You should be able to put this command in a startup script to prevent having to type is every time or even create a simple spotify launcher that removes the cache first.


Arch Linux Nvidia scroll tearing

Having recently setup a new system with Arch Linux and a Nvidia 560ti, I had the strange and annoying problem of scroll tearing when scrolling through a website or even watching a video. After a bit of playing I discovered that this can be fixed with the “nvidia-settings” application.

Goto the “X Server XVideo Settings” section and make sure that your primary monitor is selected.

Secondly, goto the “OpenGL Settings” section and make sure “Sync to VBlank” is enabled.

If this problem continues you might want to look into compoising settings.

Steam: error while loading shared libraries:

After installing the propriety NVIDIA driver on Ubuntu/Debian/Linux Mint I got the following error every time steam was launched:

Steam: error while loading shared libraries:

Steam attempted to load the 64bit libraries and then after seeing they were incorrect, gave up.

This can be solved by creating a new file:

sudo echo /emul/ia32-linux/usr/lib > /etc/

And then either rebooting or executing the following in terminal:


Steam should now work well for you!


Debian wifi not working with iwlwifi-firmware

After installing the non-free iwlwifi-firmware driver for my Intel Centrino Wireless-N 2230 card I found that I could scan and connect to wireless networks fine but would have problems accessing the Internet.

Even though dhcp worked ok and I was allocated an IP, I could not ping anything on the LAN.  After a series of experiments this was easily fixed with the following:

apt-get install firmware-linux

Followed by a reboot.


This was using the latest kernel (at the time of writing this) 3.10.5