Installing a software from source. (Untarring a .tar/.tar.gz file)

Read this till the end before actually trying out the steps.

After downloading the tar.gz file, untar it by running

tar -xvzf filename.tar.gz

After untarring it, the best way is to go through the README.txt or INSTALL.txt which can be found under the /docs directory among the untarred files.
However, assuming that the software you’re about to install are built with GNU’s autoconf and make tools, I’ll explain the steps below. (Meaning, in most of the cases the following steps will work.)

1. Check to see of there is a script called ‘configure’ among the untarred files. If yes skip this step. Otherwise, do

autoreconf –install

2. This will generate the configure script for you and you will be able to find it among the files. Once ‘configure’ is there, run


This will generate a file called the Makefile for you. However (A BIG HOWEVER), a Makefile will only be generated provided you have all the dependencies installed on your system. That is, the software you are about to install may depend on other software or libraries to work. Step 2 checks if these dependencies are met and will return an error if any of the dependencies are not met. When you see the error, you will have to install that software/library package in order for the configure script to execute succesfully. If you are using Ubuntu/Debian based distors, you just have to apt-get install the softwares.

3. After installing the dependencies and the successful completion of the configure script, a Makefile will be there among the files. Run


This will compile the files of the software. (Note: If you are making any changes to the software, make recognizes that change and recompiles only that. It thus saves you a lot of time by not recompiling the entire thing once again.

4. After the successful completion of make, run

sudo make install

This will install your softwares binary files and libraries under /usr/local.

5. You are good to go. Just type the name of the software in the terminal and hit enter.

IMPORTANT: The problem with the above approach is that (assuming you are using Debian/Ubuntu based distros) your package manager ‘apt’ doesn’t know that the software has been installed. As such, it might cause trouble if you use apt to install this software itself from the repository. The recommended way to install softwares from source is to install them into a non standard location. The changes you will have to do in the above steps in order to install the software into a non-standard location are explained below.

1. Same step.
2. Create a folder ‘temp’ (any name you want) somewhere in your home directory. For sake of explanation, I created a folder named ‘temp’ in my home folder. So its path will be /home/haris/temp. Now run

./configure –prefix=/home/haris/temp

3. Same step.
4. You ran this step with sudo earlier because /usr/local was a standard location and you needed administrative privileges in order to install binary/library files there. But now, since we have given a non-standard location, just run

make install

This will install the binary files of your software (the files that is to be executed in order to launch the program) in the specified location. In this case, under /home/haris/temp/bin.

5. You’re not good to go. In order to run the program, you need to go into the directory containing the binary files and run it from there by typing the name of the software. (This is because linux searches for the executables in standard locations such as /bin, /usr/bin, etc.) However, if you want the software to run from the prompt no matter in which directory you are, here is way for that.

6. The locations linux will search for the executables will be given in a variable called PATH. Try

echo $PATH

in your terminal and you can see the locations.

7. What we need to do is to add the path of our installed software to the PATH variable. To do this, open up the file named .bashrc from your home folder.

sudo gedit ~/.bashrc

8. Add the following to the end of that file (in your case, give the path of the ‘bin’ folder of the installed software). In my case,

export PATH

9. Save and exit. Restart your terminal and try typing the name of the software from anywhere you want. It will launch.

NOTE: Sometimes the Makefile will be there by default among the untarred files. In that case just do step 2 and 3.

Now, in order to uninstall the program, all you have to do is run

sudo make uninstall or make uninstall

depending on how you installed it. Run this command from wherever you ran the  make command earlier.

Also, in order to clear the files created by make, run

make clean

That would be all. Thanks to Ershad!

Good luck!


e-birth, e-life and e-grave. E-volve!

The world is moving on quite fast and if people could shit and pee in the clouds, they would do that too. (Well I guess…. Nope nothing!)

As the cloud mania continues, everything is going onto the net. Read my thoughts on cloud here:

Cloud – A menace?

However, I fear life itself is being shifted away from us. Relations, love, connections, job, meetings, to name a few are already on FaceBook and other social networking sites. It is only a matter of time before births happen on the social networking sites.

Think I’m joking? Wait and see.

There will be this “Request marriage” button on people’s profile pages. Click it and after a while if he/she accepts it, a new community will be automatically created that will be the venue for the happy day. Friends from both people’s friends list will be automatically sent an invitation and a day will be fixed.

An animation marriage of some sort will happen and since people are not happy with real life happenings and relations these days, both the husband and wife can have a virtual life. Cool.

They probably will have a common profile created with the buttons “Have sex”, “Produce Babies” and stuff. “Hey, why not assign points to the number of times you click this and see who has the happiest life doing more sex?”

So one fine day they click on the “Produce babies” button and viola! A baby profile with features blended from both the parents profile is created. No need to wait 10 months and go through all the pain. Instant mix! This profile is not alterable except for some fields. (Hey, it would be kinda nice if you had a ‘delete’ button too!)

The babies age will slowly increment each year (How about an option to set the rate of increase of age?) and the parent’s profile will have some sort of “credits” for all the “jobs” (Think of some work on the net which if you do you get credits) they did and they have to spend this for the child’s education… Hey no! That wouldn’t be cool. Not as long as google is there. Free education it is then! Awesome. The baby educates himself with a few basic knowledge.

But the question is, who will take up the profile’s responsibility? I dunno. Hey FaceBook guys, isn’t it easy to handle more than one profile? Ah Good. So maybe people can volunteer to take up profiles.

But hey! Look at the bright side of things going on. Population will be cut down radically because all the sex is done virtually! Cool. People who follow the conventional method shall be cursed and cast off by the society. Crucified maybe.

A new age of peace and happiness where your body doesn’t even have to move! Wonderful! Already this is happening in the name of “maintaining friendships and relations”. But you see, sooner or later, we’re going to e-volve.

So life goes on.

Just a quick thought here. You guys might want to see the movie “The Surrogates”. You can feel all of the stuff that I talked about waiting just around the corner.

But that’s not all! Can immortality be there? Sigh… Not yet I guess. But let us stick to the real life flow itself for now. Born, lived, and now the great leveller! Death.

How can we implement this? Let’s see…

The profile’s owner will probably have to post a status message, “Hey! I’ve kicked the bucket!” Ha ha… That would be like supernatural.

Let’s get serious.

Since everything is on the net, people not being online or people not updating their profile page often is not going to happen at all. There will be constant updation of your profile page. So we can, without worry, say that once a certain time limit gets expired in which there is no activity in your profile page, you’re deemed dead.

You will be given a proper ceremony and stuff and there will be this dark and dull page called the e-grave where dead people’s account from all the social networking sites will be brought and put so that their families can click ‘mourn’, ‘like’, etc buttons. Maybe you can have  an “emotions counter” associated with each profile so that each time you click a ‘mourn’ button from the e-grave, your “emotions counter” goes up or something.

Whoa! Ideas are keeping on popping into my head as I go on writing. But putting them all down here would be trivial. I’ve brought you to your death from your birth through the net. And hey, it might be possible to do reincarnation too! Second birth! In the form of a, of a… WOW!! Think of the amazing possibilities!

Guys, I’ve written this a bit funny. But think about it. Don’t you feel these thing are going to come? And if you’re already addicted to this kind of life, do you think you’ll be able to resist these changes once they come?

Laugh at me. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.

He who wanted future.

He was depressed.

He had no clue how things could go so wrong. It was not the end of the world or anything but still, he had screwed up considerably well. However, the event altogether had not been a flop. But that was not an excuse to cover up his idiocy. It was a blow to his integrity and how much he wished he could change what had happened. More than that, how much he wished he knew what was going to happen so that he could be prepared for it.

With the thoughts of his failure and his tremendous wish of getting to know what was going to happen next, he lied down on his bed brooding over all of these. He had read about Hari Seldon, the great mind in Isaac Asimov’s foundation series who predicted the future of man. Seldon had formulated the Seldon Theory which predicted the fall of the current Galactic empire in a certain year and the rise of a new one thereafter.

It was an amazing story line and he thought about what Seldon had based his calculations on. It was a really interesting observation that Seldon had made about humans. And it was that, as individuals, all of us, including you and I, are unpredictable. No one would be able to predict what an individual would do next except for having a hunch. And if someone could predict it, it would solely depend upon human emotions and would have no mathematical grounds to hold it true.

As such, Seldon did not consider humans as individuals for his theory. But he considered them as a whole bunch, a humongous group as grounds for his theory. Now why did he do that? The answer was simple. As a whole, what the humans would do was exactly or at least to the precison of …

WHAM! Suddenly his thoughts were cut short by a deafening sound and somebody had kicked open his door. He was on red alert.

His heart felt joy and warmth and a feeling that cannot be described with words when he saw his friends standing there and singing,

“Happy birthday to you,

happy birthday to youuuuu,

happy birthday to dear Haseeb,

Happy… Birthday… tooooooo… youuuuuuuuuuuuuu”

In that moment he realized he would never wish again to know the future. Because, what would life be without surprises?

They all had the best time of their lives.

Now I know how Frodo felt. (DroidCon, hasGeek).

For those among you who have read Lord Of The Rings, you already know Frodo,the Hero. How his life’s destiny was entwined with ‘The Ring’.

It is all too familiar how The Ring came to be in Frodo’s hands and how he set out on his adventure with his friends that brought him to dangers and threats and new alliances. How the small Hobbit became the most important person in the world once he destroyed the terrible Ring that was the entire power of Sauron by throwing it into the engulfing flames of mount doom.

However, after the new and rightful King of Minas Tirith, Aragorn, had been restored back on his throne and all the men and elves had bowed deep in respect of Frodo and the three hobbits, when they four peacefully returned back to their Home, the Shire, things were not as expected.

To those who were in the Shire, these four Hobbits were just Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin. To them, these four hobbits were not saviors of the world, nor were they the ones who fought against the terrible Nazguls, nor were they the ones among the valiant soldiers who guarded Minas Tirith from the terrible wrath of Sauron. They were just four Hobbits.


Being back at Hostel after attending DriodCon and volunteering for it, I’m just the silly old Haris to everyone here. To them, I’m not the one who co-ordinated the speeches in the conference halls, nor was I the one who went around and made sure that all the volunteers were in their respective rooms, nor was I the one who was an important part who made Kiran’s dream of DroidCon come true.

But it was a lovely experience. There was no bossing around and there was no ‘watching over your shoulders’. You were allocated a venue and it was entirely your responsibility that things went smooth over there. And as such, all my fellow-volunteers whom I worked with, Vamsee, Royson, Ankita, Prakhar, Rasagy and the Main guys, wanted the event to be a success with all their hearts. There was no gain in it for any of them if the event was a success nor was there any blame on them if the whole thing got screwed. But still, they dedicatedly did a wonderful job and made the event a success!

Here is my wishes to hasGeek for conducting such a fantastic event and giving all those who were there an opportunity to be together and share their spirits.



It refers to the state a person is in because of being at a place for too long.

Those among you who have seen Shawshank redemption may get the idea in one shot when you think of Brooks. But we are talking about real life here.

I guess being at a college for four years gets you into this state quite a bit. It is so because at college you are with your friends who know who you are and what you are. They almost always would want you to be with them, to help them out, to enjoy with them and stuff. As such, you’re a part of a family who loves and respects you. You’re in a scenario where if you pull the knot, you can see whether an end is getting tightened or loosened. You’re in a controlled atmosphere where you can, to an extent, decide and know the consequences of your action.

But once you get out of your college, a world there is awaiting you where not a single person knows you. You suddenly become unimportant and unnoticed by people. You show what you have and no one realizes what it is. Unless and until you are so strongly mentally prepared to face it and slowly grow up out there, you’re sure going to break. That is what happens when you don’t sow your seeds when you can. Unless you do that, you won’t have anything worth to harvest. So you’ll naturally go to someone else’s field and start pestering him about it.

This is where people get cheated by the term, “enjoying college life”. You must enjoy it, but there is a way to do everything. And the way that you know might not be always right.

Before ending this post, I would like to point out how FaceBook provides this false sense of importance to a person. Prolonged use of fb could get a man cracked when he suddenly realizes people are not “liking his comments” but instead are commenting on him being a loser.

You always do feel extremely good when people notice your comments and reply to it. You feel good when people ‘like’ your comments. You are important in there. But an absolute loser out there where it actually counts. Do you believe any of these ‘like’ers are going to come to help you out in the wild world? Yeah right…

One line that I found very meaningful quite lately, “Am I betraying myself in the name of enjoying the present?”.

Population – The difference in views.

This post comes from the teachings of our economics teacher, Mr. Sanjeev sir. A really awesome teacher.

I’m sure this post can go on and on if I were to let it. But I’m going to make it concise and just state a few points.

When the question of “Why population explosion?” is being discussed, few factors become extremely relevant. And one among them is poverty.

Does poverty increase population or does poverty decrease population? I do not know what answer came into your mind, but I’m pretty much sure that your first thought would have been inclined towards poverty decreasing population. I mean after all, a guy has to feed his kids right? And for that he needs money. So it must be inversely proportional.

The thing is, in most cases it is directly proportional.

I only wish to state two cases in this context. One is a beggar’s and the other is that of a person who enjoys a high standard of living.

The thought of the beggar is not  going to be how he is going to feed his kids if they are born. On the contrary, he sees his each child as a source of income for him. On an emotional level, this can be debated. But hey, economics doesn’t include emotions. Facts are facts and whatever you might feel, this is what is happening.

So, as many kids as the beggar has, as much his income increases. And as much children they have, that much the probability of one or two among them reaching a stable position and supporting them.

However, on the flip side of the coin, what does the guy who has money think? Each child he has is going to reduce his income. He has to raise them and support them till they reach a point where they can take care of themselves. As such, he is going to have lesser number of children.

A beggar’s son will start earning while he is 4 or 5 years old on the streets. At least by begging. But imagine a rich man’s son working at that age. It is not going to happen.

It is interesting to see how much money affects the way see and perceive life.


You are who you are when you are alone.

Pretty soon I’m going to get sued because almost all of my posts are based on some other person’s advice.

As such, this one was told to me by my sister when I was in first year of college. Lately, Ambu sir (take a look at my last three posts to know who this guy is) also said the same thing. He said, “What you do and what you think when you’re alone defines the person you are”.

I guess that is very true because it is when you realize that no one is watching you that all your mischiefs come out. It may be through your actions or through your thoughts. The way you control the thoughts that come at those moments will determine the person that you are.

When you are alone is the time when the strength of your morals, beliefs and values that you carry within you are questioned.

I found it one of the best ways to evaluate one’s self.