RE: [Nolug] Android phone apps for Linux cmdline geeks

From: John Souvestre <>
Date: Fri, 21 Jun 2013 18:21:49 -0500
Message-ID: <007c01ce6ed6$1e915220$5bb3f660$>

Hi Philip.

I recently upgraded to a Samsung Galaxy S4 with Verizon. I'm enjoying it, for
the most part. I haven't rooted it, but since Google/Verizon/Samsung are so
notoriously slow to fix bugs in the Android software, I've been temped.

Here are some of the apps which I find handy.

K-9 Mail
Google's Maps & Navigation (not Verizon's)
Voicemail (but Verizon charges $3 a month extra for it!)
No Screen Off - Quick way to keep your screen live while doing something
RPN Calculator - Yep, I still have my old HP calculators. :)
GPS status - GPS info
WiFi Manager & WiFi Analyzer - WiFi info
Sentry - If you use WiFi at home/office, when mobile it constantly
    searches for WiFi's, and sucks power. Instead, search once a minute.
Light Flow - Repeating notifications for missed calls, messages, ...
Lux Dash - More control over screen diming vs ambient light level
    Note: The screen is one of the biggest power users
Disable Increasing Ring - I * hate * that soft first ring.
Note: Wallet is blocked by Verizon. Their pay service is junk.
There are various RDP, VNC, and SFTP apps.
Google Authenticator - Standard TOTP codes for MFA's



    John Souvestre - New Orleans LA - (504) 454-0899

-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of Philip Amadeo Saeli
Sent: Friday, June 21, 2013 1:25 am
To: NOLUG; BRLUG General
Subject: [Nolug] Android phone apps for Linux cmdline geeks

Hi, All,

Hopefully, there are some Linux geeks on this list that may be able to offer
some guidance for me. For the following, assume I do not have a G**gle
account of any type. Sorry for all the rambling, but I have so many

I just acquired my very first Android phone and I am looking for some apps to
set up as much of my usual Linux environment as possible without actually
rooting the device (that may come later). Also, being a rather old-fashioned
type, I'm not especially anxious to turn my whole life over to G**gle simply
to be able to make use of the basic features of my phone (at least not just
yet, and maybe never).

I am looking both for the standard PIM apps (Calendar, Contacts, Memos) as
well as some more specialized Linux apps (ssh client and server, bash shell,
terminal emulator, ftp, tar, zip, etc.). Are there any reasonable PIM apps
that do not require a G**gle account? Are there any basic Linux apps that do
not require rooting the device? If so, any recommendations?

Is Google Play safe to use, or is there a safe way to use it? It seems to be
the only place to go for downloading apps. It appears to be very commercially
oriented, at least as compared to the N810 Maemo store, and I find it rather
difficult to find what I am looking for when browsing it. I am mostly used to
using Open Source software and open software repositories, and find the highly
commercial orientation of Google Play to be very distracting. Any tips?

It seems that most of the base software on the phone is oriented toward
running everything through G**gle's servers as a "convenience"
function. Everything becomes a G**gle search for something (and, of course,
adding all of my info to their marketing engine). I'd like to avoid that as
much as possible. The younger ones tell me to quit fighting it, that it's
inevitable anyway. However, this old fart is not about to just roll over and
die. But I would like to be able to make some informed, wise choices in that

On all of my current Linux (and Windows) devices, I am, e.g., running Firefox
as a browser and have it configured with plugins to block annoying ads, limit
javascript, block flash, etc., and have a much more pleasant browsing
experience as a result. I am also running the "Iron"
browser (based on Chromium) on one of my systems, but find it much less
configurable to my liking than Firefox and not as usable for my purposes. The
Android browser seems to have no configurability at all.
Are there any useful alternatives?

My most recent pocket Linux device is a Nokia N810 Internet Tablet. It was
under powered when I first got it, and it seems even slower now.
However, it runs a number of apps that I find invaluable in everyday use. I'd
like to get as many of those or equivalents as possible for my Android device
which appears to have more than enough horsepower to run anything I might
throw at it. I'd like to be able to make better use of the phone than to be
limited to making calls, texting, and playing games.

For reference, I have a Samsung Galaxy Note II with Verizon as the carrier
and, yes, for better or worse, the most recent OTA has been installed.



Philip Amadeo Saeli
openSUSE, RHEL, CentOS
On the North Shore
Nolug mailing list
Nolug mailing list
Received on 06/21/13

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0 : 07/25/13 EDT