• Pop!_Planet is still very much under development. Data for the wiki is being sourced from the Arch Linux and Ubuntu wikis, along with a bunch of completely unique content specific to Pop!_OS, and sourcing, converting and updating that content takes time; please be patient. If you can't find what you're looking for here, check the Arch Linux and Ubuntu wikis.

General recommendations

This document is an annotated index of popular articles and important information for improving and adding functionalities to Pop!_OS.

System administration

This section deals with administrative tasks and system management. For more, please see Core utilities and Category:System administration.

Users and groups

During the installation process, you will create your first system user. Once installation is complete, you will be left with this user, as well as the superuser account, better known as "root". The unprivileged user account created during installation is the account you will log in with, and will be used for most tasks. The root account should be used only when absolutely necessary for system administration. Leaving the root account logged in is insecure.

Users and groups are a mechanism for access control; administrators may fine-tune group membership and ownership to grant or deny users and services access to system resources. Read the Users and groups article for details and potential security risks.

Privilege escalation

Both the su and sudo commands allow you to run commands as another user. By default su drops you to a login shell as the root user, and sudo by default temporarily grants you root privileges for a single command. See their respective articles for differences.

Service management

Pop!_OS uses systemd as the init process, which is a system and service manager for Linux. For maintaining your Pop!_OS installation, it is a good idea to learn the basics about it. Interaction with systemd is done through the systemctl command. Read systemd#Basic systemctl usage for more information.

Package management

This section contains helpful information related to package management. For more, please see FAQ#Package management and Category:Package management.

apt

apt is the Pop!_OS package manager: it is strongly recommended that all users become familiar with it before reading any other articles.

See apt/Tips and tricks for suggestions on how to improve your interaction with apt and package management in general.

Repositories

See the Official repositories article for details about the repositories enabled by default on a clean Pop!_OS installation.

PPAs

Personal Package Archives (PPAs) are a type of user-managed apt repository which allows you to upload source packages to be built and published on Launchpad. While PPAs are commonly used to install and manage software not included in the official repositories, it is worth noting that they are user managed, so should be used with care. Read the Launchpad Help article] for further information.

Booting

This section contains information pertaining to the boot process. An overview of the Pop!_OS boot process can be found at Pop!_OS boot process. For more, please see Category:Boot process.

Hardware auto-recognition

Hardware should be auto-detected by udev during the boot process by default. A potential improvement in boot time can be achieved by disabling module auto-loading and specifying required modules manually, as described in Kernel modules. Additionally, Xorg should be able to auto-detect required drivers using udev, but users have the option to configure the X server manually too.

Retaining boot messages

Once it concludes, the screen is cleared and the login prompt appears, leaving users unable to gather feedback from the boot process. Disable clearing of boot messages to overcome this limitation.

Num Lock activation

Num Lock is a toggle key found in most keyboards. For activating Num Lock's number key-assignment during startup, see Activating Numlock on Bootup.

Graphical user interface

This section provides orientation for users wishing to run graphical applications on their system. See Category:Graphical user interfaces for additional resources.

Display server

Xorg is the public, open-source implementation of the X Window System (commonly X11, or X). It is required for running applications with graphical user interfaces (GUIs), and the majority of users will want to install it.

Wayland is a newer, alternative display server protocol and the Weston reference implementation is available.

Desktop environments

Although Pop!_OS comes bundled with the GNOME desktop environment, there are many other options available. Popular environments such as KDE, LXDE and Xfce bundle a wide range of X clients, such as a window manager, panel, file manager, terminal emulator, text editor, icons and other utilities. See Category:Desktop environments for additional resources.

Window managers

A full-fledged desktop environment provides a complete and consistent graphical user interface, but tends to consume a considerable amount of system resources. Users seeking to maximize performance or otherwise simplify their environment may opt to install a window manager alone and hand-pick desired extras. Most desktop environments allow use of an alternative window manager as well. Dynamic, stacking, and tiling window managers differ in their handling of window placement.

Power management

This section may be of use to laptop owners or users otherwise seeking power management controls. For more, please see Category:Power management.

See Power management for more general overview.

ACPI events

Users can configure how the system reacts to ACPI events such as pressing the power button or closing a laptop's lid. For the new (recommended) method using systemd, see Power management with systemd.

CPU frequency scaling

Modern processors can decrease their frequency and voltage to reduce heat and power consumption. Less heat leads to more quiet system and prolongs the life of hardware. See CPU frequency scaling for details.

Laptops

For articles related to portable computing along with model-specific installation guides, please see Category:Laptops. For a general overview of laptop-related articles and recommendations, see Laptop.

Suspend and Hibernate

See main article: Suspend and hibernate.

Multimedia

Category:Multimedia includes additional resources.

Sound

Sound is provided by kernel sound drivers:

  • ALSA is included with the kernel and is recommended because usually it works out of the box (it just needs to be unmuted).
  • OSS is a viable alternative in case ALSA does not work.

Users may additionally wish to install and configure a sound server such as PulseAudio. For advanced audio requirements, see professional audio.

Browser plugins

For access to certain web content, browser plugins such as Adobe Acrobat Reader and Java can be installed.

Codecs

Codecs are utilized by multimedia applications to encode or decode audio or video streams. In order to play encoded streams, users must ensure an appropriate codec is installed.

Networking

This section is confined to small networking procedures. Head over to Network configuration for a full guide. For more, please see Category:Networking.

DNS security

For better security while browsing web, paying online, connecting to SSH services and similar tasks consider using DNSSEC-enabled client software which can validate signed DNS records, and DNSCrypt to encrypt DNS traffic.

Setting up a firewall

A firewall can provide an extra layer of protection on top of the Linux networking stack. It is highly recommended to set up some form of firewall. See Category:Firewalls for available guides.

Resource sharing

To share files among the machines in a network, follow the NFS or the SSHFS article.

Use Samba to join a Windows network. To configure the machine to use Active Directory for authentication, read Active Directory Integration.

See also Category:Network sharing.

Input devices

This section contains popular input device configuration tips. For more, please see Category:Input devices.

Keyboard layouts

Non-English or otherwise non-standard keyboards may not function as expected by default. The necessary steps to configure the keymap are different for virtual console and Xorg, they are described in Keyboard configuration in console and Keyboard configuration in Xorg respectively.

Mouse buttons

Owners of advanced or unusual mice may find that not all mouse buttons are recognized by default, or may wish to assign different actions for extra buttons. Instructions can be found in Mouse buttons.

Laptop touchpads

Many laptops use Synaptics or ALPS "touchpad" pointing devices. For these, and several other touchpad models, you can use either the Synaptics input driver or libinput; see Touchpad Synaptics and libinput for installation and configuration details.

TrackPoints

See the TrackPoint article to configure your TrackPoint device.

Optimization

This section aims to summarize tweaks, tools and available options useful to improve system and application performance.

Benchmarking

Benchmarking is the act of measuring performance and comparing the results to another system's results or a widely accepted standard through a unified procedure.

Improving performance

The Improving performance article gathers information and is a basic rundown about gaining performance in Pop!_OS.

Solid state drives

The Solid State Drives article covers many aspects of solid state drives, including configuring them to maximize their lifetimes.

System service

This section relates to daemons. For more, please see Category:Daemons and system services.

File index and search

Most distributions have a locate command available to be able to quickly search for files. To get this functionality in Pop!_OS, mlocate is the recommended install. After the install you should run updatedb to index the filesystems.

Desktop search engines provide a similar service, while better integrated into desktop environments.

Local mail delivery

A default setup does not provide a way to sync mail. To configure Postfix for simple local mailbox delivery, see Postfix. Other options are SSMTP, msmtp and fdm.

Printing

CUPS is a standards-based, open source printing system developed by Apple. See Category:Printers for printer-specific articles.

Appearance

This section contains frequently-sought "eye candy" tweaks for an aesthetically pleasing Pop!_OS experience. For more, please see Category:Eye candy.

Fonts

You may wish to install a set of TrueType fonts. There are several general-purpose font families providing large Unicode coverage and even metric compatibility with fonts from other operating systems.

A plethora of information on the subject can be found in the Fonts and Font configuration articles.

If spending a significant amount of time working from the virtual console (i.e. outside an X server), users may wish to change the console font to improve readability; see Linux_console#Fonts.

GTK+ and Qt themes

A big part of the applications with a graphical interface for Linux systems are based on the GTK+ or the Qt toolkits. See those articles and Uniform look for Qt and GTK applications for ideas to improve the appearance of your installed programs and adapt it to your liking.

Console improvements

This section applies to small modifications that improve console programs' practicality. For more, please see Category:Command shells.

Tab-completion enhancements

It is recommended to properly set up extended tab completion right away, as instructed in the article of your chosen shell.

Aliases

Aliasing a command, or a group thereof, is a way of saving time when using the console. This is specially helpful for repetitive tasks that do not need significant alteration to their parameters between executions. Common time-saving aliases can be found in Bash#Aliases, which are easily portable to zsh as well.

Alternative shells

Bash is the shell that is installed by default in a Pop!_OS system. See Command-line shell#List of shells for more alternatives.

Bash additions

A list of miscellaneous Bash settings, history search and Readline macros is available in Bash#Tips and tricks.

Colored output

This section is covered in Color output in console.

Compressed files

Compressed files, or archives, are frequently encountered on a GNU/Linux system. Tar is one of the most commonly used archiving tools, and users should be familiar with its syntax. See Archiving and compression.

Console prompt

The console prompt (PS1) can be customized to a great extent. See Bash/Prompt customization or Zsh#Prompts if using Bash or Zsh, respectively.

Emacs shell

Emacs is known for featuring options beyond the duties of regular text editing, one of these being a full shell replacement. Consult Emacs#Colored output issues for a fix regarding garbled characters that may result from enabling colored output.

Mouse support

Using a mouse with the console for copy-paste operations can be preferred over GNU Screen's traditional copy mode. Refer to General purpose mouse for comprehensive directions. Note that you can already do this in terminal emulators with the clipboard.

Scrollback buffer

To be able to save and view text which has scrolled off the screen, refer to General troubleshooting#Scrollback.

Session management

Using terminal multiplexers like tmux or GNU Screen, programs may be run under sessions composed of tabs and panes that can be detached at will, so when the user either kills the terminal emulator, terminates X, or logs off, the programs associated with the session will continue to run in the background as long as the terminal multiplexer server is active. Interacting with the programs requires reattaching to the session.