Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Ubuntu 12.04 - Hide the Recent Items in the Dash and Stop the Logging!

I really like Ubuntu 12.04. I even like the Unity Desktop (despite the general hatred it seems to attract amongst many users), it works really well on my netbook. However, Ubuntu has a lot of privacy issues, not the least of which is the integration of zeitgeist into Unity.

Here's what I did to get zeitgeist to stop logging. The "Privacy" app under System Settings never seemed to work properly, and clearing the history still left all sorts of information in the log files.

First, remove zeitgeist. I did this with synaptic. Don't remove the related libs, however, as Unity needs them. Restart the system.

Then, kill the running zeitgeist processes:

sudo killall -9 zeitgeist-fts zeitgeist-datahub zeitgeist-daemon
Then, remove the existing logs:

cd $HOME/.local/share/zeitgeist
rm activity*
You can use srm if you feel it is necessary. Restart the system.

Upon restart, Zeitgeist will recreate the log files, albeit they will be essentially empty. Now set them to read-only:

cd $HOME/.local/share/zeitgeist
sudo chmod ugo-w act*

Restart once more.

Once I did all this, the dash did not populate with recently used files, and the zeitgeist logs remained static. YMMV!