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UPDATE: This "mode" is no longer supported and can be considered deprecated.

Please download Webconverger to use Debian as a Web kiosk.

So you're a super smart Debian/Ubuntu geek. :)

Here's a chance to impress when you have friends over. Hopefully your friends like computers too via the familiar Firefox Web browser.

To save some blushes when your 'personal' Web history might be exposed whilst showing your friends some cool new Web application...

Use Webconverger!

Add:

deb http://debian.webconverger.com/ lenny/

To your '/etc/apt/sources.list'

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install webconverger-base iceweasel-webconverger

You should then be prompted to install two packages:

iceweasel-webconverger - the firefox extension to lock down the browser
webconverger-base - the bits that create a private browser using webc

Install them. Now the geeky part:

  1. [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[F6] and login into tty6 with your usual username.
  2. sudo su - webc
  3. startx -- :1

Here we launch a seperate X session in the webc's user sandboxed space.

  • [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[F7] should get you back to your normal X :0
  • [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[F8] switches you to your second webc X :1

To quit and clean up, on your second X :1 [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[Backspace] and logout from the webc user and finally:

sudo apt-get remove webconverger-base iceweasel-webconverger

iceweasel-webconverger atm will lock down any user's browser on your system. So you might want to uninstall it once you're done.

Webconverger aims to uphold your privacy with this Internet Appliance aka Web Kiosk standalone mode for your Debian/Ubuntu system. This is an initial release, so my clever brethren, if you spot any security bugs in webconverger-base, do tell.

P.S. If you have no friends this Webconverger mode is good for porn. ;)