FieldWorks Installation Instructions
These are instructions for installing and testing FieldWorks on Linux.
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Preparing Your System
- 3 Installing FieldWorks
- 4 Using FieldWorks
- 5 Getting Help and Reporting Bugs
This software is still in the beta release phase and so is not as polished as a full release would be. It may crash from time to time, and various features may not work properly. Please report any bugs you find, and subscribe to our blog (using RSS).
Note: The Linux version may not match the latest released version on Windows. Newer versions of FieldWorks can import data from an older version, but the reverse is not true. If you plan to import data from an existing FieldWorks installation (eg on Windows) this can be done only if the data is from a version that is the same as or older than the Linux version you are using. So if your FieldWorks version on Windows is newer than the version you are about to install on Linux, you will not be able to import your data, unless you do it from an older backup that was created with a compatible version of FieldWorks. The Linux version number may have a suffix like ~beta6 but this is not significant when comparing version numbers for data compatibility.
This version has been tested using Ubuntu 12.04 (Precise), Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric), Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty), Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick) and Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (Lucid). It may also work on other distros and releases but will need to be built from source. Another alternative, if you are using an RPM packaging system, is to try using Alien to install FieldWorks.
Note that on Linux you do not download an installer but instead you enable a software source (aka package repository) as described below. The software will then show up as an additional package in the list of available software on your system.
There is a list of “known issues” for this release here.
Preparing Your System
Enable Visual Effects
We urge you to run FieldWorks with Visual Effects set to Normal (ie Compiz enabled). This gives much better screen performance when using FieldWorks. Unfortunately if you are running Linux in a Virtual environment you may not be able to turn this on.
To check your settings, choose System > Preferences > Appearance. Click the Visual Effects tab. Click Normal. FieldWorks will run without Compiz for those who can not get Compiz turned on for some reason, but expect your screen performance to deteriorate as a result.
For Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty) and later, visual effects will be enabled by default. To change your Compiz visual effects, you will first need to install the CompizConfig Settings Manager.
Install all Updates
Before you begin testing or using FieldWorks on Linux, you will need to install all updates for your system. Instructions for doing this can be found here.
Enable Universe and Multiverse repositories
Start Synaptic and go to Settings > Respositories (On Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty) and higher: start Software Sources) and check to see that the Community-maintained Open Source software (universe) is checked, and also the Software restricted by copyright or legal issues (multiverse). If you have to check either of these, then click Reload.
Prepare to install MSCoreFonts and FlashPlugin
If you are behind a proxy and do not already have the ttf-mscorefonts-installer package or the flashplugin-installer package installed, then please follow these steps so that these packages will install correctly.
Add SIL Package Repositories
Using your browser of choice, go to:
and follow the instructions there for adding the SIL package repository to your list of software sources. Make sure that you can now see
packages.sil.org in the Origin tab on the left-hand side of the Synaptic Package Manager.
Go back to Software Sources and make an additional entry for
packages.sil.org, but this time when changing the distro name add
-experimental to the end of the name, with no space before it, just directly to the end of the name. For example, if you are currently using
lucid main use
lucid-experimental main. (You don't need to add the key again.) Close the window and click the reload button.
Unfortunately, the SIL repositories do not handle authentication correctly at the moment, and so you will see warnings about unauthenticated packages even though you have installed the repository key on your system. In Ubuntu 10.10 onwards, Ubuntu Software Centre and Update Manager refuse to install unauthenticated packages, so it’s necessary to use Synaptic Package Manager (on the System > Administration menu) to install FieldWorks. You may need to install Synaptic since it is no longer installed by default in later versions of Ubuntu. The rest of these instructions assume you are using Synaptic.
You should now see the following packages under
packages.sil.org in Synaptic's Origin view:
fieldworks for installation will automatically select all of the packages in this list.
fieldworks-applications for installation will automatically select
fieldworks-mono-basic, and any other needed dependencies. You can also add the sample data by selecting
Proceed with the installation in the normal way.
Note: If you are upgrading from a previous version you may have numerous setup or starting difficulties, or get an error similar to this:
trying to overwrite '…', which is also in package fieldworks 7.0.0~alpha7
If this happens, remove the existing
fieldworks package before installing the new one.
For proper testing of the Beta packages, it would be useful to remove all previous information so you start out fresh. Be sure to first backup any data you are using for testing. Unintall previous versions of FieldWorks and see Previous FieldWorks Alphas for how to manually remove configuration information.
Copy Sample Data
For testing purposes, some sample data has been provided. As of Beta5 this sample data is already available when you choose to open an existing project if this is your first time to install FieldWorks. If you are just upgrading and want to use the sample data, you will still need to manually copy it as described. Please check that the software works with this sample data before importing your own data as this will make it much easier to diagnose any installation problems. To use the sample data in previous Beta versions, follow the instructions at FieldWorks Sample Data
Run the applications
To run either Translation Editor (TE) or Language Explorer (Flex), do the following:
- For current Ubuntu versions, use the Dash and type in FieldWorks. For older versions Choose Applications > Education > FieldWorks Translation Editor or FieldWorks Language Explorer.
- On the dialog, click Open an existing Project.
- Click Sena 3 or Sena 2 if they are in the list. If not then click Open project in another location.
- Navigate to your home folder (Personal) and click the Sena 3 or Sena 2 folder, then click Open.
- Now click on Sena 3.fwdata file or the Sena 2.fwdata file and click Open.
TE or Flex should now open with the data you selected. The next time you run the application it will open with this same data.
You may get a warning about the Global Writing Systems Changed, or the Writing Systems for certain languages have changed, just click yes.
FieldWorks has context sensitive Help, student manuals and Demo movies. Please see Using FieldWorks Help for notes about using these various helps in FieldWorks.
Keyboarding in FieldWorks
Keyboarding for FieldWorks should now be able to use XKB (System keyboards) or to use IBus, which is what is used in Ubuntu 9.10 and Ubuntu 10.04. Scim will not work for FieldWorks. A KMFL package for IBus is available from packages.sil.org for Ubuntu versions. IBus comes with many language keyboard options already available. If you need help with installing and using KMFL, please see Installing KMFL on Ubuntu. There is now a package available for the KMFL IPA keyboard at packages.sil.org. Installing this package will put all the files in the proper place, then you can continue to follow the instructions for adding this into IBus.
Getting rid of old configurations
If you have used previous FieldWorks packages, even previous Beta's, it may be necessary to get rid of some configuration files before the current version will run correctly. So if you have followed all the preceding directions, downloaded and installed the current version and tried to run either Translation Editor or Language Explorer, you may get an error when opening the sample projects or your own projects. If this happens to you, see Previous FieldWorks Alphas to correct this error.
Getting Help and Reporting Bugs
There is a discussion group for Flex on Linux. You can ask general questions there.
However, if you've found what looks like a bug, please report it using our Bugzilla database. This makes it much easier for the developers to process.
To use Bugzilla:
- If not already registered, click the New Account button at the top of the main page.
- If not already logged in, log in using the link and fields at the top of the page.
- Check whether an identical or similar bug has been reported, by doing one of the following:
- Click FieldWorks at the bottom of the page to browse all outstanding bugs.
- Click Search, select FieldWorks from the Product drop-down and enter some words to search for.
- Submit your information, by doing one of the following:
- Add a comment to an existing bug, if appropriate:
- Type some text into the Additional Comments box
- Click Commit
- File a new bug:
- Click New at the top of the page.
- Click FieldWorks.
- Fill out as much information as you can and click Commit.
- Add a comment to an existing bug, if appropriate:
Please note that the email address that you register with will be displayed on the web site and therefore will be publicly visible.