Removing Zeitgeist

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Removing Zeitgeist

Postby xenopeek on Sat Aug 04, 2012 3:57 pm

Zeitgeist is a service which logs the user's activities and events (files opened, websites visited, conversations held with other people, etc.) and makes the relevant information available to other applications.

It serves as a comprehensive activity log and also makes it possible to determine relationships between items based on usage patterns.

If the above description taken from the Zeitgeist packages doesn't sound useful to you, or possibly even makes you worry about security implications, you may agree with me and want to remove Zeitgeist. Linuxaria had an article how to do this for Ubuntu, which inspired me to write this tutorial for Linux Mint.

This tutorial was tested on Linux Mint 13 MATE and Linux Mint 13 Cinnamon. You may also want to remove the software from Linux Mint 13 Xfce, though Zeitgeist is not active on that edition (so only perform step 2). Zeitgeist isn't installed on Linux Mint 13 KDE, though that has its own similar service in the form of Nepomuk.

There are three steps to removing Zeitgeist:

1. Stop the Zeitgeist daemon:
Code: Select all
zeitgeist-daemon --quit

2. Remove the Zeitgeist software (this is one command, it overflows to two lines):
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get --purge autoremove activity-log-manager-common activity-log-manager-control-center zeitgeist zeitgeist-core zeitgeist-datahub

3. Remove the Zeitgeist created files from all users' home directories:
Code: Select all
sudo rm -fr {/root,/home/*}/.local/share/zeitgeist

I've left libzeitgeist-1.0-1 and python-zeitgeist installed, as the packages gedit and nautilus depend on the first and gedit-plugins depends on the latter. If you can do without Gedit and Nautilus, go ahead an also remove these packages. These are just libraries and don't actually do the activity logging, so there is no harm in leaving them.
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby oobetimer on Sun Aug 05, 2012 3:12 pm

All that zeitgeist spying-ware is made for Unity, and Unity´s Dash does not work without that spying-ware. One more reason for avoiding Unity .. :lol:
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby fraze on Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:46 pm

This should be mandatory for laptops, I see zeitgeist wasting cycles far too often and all that zeitgeist disk access can't be good for battery life either.
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby nomko on Sat Aug 18, 2012 4:49 am

I always wondered what that Zeitgeist is and in most articles i've been reading on the internet, i end up with Ubuntu. Is this some sort of standard kernel-build-in application???
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby xenopeek on Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:42 am

Zeitgeist is a Gnome application to collect data on your activities (what files you open, what people you email, and so on). It makes this data available to other applications. Apparently this is somehow useful, though I've yet to see a use for it myself. Nepomuk on KDE does the same.
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby dalcde on Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:16 am

oobetimer wrote:All that zeitgeist spying-ware is made for Unity, and Unity´s Dash does not work without that spying-ware. One more reason for avoiding Unity .. :lol:


Probably not. Zeitgeist was released in July 2009. Unity was released in June 2010. And just because Unity requires Zeitgeist doesn't mean that Zeitgeist was made for Unity. Linux itself requires C but C wasn't written for Linux.

And Zeitgeist isn't spy-ware. It just logs what you've read. It's just like Firefox remembering your browsing history.
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Re: Removing Zeitgeist

Postby nomko on Sat Aug 18, 2012 1:08 pm

Vincent Vermeulen wrote:Zeitgeist is a Gnome application to collect data on your activities (what files you open, what people you email, and so on). It makes this data available to other applications. Apparently this is somehow useful, though I've yet to see a use for it myself. Nepomuk on KDE does the same.

Okay...that's why i get Nepomuk too when installing K3B...
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