The Ultimate Blogging Client for Linux

How it all started

Ever since i started a blog i had always wanted a wanted a application which would allow me do my blogging (preferably offline ) without having to use the web browser. One of the reasons for this was because i (as at then) did not have a stable Internet connection and had to go to Internet cafe to do my blogging which wasn’t really convenient. I wanted a way to do my blogging offline and then upload later. Even when i had a stable Internet connection i still prefer to having to use a browser for blogging. Unfortunately for me most of the blogging applications ( Drivel BloGTK KBlogger gnome-blog) i tried on Linux just didn’t cut it, some didn’t work with wordpress and the once that did weren’t powerful enough or were buggy or just too basic.

I gave up and resigned my self to the web for blogging. This was until recently when (I Cant quite remember how it happened) i found about about Bilbo Blogger and Beng. I saw the tool i just needed

Bilbo Blogger

Bilbo Blogger is a free/Open Source Blogging client, focused on simplicity and usability. Its is based on Qt4 (KDE) but should work well on gnome (i haven’t tried it but it should.. just remember i said should)

Here are some Summary of some of its Features

Currently featured:

  • A full featured WYSIWYG editor + An HTML editor
  • Previewing your post with your blog style! like when you are visiting it at your blog.
  • Support for Blogger1.0, MetaWeblog, MovableType (WordPress supports All of these!) and Google GData (used on Blogspot.com blogs) APIs!
  • Support for Creating/Modifying/Deleting posts.
  • Support for creating drafts and scheduled posts!
  • Support for uploading media files to your blog (Just on supported APIs e.g. MetaWeblog and MovableType)
  • Support for Fetching your recent blog entries.
  • Support for adding Images to post from your system. It will upload them on
  • Submitting post to blog (Just on supported APIs e.g. MetaWeblog and MovableType)
  • Support for saving local entries before publishing.Saving your writing copy to prevent data loss, at configurable intervals.
  • Internal auto spell checker. (KDE spell checker used so most of languages are supported)

Installation

Although as of blog time there were only two binaries available for Linux and one for windows.

Archlinux users Bilbo should be available in the arch community repository ( am not sure about this as i don’t have an arch installation to confirm) but in any case an arch package can be downloaded from here

(K)Ubuntu

To install on ubuntu. You are going to add a third party repository popularly called PPA To your system. This is not hard.

To start open Terminal and copy and paste the following command (you can do this via GUI but when writing a guide some things are better down using commandline copy and paste of cause i would explain every process so at least you know what you are doing)

First we download and add the key for the repository we are about to use and add it to how system.

sudo apt-key adv --recv-keys --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com 0xfe0272d55c41c17774052e575646f8b10331274d

Then we add the repository with this command

echo deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/neversfelde/ppa/ubuntu `lsb_release --short --codename` main | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list

Then we refresh the system and download bilbo with

sudo apt-get update ; sudo apt-get install bilbo

Once installed you can find Bilbo on the Internet section of your application Menu

Now i give a brief guide on how to configure Bilbi blogger to your blog

First your start bilbo ( like you don’t know that already hehe) once installed you will find it under the Internet section of your application menu.

The first thing you want to do is to add a blog, (my blog is hosted on wordpress.com hence that is what this guide would be based on. )

Just select Add Blog from under Blog menu

add a blog

This would open a dialog box, something like this

blog-address

Type in the URL of your blog then enter your blogs username and password and click the Auto Configure button. In my case it was http://ubuntunigeria.wordpress.com and i clicked the Auto Configure button. Then Bilbo would work its magic and Auto configure the settings for the blog. If all goes well (and it always did in my case) The dialog box would now look like this.

autoconfigure

Bilbo has auto configured my blog settings, pulling the Title of the blog, the correct URL. You can go to the Supported features tab and check out the list of features bilbo has support in your blog here is mine

supported features

Once your blog is configured and loaded up. you would see a page which looks like this.

bilbo-blog

So here is the layout of Bilbo Blogger, it always you to use both WYSIWYG, or for code warriors you can always use the HTML editor field. one really cool feature with bilbo is the ability to preview you draft and see how it would look like on the blog page, This for me is one of its killer features

HTML Editor

html editor

Normal Preview

Preview with blog style

blog style preview

Other cool features of Bilbo

  • It support multiple blogs hence you can setup more than one blog at a time.
  • It also allows you to edit previous blog posts ( or delete them)
  • If you are working on a blog post, you can always tell it to save locally, like as i was writing this post, i got disconnected, if i was using the web interface i might have lost some of my works or would have to wait for the Internet to get back before i continue. With bilbo i just told it to save my work locally and continued working.
  • It also allows you to add tags and post the blog to a category
  • tags

Bilbo also supports tabs you can edit more than one blog at a time with it just by opening a new tab.

Most importantly i found bilbo to be very stable, its doesn’t slow down on me or crash on me. i never experience on crash with it.

There is just so much to talk about Bilbo you would have to give it a spin to see your self.

I hope someone finds this useful.

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  • Hi I tried adding it to my repositories via the terminal but I am getting an error when trying to update. I am using Mint Gloria. I am looking forward to testing it when it its working. Will try it manually.

    • hmm the guide is meant for ubuntu, and some part of it ( the part on add bilbo repository to your system) would not work on linux mint .. can you paste the error you are getting so i can have a look. and if u have time u can met me on yahoo IM am bigbrovar there

  • The error I am getting is
    lsb_release: error: No arguments are permitted. I think it was because of the apostrophes that were in the url.

    I went to the launchpad site and installed from there. It loaded up fine although I haven’t tested it yet.
    https://launchpad.net/~neversfelde/+archive/ppa
    Thanks for the post.

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  • nobu^

    nice program! I’m a “web-guy”, but if I’ll do some offline blogging, I’ll use this, thanx πŸ™‚

  • Jim

    Neat app, thanks for that.

    It is available in the Fedora repos too.

    • Oh that is could to know i would add this info to the guide thanks

  • Yes! Bilbo is the best. I’ve checked many softwares and only bilbo “worked” for me.

  • Cool

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  • I can confirm that Bilbo Blogger will run under Gnome, provided you install the necessary Qt4 and KDE4 libs. “Requirements to Install” on the Bilbo website (http://bilbo.gnufolks.org/download/#install_from_source) points you in the right direction.

  • Thanks for the heads up. I just tried Bilbo with my Blogger blog it works great. And the html it generates is definitely better and cleaner than the one generated by Blogger’s online WYSIWYG editor.

    Lovin’ it!

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  • Bilbo just f*ck**g lost my work… Where are the “saved locally” files?!! Do anyone here konws?

    • eagerforknowledge

      I was looking myself for drafts that were “saved locally”. After searching for some time found out that under “Toolbox” there is an entry “Local Entries”.

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  • Thanks a lot for writing about this tool. I have been wanting to have nice blogging client for some time now, not that wordpress WYSWYG editor is ugly but it is just little time consuming to hit refresh after each modification.

  • Thanx! Just tried Bilbo and it works fine, running under Karmic Koala. Keep up the gr8 posts.

  • Thank you very much! This program is exactly what I needed.

  • suppot blogger/blogspot?

    • Yes, it does. But no image uploads and labels though if I remember correctly.

  • I’m sold πŸ™‚

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  • Jim

    Just updating that it is now known as Blogilo due to some issues with the previous name. The full story is on the site and a discussion of the possible original of the new name is on the Fedora forum at http://forums.fedoraforum.org/showthread.php?t=243354

  • Hello everybody. I read this post and I tried with Blogilo (the new name for Bilbo) but I couldn’t find the way to get an word counter in it. Do you know another Ubuntu software to blogging with ‘word counter’ included?

    I was trying with BloGTK, Scribfire, Drival but all of them haven’t word counter.

    Thank you.

  • Amf

    Will be trying to use this later. I’m updating ubuntu right now! Thanks for the great info

  • Thanks. Will probably try it myself as the latest wordpress version is slowing down my low end computer every now and then. Hope this will make my work more comfortable. Thanks!

  • I’m getting an error installing bilbo. It says the package doesn’t exist. More precisely, it says “E: Unable to locate package bilbo”