Inkscape tip: make arrow head’s color match that of its body

I have encountered the problem more than once, and it is a bit annoying to say the least. Basically, when you build a path/arrow in Inkscape, it starts as a black curve by default. You can edit it to put a marker in either or both ends (Click on the curve, then Object->Fill and Stroke->Stroke Style), to make an arrow, for example.

Now, the problem is that if you change the color of the body of the arrow, the head will remain black, as documented, for example, in A Guide to Inkscape, by Tavmjong Bah. Not nice, uh? The solution is given in the same site, and consists on using a plugin. To do so, select: Effects->Modify Path->Color Markers to Match Stroke.

If you are a Debian user, you might encounter a problem: a window pops up saying The module requires PyXML. This has been reported as a bug, and also happens for Ubuntu. The solution is to install the python-xml package, which is not always installed by default when you install Inkscape, it is just “suggested”. This means that when you install Inkscape (aptitude install inkscape), aptitude will tell you something like “The package python-xml is recommended, but it is not going to be installed”, and will go on happily. If (like me) you ignore the suggestion, you will not have the python-xml package installed, and some extensions, like the above, will not work (however this allows the users that do not want to use the plugins to have a lighter instalation, if they so wish).

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Xgl with Xfce under Debian Etch


d/l .debs from


add “/usr/share/fonts/X11/misc/” to the Xgl command in, otherwise it gives “could not open default font ‘fixed'”


Debian secure APT

The APT package management tool has a GPG signature checking system I keep forgeting how to configure in new Debian installs. This post is simply a reminder.

First step, get signature of official Debian repositories:

# wget - -O - | apt-key add -
# aptitude update

Then, if we have other (non-official) repositories, the “aptitude update” above will give us errors like:

W: GPG error: http:whatever Release: The following signatures couldn't be verified because the public key is not available: NO_PUBKEY XXXXXXXXYYYYYYYY W: You may want to run apt-get update to correct these problems

It means that repository “http://whatever” has a signature that is not in the list of your trusted signatures. From the “XXXXXXXXYYYYYYYY” number, take the last 8 digits (the Ys), and do the following:

gpg --keyserver --recv-key YYYYYYYY

This downloads the PGP key of that repository (from a trusted site, like Then you have to add it to your list of trusted keys:

gpg -a --export YYYYYYYY | apt-key add -

This last bit will output “gpg: no ultimately trusted keys found”, followed by an “OK”. You can safely ignore the warning. The procedure worked.

The info has been taken from the Debian Wiki.

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