I install lots of software that I use nearly every day. Here is a list of what I am installing from the start:

(*) gnome-do
(*) crossover office (PAID SOFTWARE) [Microsoft Office 2008, Vector Magic]
(*) crossover games (PAID SOFTWARE)
gcolor2
gscan2pdf
hugin
inkscape
(*) dropbox
ktorrent
nicotine-plus
(*) opera
abiword
bluefish
(*) banshee
dvd::rip
(*) gpodder (needs python-gpod to work with iPods)
pulse audio volume control (pavu-control)
VLC
compiz fusion icon
(*) Mathematica 7
compiz control settings manager (ccsm)
powertop
gparted
ntfsprogs
hfsprogs
kerneloops
gthumb
subversion
bootchart
wacomtools
xflux (see my guide on installing this)
citrix (see my guide on installing this)

Those programs prefixed with (*) should NOT be installed from the Ubuntu repositories. Either they are not in the repos, or I don’t like the version in the repos.

In order to do this, some custom repositories (Launchpad PPAs) must be added. See the following section for how to install software from Launchpad PPAs.

If you want to install most of these at once, you can use the following command:
$ sudo apt-get install gcolor2 gscan2pdf hugin inkscape ktorrent nicotine bluefish dvdrip pavucontrol vlc fusion-icon compizconfig-settings-manager powertop gparted kerneloops gthumb subversion bootchart ntfsprogs hfsprogs wacom-tools xournal cellwriter

Installing Software from a Launchpad PPA.

In order to do this, open System > Administration > Software Sources > Third Party Software and “Add” the following lines:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/banshee-team/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/banshee-team/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

Once you do this, click close, but not refresh (if you do refresh you will get an error, just ignore that until you complete the next step.)

Now for the tricky part of adding custom PPAs — adding the public keys. What you will need to do from the launchpad PPA page is follow these instructions:

On each Launchpad PPA Page will be a line of text similar to the following:
screenshot

“This repository is signed with 1024R/6E80C6B7 OpenPGP key. Follow these instructions for installing packages from this PPA. ”

To install the key, click the link that the numbers are linked, and then again click the “Key ID” link on the next page (another set of numbers). Now you will be at the public key page. From here, copy-paste everything from
“—–BEGIN PGP PUBLIC KEY BLOCK—–” to “—–END PGP PUBLIC KEY BLOCK—–”
into a new text document (make it on your desktop, it doesn’t matter where really). Then save this document with any name, close the text editor, then open back up System > Administration > Software Sources, go to the “Authentication” tab, click “import key file” then select the file you created. Once you do this you are okay to delete the file.

Now you are ready to install the program from synaptic, or apt-get.