Ubuntu: How to install the Classic Desktop in Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)

Ubuntu 11.10 will not include the classic GNOME desktop which is available alongside Unity in Ubuntu 11.04. Ubuntu 11.10 will automatically use Unity as its default session and fall back to Unity 2D for those whose computers do not support 3D graphics. But if you truly want to go back to Ubuntu Classic Desktop without Unity, then this tutorial will show you how to do it easily. All that’s requires is installing a few extra packages and performing a tweak here and there.

The first step is to install the ‘gnome-fallback-session’. To get started, press Ctrl – Alt – T to open Terminal. When terminal opens, type the commands below to install Gnome Session Fallback.

sudo apt-get install gnome-session-fallback

After installing, logout and choose GNOME Classic. This will give you a traditional GNOME desktop with top and bottom panels and the Compiz window manager. If you don’t want Compiz’s desktop effects, select the GNOME Classic (No effects) option for the window manager instead.

It’s GNOME 2-ish, but with a few tweaks we can make the Classic Session look better.


Change the panel background

Alt+Right click on the top paneland choose ‘Properties’
Select the ‘background’ tab
Select background image and click the button
Navigate/select ‘usr/share/themes/Ambiance/gtk-2.0/apps/img/panel.png’

Install Ubuntu indicators

Add ‘ppa:jconti/gnome3‘ to your Software Sources:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:jconti/gnome3

Update, then install ‘indicator-applet-complete’:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install indicator-applet-complete

Alt+Right click on the top panel and choose ‘Add Applets’
Add ‘Indicator Applet Complete’

Add the Ubuntu Logo to ‘App Menu’

Open a new Terminal

gksu gedit /usr/share/themes/Ambiance/gtk-3.0/apps/gnome-panel.css

Add ‘-PanelMenuBar-icon-visible: true;’ to the bottom of the ‘PanelMenuBar.menubar.menuitem’ item
Save and logout/login to see changes.


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