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Add gnome desktop to Ubuntu 12.04

How to add gnome desktop to Ubuntu 12.04

-Initial problem description
-Further Thoughts

Initial problem description ↑

When upgrading from Ubuntu 10.04 at the end of its lifecycle to Ubuntu 12.04 I was presented with the new Unity desktop with its dock for launching applications and a startling lack of the classic "start" button to use a windows metaphor with its application browsing menu. I tried using Unity for a number of days in hopes of finding its secrets but I only experienced a frustrating learning curve that didn't improve. Maybe I am getting too old to relish change for changes sake but I wanted my gnome desktop back.

Solution ↑

Fortunately others have gone down this road before and I was able to find instructions easily enough: 1 (Here is the usual disclaimer - do this at your own risk. If the computer system is destroyed, data lost, or it eat's your dog, I accept no responsibility ;-)

1) Make sure our system is uptodate before starting:

> sudo apt-get update
> sudo apt-get upgrade

2) add the gnome repository to our package manager:

> sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3

3) update our package manager with the new repository:

> sudo apt-get -f update

4) Add gnome-shell and gnome-tweek-tool for customising your setup as well as gnome-session-fallback
-just in case:

> sudo apt-get -f install gnome-shell gnome-tweak-tool gnome-session-fallback

After rebooting, I could choose the gnome desktop option at the greeting screen where I am asked to input my user password by selecting the login customisation button. Ahh .... a sigh of familiarity and satisfaction was heard breathed by the captain at his command post.

Further thoughts ↑

While I will keep the Unity desktop option around for awhile as I might try and give it another go if someone can convince me that Unity is the greatest thing since hostess twinkies, I note that some have removed unity as well. While removing unity seems to have its pitfalls one poster (see footnote 1 below) claims to have found a way to remove the unnecessary parts while keeping only those system essential parts needed by Ubuntu 12.04.

A bon entendeur ... salut! (A rough translation from french: A word to the wise is hopefully all that will be necessary. ;-)

Michael Wells - 06 May 2013

Footnotes ↑