GNOME Shell on Ubuntu 12.04

An updated instruction from Replace Unity with gnome-shell on Ubuntu 11.10. In Ubuntu 12.04, there are better support for Unity and GNOME Shell coexists.

1. Install gnome-shell related packages:

$ sudo apt-get install gnome-shell \
gnome-themes-standard \
gnome-sushi \
gnome-contacts \

2. Disable strange overlay-scrollbar

$ export 'export LIBOVERLAY_SCROLLBAR=0' \
> ~/.xprofile

3. Use native notification of GNOME

$ sudo apt-get install notification-daemon

However, we should check the support of DBus to prevent other issues. Just check if there is ONLY contain notify-osd in the notification service file.

# vim /usr/share/dbus-1/services/org.freedesktop.Notifications.service

If the exec parameter in you file only contains notify-osd, such as: Exec=/usr/lib/…/notify-osd, you should alter it as Exec=/usr/lib/notification-daemon/notification-daemon.

4. Restart Ubuntu and change login session with GNOME. Then enjoy it. 🙂

Replace Unity with gnome-shell on Ubuntu 11.10

This article is about how to remove Unity (and its dependency packages) and launch the Gnome Shell by default.

Note: Some of the packages we want to remove may not installed in your system. Just remove the package name in the remove list.

1. Remove Unity and its dependency packages:
$ sudo apt-get remove unity unity-2d-places unity-2d unity-2d-panel unity-2d-spread unity-asset-pool unity-services unity-lens-files unity-lens-music unity-lens-applications gir1.2-unity-4.0 unity-common indicator-sound indicator-power indicator-appmenu libindicator6 indicator-application evolution-indicator indicator-datetime indicator-messages
This will also remove the tomboy and transmission. If you need them, just install back:
$ sudo apt-get install tomboy transmission

2. Install GNOME-shell and some BEST extra packages:
$ sudo apt-get install gnome-shell gnome-themes-standard gnome-sushi gnome-contacts gnome-tweak-tool

3. Remove scrollbar and appmenu of unity:
$ sudo apt-get remove appmenu-gtk indicator-applet-appmenu indicator-appmenu overlay-scrollbar

4. Use the native notification daemon (Or some notify may use ubuntu’s daemon and make us confuse):
$ sudo apt-get install notification-daemon
$ sudo apt-get remove notify-osd
This also remove gnome-power-manager but we need it.
$ sudo apt-get install gnome-power-manager

5. Clean up the system:

$ sudo apt-get autoremove
$ sudo apt-get autoclean
$ sudo dpkg --list |grep "^rc" | awk '{print $2}' | xargs sudo dpkg --purge

The first line is to clean up dependency packages while the second one is for the unused packages downloaded in system. The third one is to find the records which had been installed but remove and make a purge step.

6. Logout. And now you can log into GNOME Shell via click the ‘gear’ icon in login window and select GNOME Shell. Enjoy it. 🙂

The references are:
Ubuntu 11.10 GNOME Shell Guide
How can you remove Unity?
Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric: Remove Unity and use Gnome Classic by Default