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Thread: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

  1. #101
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    I didn't expect to be able to work with a gnome 2.x aspect in Gnome 12.04
    Just to clarify, my procedure does NOT involve reverting to Gnome 2. It's every bit Gnome 3, it's just based on the "fallback session" which truly does use Metacity rather than Compiz.

    There are many other options including Mate which truly is Gnome 2, but I simply prefer what I've posted here as an LTS option to Unity.

    Personally I'm quite happy with Unity on wide-screens under 19", and Lubuntu on larger screens which I typically use for video, but I needed a retro look and feel for some other folks with the 5 year LTS aspect and this is just what I came up with

  2. #102
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    @ kansasnoob,

    Coupla' things

    First, while I don't mean to resurrect that somewhat abrasive exchange between you and traditionalist, I do indeed have the same question: WHY is removing Unity a bad idea? Nevermind issues of whether or not it's "bone-headed" (not accusing anyone here of name calling, just don't want that to cloud my question here) or issues of the "wrong" command line, or anything else. I just want to know why it's a bad idea.

    Here's why. I'm planning to use your guideline in the OP to get a gnome-like DE in 12.04. (For background, see this thread: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2023631 , which you yourself posted in, BTW. And thanks for that response.) I have had problems before with my video (lspci readout on that: "VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 07)"), and one of the tools in my troubleshooting bag, IF that video malfunction showed up, would be this removal of Unity. My machine is a Dell Inspiron 1545 wth 4GB of RAM (running 32 bit, NOT 64)

    Apparently, as I've read on several blogs, Intel video chips don't always play well with Ubuntu, and that indeed has been my own experience.

    Now don't misunderstand, I'm not going to try to remove Unity IF the video is fine ("If it ain't broke, don't fix it") . . . and I expect the use of Metacity rather than Compiz (as you suggest) will achieve that. But IF I have video problems in doing what you outline in your OP, I MAY consider removing Unity as one of my troubleshooting options. And, no, I wouldn't expect you to render assistance if something went wrong by removing Unity . . . but that's just the point.

    If you think it would cause problems, I'd like to know why and then assuming your reasons are valid (a pretty safe assumption), I would not include removing Unity as a potential solution. Will removing Unity screw up your gnome-like DE? If that's the case, I'd like to know because it will influence my planning.

    Now I know you think this question is off-topic, and if it weren't for the potential my machine has for video problems, I'd agree. But since trying your methods in your OP MAY screw up my video (Not your fault. I have no idea if it would be because of the effort to install a gnome-like DE, or Unity itself . . . but removing Unity might be a solution), I have to cover this base BEFORE I launch into the effort.

    Let me digress a little, and compliment you on the entire effort you've made here. Clearly, you've helped a lot of us noobs with your OP, and I don't mean to diminish that, nor do I mean for this to be taken in an abrasive tone. Your thread here is excellent and I think praiseworthy. Again, my compliments.

    So, the first question is: Would removing Unity screw up the gnome-like DE or anything else?

    I'm going to ask my other questions in the next post, just so one post is not too lengthy.
    BJ

  3. #103
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    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    @ kansasnoob.,

    Second question: As I understand it, the gnome-classic like DE is actually based on GNOME 3. Is that correct? If that's so, it certainly seems like removing Unity would screw up the effort.

    3. In this gnome-classic like DE, can you build a launcher on the desktop? Right click>Create Launcher, etc? You seemed to have answered no here: http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php...2&postcount=93 but then gave a workaround. So if I create a launcher, and it resides on the panel presumably, can I drag it to the desktop or will it snap back to the panel? Seems like at the end of the post, you're saying that it will go to the desktop. Am I reading this correct?

    4. Since I am the only user on my machine, I typically configure the login as automatic, so when started the machine goes directly to the Desktop. However, I'm guessing that that shouldn't be done until AFTER a restart and log in enables the gnome-classic like DE. IOW, do a manual log in first to see the "GNOME Classic (no effects)" selection (clicking on the Ubuntu symbol of course.) Assuming that's correct, then after I do that can I reset to automatic log in, or will I have to manually log in every time and select "GNOME Classic (no effects)"? IOW, once I select "GNOME Classic (no effects)", will that setting remain through shutdown and restart, or just the session?

    5. So the update notification will show up in the panel? (With your command in Step 5 run, of course.) I'm assuming then it will be minimized. Does it flash or blink or does it show the "!" character? (I can't quite make it out in your screenshot).

    6. You are waiting for 12.04.1 (due in August) before going to 12.04? Since August is just a few weeks away, should I wait like you (yes, I know it's my call but I just want to know if 12.04 has too many unsolved bugs ATM to make your DE tweak effort productive.) IOW 12.04 is unstable and efforts to customize it will be reversed/borked until 12.04.1 comes out. . . which I assume is your reason for waiting or does all this tweaking you propose increase the stability of 12.04 as you've seen it?

    7. Apparently, having both a top and bottom panel crashes the darn thing? http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php...9&postcount=87
    Found any solution yet?
    Last edited by BobJam; July 15th, 2012 at 06:12 AM. Reason: Formattiing
    BJ

  4. #104
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    @ BobJam,

    Lets start here:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php...1&postcount=13

    In that installation options screenshot of yours, if that's what I'm presented with, I'm guessing I would use the fourth option: "Something else". I certainly don't have 11.10 on my machine and I definitely don't want to "erase everything". So that's the only option left. Will that then go on to give me screens to create a 12.04 / partition and a 12.04 /home partition?
    In retrospect I was unclear about that. Upgrading using the live installer is quite different than upgrading thru the use of the update manager. I would expect that you'd be offered the option to upgrade from 9.10 to 12.04. If not you could then click on the Quit button.

    I should probably add that it's typical to see a warning near the end of the installation/upgrade process that says some apps/packages couldn't be restored. That's just because those apps are not available in the newer version. But your next comment may make this a moot point:

    I'm still leaning toward a fresh install anyway, especially if I can have both 9.10 and 12.04.

    I favor 9.10 so much, and my existing settings, mostly because I've worked so hard to make it stable. For example, I had quite a bit of trouble with my touchpad and the cursor moving all over the place, but I finally solved that with a synclient script (can't remember what file I put it in.) Plus my video was buggy, but I finally resolved that too (can't remember what I did now.) So that's why I want to keep my settings and am still considering the upgrade path.

    But I assume that the kernel code has changed so much that I might not have the touchpad or video problems anyway, but I may have an entirely new set of problems. It might be misleading to say "problems". I'll likely just have to tweak it to get things the way I want them . . . like I did with 9.10. And everybody has to do that to some degree, so it's to be expected. Hopefully it won't be as intense as it was with 9.10.
    OK, I get it

    I do find it a bit scary that you're using a distro that's not had any security updates since April 2011, but I can also understand your concern about being stuck with no working OS at all. So I'm looking at your screenshot there:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/attachment.p...6&d=1342334326

    You certainly have more than enough space to dual boot and I'd point out that your root is about 23GB with less than 6GB used, while your home partition is about 131GB with 80GB used. And I like the idea of dual/multi-booting.

    I have to do so to perform all the testing I do:

    Screenshot from 2012-07-15 06:00:39.jpg

    I realize that's crazy extreme to most people but I do crazy extreme testing

    So using a 160GB testing drive just for comparison purposes I'd do something like this. Since it's a smaller drive I can only be comparative rather than exact, so here's a mock up of what you have now:

    what_you_have_now.png

    And what you want after resizing:

    after_resize.png

    Note: You'll notice that I only moved the right side of the existing partitions to the left, that tends to put your data at the least risk.

    And here's what you should have after creating the new partitions with Gparted:

    new_partitions.png

    You'll want to make a note (physical or mental) of those new partition designations, eg; sdc3 and sdc7. (Certainly your's will likely be sda rather than sdc.)

    Here's a good resource that describes what I'm talking about:

    http://members.iinet.net.au/~herman546/p22.html

    Or my Maverick notes (all of those bugs have been fixed to some degree, but not 100% to my satisfaction):

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1622388

    But lets stop and discuss three other things:

    #1: Before beginning the installation (or the testdrive of the Live desktop) always check the disc/USB for errors. In Lucid they began hiding the boot options so when the first screen appears with the two small logos at the bottom you have a whopping 3 seconds to press a key and display the language selector followed by the boot options. Be sure to choose "check disc for defects". It takes several minutes to complete but I can't think of anything more frustrating than finding out the installation media was faulty. Look here:

    http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/installing

    #2: I'm guessing you have a laptop. It's always best to use a wired power source when partitioning or installing. Imagine the battery dieing when you're nearly done! Even then my general rule is to backup all valuable data to some external source - the data that's not backed up is always the data that gets lost.

    #3: Your SWAP partition seems rather large - nearly 10GB. But I don't know how much RAM you have? You can find out by running:

    Code:
    free -m
    But if you should decide to resize the SWAP before installing 12.04 you should know that the UUID will likely change which will keep the SWAP from working properly in 9.10. That's particularly a problem with laptops when it comes to hibernating or suspending. It's easy to fix, but I just wanted you to know.

    The only other thing I'd mention right now is that I'm already using 12.04. I'm just waiting for 12.04.1 before I start upgrading the 3 dozen+ other PC's I maintain. No huge bugs, just a couple small ones that I hope to get fixed by the time 12.04.1 rolls out.

    In my next post I'll start to address your "classic" questions. I applaud you for asking questions and being cautious.

  5. #105
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    One thing I left out

    Quite some time ago I helped someone with a Hardy -> Lucid dual boot, including the transfer of data from old to new:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1687962&page=3

    The live installer has changed quite a bit but you might still find some of that useful

  6. #106
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    Forgot you said this:

    My machine is a Dell Inspiron 1545 wth 4GB of RAM (running 32 bit, NOT 64)
    So I'd think between 4GB and 5GB of SWAP would be plenty. It just depends if you care about an extra 4 to 5GB of space. Correcting the UUID problem is fairly simple and straight forward, but I'll leave that decision up to you.

  7. #107
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    Regarding the removal of Unity, my choice of words was clearly inappropriate

    But I looked at the link provided and thought, "oh no"! The command provided was very clearly flawed and I hoped to stop mystmaiden from hosing her installation.

    That aside there may be more appropriate ways to "remove" Unity but removing core components of Ubuntu typically removes the meta-package 'ubuntu-desktop'. The generally overwhelming opinion is that doing so is OK but when you read the package description it clearly says:

    This package depends on all of the packages in the Ubuntu desktop system

    It is also used to help ensure proper upgrades, so it is recommended that
    it not be removed.
    And I've personally come to take what the devs say as scripture

    So I prefer to go after configuration files to resolve most issues rather than randomly removing packages. In it's current iteration my OP removes no packages whatsoever, and it installs very few. I personally think that makes for a safe, sane, and secure Ubuntu.

    If Ubuntu itself presents insurmountable problems then I'd likely try a different "buntu" flavor like Lubuntu, Xubuntu, or Kubuntu. Or I'd start with a minimal install and build up from there

  8. #108
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    Second question: As I understand it, the gnome-classic like DE is actually based on GNOME 3. Is that correct?
    Yes. Installing 'gnome-panel' will give you the option of booting into either Gnome classic or Gnome classic (no effects), both of which are based on Gnome 3's "fallback session".

    The future of the "fallback session" is uncertain but Precise (12.04) is supported for 5 years so I'm fairly confident that it will remain viable throughout 12.04's lifespan.

    It's important to realize that Gnome classic and Unity (the standard Ubuntu DE) use the Compiz window manager, whereas both Gnome classic (no effects) and Unity-2D (aka: ubuntu-2D) use the Metacity window manager.

    To further confuse you Gnome itself (gnome-shell) uses the Mutter window manager which is Metacity+Clutter. How unfortuante is the package name 'clutter'?

    Mutter is a small window manager, using GTK+ and Clutter to do
    everything.

    Mutter is the clutter-based evolution of Metacity,
    Clutter describes my home

    I'm in hopes that one or the other will work OK with your graphics chip, there's only one way to find out

    There are other options like the Cinnamon desktop that's truly based on an extension for gnome-shell, and the Mate desktop that is truly a fork of gnome 2. My preference is obvious, but Linux is all about choice
    Last edited by kansasnoob; July 15th, 2012 at 04:36 PM.

  9. #109
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    In this gnome-classic like DE, can you build a launcher on the desktop? Right click>Create Launcher, etc?
    It's different so NO but YES

    Rather than right-clicking the desktop to create a launcher you must drag the applications launcher from the "menu" to the desktop. Simply select the app in the menu, left click and drag:

    select_app.jpg

    app_on_desktop.jpg

    Then I can drag it to the proper location on my desktop.

    The one exception is Libreoffice apps, please see posts #22 thru #24 for a workaround. I do plan on following up on that issue, I can't find an existing bug report so I guess I'll have to start a new one

    BTW, sorry for the cruft on my desktop. Everyone uses their puter different and I place stuff on my desktop that I don't plan on keeping - like temporary screenshots
    Last edited by kansasnoob; July 15th, 2012 at 04:39 PM.

  10. #110
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    Re: 12.04 LTS / Precise Classic (No effects) Tweaks and tricks

    Since I am the only user on my machine, I typically configure the login as automatic, so when started the machine goes directly to the Desktop. However, I'm guessing that that shouldn't be done until AFTER a restart and log in enables the gnome-classic like DE. IOW, do a manual log in first to see the "GNOME Classic (no effects)" selection (clicking on the Ubuntu symbol of course.) Assuming that's correct, then after I do that can I reset to automatic log in, or will I have to manually log in every time and select "GNOME Classic (no effects)"? IOW, once I select "GNOME Classic (no effects)", will that setting remain through shutdown and restart, or just the session?
    No need to change your login settings. Just logout, select Gnome classic (no effects), and log back in as shown here:

    http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/classicgnome

    Note: I realize that screenshot shows selecting standard Gnome classic but it's hardly worth doing a virtual install to grab a new screenshot is it?

    OTOH once you've installed you can change your login settings in System Settings which shows up in at least two places:

    Screenshot from 2012-07-15 09:26:28.jpg

    Screenshot from 2012-07-15 09:27:11.jpg

    Screenshot from 2012-07-15 09:28:33.png

    Screenshot from 2012-07-15 09:29:03.jpg

    Clear as mud

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