Sunday, January 20, 2013

Almost workable Fedora 18 desktop

After about two days of tinkering with the settings of Gnome 3.6 of Fedora 18 I found a set of compromises (fails and wins) that made my desktop experience workable and pleasant.  The result can be viewed in the screenshot below.

Since I'm running Nvidia Optimus I had to install the packages provided by the bumblebee project which surprisingly worked. 

One other thing that I've did was to install all of the Gnome's extension packages provided by Fedora and some from the Gnome website. One mention here is that some of them are not supported by the current version. 

Dash dock can be viewed in the screenshot which reminds of the Ubuntu setup, but the plug-in integrates and adds additional value with the very useful smart autohide option. 
Besides this I used gnome-tweak-tool and gconf-editor to bring back the three very important buttons (minimize,maximize,close), change the default fonts to Dejavu antialiasing and hinting, as well as changing the theme and icons to something more classic.

Tint2 was the second revelation of the setup this small utility provides a almost normal taskbar option to the desktop with small or very little configuration effort.

I also replaced the original alt+tab and alt+F2, for the first I've used the gnome shell extension Alternatab, as for the second I used the well known gnome-do utility.
My software stack used for my job productivity was installed without any issues and can be partly viewed in the Dash Dock .
One thing that I've found very annoying was the lack of nautilus menu bar as well as the nautilus option (as I like the size of all my icons to be at 66%)

As a small conclusion the overall ration between success and effort is acceptable, the stability of the gnome shell needs some more work but the final result is a workable, productive desktop part of good release of Fedora.


  1. thank you for few tips like dash to dock...

  2. Frankly, I hate Gnome Shell from the bottom of my heart.
    I think this is one of the worst combination between eye-candy and functionality.
    One of the main reasons for which I'm saying this is the fact that they are putting too much effort in building fancy GUI rather than simplifying (at least at UI level) some functionalities that a non-geek user will not be able to tune/use.

    Nice review btw. :D

  3. @Greg - yes the Dash Dock plugin was one of the revelations of this setup.

    @Adrian - your absolutely correct, Gnome Shell from my point of view should be scraped and started over with the project.

  4. Hi I like your article, one more thing could you please make a blog post or tell me how you got bumblebee working I could not make it on f17 I tried the guide from the fedora wiki.