Sex up Ubuntu 9.10 desktop with Cairo-Dock

UbuntuI’m not a fan of Ubuntu. Never liked it, though I must admit that it is very popular, and has some nice features. I personally don’t like distros that use sudo especially now that Microsoft has been granted a patent for it. But not liking a distro will not stop me from helping others customize their desktop especially if that desktop is as bland as the default Ubuntu 9.10 desktop.

It is not going to be possible to make the Ubuntu desktop as visually appealing as the default Hymera Open desktop, but we can try. And the tool we are going to use is called Cairo-Dock.

But before we install Cairo-Dock, let’s perform some surgery on the default desktop. First, take a look at the default desktop on Ubuntu 9.10 (aka Karmic Koala). You gotta agree that that’s as plain-vanilla as you can get on a desktop.

Ubuntu 9.10 default desktop
Default Ubuntu 9.10 desktop

What we need to do is remove the lower panel. Right-click anywhere on the lower panel and select ‘Delete This Panel.’ The modified desktop should look just like the one in the screenshot below.

Modified Ubuntu 9.10 desktop
Modified Ubuntu desktop

Ok, time to install Cairo-Dock. To do that, you’ll have to use Synaptic or the command line (Cairo-Dock is not available from the Ubuntu Software Center). For this article, I’m going to use the command line. Launch a shell terminal (Applications > Accessories > Terminal), and type in this command: sudo apt-get install cairo-dock. If you are using Synaptic (System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager), type ‘cairo-dock’ in the search box.

Installing Cairo-Dock from the Linux cli
Installing Cairo-Dock from the cli

After installation, two entries for Cairo-Dock will be placed in the menu – Applications > Accessories > Cairo-Dock (no OpenGL), and Applications > Accessories > GLX-Dock (Cairo-Dock with OpenGL). The latter is better. So launch GLX-Dock from the menu. The default theme does not really appeal to me, so I changed it to the Diamond theme by Coz. My new desktop is shown below.

Ubuntu desktop with Cairo-Dock
Ubuntu desktop with Cairo-Dock

Not bad, eh? Certainly better than the default panel that we deleted. Cairo-Dock is highly customizable. You can move launchers around, create sub-docks, change the position of the dock itself, add and remove launchers, and manage themes. And there are lots of themes to choose from. Click on the screenshot below to access Screenshot Central and view more images from the Cairo-Dock-beautified desktop.

Rainbow view

Related Posts

Failed attempts to dual-boot PC-BSD 10.1 with Windows 8 After reviewing PC-BSD 10.1 and installing it on an encrypted hard drive, the next logical thing to do is attempt a dual-boot setup between it and Win...
Configure LVM in Foresight Linux Foresight is a Linux distribution built around the Conary package management system, with Gnome as the default desktop environment. Like most Linux di...
Is your browser safe against tracking? Use Panopticlick to find out Worried about privacy, about the websites you visit tracking you, whether you accept their cookies or not? Panopticlick to the rescue! Panopticl...
What’s the point of having 2 scrollbar types in Ubuntu 12.04? With free software operating systems, a popular practice is to install, out of the box, more than one application for the same computing task. For new...
Autologin, passwordless login and controlling who can reboot and shutdown your computer in... Autologin and passwordless login play a critical role in the physical security posture of your computer. In KDE, they are very easy to configure. But ...
How to install Ajenti on Ubuntu 13.04 server Ajenti is a server administration panel for Linux distributions and FreeBSD. It is similar to cPanel, ISPConfig and others like them, but kinda light ...

We Recommend These Vendors and Free Offers

ContainerizeThis 2016 is a free, 2-day conference for all things containers and big data. Featured, will be presentations and free, hands-on workshops. Learn more at ContainerizeThis.com

Launch an SSD VPS in Europe, USA, Asia & Australia on Vultr's KVM-based Cloud platform starting at $5:00/month (15 GB SSD, 768 MB of RAM).

Deploy an SSD Cloud server in 55 seconds on DigitalOcean. Built for developers and starting at $5:00/month (20 GB SSD, 512 MB of RAM).

Want to become an expert ethical hacker and penetration tester? Request your free video training course of Online Penetration Testing and Ethical Hacking

Whether you're new to Linux or are a Linux guru, you can learn a lot more about the Linux kernel by requesting your free ebook of Linux Kernel In A Nutshell.


One Comment

  1. First decent proposal on the subject. Thanks.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*