How to customize Pear Linux 6

Pear Linux 6, code-named Bartlett, is the latest release of Pear Linux, or Pear OS, a desktop distribution based on Ubuntu Desktop. Unlike its parent distribution, which uses the Unity Desktop, Pear Linux features a slightly modified version of the Pantheon Shell called Pear Shell. (In Pear Linux 6 review, I made the erroneous assumption that Pear Shell is an adaptation of the GNOME Shell. Thanks to Jesse Brandao for correcting me.)

As much as I like Pear Linux, especially this latest release, it falls short in a few key areas. This article tells you what those area are, and how to customize your copy of Pear Linux 6 to make it just work better.

1. Missing Image Viewer (install EOG) : The default image manager in Pear Linux 6 is Firefox, the Web browser. So if you click on an image file (png, gif, jpeg,jpg), it opens in Firefox. That’s not right. You want to view images in an application designed just for that. That’s why we have Eye of GNOME (EOG). You can install it from Pear Appstore or from the command-line. In Pear Appstore, search for “eog” or “graphics viewer.” From the command-line, type sudo apt-get install eog (to install it). After installation, the file type manager settings in Pear Tweak Tool will be updated automatically to make EOG the default image viewer. The screen shot below shows the default file type settings.
File Type Manager

And here’s is what it should look like after installing EOG.
Pear File Type Settings

To Access Pear Tweak Tool, start System Settings, then click on the Pear Linux Tweak.
Pear Tweak Tool

The File Type Manager is on the Admins tab.
Pear Tweak Tool

2. Annoying Overlay Scrollbar (uninstall or disable it) : The Overlay or Ayatana scrollbar is one of those annoying “innovations” from Canonical that should not be installed on any distribution. Unfortunately, it is installed by default in Pear Linux 6. But not to worry, there are two ways to deal with it: Uninstall or disable it. To uninstall it, see how to uninstall the overlay-scrollbar in Pear Linux 6 and Ubuntu 12.10. To disable it, launch the Pear Tweak Tool from System Settings. Click on the Tweaks tab, then on Miscellaneous. (Props to Reza of, and David for bringing the disable option to my attention here.)
Pear Overlay Scrollbar

You can toggle the Overlay Scrollbar on/off here.
Pear Overlay Scrollbar

3. Missing Graphical Firewall Manager (install Gufw) : The firewall is activated and configured in Pear Linux 6 out of the box, but Gufw, the graphical interface, is not. To install it, follow this guide: How to install and configure a graphical firewall client on Comice OS 4. It was written for an older version of Pear Linux, but can be used for the latest version.

4. Your Favorite Apps are Missing (install them) : Pear Linux 6 does not have a lot of graphical applications installed. On a new installation, there are just 20 installed. No games, no Office suite. To install games for the GNOME desktop from the command-line, type sudo apt-get install gnome-games. You may also use Pear Appstore to install it. Same goes for LibreOffice or any other application you wish to install.

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