How to customize GNOME 3.12 GNOME Shell

This tutorial shows how to customize a GNOME 3 desktop, that is, take a plain-vanilla GNOME Shell and transform it into a desktop that is a little bit more user-friendly.

That means installing and customizing a few GNOME Extensions directly from or by using the GNOME Tweak (Tool).

So if you’re using a GNOME 3 desktop with the default GNOME Shell, here are the steps to take to transform it into a less annoying desktop.

1. Enable Titilebar Buttons: By default, application windows in GNOME Shell feature just the close button. I find that that makes using the desktop very annoying. Fortunately, it only takes a few mouse clicks to enable the Maximize and Minimize buttons. Just start the Tweak tool, or install it if it’s not already installed. From the Windows tab of the Tweak tool, enable the maximize and minimize buttons.
GNOME Tweak Tool

2. Enable Static Workspaces: The default GNOME Shell comes with dynamic workspaces. That’s just fine, if you like it that way. I prefer static workspaces. So if you are like me, enable static workspaces by clicking on the Workspaces tab of the Tweak tool. Then select “Static” from the Workspace Creation menu.
GNOME static workspaces

3. Enable These Extensions: There are dozens of extensions that you can use to customize your GNOME 3 desktop, but just by installing the Applications Menu, Dash to Dock, Places Status Indicator, Removable Drive Menu, and Workspaces to Dock extensions, you make your desktop a more user-friendly place for desktop computing. Even after installing the Applications menu, access is still available to the Activities overview, so you are not losing any core GNOME 3 functionality.
GNOME 3 GNOME Tweak Tool

The following screenshots show how a GNOME 3 desktop looks like after those extensions have been installed. This one shows the desktop after installation of the Places Menu, Dash to Dock and Workspaces to Dock extensions.
GNOME 3 Places menu

The desktop with the Applications Menu installed.
GNOME 3 App menu

The desktop in overview mode. Like I wrote earlier, there are a lot more extensions available, but the ones I mentioned here should be enough to make your GNOME 3 desktop a more productive place for all your daily computing tasks.
GNOME 3 overview

Related Posts

Manual LVM configuration on Fedora 13 Fedora 13 is one of the Linux distributions that supports and uses Linux Logical Volume Manager (LVM) as the default disk partitioning scheme. While t...
How to set up a 3-node CoreOS cluster, just for fun "CoreOS is a new Linux distribution that has been rearchitected to provide features needed to run modern infrastructure stacks." That's geek-speak ...
Android on a Stick, or how to install Android-x86 on a USB stick The Android-x86 project provides ISO installation images of Android that can be installed on personal computers, which is cool, because that makes it ...
Solution for crashing KDE applications on Linux Mint 17.1 Cinnamon On one of my test systems, I have Linux Mint 17.1 Cinnamon installed. However, I still like to use KSnapshot, the screenshot application for KDE. A...
A Guide to DRM-Free Living Welcome to our brief guide to living a DRM-free existence. We want to provide a range of links pointing you toward online stores, video/music players,...
Guest account and user management on Mandriva 2011 Creating and managing user accounts are very basic tasks that you would need to perform on any operating system. If you are new to Linux and to Mandri...

We Recommend These Vendors

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).

One Comment

  1. ElectricPrism

    Personally, I love Slingshot Gnome when you have Slingshot Launcher & Plank Installed

    It brings the goodness of ElementaryOS/Pantheon to Gnome 3.

    I wish there was a extension the divided the indicators from one menu into Volume | WiFi | Shutdown

Leave a Comment

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