From Organic Design wiki
Legacy.svg Legacy: This article describes a concept that has been superseded in the course of ongoing development on the Organic Design wiki. Please do not develop this any further or base work on this concept, this is only useful for a historic record of work done. You may find a link to the currently used concept or function in this article, if not you can contact the author to find out what has taken the place of this legacy item.

GNOME offers an easy to understand desktop environment for your GNU/Linux or UNIX computer.


GNOME3 Screenshot.png


The GNOME Shell extension design is designed to give a high degree of power to the parts of the GNOME interface managed by the shell, such as window management and application launching. It simply loads arbitrary JavaScript and CSS. This gives developers a way to make many kinds of changes and share those changes with others, without having to patch the original source code and recompile it, and somehow distribute the patched code.

Extensions are listed at and can be installed one-click style directly from the site :-) some extensions that I recommend are:

Writing extensions

Create an initial working extension template using the gnome-shell-extension-tool --create-extension command, then after you change your code, you restart the Gnome shell by pressing ALT+F2, then entering r and pressing Enter. To check for errors and perform other debugging tasks, use the LookingGlass applet which can be started by pressing ALT+F2, then entering lg and pressing Enter, and escape to close it. Use the command global.log("text") in your code to output to the error console which you can view from LookingGlass in the errors tab - not that it doesn't update in real-time.

Installing on Ubuntu 12

They've now made Unity the default desktop environment which many people find really horrible, to install GNOME do the following:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gnome-shell

Then log out and select GNOME at the login prompt


Adding your own apps to the search

You'll need to create a .desktop file for your application in the ~/.local/share/applications directory with the name of your application as its filename. The content of the file is of the following format:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=My applications name
Comment=My cool application

Where'd the startup applications applet go?

It's still the same program which is gnome-session-properties, but for some reason there's no longer a launcher for it - you can make one using the instructions in the previous section if you like, or launch it manually from a terminal window.

See also