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Tips for Ubuntu 11.04 testers

So you’re playing around with Ubuntu 11.04 Alpha and, well, things are going a bit awry. Here are a few useful tips harvested from AskUbuntu that may save you a headache or two…

How do I ‘reset’ Unity?

If your experiments with Unity have led to a things messing up it’s simple to ‘reset’.

Open a terminal and run: -

unity –reset

How do I display the date in the Unity panel?

By default Natty’s Indicator clock only displays the time. If you’re forever in a state of time-disorientation you may need to know what day/the date is too.

Although no GUI option yet exists for enabling the date, Jamie Strandboge has figured how a quick hack to enable it.

Open a Terminal and enter the following command to display the date: -

gsettings set org.ayatana.indicator.datetime show-date true

Optionally, run the following command to display the day: -

gsettings set org.ayatana.indicator.datetime show-day true

To switch either/both off simply run the commands again using the ‘false’ suffix in place of ‘true’.

How do I switch back to the ‘normal’ Gnome desktop?

Ubuntu 11.04 still ship with a ‘standard’ gnome desktop – it’s just not the ‘default’. It’s there for users unable to run Unity and for those who, put simply, don’t want to run Unity.

To switch to it simply log out of your Unity session and select ‘Classic Gnome desktop’ from the sessions menu at the log-in screen.

How do I make the launcher auto-hide?

Unity’s slick sidebar can auto-hide when in the way. To enable this feature you will need to install the CompizConfig-Settings Manager application from the Ubuntu Software Center (or by clicking here).

One installed, launch the manager and enter ‘Unity’ in the search box. From there check the ‘Enable hiding’ option and et voila your launcher will now intelligently hide.