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Spatial Desktop: One Script, Ultimate Minimalist Desktop

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Spatial Desktop is a theming script that transforms your GNOME desktop into a minimal and uncluttered space.


Essentially  a combination of themes, applications and tweaks, it maximizes space by removing GNOME Panels, toolbars and applets, replacing them with Docky, GNOME Do and Conky ” all in a descreet, sleek package.


Spatial Desktop comes in three colours, all of which are installable from the same script: –

View whocares

Smaller-screened netbook or laptop users might find Spatial Desktop useful as will those looking for an uncluttered and minimal space to work in.

Even if you’re just curious about it, try it out anyway! It has a restore function will will set everything back to how you had them before.

How To Get Spatial Desktop

Download the script:


Make it executable (so you can double click it to run): 

chmod +x

Finally, run it by double clicking on it.

Install Options


When you run the Spatial Desktop script you’ll be given a list of options. The important ones are: –

This will install all of the default settings. If you’ve already made changes to your desktop i don’t recommend using this option.

This is the option i used. It allows you to have a hand in some of the changes that could be made.

This will set everything back to how you had it before.

Custom Options In Detail


The default settings for Compiz in Spatial are minimal and functional rather than eye-candy laden. (E.G. uses Desktop Wall rather than Cube, no wobbly Windows, etc.) If you have Compiz set up how you like it and want to keep it the same in Spatial Desktop simply uncheck ‘Compiz’ in the custom setup steps to carry your settings over to the.

Spatial uses the Plano metacity theme and the Murrina Smoothie GTK theme for GNOME. Icons are from the GNOME Colours icon set. Wallpaper is by mx-steel.

The system font is Sans.

Gedit is themed to look like this: –


using a theme called "darkmate". The terminal will look like this: –


As with the other options you can uncheck these if they’re not to your taste.


Depending on what you already have installed, you may want to uncheck Docky and Gnome-Do.

Conky adds the date and time in the left hand corner, and Trayer adds the applets in the right corner, so keep these both checked.


Uncheck mailto links if you use Evolution, Spicebird or Thunderbird for you mail.

Volumes on the desktop is a minor choice and can be disabled/enabled anytime from UbuntuTweak if you change your mind but use Spatial Desktop.

I personally like having system sounds, but, again, this is a minor tweak that can be re-enabled if you do stick with Spatial Desktop and decide you want them back later.


Once you’ve chosen all of your settings and clicked OK, the script will do its job and install the required parts. After this you will be prompted to Logout. Upon logging back in you will presented with your Spatial Desktop.

Restoring Your Previous Desktop

Tried Spatial but want your previous setup back? No fear, simply run the script again and choose restore. The script will revert all of the settings and then prompt you to log out and back in. Once you have you’ll see your previous desktop looking almost untouched.

Things to note…

  • There is no “main menu” ” all applications are accessed via GNOME Do and Docky.
  • There is no “log out” applet, this, too, is handled by GNOME Do.
  • Trayer doesn’t support most GNOME Panel applets meaning there is no indicator applet, no messaging applet or any others that you use.
  • After restoring your previous settings you may find Conky still running. Issuing a ‘killall conky’ from the terminal will solve this.

Project page: