Theability to easilycustomiseyour desktop look is, for many, one of the boons of using Linux.

With Ubuntu 11.04’s Unity interface you may have found that your favourite third-party themes – such as elementary or Orta – don’t quite look as natty under Unity as they do under the classic Ubuntu desktop.This is particularly true of the Unity panel buttons of maximised windows, as evincedbelow: –

elementary under unity
elementary in Ubuntu 11.04 doesn't look quite how it should

But, as all with most things Linux, you can tweak this to suit your tastes.

Replace the Unity Panel buttons

The ‘hack’ we’re featuring is the work ofnanabuluku. He’s packaged up Unity Panel buttonreplacements for 3 popular themes – elementary, Orta and Minty Freshness that, whilst not the easiest to install, make for beautiful results…



Minty Freshness


Before you do anything you need to be aware that the following procedure is a ‘hack’ and not a supported theming method.

1. Backup and/or rename the original Ambiance theme. Should you wish to revert at a later date this is important.

2. Extract the .zip archive of your chosen theme download (download links above).

3. Open a Terminal (Application Lens > Search > Terminal) or press ALT+F2 and enter the following command: –

  • gksu nautilus /usr/share/themes/Ambiance

Move the “metacity-1” from the previously extracted theme folder into the window that opens, choosing to “Merge” and “Replace all” when prompted.

4. Open Appearance Preferences (Application Lens > Search > ‘Appearance’) and select the ‘Theme’ tab.

Drag the ‘Ambiance.tar.gz’, as found in the previously extracted folder, on to the window and drop. Click on any other theme and let it load before selecting ‘Ambiance’ again.

Note: You must select ‘Ambiance’ for this effect to take hold.


The easiest way to reverse the changes made above is to reinstall the ‘light-themes’ package via the Synaptic Package Manager(Applications Lens > Search > Synaptic)

Tipform via Jason via DeviantArt

Download How To elementary Eye Candy nautilus-elementary orta themes Unity