If you’re a fan of the Arc menu extension for GNOME Shell you may be interested to hear that an update is on the way.

A new version of the traditional-style app menu, which is particularly popular with Dash to Panel users, is currently pending approval over the GNOME Extensions website.

What does it bring? Personalisation.

Arc Menu replaces the full-screen app launcher in GNOME Shell with a more traditional ‘start menu’ design. It’s searchable, has bookmarks for important folders, shortcuts for key system actions, and lets you manage your session.

It also lets you browse installed applications based one their category. The whole of the left-hand sidebar is dedicated to this purpose.

An older version of Arc Menu with categories on the left

But not for much longer, as per a feature request, and the latest update.

The app launcher finally makes the left-hand side of the menu customisable., replacing the list of stock app categories on the left-hand side of the menu with a user-generated list of pinned apps.

Yes: you can finally add your favourite apps to the Arc Menu sidebar for quick access!

An update from developer LinxGem33 on the extension’s Gitlab issue tracker explains: “Arc-menu’s left panel will now default to a list view of pinned apps. You can now add apps and modify them and also add custom apps using arc-menu’s settings.”

The new settings panel looks well designed. Users shouldn’t have too many problems figuring out how to pin their fave app shortcuts the sidebar, shuffle the order, or remove those they no longer need:

Fans of the old category-based sidebar needn’t panic. Arc Menu lets you browse through applications based on category by smudging the “All Programs” button under the list of pinned apps.

Get the Arc Menu Extension

Like what you see? Well, you’ll need to be patient (unless you’re a dab hand at building from source). The Arc Menu update that implements the ‘pinned favourites’ sidebar referenced in this post is currently pending approval on the GNOME Extensions website.

…Which can take a while.

In the mean time, if you want to sample Arc Menu, you install the current (slightly less configurable) version from GNOME Extensions:

‘Arc Menu’ on GNOME Extensions

Alternatively, you can build the extension from source — you’ll need Ubuntu 19.04 for it to compile successfully, mind.


Incidentally, I’m currently scouting feedback on what you think the best app launcher for Ubuntu is. Albert? Ulauncher? Arc Menu? Let me know your picks in the comments or via Twitterland:

https://twitter.com/omgubuntu/status/1140966350275391488

H/t Jeff

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