GNOME Shell allows you to view weather forecasts and timezones for different locations inside the message tray (also known as the notification area).
This eliminates the need to open separate weather apps or install additional extensions, saving you time and keeping your desktop clutter-free.
In this guide I show you how to take advantage of this convenient feature in Ubuntu so that can you instantly access a 5-hour weather forecast and see timezones for locations you care about, whenever you want to.
You just open the message tray, either by clicking on the clock at the top of the screen or by pressing the super + m keyboard shortcut, and bam: weather forecast and the time in different countries are right there.
You could install a GNOME weather extension or a world clock applet to get similar functionality but this method reduces visual clutter by not putting more icons and text labels in the top bar. If you like to keep things minimal, this method is ideal.
See Weather Forecast in Ubuntu
To see weather forecast data in the GNOME Shell message tray on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and above — these steps also work with other Linux distributions shipping GNOME Shell — you need to:
- Install GNOME Weather: Find it in Ubuntu Software (or App Center in Ubuntu 23.10, but select the ‘deb’ filter after searching) or run
sudo apt install gnome-weatherin the Terminal app.
- Set a location: Open the GNOME Weather app and enter a location to fetch and display weather data from.
The GNOME Weather app fetches its location and weather data from OpenWeatherMap, yr.no, and/or weather.com. These are reliable, free sources of weather information that ensure you’re always looking at timely, accurate forecasts.
See Time Zones in Ubuntu
GNOME Shell can show a world clock widget in the message tray when the GNOME Clocks app is installed, allowing you to easily keep track of multiple time zones in Ubuntu.
Once enabled, this world clock widget shows the local time in multiple time zones, along with the time difference between your location and each, e.g., +5 hours, -2 hours, etc – perfect for staying in-sync with colleagues, friends, and family across the globe.
To set it up:
- Install GNOME Clocks: Find it in Ubuntu Software (or App Center in Ubuntu 23.10, but select the ‘deb’ filter after searching) or run
sudo apt install gnome-clocksin the Terminal app.
- Open the GNOME Clocks app: Once installed, open the GNOME Clocks app from your applications menu.
- Add timezone(s): Click the “+” button in the GNOME Clocks app and start typing the name of the city or country you want to add. Select the matching location to add it to the list.
You can add as many time zones as you need. They will all be displayed in the world clock widget, organised by date/time order, with countries ahead of your time zone appearing near the top and those behind your time zone closer to the bottom.
When you remove a timezone from the GNOME Clocks app the corresponding entry in the Shell widget is removed too.
There you have it: a super simple way to add a dash of extra data to the the message tray. The beauty of this feature is in the convenience it offers. You no longer need to open the Clocks or Weather apps to get information as it’s delivered to you in the message tray area.
Is this GNOME Shell feature something you will use? Let me know in the comments!