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I love the Dash, find the hud to be cool, hates the launcher and loathes the panel! So is there a way that I can run the Dash alone and use Gnome or Cinnamon or whatever as a window manager?

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If you don't like the unity launcher, you can use GNOME 3. It might be what you're looking for.

Just go to the Software Center, and find the GNOME Desktop Environment. After you download it, log out. At the log in screen click the little Ubuntu circle logo to chose gnome, then enter password to log in.

You can pretty much do the same for the other desktop environments out there. Or you can use other tools like Ubuntu Tweak to change the appearance of your desktop.

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This doesn't really answer the question of whether or not it's possible to use the dash and HUD but not the launcher. – Eliah Kagan Jun 25 '12 at 10:51
Yes, Gnome is nice and is what I have become used to from previous ubuntu versions. So after having played around with unity for a while I went back to Gnome, but now I find that I miss the dash :( Having a Gnome enviroment AND having the Dash pop up when I hit the super key would make my awsomesence tingle with delight :) – Christian Jun 25 '12 at 17:27

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