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In the past (before Unity), it was possible to use my entire desktop without any menus whatsoever.

I used a quick launch app to run my programs and used some of the nice compiz windows managers to cycle between my windows. Now I'm kinda stuck with the menu at the top and unity at the left (which I can autohide, but this messes things up with two monitors side by side).

There are hacks and utilities to make them disappear, but what would be the least intrusive way? I can't afford for my Ubuntu to become unstable.

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Have you looked at using an alternate window manager like Fluxbox or xmonad? –  Tom Brossman Jul 17 '12 at 10:08
    
I've looked at them, but have not installed them. Maybe I should give them a go - I just don't like messing around with fragile config settings too much and would love to learn from someone else's experience here. –  JacobusR Jul 17 '12 at 10:28
    
The Linux Action Show did a lengthy video review of xmonad, if you want to see it in action. I like Unity so I have no experience in other window managers, sorry. –  Tom Brossman Jul 17 '12 at 10:31

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If I am reading this correctly, solving the problem of managing dual screens would also solve the initial problem you describe.

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Thanks David, the other question did solve part of the problem, but here I'm really hoping to find and answer to windows management that gets out of your way. I use the keyboard a lot, and switch between apps a lot, and desktop real-estate is prime. –  JacobusR Jul 17 '12 at 10:15

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