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Running 12.04. Downloaded Ubuntu tweak and set window controls to the right side. Only some programs follow the rule. Pidgin as an example has window controls on the right. But Chrome, Thunderbird, Geany, still have controls on the left.

How can I move ALL window controls(close/min/max) to the right (or left)?

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8 Answers

For Ubuntu 12.10 and lower.

  1. Open terminal
  2. Type: gconf-editor
  3. Go to Apps -> Metacity -> General
  4. Find: button_layout
  5. Change value to: menu:minimize,maximize,close

For Ubuntu 10.10 the string needs to be menu:minimize,maximize,close, with a comma in the end of the string.

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Protip: if you delete the colon and forget to add it back, you'll loose your menu bar and it will be really annoying/buggy behavior (the terminal doesn't show any text) until you set it back and restart. –  Carrotman Feb 14 '13 at 18:40
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12.04 until 13.10

from 12.04 and newer gconfeditor wont work use this:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences button-layout ':minimize,maximize,close'

14.04

With the new unity decorations this is no longer possible, unless it gets a patch to allow it again. They are no longer using gtk styling. The workaround would be to use Gnome-Flashback when logging in, if you don't care about the new features of unity decorations.

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Protip: if you delete the colon and forget to add it back, you'll loose your menu bar and it will be really annoying/buggy behavior (the terminal doesn't show any text) until you set it back and restart. –  Carrotman Feb 14 '13 at 18:33
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Worked for me in 12.04 –  Ciske Boekelo Sep 14 '13 at 14:24
    
Works for windows which are not maximized.. But what about maximized windows? –  Binod Dec 18 '13 at 11:54
    
not for this topic, but you can disable the move stuff to top bar in ubuntu to not have that behaviour, that can break standard behaviour in ubuntu so I wouldn't recommend it. –  Axlrod Dec 18 '13 at 13:21
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For 12.04 and 12.10

Unity

Run this command in a terminal:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences button-layout ":minimize,maximize,close"

Note that this will only change the position of the window controls of non-maximized windows. The maximized windows will continue to have their window controls on the left in title bar. To set the controls back to being on the left side:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences button-layout "close,minimize,maximize:"


GNOME-shell

gsettings set org.gnome.shell.overrides button-layout ":minimize,maximize,close"
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For those who want to move buttons to the left "close,minimize,maximize:" –  Yuriy Voziy Oct 23 '12 at 11:18
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You can also download Ubuntu Tweak, which has an easy GUI option to switch the window buttons to the right. It's found under the Windows Manager Settings option, under the Desktop category. Just select the "Right" radio button and you're done.

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I used Ubuntu Tweak to do it and in my opinion, it is the easiest method. –  ricky Aug 2 '10 at 16:33
    
It is surely the easiest method. –  User Oct 22 '10 at 3:02
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gsettings set org.gnome.shell.overrides button-layout :close,minimize,maximize

Try the above command in the terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T). This will work. It actually follows the principle of slicing in Python. You can give close,minimize,maximize: to move the keys to left. Further u can interchange the positions of close,minimize and maximize :)

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System>Preferences>Appearance Change the theme to something other than Radiance/Ambiance.

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I don't want to change the theme! –  User Jul 31 '10 at 17:40
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@Shubhkarman If you are using the default theme, and switch the button layout, it will look like crap, because the buttons are designed to be in a certain order. To fix that you could install Ambiance_R (or Radiance_R) gnome-look.org/content/show.php?content=123927 –  Alvin Row Jul 31 '10 at 17:59
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Wait... Pynt, it doesn't do that anymore. It used to (early in development) but it was fixed with a patch to Metacity. Now you can put the buttons any order you want, and it'll still look good. –  snostorm Aug 1 '10 at 1:28
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I found that the gconf-editor suggestion just reversed the order of the buttons. They remained on the right hand side of the window. To switch buttons to the left hand upper corner, I used System Settings > Ubuntu Tweak > Tweaks > Window. Window Control

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Some applications do not adhere to the global window decorations, and Chrome is an example of this behaviour. Right-click its window border and choose "use system window decoration". Pretty much every major application other than Chrome uses the default, system-wide kind, so peobably this is all you will have to do.

Also, I strongly recommend you leave the button order as it is, because this change did not come out of nowhere. For instance, in Unity, maximized windows have their buttons in the top-left corner as well, and this tweak won't change that.

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