Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have been using gnome fallback for more than a year, but recently I have come across this image: enter image description here

However, when in virtual machine (new copy of ubuntu 12.04) I change to gnome 3 shell, the desktop is not even similar to the one in the photo above. I am wondering if there are others things that I am missing/have to get to the same thing (or similar) that you can see in the image above.

NOTE: Here is a screenshot from the virtual machine after I used these commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gnome-shell

ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3 Launchpad logo (Click here for instructions on using PPAs.)

enter image description here

share|improve this question
it might be that the virtual machine doesnt have 3d acceleration thus falling back to something else. Again, its just a guess, i'm not sure if this is what is happening, would need more info. – Sam Nov 19 '12 at 0:17
Yes, may be there is something wrong with the graphics settings. Could you post a picture of the appearance in the virtual machine that you are getting? – Swarnendu Biswas Nov 19 '12 at 0:40 is in the main body of my comment. – Elysium Nov 19 '12 at 0:43
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You have to install VirtualBox Guest Additions in order to use Gnome Shell. There is no need to add any PPAs. Gnome Shell is in Ubuntu. But it requires hardware accelerated graphics, which isn't available until you install the Guest Additions.

share|improve this answer
Thanks a lot for the answer. Can you tell me what this Guest Additions adds to my existing VirtualBox? – Elysium Nov 19 '12 at 13:33
Mostly graphics acceleration and features from your VGA that can't be used without it. – Jo-Erlend Schinstad Nov 20 '12 at 1:12

I think installing gnome3 will do, if it doesn't bother you, however, you can install ubuntu gnome remix 12.10.1, which comes with gnome for default and doesn't leave all those nasty unity plugins or programs installed.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.