export UNITY_LOW_GFX_MODE=1 in my
~/.xprofile and it no longer has any effect in 13.04. Is there a way to disable all the eye candy? I'm running in VirtualBox and the Unity 3D mode with all the visual effects is overwhelming for the VM. Unity works and is usable, it's just very slow to render, so I'd rather have it off (is this 2D mode?).
Especially on a low end machine such as mine (Athlon dual core, GForce 210) running Ubuntu with Unity and Compiz enabled is quite a challenge and may result in a rather slow and sluggish experience.
Virtual machine settings
To improve this I gave the following settings to the virtual machine:
Remove desktop effects
Then I observed a very slow animation for windows and menus. This animations did more harm than use in my virtual machine. Below is three methods how to disable them to get a smoother experience in Virtual Box:
This awesome application lets you disable animations in the Window Manager/General settings dialog:
As this is a virtual machine with the option to make a snapshot before you do harmful things to your OS you may probably safely runs ccsm to disable Compiz effects:
Lastly here is how to do it with dconf-editor:
Unfortunately I have found no way to disable the Dash animation, which still will be rather slow.
In the likely case you are still not happy with the overall speed of the desktop you may consider installing the GNOME Session Flashback, which will let you log into GNOME Flashback (Compiz or Metacity) with a lean and fast desktop reminiscent of 10.04, but with all the upgraded applications, and the recent kernel:
The Unity interface in my Ubuntu 14.04 guest OS became very sluggish recently, even though my Guest Additions were up-to-date with the VBox version at 4.3.26. I read through this and several other answer pages and contemplated switching from Unity to Gnome and other changes, but I knew nothing significant had changed and I remembered getting perfectly good performance out of Unity in my guest machine previously.
So on a guess, I simply reinstalled the Guest Additions (same process as installing them in the first place; the installer simply removes and reinstalls them) and I regained the excellent visual performance and eliminated the input lag that had been occurring just recently. Try this before you try anything more drastic.