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Is it possible to get menus to be shown in always visible menu bars in 14.04, rather than in window title bars?

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Yes, you should remove some packages. Use:

sudo apt-get remove --purge appmenu-gtk appmenu-gtk3 appmenu-qt firefox-globalmenu thunderbird-globalmenu indicator-appmenu

This will restore application menus in right place.

UPD: there might be a few packages I missed. To find them, open Synaptic and in the search field enter "appmenu", check the found packages for removal, then search for "globalmenu" and remove them too.

Restart/relogin into your X session to finish changes.

Also check this article.

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This does not seem to work for nautilus. – Alex Mar 31 '14 at 9:06
See the updated answer for instructions. – Danatela Mar 31 '14 at 9:11
blacklisting is something you would do if the package is installed, did you actually restore the nautilus menu bar? – Alex Mar 31 '14 at 9:19
No, I just want to give you more options to try. – Danatela Mar 31 '14 at 9:24
Worked perfectly on Xubuntu 14.04 - finally I have my menu bars back. :) – speakr May 9 '14 at 11:30

There is a simpler method. Just type

sudo apt-get remove hud

in Terminal. It will remove all the other packages and you will get what you want.

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This does not seem to work. Using apt remove --purge hud will only remove hud on Ubuntu 14.04, not any other packages. Are you sure? – Jens May 17 '14 at 7:35

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