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Since Ubuntu 13.04, and now 13.10 and 14.04, my Nautilus (Files) has no application menu.

This means that I can't access Edit>Preferences and can only change preferences via dconf-editor, as the 'show hidden files' option keeps turning itself on.

No, it's not hidden in the global menu, whether the global menu is disabled in settings or not.

I've spent hours searching Google for an answer and tried every suggestion, including:

  • Reinstall Nautilus, removing the ~/.config/nautilus and ~/.config/nautilus-actions folders

  • UBUNTU_MENUPROXY= nautilus

  • Installing the appmenu list of programs

  • Removing the appmenu list of programs

Can anyone help?

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have you got some relevant messages in /var/log/kern.log ? Are you using unity, gnome, or KDE ? –  Fred B. Apr 30 '14 at 12:55
Open Gedit and press Ctrl + O (alphabet o) to open a file. If it shows hidden files, press Ctrl + H to hide them and then close Gedit. Now open Nautilus, does it show the hidden files? And what are you using Ubuntu Unity or Ubuntu GNOME? –  Aditya Apr 30 '14 at 12:58
Thanks for your time so far, I'm using Unity. The hidden files is not really a big problem, it's just a reason to need to get into preferences. Ctrl H works universally wherever I am. It just doesn't persist between boots and I have to use dconf-editor to disable the setting. Looking in /var/log/kern.log, there are no log entries at all relating to Nautilus or Files whatever I do in Nautilus, only if I mount a drive through Nautilus then a file mount message shows up; nothing else. All other programs are fine, it's just Nautilus. Are there any other config files I could delete? –  user276240 Apr 30 '14 at 15:12

3 Answers 3

Run dconf-editor, navigate to org > gtk > settings > file-chooser, then untick show-hidden.

Press Ctrl+h to show hidden files, press it again again to hide them.

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Sorry to say, but it didnt work for me - ubuntu 14.04 –  davidkonrad Oct 16 '14 at 15:33

I think what you're asking about might be "a feature, not a bug".

Take a look at: http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/02/ubuntu-desktop-moving-application-menus-back-into-application-windows/

It says:

... in May 2012. "By design, the global menu bar displays the menu of the focused window. This proves awkward in some applications with dialogs and multiple windows."

The intent of moving application-specific menus into the global menu bar was to leave more room for content in applications.


Ubuntu developers wanted to "propose a solution to fix the main UX bug we have [had] in Unity since its very first release: the menus being hard to find or too far from their parent window,"

To find this solution:

Hover over an empty space in the background. Click the menu-button on your mouse (usually the right button). A menu appears; select "Change Desktop Background".

A window will open up, with "All Settings" | "Appearance" and two tabs: "Look" and "Behavior". "Look" will be selected; select "Behavior".

Under "Show the menus for a window", select the "In the window's title bar" option.

That should do it.

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No, this didn't do it. –  haelix Nov 14 '14 at 9:58
No menus, this is extremely frustrating and an excellent illustration of the fact that Ubuntu is going nowhere. I'm with Ubuntu since 7 years go but features and bugs keep coming and going. The whole global menu thing was plain stupid from the start. Now, you can't get rid of it. –  haelix Nov 14 '14 at 10:00

Press the alt key.

OR ...

Move your mouse to the top of the screen.

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protected by Community Dec 30 '14 at 20:44

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