At first glance this sounds like a duplicate of Can't change text size in gedit, but it isn't: in that question they're actually talking about print size, I'm not.

I'm using Ubuntu 14.04 and Gedit 3.10.4.

Anyway - last week, to let one of my kids play with the text editor, I changed the default text size to be large, on the Edit/Preferences/"Font and Colour" tab. Now, I can't change it back - I tick on the box to use the default "Ubuntu Monospace 13" font, and the box is ticked and then unticks itself straight away. I can change the font size instead, and the change just reverts as soon as it's saved.

I think it might be due to some config file which has the wrong permissions: if I open Gedit in sudo mode, I can change the font size. But the change made here doesn't cross over back into "non-sudo" gedit.

The only config file I can find in home is ~/.config/gedit/accels and the permissions are normal on that. I think that's just a list of keyboard shortcuts anyway. There's lots of other config files in /usr/share/gedit/ but none of them show as being modified recently.

I've tried uninstalling and reinstalling gedit but it didn't make any difference.

Any ideas anyone?

  • When you uninstall gedit it keeps the configuration unless you use the --purge flag. Oct 9, 2018 at 10:40
  • ah, i'll try again....nope, didn't help. I just noticed that it's all of the options that are locked, not just the font size. Oct 9, 2018 at 13:55

1 Answer 1


It sounds similar to this problem: gedit "Manage External Tools" menu option doesn't appear

Use namei to find if sudo owns some of your configuration files:

$ namei -l ~/.config/gedit/tools
f: /home/rick/.config/gedit/tools
drwxr-xr-x root root /
drwxr-xr-x root root home
drwxr-xr-x rick rick rick
drwx------ rick rick .config
drwxr-xr-x root root gedit
drwxrwxr-x rick rick tools

If you see root appear as owner or group (after the first two directories, / and home) then use this command:

sudo chown -cR user:user /home/user

Where user is your user ID. ie Max:Max /home/Max

  • Thanks. I don't have ~/.config/gedit/tools - the only thing I have is ~/.config/gedit/accels and the path down to that is all owned by max:max (my user/group). Oct 9, 2018 at 13:38
  • chowning my whole home dir (as in that question) didn't help either, unfortunately. Oct 9, 2018 at 14:00
  • I've uninstalled gedit and deleted everything I can find on my whole drive, that mentions gedit. Then after installing it again I have the same problem... Dec 3, 2018 at 9:58

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