I want to run compiz on startup instead of the default window manager in the Gnome Classic Gnome Shell Fallback. My problem is that I can't find the "correct" way to do this. I have tried a bunch of stuff, e.g.


which doesn't work. The only way that have worked for me is using compiz --replace at startup but this slows down the startup, right? I mean, if I use the default window manager and i also have the compiz --replace at startup, wont it cause a slower startup when both the default window manager and compiz are launched (even though one is terminated)?

I also have the windowmanager set to compiz in the


in gconf-editor and it still doesn't work.

Any idea how I can disable the default window manager and use Compiz instead?

BTW: Im using ubuntu 11.10

  • Compiz uses Metacity under the Ubuntu session, Mutter uses Metacity under the Gnome Session (Gnome Shell). if you disable Metacity you will not have Window borders. – Uri Herrera Mar 31 '12 at 20:04
  • @UriHerrera If I enter compiz in a terminal, without the replace flag I get this message: (compiz:3845): Gtk-WARNING **: Failed to parse /home/euhiemf/.config/gtk-3.0/settings.ini: Key file does not start with a group compiz (core) - Error: Screen 0 on display ":0" already has a window manager; try using the --replace option to replace the current window manager. so which window manager is ubuntu using by default? – richie Mar 31 '12 at 20:07
  • In the Ubuntu Session, Compiz is already running, since Unity is a Compiz plug in. You don't have to add anything. – Uri Herrera Mar 31 '12 at 20:08
  • The link you put in your question is for 2008, When Gnome 2 users used Compiz to have compositing and you'd add it at start up to have that, in 11.10 it's not necessary, unless you're running XFCE or LXDE which doesnt use compositing by default or if you want to replace Kwin in KDE. – Uri Herrera Mar 31 '12 at 20:11
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    Gnome Classic (Gnome Shell Fallback) doesn't use Compiz it Uses Mutter, it's own compositing engine. – Uri Herrera Mar 31 '12 at 20:14

Let me start off with telling that compiz is the default for Gnome-Classic in Ubuntu 12.04. So you might just want to upgrade. The Gnome-Classic session received lots of love in Ubuntu 12.04 and really works like the good old Ubuntu desktop.

On session configuration: The sessions are configured in /usr/share/xsessions where gnome.desktop is the default session. The .desktop session files usually run something like gnome-session --session=ubuntu or gnome-session --session=gnome-classic.

These refer to files located in /usr/share/gnome-session/sessions where you can tell the specific session which window-manager to use.

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