I am trying to use the old Ubuntu feature of adding/removing indicators from the top panel in 11.10/12.04, but cannot do so. I have these questions:

  • How can I remove or add indicator applet at top panel?
  • How can I erase or add a panel ?
  • How can I erase switch user account from top panel since I am the only user in my computer ?
  • How can I erase Startup applications and printers from top panel ?
  • How can I erase the Messages indicator from the top panel?

4 Answers 4


You can no longer add/remove indicators or panels by right-clicking like you used to with older Ubuntu versions before 11.10.

Warning: The default indicators (messages, networking, power, sound, user accounts, etc.) are tightly integrated with Unity since Ubuntu 11.10, and trying to remove them may cause problems.

  • You can remove these default indicators without affecting the rest of the system:

    1. Messages: Remove package indicator-messages
    2. Sound: Remove package indicator-sound
    3. Power: Remove package indicator-power
    4. Print Jobs: Remove package indicator-printers
    5. Date/Time: Simply enable/disable from System Settings...Time & Date: enter image description here
  • Removing these default indicators is NOT recommended or not possible without serious adverse effects:

    1. Networking: Provided by package network-manager-gnome. DO NOT remove unless you have a desktop with one wired ethernet connection and do not use VPNs.
    2. User Accounts and System: Both provided by the package indicator-session. Removing this package will remove the Shutdown, Logout, etc. options as well!
      • Editing the list shown in the System Menu (Startup Applications, Printers, etc.) is NOT possible without modifying the source.

Adding other indicators

Please see this question for a master-list of all the different indicators -- each answer/comments will tell you if it is available from PPAs or the Software Center:

What Application Indicators are available?


The top panel is static and cannot be moved.

If you would like to add indicators to your system, there are 2 ways:

  1. Go to the Ubuntu Software Center and search for "indicators". Install the indicators you wish to use.
  2. Install them via the terminal, for example:

    sudo apt-get install indicator-weather
  3. To remove an indicator, simply use the remove button in the Ubuntu Software Center, or use apt, for example:

    sudo apt-get remove indicator-weather
  • how can I remove message indicator from panel since they are not seen at software center ?
    – user8324
    Jun 18, 2012 at 6:10

This feature has been removed from Ubuntu since 11.04

The only way to add or delete indicators, is to install them or uninstall them via repos or Ubuntu software center.

  • Mail, switch user etc. indicators cannot be seen in software center. Where can I remove ?
    – user8324
    Jun 18, 2012 at 6:06
  • 1
    For mail paste this in terminal: sudo apt-get remove indicator-messages
    – user44136
    Jun 18, 2012 at 22:56

If you want a highly customizable panel with the Lucid feel, and don't mind loosing Unity, you could try gnome-classic session. I think it's very good.

Tutorial here: http://www.webupd8.org/2012/02/more-classic-gnome-session-lands-in.html

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