This is a problem with Unity 2D on 12.04. More advanced 3D has no such issue.

Alt+F1 accesses the launcher menu, with arrow keys to navigate the list (side menu).

Alt+F10 accesses the top bar in an open application (or Alt+an underlined menu item letter), which allows access to the global ubuntu settings in the top right (battery, wifi/networking, audio, time/calendar, user, power).

Alt+F10, when no application is open and you're just staring at the desktop, accesses those ubuntu settings immediately.

But the top menu bar does list, in the top left, menu commands for the desktop per se (create new folder, go home, help, start server, etc). These can be accessed only by mouse hovering and click. No way to get to them only by keyboard (arrow keys just cycle through the settings, don't jump over to the left side of the top bar).

Is there a keyboard shortcut way to access the desktop menu bar for manipulating icons on your desktop and other general things? Or is this a work in progress for unity?

If you use the context menu key (or some equivalent you've set to generate that signal) along with other shortcuts for working on the desktop, you can cover most of the functionality of the top menu bar. However, I don't want to memorize those keys to become proficient. I just want a way to open and browse through those menu items (and they aren't ALL available through hotkeys anyway).


Correct me if that's not what you were after, but for me this does the trick:

  • Alt F10, followed by
  • left arrow and right arrow, respectively,

which will let you roam all of the "top bar" to your heart's full content!



you can configure these shortcuts in the usual places ("keyboard" and "CCSM" (which is not installed by default for a good reason)).

Notice also Shift F10 for accessing the context menu (in case you want to use the context-menu key for sth else, etc).

btw: I think you could condense your question a bit and make it more clear n readable: Though I'm happy to try n help, I'm having to guess what you're actually trying to ask...

  • Actually, you described a functioning version of the key presses I was using. I found that it works fully in unity 3D. Not in unity 2d, which is what I want to stick to. The top bar, desktop only, simply does not let the arrow keys cycle over to the left side top menu items, in 2D. So, I guess it's a faulty 2D setting/configuration from ubuntu that can't be fixed. But I'll stick it out in 2D. – user108754 Mar 12 '13 at 14:44
  • hmm, might help if you updated your question than to include 2d vs 3d... no? – nutty about natty Mar 12 '13 at 14:50

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