I'm using 12.04. I executed:

  sudo dconf reset -f /org/compiz

Now changing settings in CompizConfig Settings Manager (ccsm) has no effect. For example, changing the number of desktops has no effect. I found that the number of desktops is now controlled by the Gsettings registry, which I suppose may not be connected to the 12.04 ccsm (ccsm Preferences says it is using the GConf backend, there is no Gsettings or dconf option there).

That's OK, but my Place Windows stopped working and I don't know how to configure it now. Presumably a previous upgrade migrated my GConf compiz entries to GSettings and at that time ccsm stopped working and I didn't notice because I wasn't trying to change anything -- but now perhaps i have wiped out the Place Windows and other settings that were migrated, how do i re-migrate them? I would actually like to just put things back to where they were before I executed sudo dconf reset. I have a backup of my hard drive available, I just need to know which files to rollback. I tried rolling back the .config, .gconf, and .cache directories, to no avail. Which files is Gsettings storing stuff in, and how do i read the entries in those files in my backups directly to confirm that they contain org.compiz entries? Alternately, how do i manually redo the GConf->Gsettings migration for compiz, if there even was one?

Incidentally, where is the documentation for this sort of thing (which documentation specifies where Unity and Compiz store config settings?)? And where does dconf store things? And where is dconf's documentation? http://dag.wieers.com/home-made/dconf/dconf.1.html says nothing about the 'reset' command, and it says it stores things in /var/log/dconf, but nothing was there. Are there two things named 'dconf'?

thanks, bayle

1 Answer 1


You used sudo the reset personal configuration files inside your home folder, that made the files changed by the reset owned by root.

To set that back that you need to open a terminal and type this when logged in to your account:

sudo chown -R $USER:$USER $HOME

It will reset all files ownership inside your home folder back to your user and you will be able to use CCSM again.

Next time you need to reset your compiz (or another config tree) just use dconf reset -f /org/compiz, you don't need sudo to change your own files inside your home folder.

  • thank you, but unfortunately it didn't work (ccsm still has no effect). To clarify, when i make a change in ccsm, the change persists in ccsm (even after i restart the machine), but it has no effect. So it seems that whatever configuration registry ccsm is writing to is no longer controlling Compiz.
    – bshanks
    Dec 3, 2012 at 12:28

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