I use Ubuntu 10.10 on a laptop, with an external monitor, which is used as the primary. Notify-osd alerts show on the connected monitor, as I want.

However, some days ago I removed both gnome panels and installed AWN. All was good, but notify-osd alerts now appears on the laptop. I need, that notify-osd appears on the connected monitor.

How can I move notify-osd alerts on the connected monitor without gnome panels?

  • Did you set the external monitor as primary?
    – ohitsanazn
    Commented Apr 12, 2011 at 20:01

3 Answers 3


gsettings set com.canonical.notify-osd multihead-mode focus-follow

This is the correct way for 12.10. You can test with notify-send

  • This will work on 13.04 Unity Commented Oct 5, 2013 at 19:46
gconftool-2 -s -t string /apps/notify-osd/multihead_mode focus-follow

Should display notices on the currently active monitor.

  • 1
    are there other options besides focus-follow? what if I wanted to pick a specific montior to show notifications on?
    – tester
    Commented Nov 11, 2011 at 18:08
  • You can use gconf-editor ( dconf-editor on 11.10 ) to see all available options. Commented Jan 13, 2012 at 15:29
  • 2
    Setting this value doesn't seem to have any effect in 12.10. I did a quick search in dconf and there doesn't seem to be a notify-osd node.
    – Erigami
    Commented Dec 6, 2012 at 19:31

Hmm interesting, it should show up on Primary screen by default and we can choose the monitor in shell like this DISPLAY=:0 notify-send "hi" and DISPLAY=:1 notify-send "hi"

  • 1
    As far as I know, the DISPLAY option has nothing to do with multiple monitors. Testing this on Ubuntu 12.04 (with focus-follow set as described above), it doesn't seem to do what you suggest either.
    – Joel Cross
    Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 14:57
  • Used to work for me earlier but not using the same setup anymore.
    – Ashfame
    Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 15:15

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