Have just installed Ubuntu 13.10 (desktop), but the panels seem to be locked. I cannot move or edit them, or add applets to the panels. Newbie to Linux... have scoured forums and tried all the hold ALT & right Click or hold SUPER & right click etc.

Release: Ubuntu 13.10 (saucy)
GNOME: 3.8.4 (Ubuntu 2013-09-04)
Kernel: 3.11.0-14-generic (#21-Ubuntu SMP Tue Nov 12 17:07:40 UTC 2013)
OS Type: Linux
GCC version: 4.8 (i686-linux-gnu)
Xorg Version: 1.14.3 (15 October 2013  09:23:29AM)
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    Gnome no longer includes applets, BTW which de, unity or gnome shell? – Tachyons Dec 5 '13 at 1:13

Gnome has moved away from the let-the-user-customize-it approach, since Unity is built from Gnome it also encompasses this new ideal.

Option #1: You can run an older version of Ubuntu such as 10.10 which was the final release of Ubuntu to utilize the old style gnome (Gnome2.32), but beware the repos have been moved so you will need to reconfigure you apt list to install software from the Ubuntu repos. This release isn't supported anymore, so it no longer receives bug fixes or security updates, and therefore is not an advised option.

Option #2: You can install a different desktop environment like KDE, or XFCE. I prefer KDE myself but XFCE has a fairly Gnome2 like appearance so it may be more to your liking. If you want to try these you can install them from apt or you can download Kubuntu or Xubuntu which are the official ubuntu projects that utilize those desktop environments rather than Unity.

Option #3: You can install a different desktop environment that is branched from the Gnome project such as MATE which is built from the Gnome2 code. I found Mate had some serious bugs, but all projects do in the beginning, it may since have improved, and has quite a fan base. There are also some others like Cinnamon to consider.

Option #4: You can give Unity a try, maybe you'll like it? I don't.

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    suggesting the use of an unsupported EOL version is dangerous, these no longer receive bug fixes or security fixes/updates – TrailRider Dec 5 '13 at 3:19

If you are in the Gnome shell rather than Unity it should be Alt+Left click and hold to drag panels, and Alt+Super+Right click to bring up the context menu to edit. I think the need for the extra super is that Compiz swallows the Alt+Right click. This works for me in 12.04 and it works on 13.10 too.

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