I don't quite like Gnome3, or maybe it's just Unity (for the moment)? Was wondering if all Linux distro is going to eventually adapt and move to Gnome3 and have similar interface? I know there is classic login, but as for now, I don't quite like the global app menu and huge not yet so friendly to modify the dock, and was hoping to stick to Gnome2.x as long as possible. When will Gnome2.x be unsupported?

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    Even if it will be deprecated from the main branch, I'm sure someone will fork it due to the popularity of the older interface for simpler setups.
    – crasic
    Jul 2 '11 at 5:29
  • It's still unclear if anyone is going to maintain Gnome2. However, quite a few good distros have it - Ubuntu 10.04, Debian, Scientific Linux, CentOS, Mageia, OpenSuse, and some others (in no particular order of importance). Just use one of these. Jul 2 '11 at 5:54

When you refer to Gnome 3 and Gnome 2.x, it seems to me that you're talking about the shell, but Gnome is far more than its shells. It includes Nautilus, Evolution, Gedit, Totem, Banshee, Rhythmbox and many other applications. Lots of stuff. Unity is only one of many shells for Gnome and Ubuntu will move to Gnome 3 in 11.10, which is scheduled to be released in October this year. Using Gnome 3 does not mean you have to use Gnome Shell or Unity and so many GNU/Linux distros will use other shells by default. There is also work being done to port Gnome Panel to Gnome 3.

Ubuntu Classic does not use the global menu by default, although you can install and use it if you wish. Gnome 2 will be supported by Ubuntu at least until April 2013, but the differences between Gnome 3 compared to Gnome 2 will not be as big as you seem to think, since Gnome Panel will still be available for it.

Also, if you like the old school shells, then you might want to try out Xfce.


Now that 11.10 with Gnome 3 has been around for a while, I thought I'd add a screenshot of my Gnome Panel 3 desktop, AKA "Gnome/Ubuntu classic". As you can see, you can still use good, old Gnome Panel in 11.10 :)

enter image description here

  • Great advice. I will stick to 10.04 as long as possible. Gnome3 on unity seems a bit scary at the moment for me, and has gone bad once on my virtual box (Thank goodness i didn't upgrade my native lucid).
    – robx
    Jul 2 '11 at 17:47
  • Well, there are big differences between running software in virtual machine and on physical hosts. Unity does use the graphics adapter much more than many other shells do, so it's not surprising that virtualbox will have difficulties. It's supposed to be working well now though. In other words; the fact that you didn't have a good experience in virtualbox does not in any way mean you wouldn't have a good experience on your physical machine. And 11.04 does provide Gnome Panel, so Unity is no reason not to upgrade. But we do have LTS-es for a reason. Keep using it until you feel confident. :) Jul 3 '11 at 1:01
  • Well, it what it was is some of the packages i needed wouldn't work, and wine for one wouldn't upgrade for one reason or another. Then I kept trying things and it eventually crashed.
    – robx
    Jul 3 '11 at 1:26
  • +1 for Xfce, you can easily install it with "sudo apt-get install xfce* " and it is significantly faster, uses at least half a GB less space on my test machine. Most GNOME applets and apps should be compatible.
    – NoBugs
    Dec 2 '11 at 19:04

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