If I am currently logged in to Unity, is there a way for me to switch my current session to Unity 2D or Gnome without logging out and in again? I know I can restart Unity by running unity --replace. Is there an equivalent command for Unity 2D or Gnome that I could run to switch to it? If I am currently running Unity 2D or Gnome, will unity --replace switch me back to Unity?

3 Answers 3


Honestly, I would just log out and log back in. Even if you got a script to switch you mid-session, there could potentially be some Unity code still in RAM that might conflict with whatever session you are in. Also, whenever I switch from logging out / in, the Adwaita theme becomes default for Unity.

It would honestly be screwy. May I ask why you would want to switch environments mid-session?

  • Mostly I was just wondering if it was possible. Feb 27, 2012 at 1:15
  • For Live runs, it would be useful to switch without having to log out, since logging out isn't trivial. Dec 30, 2012 at 3:32

I think the better option is to logout and login with the chosen option .. after some logins with the one of the options it will be the default


I haven't tried it, but you could try metacity --replace to go to Gnome.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.