I use Ubuntu for programming. I recently updated it from 11.04 to 11.10. There are some things I don't like in the new version of Unity desktop interface. I don't actually know if it is hard to restore previous behavior or not, and if it is not, where should I look to do that. I know a bit of programming, but I really don't know much about Linux settings.

I used to have 3-6 terminal windows and switch between them with Alt+Tab and Shift+Alt+Tab. I liked half-transparent terminal windows, since with them I could open web-page with some instruction in Firefox, press Alt+Tab and type commands in a console window, being able to recognize text on a web-page under it. Now I have problems with my usual work-style because of the following.

List of "negative" changes

  1. Alt+Tab shows just one icon for all console windows. When I wait some time, it, however, shows all windows, but I don't like to wait. I prefer to remember order of windows and press Alt+Tab as many times as I need to switch to the right window.
  2. Alt+Shift+Tab to switch in reverse order doesn't work now.
  3. Console windows are not transparent any more.
  4. When I don't wait, and switch to this icon, it shows all console windows altogether. So even if they were transparent, I wouldn't be able to see anything below them (I can read something only from the window, which is directly under current one, not a few levels under).
  5. When I run a few console windows in Unity I had 740Mb used on Ubuntu 11.04, but I have 1050Mb now. The question is how to make it back to 750-. I really need my memory, since I use my computer to work with 1512Mb of data and I try to save every 10Mb possible (if it doesn't take too much of machine and, more importantly, my time).
  6. When I press "The Super key" I have a field to type the name of the program I want to run. But now it sometimes shows this field, but when I'm trying to type nothing happens. Probably, focus is not on the right field.

I don't really mean to restore exactly the same behavior, but I want to make my work in Ubuntu 11.10 efficient (at least as efficient as in Ubuntu 11.04). I would be happy if there are some ways to accomplish that.

What have I tried

  1. I have installed CompizConfig Settings Manager.
  2. I have read this question. However enabling "Static Application Switcher" makes Alt+Tab crazy: after enabling it
    1. It says about key-binding conflicts with "Ubuntu Unity Plugin";
    2. "Alt+Tab" switching doesn't change, but "Shift+Alt+Tab" now works and shows all windows;
    3. Memory usage increases.
  3. I have tried turning off Ubuntu Unity Plugin, but this doesn't seem right thing to do, since it seems to turn off all menus, a lot of keystrokes and app-launcher, which usually activates with "The Super key".
  4. I have found, that window transparency can be enabled by "Opacity, Brightness and Saturation" plugin from Accessibility. However I don't know if enabling it is the right thing to do (at least it increases memory usage).

Update: everything solved but #3: see my own answer below.

I have made a separate question about issue #3 (transparency).

  • 1
    'closed as too localized'??? This is a really important question, please reopen. – EoghanM Apr 12 '12 at 16:27

Everything solved but #3: it was the difference between Unity 2d and Unity 3d
I've found an answer to my own question: I've read about Unity and have found that there are two versions of it: Unity 2d and Unity 3d. Also I found, that default was Unity 3d, but when on start-up/log-on screen I've pressed wrench and chosen "Unity 2d" instead of "Ubuntu" from drop-down menu, all problems seem to be gone except for #3. It seems that in this menu "Ubuntu" is a nickname for Unity 3d.

Problem #3 (transparency) was asked in a separate question.


http://www.ubuntugeek.com/howto-create-a-transparent-terminal-in-ubuntu-desktop.html here is the link to change transparency of your terminal and for regarding alt-tab behavior, you dont need to change it you just need to explore 11.10 when you press alt-tab it will show you all opened programs but in group move to terminal by holding alt and pressing tab again and again when you reach on terminal press ~ Button its above tab(keep alt pressed) and you will see list of all terminals. hope it helped, please accept this question by clicking check button on right side and if you think i have not satisfied you then comment below. thanks

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