I accidentally made GNOME-Shell unusable by testing a theme which completely broke the environment. After I've logged in nothing happens, all I get is an empty desktop.

I can't change the GNOME-Shell theme through gnome-tweak-tool when I'm not currently running the GNOME-Shell so how can I change this manually? There must be a value in gconf or something that I can edit to restore the shell, right?

Please help me out here? :)


First you need to get hold of a theme, if you don't got one you can find one here. After you downloaded the theme, unzip it to "/usr/share/gnome-shell/theme". Then you can reload gnome-shell by ALT+F2 and typing gnome-shell --replace Or just log out and back in again.

Hope it helped.

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  • Thank you for the help, though I solved it by removing the GNOME-Shell user settings file in ~/.config/dconf/ I guess your way of solving it would be better since I needed to reconfigure all my personal settings after doing this but it worked at least :) – Niklas Nov 1 '11 at 9:36

Or you can use this command:

gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.user-theme name SHELL_THEME


gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.user-theme name Adwaita
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