By default Ubuntu Dock in Ubuntu 17.10 and later releases always extends to the edges (top-bar-to-bottom if placed on the left or right and left-to-right when placed at the bottom) even when it's not filled with icons.

Is there a way to prevent this behaviour (i.e. I want to make the dock-length flexible, as the number of application icons in the dock increases it should expand accordingly)?

In other words, is there a way make Ubuntu Dock look like a "proper dock" instead of a side/bottom panel?


Open Terminal and run

gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.dash-to-dock extend-height false

To revert to the "panel mode" run

gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.dash-to-dock extend-height true
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    Also, if you want a graphical tool, install dconf-editor, and navigate to the path @pomsky provided (/org/gnome/shell/extensions/dash-to-dock). – PJ Singh Oct 28 '17 at 23:45

Using either the Gnome Tweak Tool, or https://extensions.gnome.org/local/, disable the 17.10 built-in Ubuntu Dock extension, and install the more configurable Dash to Dock extension, and it'll give you the shorter dock you desire.


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    I tried disabling Ubuntu Dock using Tweaks and extensions.gnome.org/local in a live USB session and restarted GNOME shell (Xorg session). It seems they're not working, dock stays active. – pomsky Oct 30 '17 at 10:01
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    @pomsky I don't know if working in a live USB session makes it reload a gnome session default when restarting gnome, or why that wouldn't work. In a real session, disabling the built-in Ubuntu Dock and enabling the Dash to Dock extension from extensions.gnome.org works fine, just the way it's supposed to. – heynnema Oct 30 '17 at 13:08

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