Friday, 19 March 2010

Fixing themed Window controls

There's been a huge fuss over the default layout in the new Ambiance and Radiance Light themes in Lucid Lynx. Namely, the Window controls (minimise, maximise, close) being in the top left corner, not the right as we are all accustomed.

But it's surprisingly easy to fix, even if it's buried in the arcane black arts of 'old Linux'. It's a one character change in one line of the gconf file.

Rope and pitons at the ready...
Click alt + f2 to bring up a command line; type
gconf-editor
Warning: do not edit anything else in the gconf file unless you know what it does, you will wreck your x-windows session.
Navigate the gconf hierarchy tree to the level and key -
/apps/metacity/general/button_layout
and you will find the line -
minimize,maximize,close:
Right-click to open the options menu, select edit; it should be changed to -
:minimize,maximize,close
The leading colon is significant, this sets the window controls to left or right aligned depending on its position at start or end of the line. 

Of course, if you don't like the notification area throwing messages over your right-aligned window controls, you can equally change their position from right to left.  RC

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