Manage apps & settings with the menu bar

The menu bar is the dark strip on the top of your screen. It contains the window management buttons, the app menus, and the status menus.

Window management buttons

The window management buttons are on the top left corner of windows. When maximized, the buttons are in the top left of the screen. Click the buttons to close, minimize, maximize or restore windows.

App menus

The app menus are located to the right of the window mangement buttons. Unity hides the app menus and the window management buttons unless you move your mouse pointer to the top left of the screen or press Alt+F10. This feature enables you to see more of your content at once, which is especially valuable on small screens like netbooks.

Disable the app menu

It's possible to remove the app menu integration if you prefer to have your menus attached to the window instead of the menu bar.

Disabling the app menus will break the HUD.

  1. Click this link to open the Software Center.

  2. Click Remove.

  3. Log out and log back in for the change to take effect.

Status menus

Ubuntu has several different status menus (sometimes referred to as indicators) on the right side of the menu bar. The status menus are a convenient place where you can check and modify the state of your computer and applications.

List of status menus and what they do

  • Messaging menu Message icon

    Easily launch and receive incoming notifications from messaging applications including email, social networking, and Internet chat.

  • Battery menu Battery icon

    Check your laptop battery's charging status. This menu is hidden if a battery isn't detected.

  • Bluetooth menu Bluetooth icon

    Send or receive files by Bluetooth. This menu is hidden if a supported Bluetooth device isn't detected.

  • Network menu Offline network icon

    Connect to wired, wireless, mobile, and VPN networks.

  • Sound menu Volume icon

    Set the volume, configure sound settings, and control media players like Rhythmbox.

  • Clock

    Access the current time and date. Appointments from your Evolution calendar can also display here.

  • System menu Power cog icon

    Access details about your computer, this help guide, and system settings. Switch users, lock screen, log out, suspend, restart or shutdown your computer.

    Some of the icons used by the indicator menus change according to the status of the application.

    Other programs such as Tomboy or Transmission can also add indicator menus to the panel.