title Ubuntu Netbook Edition - Uninstall Unity


With Ubuntu 10.10 a new desktop called "Unity" was introduced as default for the Ubuntu netbook edition. The new interface should use the small desktop of netbooks more effectively, give a better structured access to the installed application and be more touchscreen-friendly. It is already planned to use Unity as default desktop for Ubuntu 11.04 ([1]).

But there are several reasons to prefer the previous netbook desktop:

  • The old netbook desktop used the desktop space of netbooks better than unity. While the old netbook desktop only used a small bar at the top unity introduces an additional sidebar stealing more usable space from maximized applications.
  • Unity has a much higher cpu load. The performance needs of Unity often exceeds the power of the netbook-typical Intel Atom processors.
  • The new structured access to all installed applications is slower than the previous GNOME starter or GNOME Do.

Fortunately there is an alternative available that restores the previous ubuntu netbook interface which is written in EFL. In the following the installation and switching to Ubuntu Netbook EFL is shown.

Installation of Ubuntu Netbook EFL

For the EFL-Version of the ubuntu netbook edition install the packages


for example with apt-get:  sudo apt-get install netbook-launcher-efl ubuntu-netbook-efl-default-settings 

Switching to Ubuntu Netbook EFL

To automatically login to the Ubuntu Netbook EFL desktop open the system logon settings in System-> Administration-> Login Window.

Choose "Ubuntu Netbook Edition 2D" as default session. After reboot the unity packages may be removed. But as long the de-activated Unity does not any harm the removal of the package is not recommended. Unity is still in strong development and maybe in the near future the problems are fixed.

Customization of the EFL desktop

There are two themes available for the Netbook EFL desktop: 'default' and 'alternative'. The action theme can be defined with the gconf-editor in the key 'theme' at apps->netbook-launcher-efl.

For advanced editing (changing the background picture of the alternative theme or the font sizes of the default theme) the corresponding theme files in edge format have to be edited. The files can be found in /usr/share/netbook-launcher-efl/data/themes under their corresponding theme names.

Use edje to extract (can be received with the package libedje-bin) one of the themes:

sudo edje_decc alternative.edj
sudo edje_decc default.edj

This creates the corresponding extracted theme directories which can be easily edited. For example the font size of the Ubuntu Netbook EFL Desktop Menus can only be changed in the configuration file default.edc. The background picture of the alternative-desktop can be changed by replacing bg.jpg with another 1024x600 pixel jpg-image. After all modifications rebuild the .edj-file with build.sh and copy it to the parent directory. Take care of the file owner (root) and permissions (-rw-r--r--).

See Also

External Links

UbuntuNetbookEdition/UninstallUnity (last edited 2010-11-14 18:55:49 by a-schmitt-ohren)