Software & AppsOperating SystemLinux

How To Merge Application Menu Bar with GNOME Top Bar

Ubuntu 4

GNOME, a popular desktop environment for Linux, is known for its clean and intuitive user interface. However, if you’re using a laptop or a monitor with limited vertical space, you might want to save some screen real estate by merging the application menu bar with the GNOME top bar. This can be achieved using a GNOME extension called Unite. In this article, we’ll guide you through the process step-by-step.

Quick Answer

To merge the application menu bar with the GNOME top bar, you can use the Unite extension. Install the extension from the GNOME Extensions website and configure its settings using the GNOME Tweaks tool. After configuring, the application menu bar will be merged with the top bar, saving vertical screen space. However, compatibility may vary depending on the application, and alternative solutions like hiding the top bar or maximizing the application can also be considered.

Prerequisites

Before we begin, ensure that you have GNOME Shell installed on your system. You can check your GNOME version by running the following command in the terminal:

gnome-shell --version

If you don’t have GNOME Shell installed, you can install it using your package manager. For Ubuntu, you can use the following command:

sudo apt install gnome-shell

Installing the Unite Extension

The Unite extension can be installed from the GNOME Extensions website. Navigate to the page and click on the toggle switch to enable the extension. A prompt will appear asking you to install the extension. Click ‘Install’ to proceed.

Configuring the Unite Extension

Once the Unite extension is installed, you can configure its settings to your liking. To do this, you’ll need the GNOME Tweaks tool. If you don’t have it installed, you can install it using your package manager. For Ubuntu, use the following command:

sudo apt install gnome-tweaks

After installing GNOME Tweaks, open it and navigate to the ‘Extensions’ section. Here, you’ll find the Unite extension. Click on the gear icon next to it to access its settings.

In the settings, you can customize various options such as merging the title bar and the top bar, hiding the title bar when the window is maximized, and more. Adjust these settings according to your preferences.

Using the Unite Extension

After configuring the Unite extension, you should see the application menu bar merged with the top bar. This will help save vertical screen real estate on your laptop.

It’s important to note that the Unite extension may not work perfectly with all applications. Some applications, like GNOME Files and Gedit, do not have a traditional menu bar and may not be compatible with the extension.

Additionally, Firefox and Thunderbird have their own menu bars, but you can save screen estate by disabling them and using the hamburger menu (≡) instead. To disable the menu bar in Firefox or Thunderbird, right-click on an empty space in the menu bar and uncheck ‘Menu Bar’.

Alternatives to the Unite Extension

If the Unite extension doesn’t meet your needs or is not compatible with certain applications, there are alternative solutions. For example, you can hide the top bar using extensions like Hide Panel Lite, Hide Panel, or Hide Top Bar.

Another option is to turn off the legacy title bar in Firefox or Thunderbird and maximize the application using the Super+Up shortcut or the following command line options:

firefox --maximized
thunderbird --maximized

Conclusion

In this article, we’ve shown you how to merge the application menu bar with the GNOME top bar using the Unite extension. This can help save vertical screen space, especially on laptops or monitors with limited vertical space. However, keep in mind that compatibility may vary depending on the application, and alternative solutions like hiding the top bar or maximizing the application can also be considered.

How do I install GNOME Shell on my system?

To install GNOME Shell, you can use your package manager. For Ubuntu, you can run the command sudo apt install gnome-shell in the terminal.

How can I check my GNOME version?

You can check your GNOME version by running the command gnome-shell --version in the terminal.

Where can I find and install the Unite extension?

The Unite extension can be found and installed from the GNOME Extensions website at this link.

How can I access the settings for the Unite extension?

To access the settings for the Unite extension, you’ll need to have the GNOME Tweaks tool installed. Once installed, open GNOME Tweaks and navigate to the ‘Extensions’ section. From there, you can access the settings for the Unite extension.

Are there any alternatives to the Unite extension?

Yes, if the Unite extension doesn’t meet your needs or is not compatible with certain applications, you can consider using alternative solutions like hiding the top bar using extensions such as Hide Panel Lite, Hide Panel, or Hide Top Bar.

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