Yesterday I blogged about changing the GDM login screen, which seems to be a very touchy and popular subject among readers. I don’t know that I’ve heard from but a very few people that actually like the default login screen in Ubuntu 9.04. It seems everyone has an opinion about changing it. I thought I would offer mine, in more detail. Presenting “My Ubuntu Look and Feel”
There are so many really amazing desktop backgrounds to choose from it is hard to pick just one and publish it as my “favorite”. I guess what I will say is that I’ve grown accustomed to something darker (which fits with the theme, which we’ll see soon.) One of my recent selections is GNOME Smoke. Not too busy, and not too bright and shiny as to be distracting.
For my overall theme I have been using Shiki-Colors for months now. I’ve really grown accustomed to the look, and my desktop just “looks funny” to me if its on something else. I’ve blogged in the past about how to install Shiki-Colors. If you haven’t tried it, I’d recommend it.
Another must-have in my book is the Droid Sans font. I update all my fonts system wide to use this (Droid Sans Mono within gnome-terminal). You might also check out my previous post about installing Droid Fonts. If you haven’t tried this font set check it out. Here are some quick instructions:
sudo aptitude install ttf-droid
System > Preferences > Appearance > Fonts
Select “Droid Sans” 10pt for everything. I also check “LCD” (I am on a laptop). You also may notice a difference if you click “Details” in the bottom right corner of the window and make sure that you’re resolution is set to “96” dots per inch. I know that recent releases try to dynamically detect the best resolution, often times selecting something higher than 96. I’ve found that 96 still looks the best.
It might seem odd to include gnome-terminal is a list of graphical tweaks, but I always customize my terminal as well. Considering I spend the more part of my day within it, it should present me with the most comfortable surroundings.
First I right-click and select Profile > Profile Preferences. I then deselect “Show menubar by default in new terminals”. I then deselect “Use thy system fixed width font” and select Droid Sans Mono, 10pt. I then move to the “Colors” tab and deselect “Use colors from system theme”. I promptly change the color scheme to White on Black. For me, a black background is the only appropriate background for a console. After this I move to the “Scrolling” tab and select “Disable”. You might think this disables the ability to scroll. It does not. It disables the scrollbar within the window (pgup/pgdn still work as expected).
With that I Close the window and enjoy a white on black console with the additional space alloted from removing the scrollbar and menubar, plus a very clean readable font.
Looking back at this it sure doesn’t seem like I’m too particular when it comes to the look and feel of my Desktop, but I definitely have an opinion. I’ve grown to the point that I like/expect certain things a certain way, while not caring about others. It does sometimes feel like I’ve grown a bit more minimalist. Anything that allows me to focus more on my work and less on the “bling” and I’m good.
What are some of your favorite UI tweaks? Have a favorite wallpaper? GDM theme? font? Share the love!