Enhancing the GNOME desktop experience

GNOME 46.1 is stable on Clear. Two extensions improve the overall desktop experience.

Obtaining

  • Dash to Panel: Select shell version 46, extension version 62
  • ArcMenu: Select shell version 45 (not 46, broken on Clear), extension version 56

Installation

mkdir -p ~/.local/share/gnome-shell/extensions
cd ~/.local/share/gnome-shell/extensions

rm -fr dash-to-panel@jderose9.github.com
unzip ~/Downloads/dash-to-paneljderose9.github.com.v62.shell-extension.zip \
    -d dash-to-panel@jderose9.github.com

rm -fr arcmenu@arcmenu.com
unzip ~/Downloads/arcmenuarcmenu.com.v56.shell-extension.zip \
    -d arcmenu@arcmenu.com

Enabling

  1. Log out and log in.
    Run the Extensions app or command-line gnome-extensions-app.
    Enable Extensions, ArcMenu, and Dash to Panel.
  2. Right-click on the ArcMenu icon and select ArcMenu Settings.
    Enable Hide Overview on Startup under General Settings.
  3. Running X11? Run the Tweaks app or command-line gnome-tweaks.
    Select Fonts and scroll down to the bottom of the pane. Adjust Scaling Factor for your display. For example, I have a 140dpi display. So, my scaling factor is 1.46. That is 140 / 96 rounded to two decimal places.

Running NVIDIA graphics? Stay on X11 for a while longer. Until NVIDIA releases the 555 driver.

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I used to use Dash2Dock, but recently I switched to Dash2Dock Animated, a more lightweight GNOME extension. Still ironing out some kinks, but I see it as having great potential. And very responsive devs.

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Running X11 and cannot resize QT windows i.e. QTerminal, VSCodium? Crazy… It appears to be a timing issue somewhere, mutter-x11-frames starting too early. Create a reset script and place it in /usr/local/bin/.

sudo tee "/usr/local/bin/reset-mutter" >/dev/null <<'EOF'
#!/bin/bash
pkill -HUP -f /usr/libexec/mutter-x11-frames
EOF
sudo chmod 755 /usr/local/bin/reset-mutter

Most often, resizing QT windows works as usual. Run the reset-mutter script for the rare occasions unable to resize a QT application.

btw for some time we considered shipping such extensions by default but … the maintenance pain of this was enormous – they ended up breaking too often and we ended up deciding not to ship extensions like this anymore (even though they do improve the experience)

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