Posted by: reformedmusings | May 1, 2012

Regaining Dodge Windows for Unity Launcher in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Precise

I lived by the Dodge Windows behavior in Gnome with AWN, and found it equally helpful and desireable in Ubuntu’s Unity launcher. As part of the Canonical campaign to dumb down Ubuntu to the lowest level user while sacrificing experienced users who helped make Ubuntu what it is today, support for Dodge Windows was dropped in 12.04 LTS Precise. But, the beauty of open source is that you can get it back (HT: omgubuntu!)!

damianatorrpm wrote a patch to add Dodge Windows back into Unity. The easy way to get the behavior back is to add ikarosdev’s PPA into your repository list. You can find the exact instructions in this post. I will not duplicate the procedure here as it may change in the future. You may want to save the instructions to remove the PPA and its patched files in case they are needed later. Sometimes these patches cause issues with later updates.

I added the PPA and was offered the updated files upon refreshing the package list. After installation, I logged out and back in. Voila! Dodge Windows is back as an option in Compiz Configuration Settings Manager under the Unity area. It works great! The only issue so far is that Unity will not open a window over the visible launcher. I’m sure that I’ll find a way to fix that with time. I probably need to change the window placement options.

In fact, it fixed a bug I’ve found in the Unity launcher, at least when set to Never Hide. I noticed that when I close programs, their icon or the marker next to the icon for the closed program remains on the launcher, falsely indicating that the program is still open. This erroneous display could only be cleared by changing workspaces, which refreshes the Launcher display. So far, the PPA version of Unity doesn’t seem to have that issue.

On ikarosdev’s page, he also discusses a patch to change the launcher’s minimizing behavior. I’m not interested in that, but it’s available to those who are.



%d bloggers like this: