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GUI’s aren’t really my thing.  Haven’t been, for a while now.  Sparse, powerful CLI’s just feel more like home.  Some of the default gnome-terminal settings make sense in the context of intuitive usability and design.  Power users, however, may be left with the perception that they exhibit the faintest note of overkill.

Default gnome-terminal, before modifications


When confronted with any command line shell or terminal emulator, some people freak out.  If that’s you, chances are good that you’ll get more mileage out of some of the other content here.  If not, keep reading, you might find some subtle albeit worthwhile modifications herein.  They are nearly a must for users with smaller displays.  (Ubuntu Netbook Edition, anyone?)

Given that the menu is accessible by right-clicking anywhere on the window, that top menu bar seems gratuitous.  Test that theory, right-click, and uncheck ‘Show Menubar.’  To make that change persist across new terminal instances, right-click again within the terminal window, and choose “Profiles > Profile Preferences.”

The right click menu, there when you need it, hidden when you don't.

Open the Profile Preferences dialogue.

There is a checkbox on the main screen to indicate whether or not to “Show menubar by default in new terminals.”  Uncheck it, and new gnome-terminal windows will open without the menubar (which can still be accessed by right-clicking inside of the terminal.)

Get rid of that pesky menubar and keep it gone!  (Until you change your mind...)

Who needs it, anyway!

Since <Shift>-<Page Up> and <Shift>-<Page Down> are a pretty universal set of keyboard shortcuts for scrolling up and down, the scrollbar is unnecessary at best, annoying at worst, and infuriating if you’re the opinionated type with obsessive tendencies.  Why not vanquish it, by selecting the “Scrolling” tab of the “Profile Preferences” pane, since we’ve already got it open?  When you’re done, click “Close” to save the settings.

In a perfect world, there would be no scrollbars.  Or mice.  And sleep would be unnecessary; only hax hax hax hax hax!!!

Begone, GUI cruft!

Ah, glorious minimalism.

All of the power, none of the frills.

Simple is good.

Until our paths doth cross again, enjoy, and happy hacking!

  1. Kevin Marsh permalink

    Great tips, especially since I’m just getting my Linux environment up. Keep ’em coming!

  2. Have you looked at terminator?

    It’s in apt.

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