Howto: USP setup + tips and tricksJuly 12, 2007 at 10:48 am | Posted in tips and tricks, xubuntu | 11 Comments
As everyone knows, Xubuntu’s start menu is…lacking, to say the least. With this howto, you can get a menu that is comparable to KDE’s Kicker or GNOME’s Slab.
The program I will be using is called Ubuntu System Panel, which describes itself as a “Simple launcher for the GNOME desktop, providing easy access to Places, Applications and common configuration items for your computer”. Even though it is designed for GNOME, it can be easily set up for XFCE. Let’s get started!
1) First, open up a terminal and install what is needed to get USP running on Xubuntu:
sudo apt-get install subversion xfce4-xfapplet-plugin python-gnome2 python-gnome2-desktop python-gmenu python-pyinotify gnome-menus
2) Make a folder, and call it usp-svn:
3) Go into that folder, and download USP:
svn checkout http://ubuntu-system-panel.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/ ubuntu-system-panel
4) Now let’s install USP:
5) Now, we need to create a .usp folder in your home folder BEFORE running USP. To do that, run:
If you plan to use the Places plugin, you should also run:
6) Right-click the Xubuntu panel, and click “Add New Item”. Add the XfApplet plugin.
Afterwards, a window should pop up and give you the choice to add the Ubuntu System Panel. Make sure that you add it. USP will now appear in the panel.
To configure USP, run
a configuration window will pop up. Even though everything is GNOME-oriented, these tips will make it fit better in Xubuntu:
- Change “USP Button Icon” to
- Make sure “Hide Side Pane”, “Hide Stickied Headings”, and “Hide Border” are checked.
- If you’d like to set the Windows key to open up the menu, set “USP Hotkey” to
- To make it look nicer on lower resolutions, reduce the number of number of plugins that are loaded. I have mine reduced to “applications”, “newpane”, “uspuser”, and “system_management”.
To remove any plugins you don’t want, select it and click “Remove”. When you’re done, click “Save”.
- Make sure “Hide Vertical Separator” is checked. Set “Applications Width” to 200 and “Applications Height” to 270.
- To enable searching, install Catfish, a GTK file searcher. It is in Feisty’s universe repo and can be installed as such:
sudo apt-get install catfish
Afterwards, change “Search Command” to
- Set “User Height” to 90 and “User Width” to 60. I also have “Hide User Name” and “Hide Logged On Date” checked, these are optional.
Under “System Management”:
- Make sure “Hide Vertical Separator” is checked. Set “System Management Height” to 160 and “System Management Width” to 100.
- Set “Install software” to
gksu /usr/sbin/synaptic, “Control Center” to
xfce-setting-show, “Lock Screen” to
xflock4and “Quit” to
You can also create your own set of shortcuts. To do so, go to “All Applications” under the “Applications” category, right click the shortcut you want and click “Add to Favorites”.
The end result should be something like this:
Feel free to make any changes as you see fit…but make sure to press the “Backup” button beforehand in case anything goes wrong.