Tuesday, December 8, 2009


This is perhaps one of the most important aspects of the 'look' of Ubuntu and its panels. And especially since Windows 7 has taken transparency to a whole new level now! :P What if you could make the GNOME panels and the title bars of the windows transparent?

I'm not exactly sure if there's any comprehensive tutorial on transparency yet. That way, you are in luck!

First things first, you'll need Compiz and Ubuntu Tweak to do this. If you have been following my blog, you might have come across the two guided tutorials on the installation of both of them. If, however, you have missed those posts, here's a link to those tutorials (do go through both the posts as you'll need both the softwares installed):

    Click here for a complete guide to Compiz installation and setup
    Click here for a complete guide to Ubuntu Tweak installation and setup

So, this is how you make your GNOME panel transparent:

Open Compiz (GNOME Menu > Preferences >CompizConfig Settings Manager). This is what you'll see:

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Now do you notice that small tab which says "Opacity, Brightness and Saturation"? Click on that tab and it will open with this:

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Notice carefully, you can see a "New" button on this window under 'Window specific settings'. This image will help you out:

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After you click on "New", type the following exactly as is:


and set the Window Value to 70 (change this to suit your needs). This pic will make the scenario clear:

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Now coming to the panel window transparency. Open Ubuntu Tweak from GNOME Menu > System Tools > Ubuntu Tweak. Go to the Desktop >Windows option and select the settings as given here (change the values to suit your needs):

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Thats it! Say hello to transparency! :)

(For another take on a different type of transparency check out another post on this blog here)


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