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Elementary Joins the Mutter Club -4 Good- with Gala!

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Elementary OS

Elementary is actually an Ubuntu distro that comes with some Elementary Apps and a modified Gnome Panel. The latest release is Jupiter and is an Ubuntu 10.10 (!!!). I didn’t know that, so I did download it and ..I freaked out! ..Ubuntu 10.10 in 2012!?  ..Right after installing, it gives you a message that distro is not supported and a choice to upgrade to 11.04 (to the *worst ever* Ubuntu release!).

So I quit that, I set up a clean Ubuntu 12.04 and I installed Elementary modules from Elementary Daily PPA.

The new Elementary OS is called Luna, is based (lucky guess) in Ubuntu 12.04, and is going to be released probably in October –or when is ready–  ..I didn’t find a release schedule.

Menus for all tastes,  with categories or with paging. It could be a smart idea for Gnome Shell, as in version 3.8 they will -likely- replace categories with paging.

A nice and clean user interface that helps you to setup your 4 hot spots, with predefined or custom scripts.

The Switchboard-gnome-control-center. Nothing special on it. I think it supports a plugin system.

The two Browsers of Luna, File Browser (Pantheon 0.1) and the more popular Web Browser Midori. Most of Elementary modules are written in GTK3, Vala and C.


Of course all I was caring about was the user interface of Elementary. I think is possible to install it alongside with Gnome Shell and Cinnamon (at least in Ubuntu 12.04). Gala combines Gnome Shell, Cinnamon and a bit of OS X. Watch :)


Do you think that Gnome Shell is forked so much because is unpopular and people dislike it? Well, I think that this is the real power of Gnome3. Gnome3 is a blank canvas that everyone can build a custom user interface. Every fork is welcome in any software and forks show a very healthy project.

You will find lot more info in “Meet Gala: The Window Manager” and you can find all the latest news in Elementary Journal.

Original Video @ here.

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  • Adonis K. (Varemenos)

    Why make yet another fork of GS instead of helping Gnome’s team add that functionality in GS?

    • alex285

      Different people, different ideas, and besides it’s impossible all developers to work in a single project. In the end of the day, consumers get more choices. By the way having a bigger development team, isn’t always an advantage.

  • Philip Witte

    Looks great, especially the new dynamic workspace management (which is the main reason I use Gnome-Shell). Recently, Cinnamon and Gala looks like very good alternatives to Shell. Whish they where on the official repos…

  • Tom Beckmann

    Actually it is not a fork. You may know know that mutter is just a library, Gala uses libmutter bindings for vala, so no actual relations to gnomeshell besides that they both use as a base.

    • alex285

      True, that’s why it joins the club :)

  • Aventinus the Zethos

    I follow the progress of Elementary OS for years now. Back in the Gnome 2 days I was an Elementary theme and apps fan. I really love their taste of style but unfortunately their project evolves very slowly. I hope Elementary OS will be stable soon. :)

  • foobar

    Wow, some parts would make neat extensions. (Workspace-Switcher, alt-tab, icons in window-overview, zoom)

    • Capstan

      please, please someone make this extensions! The animations are great and the way the workspace-switcher works, i’m wanting for a long time!

  • Philip Witte

    you know what I wish Gnome-Shell had… the ability to drag-rearrange Workspaces in overview.

  • Ian Brunelli

    How GNOME OS apps – like Web – look on eOS (my question is mainly about GMenu)?