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Deepu K Sasidharan
Deepu K Sasidharan JHipster co-lead, Java, JS, Cloud Native Advocate, Dev @ XebiaLabs, Author, Speaker, Software craftsman. Loves simple & beautiful code. bit.ly/JHIPSTER-BOOK | 4 mins read

Must have GNOME extensions

Must have GNOME extensions

Part of "Linux environment for developers" series

I’m a sucker for nice polished UI and great UX. While there are a lot of Linux Desktop environments out there providing great UX and UI, I found GNOME to be the perfect one for my liking. Yes, I have seen/tried a few others. I also found some which are more polished and providing a better default UX out of the box than GNOME like Deepin and Elementary. But below plugins bridge that gap and hence I choose to stick with GNOME which is the default in Fedora, hence quite stable, unless I had a compelling reason to switch.

So if you like me are a GNOME fan then below are some of the GNOME plugins you must try if you haven’t already. I have listed the plugins I use in my earlier post in the series. here I detail the ones that are a must-have.

GNOME Tweaks

This nifty tool lets you tweak/configure a lot of GNOME configuration and should have been included by default in every distro shipping with GNOME. You can customize the appearance, install extensions, configure mouse & keyboard and so on. It can be found in the software center of your distro. Search for “Tweaks”.

Gnome extensions

You can install below extensions by visiting the link in the title of the extension below and by clicking on the on switch on the top right corner. On Chrome, you would need the GNOME Shell integration plugin to enable the switch. On Firefox, it will prompt you to install the plugin if it doesn’t exist.

Dash to Dock

GNOME without this plugin almost feels annoying. IMO this plugin also should be the default GNOME setting. This one moves your GNOME dash into a highly configurable dock which can be placed on the sides or top/bottom of the screen. I find it perfect on the left side of the screen in GNOME. It can be a floating dock or fixed to look like those on Mint or KDE.

Always Zoom Workspaces

By default, the GNOME launcher does not show the workspaces, you have to hover over the right edge to see it. I find it unnecessary given you have enough real estate on the full-screen launcher and the workspace view takes only a little bit. This plugin keeps it zoomed by default.

Steal My Focus/NoAnnoyance

This is another default in GNOME that is annoying. When something needs focus these plugins brings the window up instead of the default notification. You can use any one of the plugins as both do the same thing.

AlternateTab

This replaces the default Alt+Tab with a more classical window-based switcher which IMO is more user-friendly as the default requires more keyboard navigation using the arrow keys.

Window List

This is a classic plugin that adds the window list to the bottom of the screen and is a must if you use multiple monitors as the windows are grouped and placed in the right monitor screen.

Caffeine

This one adds the ability to temporarily disable screensaver/auto-suspend and automatically activates when you go full-screen. A must-have if you are using your computer for watching videos, presentations, screencast and so on.

Clipboard Indicator

This is one my favorite. It adds a nifty clipboard manager to the top bar and provides shortcuts to cycle through clipboard entries. A real time saver.

Gistnotes

As a developer using GitHub gist a lot, this one is a very useful plugin. It lets you manage your Gists right from the desktop and you can use it like a notes app.

System-monitor

A nice system monitor plugin that sits on the top bar with a detailed view as a popup.

TopIcons Plus

This moves legacy icons form applications to the top bar for consistent UX.

I hope you find this useful. If you have any question or if you think I missed something please add a comment.

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Cover image photo by Brigitta Schneiter on Unsplash

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