Ubuntu Unity Not Quite Unified

Ubuntu
Ubuntu

Today I decided to upgrade my Netbook from Ubuntu 10.04 to 10.10 so that I could test out the Unity interface without having conflicts from my custom settings I had going on with the previous interface…

The Good

On one hand I have to say it is a lot cleaner and more crisp than I had first thought. The glitchy/buggy issues I was having with the menu/title bar were gone and the launcher bar seemed to work correctly this time. Also the overhead hub (or whatever they call it) for viewing files and applications seemed to be better as well.

The Bad and The Ugly

So what didn’t I like? Getting to my files was a major pain! I have multiple partitions and like to keep most of my media files (audio, video, and even digital comics) on a separate partition and it took meĀ  a solid 5 minutes before I could figure out how to access them.

Here’s what I had to do:

  1. on the launcher bar, select the grey/white icon for “Files & Folders”
  2. wait 10 seconds for the overhead hub thingy (I’m just going to call it that until I figure out what the official name for it is) to show up.
  3. Then click the “Documents” folder at the bottom-left (any folder would work I suppose, but the options are limited to the main 4 or 5 folders in your Home directory).
  4. Look at the upper-right corner (just below the powerbutton icon) and click on the folder (again, grey/white) and FINALLY the “File Manager” will show up!
  5. The “File Manager” should look familiar, so browse files & folders and mount drives as you normally would.
  6. I highly recommend this step: in the launcher bar you should now see an orange/pink icon that looks like a folder with an arrow cursor on it. right click on that bad-boy and then select: “Keep in Launcher” so you don’t have to go through this mess all over again!

Why did that have to be so stinkin’ difficult?! They better fix that before 11.04 when it hits the Desktop version as a default interface!

**And No, you can’t just go to “applications” and search for “File Manager” because it wont show up!**

Other Problems?

You can’t use print screen when the overhead hub thingy (told ya lol) is active. Also, looking for applications is a little annoying… sorting through the system applications is even more annoying as now they are all grouped into one “System” category instead of having sub-categories of “preferences” and “administration”. There are a few other “minor” issues, but I can look past them for now.

Conclusion:

The first 3 minutes I thought – Oooh Shiny!
The next 20-30 minutes I thought – GIVE ME BACK THE OLD NETBOOK INTERFACE! (or even Gnome)
After that I thought — Meh… it’s not bad once you figure it out, but that’s not a good way to kick things off… I may be more forgiving than most… Anyone coming over from Windows or Mac for the first time is probably going to hate it and curse Ubuntu and perhaps shun Linux altogether for it…
That’s just my thoughts…

Alex

Alex is a professional web and mobile developer. He loves spending time with his wife and kids, and is still very much a kid at heart. He enjoys reading comic books, watching TV/Movies, playing video games, playing with action figures and Legos.

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3 thoughts on “Ubuntu Unity Not Quite Unified”

  1. great!

    i had managed before to find file man. , but then clikin’ on the icon gave only the options dialog!

    also my list of Applications stops at the 10′ line, same to you?

    1. Hey Gianni,

      Thanks for your comment. That is odd. When I right-clicked on the icon it gave me a menu with the following options: “Keep in Launcher” and “Quit”. I wonder what happened in your case… Also, my list of applications has 5 “most used” at the top, then a list of all installed apps below that (which you have to scroll down to see the rest as only the first 15 are displayed in view).

      Which version of Ubuntu are you running?

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