Macbuntu - Spice up your desktop

Updated: June 30, 2017

Macbuntu is no stranger to Dedoimedo. We first used this lovely project slash transformation pack in Gnome 2 many years ago and then again about three winters counter clockwise with a Salamander edition of Ubuntu. Now we shall attempt this lovely work again on top of Ubuntu 16.10 Yakkety Yak. I've written this just before the Zesty release, but the idea is 100% identical and valid.

Before we continue, you may ask, why you do dis, I feel no pain. Wait, I got confused. That's a Zohan line. What I meant is, why touch the default Ubuntu setup? Well, we've already done some work in my essential tweaking guide, so we're notching up to the next level. This will give you some serious street credit in your local coffee shop. Probably not, but worth a try.


Let us commence!

We have one Ubuntu 16.10 at our disposal and we will be using the Noobslab PPA, which we also used the last time. This unofficial source comes with a great deal of goodies, and is not limited to just the Macbuntu packages. Tons of excellent icons and themes are also available, but we'll get there in a separate article.The initial setup requires the following four lines:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:noobslab/macbuntu

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install macbuntu-os-icons-lts-v8
sudo apt-get install macbuntu-os-ithemes-lts-v8

You can now apply the relevant themes to your setup. Select Macbuntu.

Change theme

Nice 1

Nice 2

Nice 3

Dock & search

Noobslab also offers several additional, accompanying tools, which can further enhance your Macbuntu experience. The online guide on their site also goes into changing systems strings to display different labels, replacing the Ubuntu logo and a few other more intrusive bits and pieces. I decided to refrain from those.

Instead, I did install Plank, which we've seen and tested in the past. It's an interesting one, but if you're using Unity Tweak Tool and you may have re-positioned the Launcher to the bottom of the screen, you might not need the dock.

sudo apt-get install plank

Plank dock

Plank, zoomed

You can also configure Albert, a lightweight launcher a-la Krunner in Plasma, Alfred in Mac or Synapse in Linux, or, for that matter, Dash in Ubuntu. This is an interesting one, and you will learn why so in a few weeks when we test another program of this kind. It is available through the Noobslab PPA, but also several other sources, as well as GitHub.

sudo apt-get install albert

Albert hotkey

Albert, more

Albert, calculations

System menu, other changes

Of course, the Devil is in the detail, so there's still more you can do, including wallpapers and even fonts. The one thing I liked a bit less is that the system menu shows icons of different heights, so this can feel a bit disjointed in the otherwise highly polished setup.



Some more screenshots, to get you pumped up!

Nice 4

Nice 5

Nice 6

Nice 7


Silly but nice. That's the meaning of life. So you should consider applying colorful tweaks to your desktop, just because you can, and also because it may infuse your system with a fresh breath of enthusiasm and fun. Macbuntu is a steady workhorse in this field, and it has yet to disappoint.

I quite like the concept, even though it treads a fine line between Linux games and a stern finger from Apple, maybe. But if you do like this idea, you might as well test. I do suggest going for icons and themes only, getting comfortable with the idea, making sure you are pleased with the visual layout, and if so, you can then consider some extra stuff, like panels, launchers, logos, and whatnot. I guess that is all for now. Bling bling away, children of the Internet, Macbuntu your desktops!


You may also like: