How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

Summary: It's actually pretty simple to choose between Unity and the classic UI.

SHARE:
TOPICS: Open Source
38

Since several people have asked the exact same question I decided to throw up a quick post on how to go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal' rather than the new, swish looking Unity UI.

It's actually pretty simple to choose between Unity and the classic UI.

  1. Log out of Ubuntu 11.04
  2. At the log on screen select the user you want to log in as
  3. At the bottom of the screen you'll notice a task bar appear -  this allows you to switch between different modes
  4. Select Ubuntu Classic
  5. Log in as normal
  6. If you want Unity back, repeat the steps but instead choose Ubuntu

Have fun!

Topic: Open Source

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

38 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • I don't see why people dislike Unity

    Could somebody give me a serious explanation please?
    Michael Alan Goff
    • People dislike Unity because... they dislike Unity.

      @goff256
      Obviously nobody can. Now I haven't tried Unity, per se, but I do use Netbook Edition on appropriate machines and it looks like Unity has borrowed some features from Netbook. I don't get the big deal. Use it - don't use it, but don't waste emotional energy on the issue. Heck there are at least 100 different Windows Managers out there ( http://xwinman.org/others.php ). If you can't find one you like write your own. To quote Jeremy Clarkson: "How hard can it be?"
      Ralph124
      • Not this again...

        @Ralph124
        As much as I enjoy using Ubuntu, I find a lot of Linux fans surprisingly closed-minded... sometimes I just think it's a front to get tech-street cred - you know; if you say it sucks then others will think it's cos' you've got some amazing insight into the feature in question. Ironic really considering the freedom to explore and experiment is the real beauty of Free & Open source. This attitude has turned what should be the epitome of collaboration and sharing into tribal fragmentation wars and is one of the primary reasons Linux will struggle as a desktop. How about some Unity, fellow Linux fans?
        rikasa
      • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

        @rikasa The open source community has always been less than open minded, atleast from where I sit, which is as a jack of all trades/master of none in a multiplatform home. Might shock some to find out but a majority of "IT guys" I know that wouln't touch Linux site the community as a primary reason.
        ITSamurai
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      @goff256 Because it lacks many of the features of GNOME. It is also a bug fest. The day may well come when Unity has all the features of GNOME and is stable - but thus far that day seems far off. Today, GNOME seems an easier choice.
      jeremychappell
      • Lacking features and having bugs

        I see that there are a lot of bugs, though a lot of the ones I have seen have been fixed.

        What features are you talking about, though? I'm not trying to sound as though I am saying you're wrong, I just want to know.
        Michael Alan Goff
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      @goff256 it's new and different ... that's usually enough!
      Adrian Kingsley-Hughes
      • It usually is

        It's just that... I see this as an improvement for them.
        Michael Alan Goff
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      @goff256

      I just like the classic Gnome desktop (I crossed over from KDE when they moved to 4.x). I use a netbook and
      It's more aesthetics and a resistance to change. I just prefer the look and feel of gnome over Ubuntu's modifications. It also keeps a common feel when switching between my various machines.

      This is what I love about the Linux world though, we don't have to go with the default desktop. We have choice! :-)
      devlin_X
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      @goff256 its just that people like what they like. I like gnome. I dont want a new manager. I dont like how unity is laid out.
      Jimster480
    • Unity DVD failed to boot

      @Michael Alan Goff
      I tried Ubuntu with Unity 11.04. The DVD refused to boot. After trying three different DVD burns, I gave up. Ubuntu is out for me.
      terry34000
  • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

    There is no winning with linux. You have to choose one crappy interface or the other, both treating you like you are stupid and can't handle the UI aspects of a mondern computer. I especially like how within the same day linux needs to be hacked just to be usable. That says all kinds of terrible things about it. What next? Compiling your source code? oh wait...
    Loverock Davidson
    • As if, you even remotely know anything about Linux

      @Loverock Davidson

      Folks, don't feed the trolls.
      Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
      • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

        @Dietrich T. Schmitz, Your Linux Advocate
        If I see one I'll be sure not to feed it. Too late, I just responded to you.
        Loverock Davidson
    • Ignorance is bliss, huh?

      @Loverock Davidson
      This is no more of a hack than changing themes in Windows7. I have one PC that works better under Win7 than any previous version of Windows, but it's older and slows down if I try to use Aero. So instead I use "Windows Classic" (or Ubuntu).

      Switching to Ubuntu Classic is no different than switching to Windows Classic. It's a choice, and choice is GOOD!
      use_what_works_4_U
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      @Loverock Davidson As opposed to what? So "not having a choice" is a good thing? For the individual, you make a choice. For a company you mandate a company-wide choice. Why is this a problem? What would you do with source code if not compile it? End users don't see source code, they typically install by choosing something and pushing the "Install" button...

      I'm not sure what point you're failing to make.
      jeremychappell
    • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

      The fool of April has spoken we see.
      Alan Smithie
  • At this point, Unity is a regression. I'll stick w/ UDE UI for now

    nt
    Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
  • RE: How to disable Unity and go back to the classic interface in Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal'

    "swish looking?" Huh?

    Swiss (as in the very influential grid-approach to design) after too many Alpine visits from the St. Bernards?

    Evocative of the Nike trademark?

    I avoid the oses until they're baked, but maybe I have to install this pre-release to understand your choice of noun.
    DannyO_0x98
  • Adrian now show me how to do an offline upgrade

    ...from a previous version of Ubuntu without the need to have the machine connect to the Internet. Windows and Mac OS X does this quite well.
    Mr. Dee