As many folks, I do not like the Unity interface in the latest versions of Ubuntu. In Ubuntu 11.04, I had used the “Classic” mode when logging in, but after upgrading to 11.10 I’ve had to take additional steps to avoid the Unity UI.
The first thing to do is install the Gnome Panel at the terminal (quick launched with Ctl+Alt+T):
sudo apt-get install gnome-panel
Once that is done, I can log out and select the GNOME Classic interface at the login screen, and log into a much more normal looking UI.
There are a few other steps I like to do after replacing Unity to customize my UI…
First, I want to do any updates that are available:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
Then, I’d like to get some restricted extras:
sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras
As I had previously been using Compiz, I started the Compiz Fusion Icon and then from there I clicked “Reload Window Manager” and the system applied my Compiz settings (so I could have a desktop cube, and windows that dock on the sides, etc.)
Pretty easy, overall!