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Enabling Compiz Fusion On An Ubuntu 7.10 Desktop (NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200)


This tutorial shows how you can enable Compiz Fusion on an Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) desktop (the system must have a 3D-capable graphics card – I’m using an NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 here). With Compiz Fusion you can use beautiful 3D effects like wobbly windows or a desktop cube on your desktop.

This document comes without warranty of any kind! I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!

1 Preliminary Note

I have tried this on a desktop computer with an NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200. It should work the same way with all other NVIDIA graphics cards.

 

2 Restricted Drivers Manager

To use 3D effects on an NVIDIA graphics card, we need the proprietary NVIDIA driver which is available in the Restricted Drivers Manager. Go to System > Administration > Restricted Drivers Manager:

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Type in your password:

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The Restricted Drivers Manager should offer an NVIDIA accelerated graphics driver for installation:

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Choose that driver; a new window will pop up where you confirm your choice by clicking on the Enable Driver button:

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Afterwards the NVIDIA driver is being downloaded and installed:

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You can now close the Changes applied window…

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… as well as the Restricted Drivers Manager (but note the Needs computer restart line in the Status column – I’ll come to this next):

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As you’ve noticed in the previous screenshot, the computer needs a restart so that the changes can take effect. Click on the restart icon in the upper right corner…

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… and then on the Restart Now button to reboot the system:

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After the reboot the system uses the proprietary NVIDIA graphics driver.

 

3 Installing Compiz Fusion

Open the Synaptic Package Manager (System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager):

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Type in the root password:

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Use the Search function and search for compizconfig:

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You should find the package compizconfig-settings-manager in the results. Click on it and select Mark for Installation:

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Accept that package’s dependencies by clicking on Mark:

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Afterwards, you should also select the packages emerald and gnome-compiz-manager for installation (you can use the Search fuction again to find them):

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Next, click on the Apply button:

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Confirm your selection by clicking on Apply again:

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Afterwards, the packages are being downloaded and installed:

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After all packages have been installed, you can close the Synaptic Package Manager:

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4 Enabling Compiz Fusion

To make sure that Compiz Fusion is enabled, go to System > Preferences > Appearance:

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In the Appearance Preferences window, go to the Visual Effects tab and make sure that Custom is selected. That’s it already. To configure Compiz Fusion, you can click on the Preferences button…

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… but you can do the same by going to System > Preferences > Advanced Desktop Effects Settings:

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In both cases the CompizConfig Settings Manager opens where you can define the behaviour of Compiz Fusion:

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5 Keyboard Shortcuts

Here’s a list of the most common Compiz Fusion keyboard shortcuts:

SUPER+SHIFT+DRAG LEFT MOUSE = draw fire
SUPER+SHIFT+C = clear fire
CTRL+ALT+DRAG LEFT MOUSE = rotate cube
CTRL+ALT+LEFT ARROW = rotate cube
CTRL+ALT+DOWN ARROW = flat desktop
SHIFT+ALT+UP = initiate window picker
CTRL+ALT+DOWN = unfold cube
ALT+TAB = window switch
SUPER+TAB = flip switcher or ring switcher, depending on which is enabled.
ALT+F7 = initiate ‘move windows’
SHIFT+F9 = water effect
SHIFT+F10 = slow animations
CTRL+ALT+D = show desktop

For Grouping and Tabbing:
SUPER+S = select single window
SUPER+T = tab group
SUPER+Left = change left tab
SUPER+Right = change right tab
SUPER+G = group windows
SUPER+U = ungroup windows
SUPER+R = remove group window
SUPER+C = close group
SUPER+X = ignore group
Hold the SUPER button then select the windows you want to group and then hit SUPER+G.

The SUPER key is the Windows key on most keyboards.

 

6 Some Screenshots

Here are some screenshots of Compiz Fusion in action:

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  • Compiz Fusion: http://www.compiz-fusion.org
  • Ubuntu: http://www.ubuntu.com

 

 

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