Mac / Windows Style Widgets or Gadgets for Linux (Ubuntu 10.04)

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You can have Windows style Gadgets or Mac style Widgets in linux (Ubuntu 10.04 or Fedora 13 etc.) using Screenlets. Screenlets are small owner-applications (written in Python) that can be described as “the virtual representation of things lying/standing around on your desk”. Sticky notes, clocks, rulers, youtube videos or whatever. So go ahead and install them by doing

sudo apt-get install screenlets

By default it comes with lots of screenlets or “widgets”, you can launch the screenlets manager from Applications > Accessories > Screenlets, which should present you with a screen like this

You can launch individual screenlet by simply selecting it and then clicking on Launch/Add or just by double clicking it. By default it would appear at the top left corner of the desktop, from where you can drag it to its desired location. You can change the settings and zoom settings on each screenlet by right clicking on it. Some of these screelets have themes as well which you can change from the menu that pops up when you right click them. You can even install additions themes which you can download from website like this. The installation instruction for a themes is usually included in the corresponding file that you download!

Further, you can have them appear like Mac widgets by pressing a key like F9, for this you would need to have Compiz Fusion installed and properly configured, for instructions, look here. You would need to go to Compiz Settings Manager and tick the box for Widget Layer.

Next you need to right click on the individual screenlets and choose the Window type as Widget.

Now this should make the screenlet disappear from your desktop and would only appear when you press F9. Enjoy, the screenlets.

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has written 346 posts on this blog.

Meditating towards his "nerdvana", lifehacker is a teacher by the day and a nerdy blogger by the night. He lives to learn and yearns to learn living.

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