My OS X wannabe desktop

First off, I love the Apple GUI, but hate Apple products (too expensive, too proprietary, too many hardware issues). I am, however, not an Apple hater, because they do do some things right. Their screens are great quality, and their OS GUI is sublime in my mind. I am running straight Ubuntu 18.04, and was TIRED of Gnome's massive memory hogging (1.8 GB's with nothing open but htop running all of my extensions...). So I decided to try MATE and installed the latest version (1.22) from an unofficial PPA, and downloaded the ubuntu mate core package as well and set to theming it up to look like my Gnome desktop. I am running Compiz, so I had to do a little trial and error to find a theme that worked with the window manager, but I managed. MATE is taking up a little more than half the resources that Gnome was (but this is with screenlets running that weren't on Gnome), boots up instantly (where Gnome had a ~5 second delay), and the only thing that I miss is the workspaces-to-dock extension from Gnome where it shows an auto-hiding dock that previews your virtual desktops, and you can easily drag and drop windows between the desktops by clicking the icons and dragging, very cool extension. But, I'm willing to live without it for all the other benefits. I'm a happy MATE user!!! I love the responsiveness and having the effects of Compiz.


In place of the workspaces to dock extension, create another panel on the side put only the workspace switcher on it shrink the length to the size of the workspace switcher make the panel 80 or so wide and make it transparent, and combine it with autohide and it should be pretty similar here is how i did it
[New panel layout (Gnome 3 but actually better)]


Nice tip! I will try that out later.

I tried what you said but I have some problems. First, the workspaces switcher applet only shows horizontally...Second, I cannot adjust the length of the dock, only the width. Also, if I set it to autohide, it hides even when nothing is blocking it. And it is a bugger to get back, I have to repeatedly move the mouse around the edge of the screen to get it back. I don't know if all of this is a problem with MATE 1.22 (Since that's what I'm running..) or just a configuration problem in general. Any ideas?

to get the workspace switcher to show vertically, go to it's preferences and add as many rows as you have workspaces, to shrink the panel go to the panel properties and uncheck the expand box, and yes unfortunately on autohide it always hides unless you mouse over it, maybe someone could make a feature request for the ability for the panel to hide only when covered by a window

Looks really nice.

What icon set do you use?

Thanks in advance.

The LaCapitaine icon theme. It should be easy to find. Here is a current screenshot with the conky I have setup instead of the screenlets...Btw that's not a second wifi indicator, its for google Insync.

Google Photos

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Thanks for the tip.

Beautiful background image, I wish I could sit there right now :slight_smile:

For beginners (as I am), I downloaded the latest La Capitaine icon set from and stored the unzipped folder in /.icons.

Nice man. This is mine. Different but still the same goal lol

Nice. I have a dark theme too, but I find after a week or two my eyes tire of it and I keep going back to the light theme.

I am the opposite. I've been using this dark theme for almost 3 years now. Since 16.04 came out

That's the beauty of Linux in that you can fine tune it to your liking, particularly Ubuntu MATE since it comes with so many predefined desktop paradigms built in. The only thing I use a dark theme for consistently if the terminal and Atom when I'm coding. I'll post a pic later of my dark theme, it uses a different icon set too.

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It sure is. The beauty of Freedom

Here's my dark theme setup...

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Cool. I'd like to use conky but I like my desktop clean with as few information as possible. It is a great program though. The possibilities of customization are endless. That's the best part :+1:

Double oh seven, where'd you get the wall paper?

anyone can help me how to install this theme?
I try it on mate-desktop site and downloaded the file but the icons are only working and panels are not affected..
sorry for my bad English. :frowning:

I'm not sure where I got my wallpapers. Usually when I'm looking for wallpapers I just google 1920x1080 wallpapers and look for what I like. I can't remember where they were downloaded from...sorry.

raijin: Here's my best attempt at a tutorial...

First download the GTK theme from
Select the Sierra-light one, its the first listed. Once downloaded, extract it and place it in the ~/.themes directory.

Second download the cursor theme from
Make sure to select the one that is OSX-ElCap, NOT THE KDE ONES. Once downloaded, extract it and open a terminal and run the install script that is located in the extracted folder.

Now at this point open the control center and open Appearances. Select the Sierra-light theme. Then select Customize and select the icon pack that you previously downloaded under the icon tab. Then select click the Pointer tab and select the OSX-ElCap cursor theme.

Now at this point you need to setup a dock. You can either use Plank that comes with Ubuntu MATE (probably the easiest), or download and install another dock. I use docky, but that's just because I was more familiar with it and like its ability to be customized. Open Mate Tweak and navigate to the panels tab. Select the cupertino layout which will provide you with a plank dock and a global menu on the top bar.

Now there a few additional things that I have added to my desktop to enable this "look," like a semi-transparent top bar, I'm using Compiz as my window manager, and I have a conky enabled as well. If you require assistance with those items I can point you in the right direction for those as well. Hope that this helped.

What theme is it @raijin?