The advanced MATE menu should be the default menu

Note that the standard menu icon doesn’t scale either with the panel vertical size. Neither do indicators, running applications on the window list, or hide-to-taskbar icons. It seems to be an exclusive behaviour of only a small number of applets. I’d posit the idea that those are the ones having an inconsistent behaviour.

On the other hand, having icons scale automatically to the panel size is one of those undesirable features for many setups, particularly on vertical panels, because of the space lost on a direction that has a premium value on modern monitors.

I do prefer the idea of setting my own icon sizes manually, by replacing icon files, or through any preferences if there are any. Besides it better matches the desirable pattern of a configurable desktop. On that aspect, the advanced menu does it right.

My main criticism of the advanced menu boils down to this: Non configurable font size and color and doesn’t support the icon separators set on the Edit Menu configuration.

The first problem affects the menu size tremendously. For large menus it becomes ugly and unwieldy. It also negates completely any value in being able to change the menu background colour. The second problem affects large menus too, because they are generally (as is my case) organized into subgroups by placing groups of related icons between separators which facilitates quick visual location of the icon I want to click.

But it is right that this is not a long list. Now, I may do what @tiox suggests on his post and look for the schema files myself and try and alter them. That may deal with the first problem. But always stroke me as annoying that the preferences allow you to change the background colour of the menu and no one thought this would necessarily mean users also needed to change the font colour. And that for a Desktop Environment that prides itself of supporting low-end machines, no one thought that low-end monitors with small resolutions tend to accompany them. And all this on a menu called “advanced”. So I just ignored it.

AFAIK all of the files are held in /usr/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/mint_menu. Might be wrong but eh. least you know where the plugins folder is where handles the bottom left and handles top left.

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Thank you @tiox. The menu seems to be a python/gtk application. The folder seems to actually be /usr/lib/mate-menu. The .py file there indicates the glade files are at /usr/share/mate-menu.

From there I took a cursory look at both the .py and glade files (also on the plugins folder), but is hopeless. I don’t know GTK programming and I couldn’t find any reference to fonts anywhere. Each entry on the menu seems to actually be a button class. But I can’t find where it is styled. More likely, there’s no support code for font size and colour and these two attributes depend entirely on the desktop theme, forcing me to change fonts globally. Which is not acceptable.

Maybe I’m mistaken, I don’t really know. I could investigate further… but honestly, I just don’t care enough. I’m a bit bummed by this so-called “advanced” menu. Interestingly enough this is a spin-off of the Mint Menu on Cinnamon, which has the exact same problem.

Spin-off from Cinnamon? Excuse me it’s a spin-off from Mint MATE. Mint Cinnamon’s default menu feels more like KDE’s.

Mint MATE, yes. Not Cinnamon.

I should know, being as previous mint user. It’s more than just a spin-off, it’s a complete rip! While I am less perturbed about the removal of the software manager button from than I use to be, I would still like a software manager that functioned as a competent package manager as well. (think blending Mint’s software manager with Synaptic’s functionality.)

Different user types have different needs. Some are very text oriented. Use the keyboard mostly. and remember the names of every program and command as text. Other are visual types. Their programs need a mouse or graphical input. They do not have their hands on the keyboard already. An extra step for them. They may not remember the name of every program. “was it vid or avid or…?”

The Advanced menu has the benefit of Favourites. So you “put” things deliberately there, to:
a) Speed. Start them with a single click. If you had type part of the name, that is already multiple interactions.
b) See and Remember things. You will immediately see them. It’s a useful reminder to do something or what the app is called. You don’t stumble across something with “search”. Browse is an important part of behviour.

The Advanced menu also (like Basic) has “Categories”. 2 clicks to “see” all your, say, Audio programs.
The Advanced menu has Search too. To keep everybody happy. And help you if you know the name, but don’t know where the app is.

Having a choice of menus an launchers, means Ubuntu Mate can appeal to a broader set of users.


Exactly. Which is why we shouldn’t argue about defaults. Rather, we should be breaking down what each configuration is tailored for so at first sign-in, people can figure out what they need based on what we make available. The default behaviour shouldn’t be to throw somebody in with a lifejacket, but to let them make their own boat from what’s there with wizards handing users the pieces.

One option might be if during setup, or at the first time login – if the welcome simply popped up and just asks users which menu they would like to use with a sample picture of each option and a very minimal description. That way everyone gets what they like right off the bat without anyone feeling left out.


I prefer the Advanced Menu myself after stumbling on it. But, the reason I came to ubuntu-MATE was for MATE, and if you change the default DE to the AM, you are arguably no longer MATE. I think it is preferable to keep the AM maintained as an option on MATE Tweak. I hope to see continue support for this customization as it is my favorite DE experience on all of gnulinux. Late on the feedback, but just thought I would chime in anyways since 17.10 is ending support relatively soon …

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That’s… exactly what I was saying.

WHERE ARE MY LIKES?! lol joking

I read all this stuff and comments, but Gnome2 menus look to me so outdated, the moment everything has to evolve, become more userfriendly. Currently I use the Advanced Mate Menu, but from all the menus I tried on several Linux Distros and Desktop Environments, the Whisker Menu from the XFCE is my favorite :wink:

You can use xfce4-panel with the whisker menu on MATE desktop :wink:

The idea is for me not to use other panels from other desktop environments, since this is mixing Desktop Environments …
I only expressed my preference … but here and now I’ll stick with mate and the options Mate Tweak provides… Maybe a better variant then the whisker menu will be available soon… the Brisk menu in any case, my opinion, isn’t :wink:

Sure man, do whatever you think is best.

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