The dconf editor, by Canonical UK, is a useful utility for editing your system configuration files in Ubuntu. Basically, it’s the Windows Registry editor on steroids. Every “key” in the editor has a corresponding description and default value which you can easily reset as shown in the below picture.
All entries are showed in an easy-to-configure manner. For example, numbers have text with + and – buttons to allow changing of the presented value and Boolean values have check-boxes for true or false. This tool offers more customizing options than the system settings window offers. It is also reasonably safe for a user with little experience to try out. There are still places for errors, but as compared to the Windows Registry Editor, one is less likely to ruin everything.
Today we’ll look at a few of the options that the dconf editor presents.
A problem commonly reported by early adopters of Ubuntu 12.10 was the loss of desktop icons. If you experienced this issue, you can easily remedy it by opening the dash home on your launcher, typing in “dconf Editor” and clicking on the icon that appears.
In the left-hand panel in dconf, navigate to org > gnome > desktop
Now, in the “desktop” submenu, click “background.” In the left pane, select “show-desktop-icons” and click the check-box. The icons appear instantly. One thing a user will quickly notice about dconf is that changes are made in real-time.
The other problem some users have experienced is the Close, Maximize, and Minimize buttons moving to the right side of the window, instead of the default left side. This is easily solved with the dconf editor. Stay in the “desktop” submenu and click wm > preferences. Click on the “button_layout” entry.
Set the value to this:
Congratulations! The buttons are restored back to normal and you’ve learned some new things about this powerful tool – dconf Editor.