Ubuntu Unity is going to be dead soon. Starting Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu will switch to GNOME as default desktop environment.
A lot has happened at Ubuntu after the announcement of Unity’s departure. But I am not going to dwell on it again. What we know for a fact that Unity desktop environment is going away after more than 6 years of development.
While a number of people have a strong dislike for Unity, there are many who consider it as one of the best desktop environments. I am one of them. Honestly, I am sad to see Unity go like this. I have always liked the Unity interface, don’t judge me for that :)
And I am surely not alone in it. There are a few people who have started to work on projects around Unity desktop environment. I am going to list three of such projects that are trying to keep Unity alive in our memories.
1. United GNOME Theme
It all started as a concept. Someone shared a mockup of Ubuntu Unity style GNOME desktop.
The concept was visually so stunning that some people even suggested that Ubuntu uses similar looks in 18.04. But why wait for a complete year when you can do something today?
A developer worked on a GTK theme that looks similar to the above mockup, all within 48 hours.
So, we now have a GTK theme called United GNOME that you can use in GNOME to resemble it with Unity.
Here is a screenshot of the theme:
The theme is under heavy development so don’t be surprised if you encounter issues here and there. You can get the theme from the link below:
2. Enjade Desktop: Unity looks on top of KDE Plasma
When Canonical announced that they will be replacing Unity with GNOME, there were some opinions about opting KDE instead of GNOME.
Seems like someone liked the idea and decided to replicate Unity desktop’s looks in KDE Plasma. And hence we have a new project called Enjade Desktop.
Enjade Desktop will be a Unity lookalike desktop environment based on KDE Plasma instead of GNOME. Development has not started yet but the website and the GitHub repository is up and inviting contributors.
If you would like to contribute in any way possible, do visit the project website:
3. Yunit: A fork of Unity 8
With such experience with Ubuntu Touch, UBports could just not let Unity 8 die. Beauty of open source is that with access to the source code, anyone can make the changes and continue the project.
UBports is going to do the same with Unity 8. They are forking it to continue its development and achieve the goal of convergence.
So far, no information is available on their forked repository. Meanwhile, a new project called Yunit is trying to do the same. There are talks going on between Yunit developers and UBports for collaboration to achieve the common goal of keeping Unity 8 alive.
You can get more details on the Yunit project on its website:
What do you think?
There is another project that has forked Unity 7 and is planning to continue as Unit Desktop. But since there is hardly any details available about it, I decided to not include it in the main list here.
What do you think of these projects? Do you think it is worth trying to keep Unity alive somehow or should we move on for good? Do share your views in the comment section below. And please do share the article on social media to help us reach more people :)