Linus Torvalds wrestles with Gnome 3

Linux creator Linus Torvalds has given the thumbs down to the Gnome 3 interface, after his install initially went pear shaped.

Writing in his bog, Torvalds said that he upgraded his aging Fedora install on his desktop because his old F14 comes with ancient X versions that did not contain all the fixes to make Intel 3D work well.

While F14 did work better on the graphical side, Gnome 3 gave Torvalds a real headache.

“I knew I’d have trouble, but also knew that most of the worst crap could be fixed with extensions, and I’d used 3.4 on my laptop enough to know it should be all somewhat usable,” he hoped.

But he found that the process was “one step forward, one step back”. For example,  when he wanted to change the font sizes he needed to install the tweak tool, because the standard settings panel still doesn’t do something that fundamental.

He went to, and installed the panel favorites extension that not only obviates the need for the stupid dual “first go to activities, then go to favorites”, but also fixes it so that he could get multiple terminals without doing the whole “three times widdershins and left-click” dance.

Then he tried to install auto-hide and says “You do not appear to have an up to date version of GNOME3”. It turned out just that the Chrome plugin was broken and it worked with Firefox instead.

“Now, I don’t need to look at that butt-ugly thing that has clearly been designed by some goth teenager that thinks that black is cool,” Torvalds said,

Then he lost the “Lock Screen” button. He could find +Sriram Ramkrishna’s extension by searching for it, but it’ was grayed out and didn’t seem to work.

“I used to think that the “” approach to fixing the deficiencies in gnome3 was really cool. It made me go “Ahh, now I can fix the problems I had”, he said.

But instead it was all a major pain, when it basically ends up as a really magical way to customise a desktop, which breaks randomly and has no sane way to do across machines, he said.

Gnome 3 is not particularly loved by anyone, but when the founder of Linux can’t get it to go properly you know there is something wrong.