Thursday, January 26

[Precise Updates] Home Lens in Dash Redesigned and New Options Land in System Settings

Unity Home Lens has received a major change in Precise. All the shortcuts with big icons have been dropped and home lens now shows info about recently used apps, files and downloads.

Home Lens in Oneiric:


Home Lens in Precise:


Please note that this feature has not landed in Precise yet. You can test it from Unity Staging PPA. Also for the home lens to work correctly, you will need updated Unity Apps, Files and Music Lens packages. But, they are not yet uploaded to the PPA.

So, try the new Home Lens at your own risk. However, in my testing, it did not break the system but some functions were missing from these lenses. These packages should be available in PPA in few hours so if you want, you can wait for some time.

Run the command below to get new Home Lens:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:unity-team/staging
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade 

You cannot customize Home Lens Yet. However, later new Home Lens settings will empower users and OEMs to override the default view on the homescreen by putting custom stuff first.

Systems Settings are also being redesigned and new configuration options have landed in Precise as per the new specifications

Appearance settings tab was renamed to User Interface and received minor design changes few days back. Now new configuration options have also been added. 

Launcher icon size can be changed now using a simple slider. You can also revert back to default settings in one click.


A new Behavior tab has been added where you can tweak more Unity settings like turning launcher autohiding on/off  and changing launcher reveal spot.


More new configuration option will land in Precise slowly and you won't have to touch Compiz to customize Unity behavior. These new options will only be exposed if you are running Unity Session and will be applicable to both Unity and Unity 2D.

However, some options like changing launcher icon size are not yet applicable to Unity 2D so they won't be shown.


At first launch of UI, default Unity3D settings will be applied and then they will be aligned as per the session. Also if you change some settings from Compiz Config Settings Manager, they will be preserved and precede these settings.

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