Ubuntu – Missing launcher after 12.04 upgrade


I recently upgraded to Ubuntu 12.04 and after doing some updates and such my application launcher and title bars (for window dialogues) are missing. Basically the entire Unity GUI is missing!

Not sure what happened so I installed GNOME 3 and it was missing a launcher too, but did have title bars. In addition the bar found at the top that lets you know what's open and allows GNOME extensions to be displayed is not interactive. I can't click, right click, alt + click (right or left), alt + super click (right or left) anywhere! I even installed an application menu from the GNOME site and it is not interactive either. However, since there is no way to launch applications I have to use terminal and if I minimize an app it will disappear completely.

Then I decided to try Unity 2D and it is incredibly messed up. Black background, launcher is there but icons and top bar while on desktop are completely distorted. They're not just pixelated; they're all sorts of funky colors and when I open something from Unity 2D launcher it will show it's opened in the launcher but nothing appears on my screen.

When trying to view videos on YouTube the video is distorted and looks just as Unity 2D does. Strange enough: the audio works fine, just not videos. Pictures loads, but not ads that stream video.

Any suggestions to get my launcher and the Unity GUI back? I tried reinstalling GNOME, Unity 3D, and Unity 2D from terminal. No change. Also reinstalled Unity desktop and tried resetting it: nothing happened.

Best Answer

I had the same problem. I tried with unity --reset (as it used to fix things when I messed things up before with compiz-config) but that didn't solve my problem now. The only thing I could do for getting everything working as normal was to reset compiz settings.

Just backup (rename) ~/.compiz-1 and ~/.config/compiz-1 directories and let them to be created again with the default settings (you'll need to logout and log back in again).

mv ~/.compiz-1 ~/.compiz-1.BACKUP
mv ~/.config/compiz-1 ~/.config/compiz-1.BACKUP

After having restarted and confirmed that everything works as expected, you can simply remove these backups (unless you have a use for them).

rm -Rfv ~/.compiz-1.BACKUP
rm -Rfv ~/.config/compiz-1.BACKUP

Note: To some people, one of the following links might have the solution. Try them if you don't want to lose all your compiz customizations.

In my case just resetting Unity wasn't enough, so I decided to get rid of all compiz settings.

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