Install Gnome in Ubuntu 14.04 – Flashback Metacity – Replacing Unity


For some people, Unity environment is difficult to grasp at first due to its nature. For others, Unity performance is very slow due to its shadows, animations etc. Well, if you want to replace Unity and go back to good ol’ Gnome in Ubuntu 14.04 and install Gnome Flashback, then follow below steps. This will install Gnome Flashback which is a lightweight desktop UI and won’t eat up your precious processor CPU and RAM.

Steps to install Gnome Flashback in Ubuntu 14.04

a) Open Terminal.
b) Run this command.

sudo apt-get install gnome-session-flashback

Wait for the installation to finish.
If you are getting error as “Unable to locate package gnome-session-flashback”, try any of the option below:

Option#1: Run below command before running apt-get install

sudo apt-get update

Try launching Ubuntu Software Center directly to install gnome-session-flashback by clicking below link:

c) Save your work and Log Off.
d) In the login screen click the small white Ubuntu logo. small_ubuntu
e) Click the option – Gnome Flashback (Metacity).
Gnome Flashback Metacity
f) Give your password and login.

You should be back to the Gnome environment. You will notice the good performance improvements over Unity.

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  • Nele Vlamynck

    Hi, IS there someone who can help me? I’ am new with linux too… If i want to run this script I have this:
    nele@geot:~$ sudo apt-get install gnome-session-flashback
    [sudo] password for nele:
    Reading package lists… Done
    Building dependency tree
    Reading state information… Done
    E: Unable to locate package gnome-session-flashback

    • Nele Vlamynck

      I want to do this, cause since i upgraded tuesday my ubuntu to ubuntu 14.04 , i have problems when i want to couple my second screen on my laptop. My laptop is that … an old Acer Travel Mate 4670 with another hard disk & more ram. So monday i still had another ubuntu version i think it was 12.04. With that version i didn’t had problems when i wanted to connect my second screen with it… In this version .. I have the following problems… I can only choose the lowest resolution… And on my laptopscreen , there are appear two black borders on the left & the right… & my pc starts to run much slower….. When i want to open a new window… it blocks etc…

      • Nele Vlamynck

        So this is what i have… If i take the lowest resolution…( the pictures below) .. If i chose a higher resolution.. I get this message…

        • Nele Vlamynck

          So i found that ubuntu 14.04 LTS changed to Unity 3D instead of Unity 2D and that it “pushes” the graphical chip into a 3D-modus and because of that i can only have anymore a resloution of 2048 x 2048 wich is not enough if i want to use a second screen.. I found some scripts to change this like for instance 3048 x …. but this didn’t do anything… So i found i should install this gnome version.. But this doesn’t go either…. cause i have this if i run it…

          • Nele Vlamynck

            So is there sometimes somebody who can help me with this problem? 🙂

            • Arindam Giri

              @Nele – Try these options and let know.


              Run the command : sudo apt-get update
              Then run your command: sudo apt-get install gnome-session-flashback

              See if it works.

              Option 2:
              Directly launch Ubuntu Software Center to install. Click below link, it will directly launch. Wait for couple of seconds.


              Click the Download button in this page –

              • Nele Vlamynck

                Hi thanks a lot, for your help! I tried option 1 a lot ( and also some modified commands of it) but that didn’t work…. At the end, I just de-installed Ubuntu and I installed Xubuntu and the problem was directly solved! Thanks anyway!

          • Nele Vlamynck

            and here is the problem again…

        • Nele Vlamynck

          my pictures didn’t upload…

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