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I think it would be nice to have a command line that's always visible (and doesn't clutter the screen). GUIs like gvim and ooffice are quicker to open from terminal, since that allows you to skip having to navigate to your file(s) from within the gui.

Is there any way in Gnome to embed a terminal in either of the top or bottom panels?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

I think you need something like Guake

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Looks good, will try this when I get home. – bbatman Sep 20 '11 at 13:45
    
I'm in love with it already – Andrew Wood Sep 20 '11 at 20:04
    
Glad it worked out for you! – Sandeep Bansal Sep 20 '11 at 22:58

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