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I am using Linux Mint Maya with Mate desktop, and I am not happy about the system title bar because it is using so much space on my laptop screen.

  • How do I autohide the panel in Mate?
  • Or how do I use it more efficiently? Maybe there is a way to display "open since: time" or add an "always on top" button beside the "- + x" buttons for minimizing, maximizing and closing windows.
  • Or how do I set the menu button and tab bar from Firefox in the panel, like in Windows or chromium in linux?

Would it be possible to make an extension for the Mate desktop, and where can I get started with it? I am new to programming, and would like to contribute to the open source community.

2 Answers 2

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You have too many questions in one, which is generally bad form on SU. But since this question is aging - I will try to start you in the right direction:

How do I autohide the panel in Mate?

Mate is a fork of Gnome2, so the same methods should still work.

  1. Right click the panel
  2. Properties
  3. Autohide

If that fails, you can launch mateconf-editor (terminal or from System Tools, IIRC).

  1. Navigate to Apps > Panel
  2. Autohide checkbox

Or how do I use it more efficiently? Maybe there is a way to display "open since: time" or add an "always on top" button beside the "- + x" buttons for minimizing, maximizing and closing windows.

That depends on how you work, so I can't speak much to this outside of using mateconf-editor for your windows to see what can exist in the top bar. Last I checked for them it was Menu, Min, Max, Close.

Or how do I set the menu button and tab bar from Firefox in the panel, like in Windows?

You'll need to be more specific, but assuming you mean something like this:

enter image description here

I'm not sure that is currently supported by Mate - but I am not fully sure there.

Would it be possible to make an extension for the Mate desktop, and where can I get started with it?

It's Linux... Of course you can. However - the question is more how flexible is the Mate API - or will you need to re-write anything of theirs?

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  • "You have too many questions in one, which is generally bad form on SU." This is multiple questions, but it seems like one problem: make menu bars take up less space.
    – Att Righ
    Nov 25, 2017 at 2:59
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For autohide to work in MATE panel:

  1. Right click on the panel, select Properties and tick Autohide.
  2. Save out with mate-tweak.
  3. In the resulting files /usr/share/mate-panel/layouts/user-tweak.layout and .panel, edit both in Pluma or other text editor to ensure autohide is specified in both:

user-tweak.panel:

[toplevels/bottom]
expand=true
orientation='bottom'
screen=0
y-bottom=0
auto-hide=true
size=19
y=748

user-tweak.layout:

[Toplevel bottom]
orientation=bottom
expand=true
size=19
auto-hide=true

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