I have been playing around with GNOME Shell from Ubuntu 9.10.

I installed the preview which is available in Ubuntu 9.10 repositories using

sudo apt-get install gnome-shell
gnome-shell --replace

However I can't figure out how to launch Ubuntu Software Center using it. It just appears to be missing. The software center appears fine in normal Gnome.

How do you launch the Ubuntu Software Center from GNOME Shell?

For those of you who are getting confused, Gnome Shell is the next generation user interface for GNOME, it is planned for inclusion as default in GNOME 3.0, there is a preview of it in the Ubuntu 9.10 repositories. I am not interested in how to launch Ubuntu Software Center from the terminal or in how to launch it from the normal GNOME interface.

  • For the next time, you can try Amos's suggestion, or this: apropos software | grep center
    – badp
    Nov 19, 2009 at 12:21
  • 1
    no badp, I already know how to launch it from the terminal, I want to know how to launch it from Gnome Shell.
    – trampster
    Nov 20, 2009 at 5:55
  • 1
    You can still use the old Alt-F2 trick in gnome-shell, but I agree that this is unsatisfactory... I'm sure when gnome-shell is more mature, this won't be a problem any more. Nov 20, 2009 at 6:01
  • 1
    BTW, if you're using gnome-shell, you may find the "Cheat Sheet" helpful: live.gnome.org/GnomeShell/CheatSheet Nov 20, 2009 at 6:06

8 Answers 8


So I think what you're alluding to is that although Gnome Shell presents a version of the "Applications" menu, it doesn't (AFAIK) present the "System" menu anywhere.

So, you have to still might want to add a launcher for the tool you want to run somewhere in the Applications menu tree. That's easy but not trivial:

  1. Click on your name up in the upper right hand corner.
  2. Click on System Preferences....
  3. Click on "Main Menu" in the Look-and-Feel section of the "Control Center" that pops up.
  4. Select the section where you want to add the software-center launcher - I chose "System tools".
  5. Click the "new item" button.
  6. Enter "software-center" as both the name and the command.
  7. Click "OK".
  8. Click "Close".

Now when you select "Activities" in the upper left hand corner, then the "more" button just to the right of the word "Applications", you'll see your new software-center launcher listed in the system tools menu.

I tried this and it worked perfectly.

EDIT: I don't know why I didn't see it there; it appears there's already a launcher for this; "Ubuntu Software Center" is a launcher in the "System" section of "System Preferences..." control center.

I haven't verified, but it looks to me like Gnome-Shell is presenting the Applications menu under that "more" button I mentioned above, and presenting the System menu within the control center that pops up when you choose "System Preferences..."

  • P.S. I rather like Gnome Shell; it's about time the Linux GUI interface got a face lift. Kudos to the developers!
    – pbr
    Nov 24, 2009 at 3:23

It didn't bring it back for me, but I Opened it, then in activities, right click and "Add to favourites", it's not with the rest of apps, but at least it's close and accessible


I'm on Debian/KDE so I can't recreate this, you should be able to open whatever Menu Editor there is on Gnome, and look at the entry for the Ubuntu Software Center, find the box labelled Command or something similar. This contains the shell command to launch the Software Center. Type it into your gnome-shell and it may or may not do the trick.

If it doesn't post back here and we can suggest something else to try.

  • 1
    Ubuntu Software Center does not appear in the "Gnome Shell" menu at all. It also has a quick launch thing (think, quick silver, launchy or gnome do) but this does not find it either.
    – trampster
    Nov 20, 2009 at 0:04

What you are looking for is software-center.

  • 1
    thats what I would do if I wanted to launch the ubuntu software center from the terminal, however I don't I trying out "Gnome Shell" look it up its the next generation Gnome user interface.
    – trampster
    Nov 20, 2009 at 0:01

You will find it on clicking on your name on the upper right corner, in system preferences


sudo apt-get install software-center will bring back the Ubuntu Software Center shortcut.


the original post is old, I wanted to add new informations, for people like me who falls on this page.

To bring back software-center after installing gnome-shell on ubuntu 13.10 .

I re-install it like :

sudo apt-get install software-center

but its was not enough . The Sofware-center shut down just after launching, I found the solution on this forum :


edit the file : lobbyview.py, as :

gksudo gedit /usr/share/software-center/softwarecenter/ui/gtk3/views/lobbyview.py

find the line :


and comment it with an #.

After that, it works fine!


snap-store is the command you're looking for

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