Monday, July 28, 2008

Cool 3D Desktop Effects in Ubuntu

Yesterday, I spent some time playing with my newly installed Ubuntu machine. It is running Hardy Heron, 8.04. I read somewhere on the web that it includes a lot of cool 3D features. I have seen some of the effects before but I never thought it will be included in Ubuntu distro. Some of the effects I like the most are the transparent window, wobbly window, animation and 3D Cube. It's amazing to see that the videos are still playing smoothly while the effects are in action.

Workspaces in 3D Cube

Transparent Windows

I will share the instruction on how to enable it.
  1. Goto System > Preferences > Appearance

  2. Click the Visual Effects tab and select Extra. You could now see wobbly window when you trying to move any active windows. We will go beyond these effects by installing additional components.

  3. Goto Applications > Add/Remove. Choose All on the left frame select "All available applications" from Show combo box. Then type "csm" on the search box. Check "Advanded Desktop Effects Setting" and click "Apply Changes" button to install this new module.

  4. Now the module has been installed, goto System > Preferences > Advanced Desktop Effect Settings. The control panel will show up and have fun with all the cool 3D effects.

I did encounter one minor problem when trying to enable extra visual effects under the appearance window. I am using Dell Inspiron 6400 with ATI X1400 graphics card. The pop up window with message "Desktop effects could not be enabled" showed up when trying to enable extra visual effects.

After doing some Google search, I found that my Ubuntu was not using the proprietary ATI drivers; hence, the 3D effects could not be used. To make Ubuntu use the ATI driver, goto System > Administration > Hardware Drivers, then enable the driver. After doing this, I could enable Extras visual effects with no problems.

That's it for now. Hope the instruction will help.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

very interesting:)