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GNOME (/(ɡ)noʊm/) is a desktop environment that aims to be simple and easy to use. It is designed by The GNOME Project and is composed entirely of free and open-source software. GNOME is a part of the GNU Project.

Installing GNOME

To use GNOME, add this to your configuration.nix:

services.xserver.enable = true;
services.xserver.displayManager.gdm.enable = true;
services.xserver.desktopManager.gnome3.enable = true;

Running ancient applications

Long ago, in the GNOME 2 era, applications used GConf service to store configuration. This has been deprecated for many years but some applications were abandoned before they managed to upgrade to a newer dconf system. If you are running such application and getting an error like:

GLib.GException: Failed to contact configuration server; the most common cause is a missing or misconfigured D-Bus session bus daemon. See for information

you need to add gnome2.GConf to the list of dbus packages in your configuration.nix:

services.dbus.packages = with pkgs; [ gnome2.GConf ];

After applying the update one also has restart their desktop session to refresh the user-specific dbus session.

Running GNOME programs outside of GNOME

While we are packaging GNOME platform-based applications to be largely self-contained, they still depend, for one reason or another, on some global configuration. The gnome.nix module sets all the necessary options for you but if you are running customized set-up, you might need to replicate that yourself.

For instance, if you see the following error:

 dconf-WARNING **: failed to commit changes to dconf: GDBus.Error:org.freedesktop.DBus.Error.ServiceUnknown: The name ca.desrt.dconf was not provided by any .service files

you should enable dconf module:

programs.dconf.enable = true;

Many applications rely heavily on having an icon theme available, GNOME’s Adwaita is a good choice but most recent icon themes should work as well.

environment.systemPackages = [ gnome3.adwaita-icon-theme ];

Systray Icons

To get systray icons, install the related gnome shell extension

environment.systemPackages = [ gnomeExtensions.appindicator ];

And ensure gnome-settings-daemon udev rules are enabled :

services.udev.packages = with pkgs; [ gnome3.gnome-settings-daemon ];

Also see