The application menu where it should be

Kubuntu Edgy by default gives you something that Apple users are well accustomed to. I am talking about the placement of the application menu bar.

By "application menu bar " I mean the menu that contains items such as "File Edit View" and so on.

It's pretty obvious that a user can only use a specific program's application menu at the time. So, why waste precious screen estate by showing the application menu for every single application open?
Basically, Edgy's default (if you're using Kubuntu) is to have the application menu right at the top of the screen. The menu will change according to which application has the current "focus".

Ubuntu people won't have this luxury. Ubuntu is based on Gnome, which is based on GTK2. GTK people are very, very strongly against the idea of having the application menu at the top. I can see some points of their argument: what if you have two monitors? What if you're using a multi-window application with different menus in each window? However, I can also see a lot of screen real estate wasted, and a lot of users who want such a functionality - those people, luckily, will be able to use KDE!

If you don't like this behavior, you can always change it. Just start the KDE Control Center, Desktop, Behavior, and change the "Menu Bar at Top of Screen".

I doubt you'll ever want to go back, once you get used to having the menu bar at the top.


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Tony Mobily - Sat, 2020-12-09 21:17.

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Not specifically Kubuntu

The habit of Ubuntu lovers to imply that features common to all distros are special to their own favourite is becoming a nuisance. Nothing against (K)Ubuntu but the credit for this belongs to KDE and applies to other distros as well.

Nigel Livesey (not verified) - Wed, 2020-12-20 03:23.

Why does this not work in Firefox or Thunderbird?

I've enabled the MAC OS style menu bar and most applications I open use this single menu bar, except for Firefox and Thunderbird. Why is that? Is there something I can do to the configuration of these applications so that their menus are displayed at the top of the screen also?

Andy Mason

Andy Mas - (not verified) - Tue, 2020-12-19 22:57.

KDE features don't apply to non-KDE software

FireFox and Thunderbird (and possibly even OpenOffice, though I'm not certain) don't use the KDE-specific programming interfaces. As a result, they don't tap into the features and configurations of KDE.

The Mozilla team made this choice so that FireFox, et. al. could be created to run on virtually any system with little extra work from them. The down side is that its actually a second class citizen on ALL platforms.

For example, unless you need an extension of some kind, FireFox is a poorer choice than Safari on the Mac platform. Its slightly slower, is more prone to caching things in RAM that don't need to be there, and has a slightly "non-native" feel to it, especially in the preferences window and the scroll bars. (Just my opinion, of course.)

This trend of software to not always work the same way from one program to the next is a left-over of the design choices that the X11 team made many years ago. It gives Linux's GUI a great deal of flexibility but requires each program to make that choice on its own.

KDE initially appeared in the late 90s in order to create a set of applications that were all unified in their appearance because they all used the same toolkits. Gnome grew up out of a disagreement between some programmers and the KDE programmers. (Simplified history.) So this is why Gnome and KDE applications don't always behave well together. They use different toolkits to build their effects. So, in the end, Linux now has KDE apps, Gnome apps, and traditional/"isolationist" apps.

An - ymous (not verified) - Fri, 2020-12-22 06:52.


Thanks for a good explanation of the situation. This is similar to when there were two competing GUIs running on top of MS-DOS: Windows and GEM. In many ways such as being cross-platform, GEM was superior but as the OS manufacturer had so much control, Windows won.

While Gnome and KDE applications both work in either environment, KDE applications "work better" under KDE. That is, there is better integration. As TUX focuses on KDE (that is, we made a choice) if there are two equivalent applications--one from KDE, one from Gnome--we are more likely to elect to cover the KDE one because of this better integration.

Phil Hughes

fyl - Tue, 2020-12-26 10:32.

Problem when using "focus follows mouse"

I really liked the idea, but a couple of issues made me switch
- It works for kde-applications only. (Fairly obvious)
-Useless for accessing the menu when "focus follows mouse" is active

Great feature though!

Thomas (not verified) - Fri, 2020-12-15 05:04.

This settings does not

This settings does not change the menu bar in openoffice. Maybe it is for KDE applications only.

An - ymous (not verified) - Sun, 2020-12-10 15:06.