Restoring “normal” scrolling in Ubuntu

I’m not a fan of Canonical’s Unity desktop environment, so I always install an alternative. My current favourite is Cinnamon, which is much more familiar, and for me, much more intuitive. However, some of the UI design work that went into Unity has slopped over into the base configuration of the system, which is rather annoying. In particular, the near-unusable overlay scrollbars show up in other desktop environments.

To switch back to normal scrollbars, simply type:

gsettings set com.canonical.desktop.interface scrollbar-mode normal

in a terminal. It will take effect immediately, and give you normal scrollbars again.

However, those scrollbars don’t work exactly as I expect. Clicking anywhere in the “trough” of the scrollbar should (to my mind) scroll the window a page back or forward. These scrollbars wizz the window to that point in the output, as though you’d dragged the “puck” to that point. It’s particularly annoying when you’re dealing with very long command line histories. Fortunately that too can be changed. Simply create a file called “~/.config/gtk-3.0/settings.ini”, and make it contain:

gtk-primary-button-warps-slider = false

You’ll need to restart to see the result.


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