I’m really enjoying using AWN (Avant Window Navigator) on my Ubuntu desktop at the moment. AWN is a great “productivity” tweak making it easier to access your favourite application by adding customisable buttons at the base of your screen. Using AWN means no more navigating through the Ubuntu applications menu for your commonly used apps and it gives you an easy way to make little shortcuts and generally tweak your desktop. Just to add a little extra fun AWN comes with a suite of widgets such as a quick window navigator launcher (hence the name..) and even a Last.fm app – the icon for which turns into the album cover of the track you’re listening to. Nice touch!
How to install Avant Window Navigator
In Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex, installing AWN is easy. Just go to terminal and type:
sudo apt-get install avant-window-navigator awn-manager
Now go to the Applications>Accessories menu and you’ll see Avant Window Navigator Manager has been installed.
Using AWN in Ubuntu
Using AWN is easy in Ubutu! To add an application to the menu, clear your desktop and navigate to the application using the drop down menu in the top left of your screen. Drag the application icon you need down to the AWN toolbar. Job done!
Inside AWN manager, navigate to this screen to add the applets you need:
You’ll also need to install a theme – the one in the screenshots is Queervision’s “transparent theme (no longer available).
My AWN buttons bounce and “squish” in 3D on mouseover – just like a MAC! (I think..) If you want to set up a similar behaviour,check out the “Bar behaviour” tab in general settings.
How to get Avant Window Navigator to run on startup:
It’s nice if AWN works from startup. When you’re happy with your installation, go to: System> Preferences> Sessions
In Sessions Preferences, go to the Startup Programs tab, click the Add button, and in “Name” type: Avant Window Navigator; in “Command” type: avant-window-navigator then click OK. AWN will always run from startup! Enjoy…