Emerald Theme Manager is a window decorator. In the past, it has been used with compiz and beryl. This guide will show you how to setup Emerald with Ubuntu 7.10 and the default setup of compiz-fusion that now comes with Ubuntu. You can take a look at just a few themes below:
Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron users, read How to enhance Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron eye-candy with Emerald Theme Manager instead!
Setting up Emerald is not the easiest thing to do, but if you have made it through my other Ubuntu howtos, it should not be a problem.
NOTE: You must have your “Visual Effects” set to “Normal” or higher in Ubuntu 7.10, and/or have composite working correctly. See this post to learn a little more.
1) The first step is to make sure that you have the universe and multiverse repositories enabled. To do this, click the following:
System > Administration > Software Sources
Type your password, and then, in the window that pops up, make sure that the first 4 check boxes are checked. It should look something like this:
Now click “Close” and let’s install Emerald Theme Manager.
2) The next step is to install using “Synaptic Package Manager”. To open Synaptic, click the following:
System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager
Once in Synaptic Package Manager, search for emerald by clicking the button labeled “Search” and typing it in:
You should receive 4 or 5 results from this search. We want to mark 2 of them for installation. The 2 packages to mark are called “emerald” and “libemeraldengine0″. Do not click Apply yet, we need more packages. You should be looking at this now:
The other package we need is called “subversion”. Do another search in Synaptic, this time search for subversion. You will receive many results. The package we are looking for is called exactly “subversion”. Mark it for installation as shown below:
Now you may click “Apply” and then click “Apply” again when asked “Apply the following changes?”.
3) Emerald is now installed. Run Emerald Theme Manager by clicking the following:
System > Preferences > Emerald Theme Manager
Emerald should open, but there probably will not be any themes. Emerald uses subversion to get these themes, so first we need to accept the server certificate from the server where we get the themes. To do this, we will need to run one command in the terminal. Do not fear though, it won’t be too bad. To open up the terminal, click this:
Applications > Accessories > Terminal
You should now be in the terminal looking at a blinking cursor to the right of
user@computer:~$. Simply type the following command followed by “Enter”:
svn ls https://svn.generation.no/emerald-themes
Once you hit enter, some things will happen and you will see the names of some themes go by. Wait until you are back, looking at
user@computer:~$ with a blinking cursor and then exit the terminal by typing exit or just closing the window.
4) Now we need to grab those Emerald themes. Open up Emerald if it’s is not already open by clicking the following:
System > Preferences > Emerald Theme Manager
Then, under the “Themes Settings” tab, in the “Repositories” tab, click “Fetch GPL’d Themes” and then click “Fetch non GPL’d Themes”. This is what you should be looking at:
BTW, as of this writing, the repository for the GPL’d themes is down, but the non GPL’d themes are still available. Don’t freak out over this, I will show you where to get more themes in the next step. Once Emerald Theme Manager is finished fetching the themes, you should be able to go into the “Themes” tab and see this:
All you have to do now is click a theme, and it will be applied. If nothing happens, make sure you have set the “Visual Effects” to a setting of “Normal” or higher. To learn more about this, see my other post, Using the “cool” 3D features in Ubuntu 7.10 the easy way.
*5) (optional) This step will explain how to download and install additional themes from http://www.gnome-look.org/. Basically, you will find most of the themes in 2 places:
Some of the themes will work and some will not. You are looking for the themes that end in .emerald. If a theme does not end in .emerald, you can try renaming it and sometimes it will work, but not always. Once you have a theme downloaded, it it time to import it into Emerald Theme Manager.
To import a theme, open up Emerald Theme Manager, and go in the “Theme Settings” tab, and then into the “Themes” tab within it. You should see a list of your current themes and some buttons to the top-right of the window. Click the button labeled “Import”.
The dialog that pops up is looking for files that end in “.emerald”. Find your emerald themes (probably on your desktop) and select one. Click “Open” and you hopefully will successfully add the theme. If not, try a different theme. If you followed this whole guide, you should have enough themes to get Ubuntu looking the way you want.