Solution for OEMs/Gnome

James Henstridge james at
Thu Apr 13 16:40:55 UTC 2006

Daniel Carrera wrote:
> Chipzz wrote:
>>> For .gconf you should prefer root's gconf database (but I still see a
>>> problem, that such customization is overwritten by a subsequent
>>> packages
>>> update, at least with the default gconf path).
>> It should be pointed out that for debian (and I think also ubuntu, which
>> is what he is using) this is simply not true. The gnome defaults are
>> shipped in /usr, not in /etc, and gconf actually uses multiple databases
>> on debian which allows you to do exactly that: make your own changes
>> without them being overwritten on subsequent upgrades.
> Thanks.
> Once again, unless someone has written a document describing how to
> change the Gconf database (and perhaps something about how that
> database works) this is all of little use to me.
> * Please don't tell me "edit the .schema file" (which one? how? those
> things are incomprehensible - yes, I know XML).
Early in this thread, the admin guide was pointed out.  It has a short
description of gconf schemas here:

Although if you are setting up systems, it is usually better to edit the
defaults or mandatory gconf config sources rather than trying to modify
schema files (which will most likely get overwritten when you install
security updates anyway).  Configuration sources are described here:

You can also add to the gconf search path by creating
/etc/gconf/2/local-mandatory.path and /etc/gconf/2/local-defaults.path
files that list additional config sources.  This can be used to point to
a central NFS shared config source, for instance (may be useful if you
are rolling out a configuration to a large number of machines).

> * Please don't tell me "do it wit gconf-editor" (gconf-editor does
> *not* have any way of adding a stupid icon to the panel).
The default panel layout is actually controlled through gconf.  Again,
the admin guide documents this, including tips on converting an existing
panel layout for use as a default panel layout:

The first time a user logs in, their panel configuration will be
constructed from the default layout found in gconf.


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