Metacity: Enabling composite

October 2017




Why enabling Metacity composite?

Metacity is a window manager for Gnome. In Layman's terms it decorates windows with themes, icons.

The Metacity "composite" is a rendering layer that adds some effects to make the office aspect more enjoyable.
It is significantly less advanced than Compiz, defacto making it much lighter than the latter.
Activating this feature allows for:
  • True transparency, for example:
    • the terminal with transparent background.
    • Gnome-do, which then activates its "glass" theme.
    • notify-osd that displays in blur.
  • AWN: this "dock" requires either Compiz or Composite to work.
  • A shadow effect on the windows, it's quite pretty.



If you have a computer that can't handle Compiz, it may be a good alternative. You can activate it under Gnome with this command:
  • gconftool-2 --set /apps/metacity/general/compositing_manager --type boolean "true"


To disable it:
  • gconftool-2 --set /apps/metacity/general/compositing_manager --type boolean "false"

Published by jad05. Latest update on September 20, 2010 at 06:53 AM by jad05.
This document, titled "Metacity: Enabling composite," is available under the Creative Commons license. Any copy, reuse, or modification of the content should be sufficiently credited to CCM (ccm.net).