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A title bar is a part of a window that displays the window or application title, usually the position of the title bar is at the top of the window. To make this title bar transparent we may use some applications for customizing window borders, but in this tip we will use instead some terminal commands for adjusting window title bar transparency.


The default transparency value is set to 1 under Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot. To change it we need to use values ranging from 0 to 0.99 as described below. There are two entries we need to change in order to make the title bar transparent:

  • metacity_theme_active_opacity
  • metacity_theme_opacity
Their values are set by default to 1. To change them, we need to decrease their values as follows:

- For Nautilus windows, use this command:

gconftool-2 --type float --set /apps/gwd/metacity_theme_opacity 0.3

- For application windows, use this command:

gconftool-2 --type float --set /apps/gwd/metacity_theme_active_opacity 0.3

Replace 0.3 with your own values, but don't exceed the limit (0--->0.99). To disable the transparency effect and restore default settings, use these commands:

gconftool-2 --type float --set /apps/gwd/metacity_theme_opacity 1


gconftool-2 --type float --set /apps/gwd/metacity_theme_active_opacity 1

That's it!

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