Ubuntu Gnome Main Menu Icon

After many years of being chained to Windows I finally made the switch to Linux for my desktop and I’m glad I did. Vista was providing to be too slow and too bulky for my uses (taking ages to load a folder preview when browsing my files was the deal breaker). So after a bit of searching (and not wanting to maintain yet another gentoo installation) I opted for ubuntu.

Being the tweeker I am, the first thing I wanted to do was to change the default installation of Gnome to suit my needs. All was well until the pesky Main Menu icon (top left corner by default) caught my attention. Googling didn’t really help me much, with people suggesting all kinds such as replacing all .png files with the ubuntu logo present (eww).

After peicing together bits of information from different sites, I managed to change the icon so I thought I would share howto for anyone in the same situation.

To help us with this, gconf-editor is our friend. For any newies reading this, gconf-editor provides a regedit like interface to many configuration settings.

First you need to load ‘gconf-editor’ (Alt-F2: type gconf-editor). Navigating to:


will give you the objects that reside on your panel.

Next step is to search through all the objects looking for an ‘object-type’ of ‘menu-object’. If you can’t find one (which if you are using the default installation you won’t) then search for ‘menu-bar’.

Next, check the option for ‘use_custom_icon’ and update the ‘custom_icon’ field to point to the image you would like to use for your main menu icon.

NOTE: If your object-type is showing ‘menu-bar’, you should change this to ‘menu-object’ for the above to work. This is due to custom icons only being supported on object types of ‘drawer-object’ or ‘menu-object’ (Looking at the description for custom_icon explains this).

So there we have it, simple really. I think many posts explain this technique in a round about way. The issue I found was swapping from ‘menu-bar’ to ‘menu-object’.