How to Install GNOME Flashback on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

GNOME Flashback is a free open-source session for GNOME 3, initially called “GNOME Fallback” and shipped as a stand-alone session in Debian and Ubuntu. It provides a similar user experience to the GNOME 2 desktop but uses the newer GTK+ 3 toolkit and associated technologies. The project aims to keep the functionality of GNOME 2 available until all significant applications have been ported to GTK+ 3.

In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install the GNOME Flashback desktop environment on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Jammy Jellyfish.

Update Ubuntu

First, make sure the system is up-to-date to avoid any conflicts.

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Install GNOME Flashback Desktop

Ubuntu features the flashback desktop in its default repository, making the installation quick and easy.

Begin the installation using the following command.

sudo apt install gnome-session-flashback -y

The download is less than 100MB, so the overall install process should be swift.

Next, while you are on the terminal screen, log out using the following command.

sudo systemctl restart gdm

First Look at GNOME Flashback Desktop

Once you have successfully logged out, you will return to the login screen.


First, click the clog in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen and change the desktop environment to “GNOME Flashback.”


How to Install GNOME Flashback on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Once done, log in to your desktop.

On the first view, this will remind users using Linux/Ubuntu desktops of some old-school looks. Overall, the desktop is smooth and straightforward and may be preferred over the default GNOME look.

Example (Click to enlarge):

How to Install GNOME Flashback on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Oldschool lock screen, dig it?

Example (Click to enlarge):

How to Install GNOME Flashback on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Update/Upgrade GNOME Flashback Desktop

GNOME Flashback desktop will be automatically updated when you run the standard apt update/upgrade commands.


sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Remove (Uninstall) GNOME Flashback Desktop

Removing the GNOME Flashback desktop is straightforward due to its light modification; begin by using the following command.

sudo apt autoremove gnome-session-flashback --purge -y

Next, restart your desktop session.

sudo systemctl restart gdm

Log in, and you will be back to the default GNOME Ubuntu desktop.

Comment and Conclusion

In the tutorial, you have learned how to install GNOME Flashback Desktop on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS.

GNOME Flashback is an excellent alternative to GNOME Shell for people who want a more traditional user interface. It provides a similar experience to GNOME 2, so you will feel right at home if used to that environment. If you are looking for something different from the standard Unity or KDE desktop environments, I recommend giving GNOME Flashback.

Not what you were looking for? Try searching for additional tutorials.

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