Saturday, June 1, 2013

Xfce-terminal Drop-Down Guake-like Feature How-to

by Dietrich Schmitz

A nice addition to Xfce 4.10.1 was added giving the ability to have Xfce-terminal behave as a 'Guake style' drop-down terminal.

It just so happens that Fedora 19 Xfce Spin includes this build so let me show you how to configure it.

First be sure you are running this version of Xfce by opening a terminal and typing "xfwm4 -V" (leave off quotes):

[dietrich@localhost ~]$ xfwm4 -V
 This is xfwm4 version 4.10.1 (revision 3918e6b) for Xfce 4.10
 Released under the terms of the GNU General Public License.
 Compiled against GTK+-2.24.17, using GTK+-2.24.18.

 Build configuration and supported features:
 - Startup notification support:                 Yes
 - XSync support:                                Yes
 - Render support:                               Yes
 - Xrandr support:                               Yes
 - Embedded compositor:                          Yes
 - KDE systray proxy (deprecated):               No
[dietrich@localhost ~]$ 

With that confirmation in hand, we can now go into Menu->Settings->Keyboard->Add

Add a keyboard shortcut to Xfce-terminal

Next, click the '+ Add' button to create a shortcut command of "xfce-terminal --drop-down" and click the OK button to save:

Add shortcut command: xfce-terminal --drop-down

This will create the shortcut.  To add the shorcut key or change it, click the row of the shortcut which you just added to give it focus and type the key(s) which you wish to use to open the terminal--in my case, I chose "<alt>backslash" which won't conflict with most applications.

Test the shortcut.  It should now open in 'drop-down' mode and add an icon to your system tray.  If you right-click the system tray icon and go to preferences, you'll find a new "Drop-down" tab in Terminal Preferences; experiment with the settings to suit your situation:

Adjust Drop-down settings to your tastes

Use your shorcut to open, ctrl-d to close, or click the system tray icon to minimize to the tray leaving the terminal session active.  

Fedora 19 Xfce Spin Desktop with Xfce-terminal running in 'Drop-down' mode

And there you have it.  Guake? We don' need no stinkin' Guake! :)

 -- Dietrich
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