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Not so long ago I was telling you about the new version 2 of Cairo Dock which was at the time still in beta/rc and that it doesn't look at all like the old 1 branch - this new version is by far the best dock menu application I've seen for any operating system.

A few days ago, version 2.0.0 full was released. Here are some of the features of the new 2.0.0 version:

* Cairo-Dock is now a full OpenGL dock ! (the cairo backend is still available for old graphic cards or ATI)
* New plug-ins provide many animations & visual effects : Animated icons, icon effects, illusion, drop indicator, motion blur, dialog rendering
* New applets : keyboard indicator, mail, quick browser, Toons, weblets.
* The config panel has been widely rewritten.
* Great improvment of the Taskbar ergonomics.
* Desklets can be rotated in 3D.
* Dialogs have many different window decorators.
* A lot of new themes, old ones have been reviewed.
* The Theme Manager can now download new themes on the server for many applets : clock, dustbin, Cairo-Penguin, Toons, etc and can build theme packages to easily exchange themes between users.
* XGamma : added the ability to setup a custom luminosity on startup.
* Shortcuts : added display of disk space.
* Clock : smooth seconds' needle movment.
* Slider : 3D transitions betweens slides and Exif data.
* Rhythmbox : 3D themes.
* Gmenu : added a quick launcher in an "ALT+F2" fashion
* Direct scroll on many applets : XGamma, Slider, AlsaMixer, etc, and also on applications' icons.

It also has a lot of themes that change it's aspect all the way: from Mac OSX like dock to 3D icons, flat icons, plane view, 3D view, stacks and so on and so forth, it's really hard to explain so here are some screenshots and video:


And the configuration panel:



If you installed the release candidate version, you first need to remove it before installing this new version:
sudo apt-get remove cairo-dock

Then download the new version from here (for Ubuntu, there are pre-build .DEB packages). - don't forget to download both Cairo-Dock and the plugins package.

To open Cairo Dock v2, you can then open it by hitting Alt + F2 on your keyboard and then, for OpenGL mode (newer video cards), type:
cairo-dock -o
For older video cards, type:
cairo-dock -c
(cairo mode)

To add it to your startup applications, go to System > Preferences > Startup Applications, click Add, put in any Name and in the Command field, enter one of the two commands above (whichever suits your graphic card).

Note 1: Of course, you need Compiz enabled for this to work. Read about it here if you don't know what i'm talking about.

Note 2: On some old video cards and Intel cards, the OpenGL mode shows a black screen but I just tested the updated drivers (for Intel) from the repository for Intel and some other graphic cards I wrote about and it worked in OpenGL mode.

Update: There are also Ubuntu repositories available for the new Cairo Dock, which you can find here (you will find instructions for adding the repository on that page).

Update 2:
Cairo Dock 2.1.0 was released with lots of improvements.