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notify OSD ubuntu purple

Notify OSD has been in Ubuntu for a long time yet for some odd reason, it never supported any kind of customizations so if you wanted to change it's color or position you had to compile it with the new settings.

But there is an Ubuntu PPA with a patched Notify OSD for Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala and Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx which supports customizations via a simple text file so you don't have to compile it and can change the Notify OSD settings on the fly.

The package in the PPA also uses the old Jaunty way to display Notify OSD meaning the Notify OSD bubbles will always be displayed in the top right corner, not dynamic to allow a gap for sound notifications. But this also can be easily configured using the package in the PPA.

Read on!

To add the PPA, paste this in a terminal:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:leolik/leolik

Then to install the new, patched Notify OSD, paste this in a terminal:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade

We're almost done! We must now create an empty file in the home folder called .notify-osd so paste this in a terminal:
gedit ~/.notify-osd &

Then in the newly opened file, paste this:
slot-allocation = fixed
bubble-expire-timeout = 10sec
bubble-vertical-gap = 5px
bubble-horizontal-gap = 5px
bubble-corner-radius = 37,5%
bubble-icon-size = 30px
bubble-gauge-size = 6px
bubble-width = 240px
bubble-background-color = 131313
bubble-background-opacity = 90%
text-margin-size = 10px
text-title-size = 100%
text-title-weight = bold
text-title-color = ffffff
text-title-opacity = 100%
text-body-size = 90%
text-body-weight = normal
text-body-color = eaeaea
text-body-opacity = 100%
text-shadow-opacity = 100%

Then save the file but don't close it yet. We'll customize it!

These are the default Karmic and Lucid settings. To make Notify OSD behave like on Jaunty, meaning the notification bubble is always in the top right corner with no gap, change the "slot-allocation" value from "fixed" to "dynamic".

Then play with the rest of the values such as colors and so on. Anyone who knows some basic CSS should have no problem customizing Notify OSD now.

To try out the new Notify OSD values, type this in a terminal:
notify-send test

For more info on using notify-send to test the notifications, type:
notify-send --help

Once you're done, restart notify-osd with:
pkill notify-osd

What's still missing for Notify OSD? A GUI to customize all these settings so the user doesn't have to edit a text file anymore. Hopefully this patch will be included in Ubuntu soon. Maybe we'll even get Notify OSD themes too.

Update1: a GUI for this version of NotifyOSD has been released so after adding the PPA in this post, you can also install this NotifyOSD GUI.

Update2: An update brings option to move the NotifyOSD notification bubbles to different screen corners, timeout fix.

Special thanks for the heads up: LucidFox; credits for the patched Notify OSD which supports customization: leolik (in Russian)