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WebUpd8 reader Erlan has sent us a tip on getting more vertical screen space in Xubuntu. Using his tweak you can get the XFCE panel in Ubuntu 11.04 to overlap the unused part of the maximized applications titlebar - more or less like Wingpanel.

Here are a couple of screenshots:

XFCE minimal Xubuntu

Xubuntu 11.04 wingpanel

Placing window controls on the right is not mandatory. You can place the panel on the right and window controls on the left if you want. This is similar to getting the Gnome Panel to behave like "wingpanel", but for XFCE.

Get a minimalistic, Wingpanel-like XFCE setup

1. To get the panel to show up above maximized windows, copy/paste the following command in a terminal (thanks to Nick Schermer for the tip!):
xfconf-query -c xfce4-panel -p /panels/panel-0/disable-struts -t bool -n -s true

2. Right click the panel and select "Panel Preferences":

Xubuntu panel preferences

On the Display tab, uncheck "Lock panel" and change the panel length to something smaller then 70-80% (whatever you like).

3. Go to Settings > Settings Manager, select "Window Manager" under "Title alignment", select "Right" and only place the title, minimize, maximize and close buttons on the titlebar:

Xubuntu Window Manager

You can of course place them all on the left if you want, but make sure to also move the panel on the right.

That's it!

Thanks to Erlan for the tip and first screenshot in the post!