Tutorial: Restituting consistent window theming on XFCE - aka revert new window borders (CSD) to previous mode (SSD)

I am aware this is reason of very strong contentions and heated conversations, and I will not enter in the merit of discussing the pros and cons of the switch in theming enacted by the GNOME development team, and now picked up downstream by XFCE developers with XFCE 4.16.
(this article, and especially its footnotes, will explain more about it and link all relevant conversations)

What I want to accomplish with this post is helping users like me who are not happy with the current looks of the desktop, cannot avoid one or two GNOME apps for their daily work, and yet would like to keep the theming consistent.
This very nifty workaround will restitute consistent theming to the XFCE software impacted by the update and the few GNOME apps using CSD on your system.


with a simple yay gtk3-nocsd-git installation.

Additionally, open xfce4-settings-editor and in xsettings set Gtk>DIalogUseHeader as false (untick box), to make sure the file picker is brought back to its former glory.

If you have any other tips, please feel free to share!!
Enjoy computing, the way you like it!! :wink:



mayby this is something also :slight_smile:

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I was in too much of a hurry to revert to a consistent workflow and theming to see what else was out there, So far, I am happy with the results - but I hope someone will try the alternative and report back!

Actually, I might try it on a less-than-daily-driver, just to see the differences - but I am grateful that the alternatives are out there. There may be a case for CSD itself - but there is NONE for jamming things into the title bar that I can understand - let alone sending people up to it just to find an OK or a CANCEL… - not even mentioning the thought that toolbars are under threat as well!

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By adding libxfce4ui-nocsd on top of my setup, I have noticed no apparent change for the moment - things were already reverted graphics-wise, and stayed so.
If you manage to try out libxfce4ui-nocsd on another machine, it would be interesting to see if it makes any difference alone (though my best guess would be that, at least with the current version of XFCE, it fixes what gtk3-nocsd-git fixes as well, while sparing GNOME software)

Thank you very much for that, I will keep the Github project followed, and hope it will live long and prosper!!

I ran into one situation where gtk3-nocsd-git did not seem to work, and the other did. Am not sure about the xsetting either - it seems to work with BOTH options. The only difference (when working) is that the install of libxfce4ui-nocsd require the removal of libxfce4ui. Whatever - BIG thanks to both (and to @ed0 for the xsettings tip)


gtk3-nocsd-git also need some configure also to make it work proper

I would also like to add a useful patch I have recently discovered and which complements well the set-up in terms of “fixing what’s intentionally broken” in GTK
The package gtk3-patched-filechooser-icon-view will allow you to get icon view in the file picker (comprehensive of picture previews)
[the new view has to be selected at the top left corner as can be seen from the screenshot, and on the top right you can resize the elements]