Install GNOME Themes – Own 26 GTK Themes with One Command

Gnome Theme Collection for Ubuntu
Written by Martins D. Okoi

Every now and then we let you in on some of the finest theme and icon sets because, like many other Linux users, we like to personalize our workstations. An appealing icon set, a well-thought out wallpaper, and an overall artillery of UI components go a long way to defining how well you enjoy using your computer.

If you’re like me but are discouraged by the stress of having to download all those themes you shouldn’t be any longer because I have come across a script that will fetch you over 10 beautiful GTK themes and all you have to do is query Git to get the script and then run it.

That’s right, Install GNOME Themes is a script that downloads, builds, and installs the latest Git versions of 26 popular GTK themes to your Linux desktop!

The themes are downloaded from GitHub and installed in your ~/.themes folder after which you can now apply anyone of your choosing theme using Unity Tweak Tool (on Ubuntu’s Unity Desktop) or GNOME Tweak Tool (on GNOME Desktop).

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The themes in the script’s download list include Flat-Plat, Pop, Numix, Arc Red, Vimix, Vertex, among 20 others! And all you need to do if you want the latest updates for any of the themes just run the script again.

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The script will download about 108 packages from GitHub when you run it but don’t be worried; this happens because instead of downloading pre-packaged themes, Install GNOME Themes grabs their source code, builds them, and then installs them on your system for you. As cool as that sounds, remember to have enough time and internet data at your disposal before you begin downloading.

Install GNOME Themes in Ubuntu Distributions

Installing and running the script is easy and it is fully compatible with Ubuntu/Debian distros

$ sudo apt install git
$ git clone ~/install-gnome-themes
$ ~/install-gnome-themes/install-gnome-themes

To run the script, run:

# cd ~/install-gnome-themes
# git pull

Getting theme updates is also easy thanks to the script monitoring a cache file in your ~/.themes which helps it download only the theme changes that have been made. If you ever want to re-download everything then deleting this cache file will get you there.

I am sure there are at least 10 themes in among the list of themes Install GNOME Themes provides – you can thank me later.

Are there any similar attractive scripts you know about? Perhaps, one with the option to exclude some themes from the download list – that will be nifty. Add your comments and suggestions in the comments section below.

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About the author

Martins D. Okoi

Martins Jr. (Dillivine) Okoi is a graduate of Computer Science with a passion for Linux and the Open Source community. He works as a Web designer & developer, technical writer, and programmer.

  • TKinter

    Detected GNOME 3.24, GTK .
    This script only GTK version 3.18 up to 3.24.

  • Srdjan Radiša

    Hello Martins, awesome article. Please can you tell me what combination of desktop environment and theme do you have on machine where you made this screenshot it looks amazing 🙂 Thanks in advance.

    • Thanks Srdjan. Don’t forget to share 🙂 .

      It’s a combination of GNOME, Fabulous icons, and paper theme

      • Srdjan Radiša

        Thank you, and one more question: What kind of launcher do you use here(on the bottom of the screen), it doesn’t look like default GNOME.
        I will gladly share the article 🙂
        p.s. Definitively one of best looking Linuxes I have seen. Too bad there is no distros that beautiful, to have it out of the box.

        • It’s Unity launcher 🙂 Use Unity tweak tool to place the tray at the bottom

          Hehe thanks man! Much appreciated.

          About linux distros not being being beautiful straight out of the box, I agree with you. The good news is I’ve written articles that can help you style your distro the way you want until dev teams decide to ship their distros looking cool enough already.

  • Ryan Hailey

    I just tried this and it didn’t install any themes into my .themes folder.

    I ran git pull and the output is “already up to date”.

    How do I view the themes in my Unity Tweaks? Have I done something incorrectly?

    • I think to get the best results you should just install GNOME desktop and use the Gnome Tweak Tool

  • Thanks much! How do you revert/remove/uninstall?

    • The easiest way is to use Synaptic package manager. With it, you can remove multiple packages and their dependencies at once.

      • tried to reply which included a link with how I was able to remove.

  • Gediz Gürsu

    This script installed tons of libraries, however it did not install one theme …
    Worst experience i have ever had.

    • Martins Divine Okoi

      Woa! That’s new.
      Do you know what to do next or do you need help getting rid of the libraries?

      Perhaps something is wrong somewhere and you should just flush them out and manually install the themes you want individually. I hate encountering script-library issues so I can imagine what you’re going through now.

      • Gediz Gürsu

        No, thank you.

        • Martins Divine Okoi

          Do whatever makes you happy.

  • koesherbacon

    Hey there. This looks pretty awesome… but, alas, I’m not using Debian/Ubuntu/etc, I’m using Arc. Is there a way this could be turned into a PKGBUILD and put into the AUR? I’d love to try this out, but I’m obviously unable to do so 🙁

    • Martins Divine Okoi

      It is pretty awesome.

      ‘Is there a way this could be turned into a PKGBUILD and put into the AUR?” Sorry but this, my friend, is a question I cannot answer lol