Using the Desktop

Your first view of GNOME will look something like Figure 2-1.

Figure 2-1. A GNOME Desktop

As stated previously, the GNOME desktop gives you access to the applications and system settings on your computer. You will notice that GNOME offers three main tools to make use of the applications on your system: panel icons, desktop icons, and menu systems.

The long bar across the bottom of the desktop is the panel. The panel contains application launchers, status indicators, and small applications.

The icons elsewhere on the desktop can be file folders or application launchers. To open a folder or launch an application, double-click on its icon.

The menu systems can be found by clicking on the GNOME Main Menu button. They can also be found by clicking on the Start Here icon and then clicking the Programs icon.

The GNOME desktop works in the manner you might expect it to when working with other operating systems. You can drag and drop files and application icons to areas that are easily accessible. You can add new icons for files and applications to the desktop, panel, and file manager. You can change the appearance of most of the tools and applications, as well as changing system settings with provided configuration tools.