For this How-To, I’m going to show you how to change the top level menu name “Applications” in Ubuntu Jaunty. No-third party installation manager software is going to be used here. Just some good old CLI hacking.
After doing some research I found that most of the answers to this question were complete bullshit. From what I found a lot of these resources showed you how to change/add items and menus using the menu editor.
If what I want to achieve could be done with the menu editor, I would have done it with the menu editor.
This tutorial is for those running Ubuntu with GNOME…if your using KDE or any others your out of luck here. In the default Ubuntu desktop installation the “Applications” menu name is hard coded into the GNOME-Panel. So basically what we need to do is download the source for GNOME-Panel, hunt down the file that names the top level menu “Applications”, change it, compile the source, and reinstall GNOME-Panel. Sound Tricky? It’s not that hard actually.
First let’s get some tools we are going to need, open up terminal:
sudo apt-get install apt-build
You will be prompted to configure this tool. For Optimization Level choose “Medium”, add apt-build repository to sources.list (Yes), and then you will need to choose your Architecture. We will then need to install required dependencies to rebuild gnome-panel from source, and we are also going to need the gnome-panel source. Back to Terminal:
sudo apt-get build-dep gnome-panel
sudo apt-build source gnome-panel
Now that we have what we need,chmod and then change your directory to the location of the gnome-panel source, where X.X.X is the version of gnome-panel (gnome-panel-2.26.0 for me):
sudo chmod -R 777 /var/cache/apt-build/build/gnome-panel-X.X.X
Open up the file “panel-menu-bar.c” in your favorite editor. Scroll through this file and find this line:
menubar->priv->applications_item = gtk_image_menu_item_new_with_label (_(“Applications”));
Change “Applications” to whatever you want, save the file and return to your Terminal:
sudo make install
This is going to configure the gnome-panel dependencies, compile the source, and then reinstall it. Now to see our changes:
Now where it used to say Applications, it should display your changes. If your looking to dive further into the gnome-panel menu system you should read the Official Gnome website, and the section on Menu’s.