Fixing GEdit’s Unconfigurable Terminal

Lately I’ve been distro hopping. Between projects and lacking inspiration, I’ve been in search of a new DE and a new text editor. I’ve come to realize that I don’t have the patience to deal with XMonad and friends, and of the mainstream DE’s, I like Gnome 3 the best.

However, that still leaves the question of the text editor. I’ve been using GEdit to do Haskell, and it’s been working for the most part. However, while GEdit supports many languages by way of GtkSourceView, it doesn’t support them all. What if I decide to learn some fringe langauge?

Of course a google search for “GEdit fringe-lang syntax highlighting” turns up “Use EMACS” or “Use VIM”. I’ve some experience with VIM from my past life, and I’ve tried to get into EMACS in my new life. Neither of these are terribly appealing. Which leaves me with GEdit for the time being.

So today, determined to do something productive, I fired up GEdit for the first time since reloading Ubuntu GNOME and was greeted with this:


Yeah… Vaguely remembering dealing with this issue before, I went into the module preferences and tried to configure the build-in terminal.


Irritating… After some googling, and message-board hopping, I found the answer. So that I don’t have to figure this out again next year, I’d like to preserve the solution here.

The Fixing

The fix is pretty simple. First, launch dconf Editor:


If this isn’t installed, it should be in your distro’s repositories. On Ubuntu:

sudo apt-get install dconf-editor

Browse to org -> gnome -> gedit -> plugins -> terminal.


There are plenty of interesting configuration options in here, things that would normally be done in the gnome-terminal profile config dialog. However, I just want my terminal to use the built-in theme. To do this, we need to ensure the use-theme-colors option is selected. After that’s done, close the dconf editor and re-open GEdit. It should now look like this:


I now have a nice, well-behaved embedded terminal. Much better!

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