I have a weird issue on a new installation of 64 bit LMDE. My Applications list in Gnome Shell is empty. I have tried deleting .gconf .gnome and .gnome2. I deleted the menus directory under .local. I can't figure out how to reset gnome shell menus. Any ideas?
I don't know if I've misunderstood your question here. but from what I can gather I'm posting a reply. Have you tried logging into the fallback mode, or into mate. The reason is that if your system does not have an accelerated graphics card, when you move your mouse over the menu nothing happens in Gnome 3.
I tried nuking all of it, and nothing worked. I ended up pulling a copy off of another LMDE computer. Strangely, it seems to have fixed some issues I had with the window manager constantly reloading. Somehow only my profile was being corrupted.