18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

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oldgaz
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18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby oldgaz » Thu Oct 05, 2017 1:10 am

I recently loaded Mint 18.1 XFCE onto a (newbie - window convert) mate's PC. He now says that the icons on the Panel (task bar?) are all at the left hand end. As he lives far away I have been using Team Viewer to help him with his issues. I cannot right click anywhere on the Panel and get the Separator window/menu. I feel that he might have accidently accessed the Separator menu and clicked Delete.
This being the case, how might I restore it? I have been using Linux for many years and feel confident using the Terminal but I am probably in the category of "a little knowledge is dangerous!". Does anyone have an easy to follow solution?

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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby shengchieh » Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:50 pm

I would do a fresh install if you want to use XFCE. Overlaying desktops can be problematic.

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trytip
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby trytip » Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:56 pm

hard to tell which panel you have, but if you willing to try you may boot into MATE session and rename .config/xfce4/panel folder to .config/xfce4/panelOLD then logOFF/ON XFCE this will bring panel defaults ... if things go bad undo (delete the new panel folder and rename from OLD
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby oldgaz » Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:41 am

Thanks for the reply trytip. I booted into a live Mint Mate 18.1 dvd but I could not rename or Delete the /panel. I was able to "rename" to /panel-org using the MV command. I then rebooted the PC into the XFCE version and a new /panel directory was created in the XFCE4 directory (alongside /panel-org). However, on the screen in the Panel where there was icons relating to the particlar program, these icons now all had the same "Stop" icon. ie they are a red circle with a diagonal line sloping to the top LH . Any further thoughts?

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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby jimallyn » Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:49 am

shengchieh wrote:Overlaying desktops can be problematic.

I didn't see anything to make me think the OP was "overlaying desktops." Did you?
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby jimallyn » Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:51 am

trytip wrote:if you willing to try you may boot into MATE session and rename ....

What has MATE got to do with this? The OP is using XFCE.
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby trytip » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:36 pm

jimallyn wrote:What has MATE got to do with this? The OP is using XFCE.

my bad ... OP wrote
mate's PC
was thinking he was on MATE with an XFCE desktop, but i guess "mate" is friend in this case and not the DE. you know us americans :mrgreen:
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby trytip » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:43 pm

@oldgaz
those icons with STOP on them are icons left over on the panel you can remove them rightclick on panel>panel preferences>items
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby jimallyn » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:49 am

trytip wrote:you know us americans

Indeed I do. I fall into that category myself. :)
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby oldgaz » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:27 am

G'Day trytip The suggestion to use the Mate live DVD intrigued me also - but I now see that it came about through a misinterpretation of my initial post and the Oz language. I had another look at the problem and noticed that the new panel directory only contained two files - datetime-5.rc and whiskermenu-1.rc. The original panel directory contained several launcher directories. I thought that might be a clue to the "Stop" icons that are now present on the Panel. So, I copied the oldest one of these ( launcher-9 ) into the new Panel Directory and rebooted. Unfortunately, nothing changed - I still have the Stop icons in lieu of the program ones on my "test" installation. Yes, I found that they would delete OK. While playing around, I noticed in the Preferences->Items there are Separator items. I called up my "Mate" and had him check this on his problem PC. He advsied that there are no Separator items in his list. So I'm guessing that he has Deleted the Separator somehow. Looks like a re-install is the only fix. I noticed that if I go to Delete the Separator on my Test XFCE PC that you get a warning that it cannot be recovered - I guess that he ignored that message. He will live with it until my next visit. Thanks all for the input.

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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby jase » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:43 pm

Sorry in advance, non-tech blargh: I have been having the exact same problem for months (I've given up in the interim). I'd call myself a level 1 or 2 user (I know enough to know that my level of knowledge is potentially dangerous, so I break things less frequently) BUT I refuse to believe that a new install is required to fix this. From my experience, that is not what Linux is about. I haven't been active on a Linux forum in years and surely someone out there knows how to fix this?!

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trytip
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby trytip » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:16 pm

one way to TEST this out is to boot with a live mint XFCE and copy folder .config/xfce4/panel/ then replacing it on the active machine (rename the old or compress to backup)
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby MrEen » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:19 pm

I'm new enough to be too afraid to try this for testing, but maybe reinstalling the panel (xfce4-panel) would be a viable option for those having problems with it?

Looking in Software Manager shows a lot of stuff will be removed along with the panel (hence my hesitancy,) but if it's already messed up I doubt it could hurt too much.

Maybe this would work:

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sudo apt-get install --reinstall xfce4-panel

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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby MtnDewManiac » Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:42 pm

I think the usual suggestion when one is attempting to figure out if an issue will require a distro reinstallation (or other "involved" fix) is to simply create a new user, boot into that account, and see if the issue is present with that account, too. If not, it's most likely just a misconfiguration somewhere.

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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby oldgaz » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:57 am

An update from a rainy day - I tried creating a new user and this did show a new default Panel with a Separator. So that appears to be the easiest solution. However, I decided to give @trytip's suggestion a go. I booted from an XFCE DVD and renamed the panel directory on the HDD file system to panel-old. I then tried to copy the panel from the "Live" system but as the ownership was "mint" I got the "invalid user" message. I could however, copy the "Live" panel directory onto a USB stick, reboot into the HDD system and copy the panel directory into a temporary location in the /home/gaz folder. Next I rebooted the Live DVD and copied the panel directory from the /home/gaz folder to the /xfce4 directory OK (as su). Rebooted from the HDD and I found the "new" Panel had no Separator.
However, I tried two other things. While booted from the "Live" DVD I renamed the panel directory again (in the Main user) and copied the panel directory from the new user. Again when I booted into the HDD the panel was missing the Separator.
Finally, I tried the solution suggestion by @MrEen (the reinstal). Before doing that I noticed the ownership for the Panel was root, so I changed it to the user. After the reinstall, the new Panel was still devoid of a Separator - it also had the same icons that I had placed on the Panel before the reinstall, so there is another file controlling things that I haven't addressed. The new panel directory showed the time stamp at the time that I did the re-install. I think that a reinstall is the only fix.

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trytip
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby trytip » Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:08 pm

if you copy something as SU you will not have permissions to use it as user so copying as SU will only work if you copy to /root partition.

reinstalling your system and keeping the same partition as /home will not resolve your issue since the configurations will carry into the new install. if you really can't get around this issue maybe rename your whole /.config/xfce and rebooting altho bewary this will reset all your desktop and personal settings
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Re: 18.1 XFCE Lost Panel Separator

Postby oldgaz » Fri Oct 20, 2017 11:21 pm

Thanks, trytip. For the sake of completeness, I renamed /.config/xfce4 directory and rebooted as you suggested. On the restart the Panel separator was restored OK. The Panel only had the default icons. The desktop retained the icons that had been added since installation, but the desktop wallpaper was back to default. Thanks everyone for your input.


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