Ubuntu WebApps by default are available on Ubuntu 12.10 but how to install them on Ubuntu 12.04?
Ubuntu WebApps is a completely new feature which was introduced on Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal Alpha version and will come by default on the final build. WebApps allows to use websites and services such as Facebook, Google Docs, Gmail, Grooveshark, Last.fm and many others to be used directy from Ubuntu desktop (Unity). They are based on HUD which means that they support desktop notifications, quicklists and they will integrate well in the Ubuntu messaging menu.
Some examples of what the WebApps integration can do:
- Control music streaming services such as Grooveshark, Last.fm directly from Ubuntu Sound Menu
- See how many unread emails you have and receive desktop notification about new emails in your Gmail, Yahoo mail and other email services.
- Receive native desktop notifications from Gmail, Google+, Facebook and other websites and services
Many services such as Google (including Docs, Gmail, Google+, Picasa and YouTube) Yahoo (Flickr), Twitter, Foursquare and Facebook will be available via Ubuntu Online Accounts and you won’t need to login each time you try to access these services. Once you authorized access for these services you will receive notifications and will be able to access them directly from Ubuntu desktop.
What services are supported by Ubuntu WebApps?
Currently it supports most popular Google services such as Gmail, Calendar, News, Google+, Reader and Youtube as well as several other popular services like Facebook Twitter, Grooveshark, Last.fm, Yahoo Mail and others. Support for more services will be added over the time so Ubuntu 12.10 will have a perfect environment to work with these services.
Ubuntu WebApps currently supports Firefox and Chromium browsers. Google Chrome is not supported and most likely will not get support anytime soon because PPA can’t install customizations on Google Chrome due to its license.
Below you can see a short video showing the best WebApps features:
How to install Ubuntu WebApps in Ubuntu 12.04?
Ubuntu WebApps will come preinstalled in Ubuntu 12.10 and latest Alpha build already has this feature available. Ubuntu 12.04 will have to install WebApps support manually and there might be some problems since it is not optimized for this OS version. I installed them on my experimental machine and haven’t had any issues but it doesn’t mean there aren’t any.
Open the terminal and run the following commands to install WebApps in Ubuntu 12.04:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webapps/preview
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install unity-webapps-preview
Now log out and log back in and visit any of the supported services to active WebApps. Once you have opened the service you will notice a popup asking if you want to integrate service with Ubuntu WebApps.
See screenshot bellow for more information:
Depending on your Web browser click on “Yes” or “Integrate” and you are ready to start using Ubuntu WebApps in Ubuntu 12.04. If you don’t want to use this service via Ubuntu WebApps just ignore this popup or close it.
Each time you will visit service supported by WebApps you will see this popup unless you confirm it or set it to “Never for this site”.
How to remove Ubuntu WebApps feature from Ubuntu 12.04?
If you found this feature not “that great” you can uninstall it using the following terminal commands:
sudo apt-get install ppa-purge
sudo ppa-purge ppa:webapps/preview
Personally I love this feature a lot but would like to see native support for Google Chrome and some more WebApps integration to make it a perfect addition to Ubuntu.