How to cleanup your GNOME registry?
The other day I stumbled upon this neat tool that helps cleanup your GConf registry, called GConf Cleaner. While GNOME registry size isn't nowhere near the size of Windows registry, and thus shouldn't slow your computer too much, it's still nice to have a tool that cleans unused and obsolete entries.
Meet GConf Cleaner
The tool is still in early stages of development (version 0.0.2), but I've successfully run it on my desktop and was amazed how many old entries it found. Typically, if you install some GNOME application, play with it a little bit and later decide to delete it, it's configuration settings will remain in the GConf database. So your registry will only grow in time.
To get the GConf Cleaner source, go to http://code.google.com/p/gconf-cleaner/downloads/list
Download the most recent version you find. Next, unpack it with something like:
tar xf gconf-cleaner-0.0.2.tar.gz
and change to its directory. Building and installing is straightforward:
make install (as root)
If everything is OK, you should now have gconf-cleaner binary installed and ready to run.
The cleanup in detail
When run, gconf-cleaner first introduces itself:
Next stage is to go through your registry and build up a list of keys to delete. You'll be provided with a nice scrollable list of all entries that gconf-cleaner is about to delete:
You can deselect some of the entries, if you know better. Before next step, it would be opportune to backup your existing GConf database which hides in
$HOME/.gconf directory. Do something like
cp -av ~/.gconf ~/.gconf-backup
Remember, this is ALPHA software! If there are bugs in it, it could eat your whole configuration database.
Finally, when you feel brave enough, press 'Forward' once again and in a split second, gconf-cleaner will report that it has deleted the keys it selected in the previous step:
And that's it. You can observe that, on my desktop, it deleted 734 of 3799 keys, which is significant (at the same time, the size of GConf database went down from 458495 to 284657 bytes). From what I can tell, everything is working just fine. Your mileage may vary!
GConf: Manageable User Preferences