White Desktop Fonts with Linux Mint 17 Ambiance

I’m a big fan of both Ubuntu and Linux Mint. I install each new release of Ubuntu, but I keep going back to Linux Mint because for me it’s a superior desktop experience. “It just works,” as they say. I have to confess that I love the look of Ubuntu, so I install the Ubuntu Ambiance theme in Linux Mint to duplicate the Ubuntu look-n-feel. Here’s my Linux Mint 17 desktop at the moment with the Ambiance theme.

To install the Ambiance theme in Linux Mint, by the way, use this command.

sudo apt-get install light-themes

Then select Ambiance in your Linux Mint Theme -> Advanced Settings. Here’s a good resource.

You’ll notice that after setting your theme controls to Ambiance that the color of the desktop font is black, where most of us would prefer white. The root issue is that Ambiance is based on Ubuntu’s Nautilus desktop manager, while Linux Mint uses Nemo by default. So nothing you change in the Ambiance CSS files for .nautilus classes will have any effect on your Nemo desktop controls.

We have to go SUDO into /usr/share/themes/Ambiance where we’re going to update two CSS files. Here’s the path and the files we want to change.

What we’re going to do is to change any .nautilus class references to .nemo classes. The end result will look something like this.

Your changes won’t be reflected right away. A quick tip on displaying the updates without rebooting is to enter

$ nemo -q

at a command line, which quits nemo. Your desktop icons will disappear in the process, but that’s okay. They’ll come back. Simply select your Nemo File Manager (or type “nemo” to launch at the command line) and your newly “minted” White Desktop Icons should shine.

The original source of this brilliant solution (of COURSE it isn’t mine!) is this Linux Mint Forum post.