In Ubuntu Oneiric’s universe repository there’s a package gnome-session-fallback that provides classic gnome desktop, but it ugly and uneasy to configure panel.

Now Linux Mint 12 has released. It brings MATE and MGSE.
MATE is a fork of Gnome 2 which is compatible with Gnome 3. Thanks to MATE, you can run both versions of Gnome on the same system

NOTE: MATE is brand new, it’s not completely stable yet, and it’s missing a few parts.

MGSE stands for Mint Gnome Shell Extension, it’s a Gnome 3 desktop with classic Gnome 2 style interface.

Install MATE and MGSE in ubuntu 11.10:

Open up a terminal window and edit the source.list by this command:

sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

in pop-up gedit window add this line to the end and save it.

deb lisa main upstream import

Now update the source, add the GPG key, and finally update the source again.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install linuxmint-keyring
sudo apt-get update

Now MGSE and MATE are available in Ubuntu SoftWare Center. Just search and install mint gnome shell extension and mint-meta-mate

Fix broken packages if installation failed:

I failed to install MATE due to python-desktop-mata package. But MGSE properly installed, previous picture is a screenshot of MGSE.

There’re two broken packages that can be fixed by Synaptic Package Manager.

1.) Install Synaptic by:

sudo apt-get install synaptic

2.)Launch Synaptic Package Manager, find Broken under Custom Filters. Mark to remove broken packages and finally apply the changes.

Fix Ubuntu Software Center doesn’t launch problem and sudo add-apt-repository error:

After installed MGSE and MATE, you may got error while running sudo add-apt-repository and can’t launch Ubuntu Software Center.

It can be easily fixed by:

sudo gedit /etc/lsb-release

change and make it look like following: