Icons too big in Fedora 22’s Gnome Shell

[Predictably, the solution changed in Fedora 23. See below.]

NOTE: The way to fix this has now changed in Fedora 23. As I anticipated, the Gnome developers have once again made life more difficult by removing the default zoom level selector from File Manager’s preferences. The way to do this now is to open File Manager (a/k/a Nautilus), click into the window and hit CNTRL – (control minus).

I’ve been testing Fedora 22 over the last few days, both Server and Workstation (in that order). I was very impressed with both flavors, so much so that it’s possible that the home file/media server could get swapped out from FreeBSD 10 to Fedora 22 Server.

My trial upgrade from Fedora 21 Workstation to 22 went smoothly, as expected. I’ve been using fedup since Fedora 17 and the experience has improved dramatically over time. “Dramatically” is actually the wrong word, since there was “no drama” at all in my last upgrade from Fedora 20 to 21.

But there is one thing that annoys me in the default desktop configuration for Fedora 22 Workstation.

The icon size.

Whether you use Nautilus, sorry “Files”, it’s hard to miss the new giant size of the icons. It reminds me of a kid’s toy, or maybe a phone or a tablet.

Fixing the problem isn’t hard, at least for now. Fortunately “Files” still has a Preferences menu that includes an option to change the size of the icons in “Icon” and “List” views.

To do it for yourself (this works right now, today’s date, no guarantee it will tomorrow):

Open “Files”, select “Files… Preferences” from the desktop menu bar.

Make sure you’re in the “Views” tab (it should be what you first open up into).

Change the “Default zoom level” to “Small” for both “Icon View Defaults” and “List View Defaults”.

The is no more “Save” button to confirm these changes. Just “X” out of Preferences when you’re done.

If Nautilus is controlling your desktop you should see any Desktop icons (like “Home” and “Trash”) immediately shrink in size.

The icons in “Files” itself won’t immediately change, but if you exist out of it altogether and then start it up again you should find the icons are now normal size.

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About phil

My name is Phil Lembo. In my day job I’m an enterprise IT architect for a leading distribution and services company. The rest of my time I try to maintain a semi-normal family life in the suburbs of Raleigh, NC. E-mail me at philipATlembobrothersDOTcom. The opinions expressed here are entirely my own and not those of my employers, past, present or future (except where I quote others, who will need to accept responsibility for their own rants).