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No more battery status tooltip in Lucid

18 March 2010 2,840 views 21 Comments

One of the changes in Lucid is that there are no longer tooltip popups when you mouseover appindicator icons. One of these icons is the battery icon. Now, in order to get your battery status, you must click on the battery icon. You then have to click in the window that you were previously working in to continue working. In previous versions of Ubuntu, all you had to do was move your mouse over the battery icon, see the status, and then keep on working. This new change is adding two additional steps to check the status of your battery, which takes extra time, plus reduces usability. I have filed a bug against this, and have also sent an email to the Ayatana Discussion list voicing my concerns. I’d like to know what your thoughts are, and hopefully this can be changed back!

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  • franzrogar said:

    I guess this’ another “feature” just like the minimize,maximize,close buttons at right.

    This “bug” applies quite similar to many other software: transmission, pidgin, etc. when you previously only needed one click to open the program and now click – search for option in menu – click again.

  • Dan said:

    What precisely in the battery status do you find useful? If the icon’s indication is not precise enough, that’s understandable. If the information is flat-out wrong, that’s a linux bug.

  • ethana2 said:

    It shouldn’t be a tooltip. On mouse hover, the battery icon should transform into a charge percentage for 5 seconds and then turn back.

  • Mike Rushton said:

    Removing features, preferences and usability seems to be the main theme surrounding the “Ayatana project”. Add this to the list of useful features of the past. Maybe another feature they can add back into the Ubuntu desktop with Ubuntu Tweak.

  • Mark said:

    I’m all for openness and faireness but let’s keep things in perspective. For most users, the visual indication of the batteries capacity as displayed in the notifications area is sufficient for most sessions. For more details, do the clicking.
    There are few fits-all solution in life, let not embark on another OTT flame-war.

    I do genuinely see you point but perhaps I just needed a rant.

    p.s. I hope I don’t miss the mouse over feedback when I upgrade to 10.04 🙂

  • Zac said:

    Doesn’t bother me. It’s less interference.

  • Guy said:

    There still are icons with tooltips (like network manager), so it seems backward in taking away my ability to check the battery status quickly and I hope this is a bug instead of a design decision…

  • Chris Johnston (author) said:

    Network manager is not an appindicator. This only effects appindicators. And my understanding is that this is the intent of the design.

  • mathw said:

    No tooltips on any of them? How do people find out what they are, then? Some people won’t randomly click on things for fear it’ll cause something to happen.

  • Albert said:

    KDE is oing exactly what ethana2 is saying and it’s the best option in my opinion. I don’t like at all the new system notation. I must admit that I have problem to understand why there are no possibility to close the annoying tooltip and worst that this tooltip is becoming blurry when the mouse is above. One of the many reason I am using KDE.

  • user said:

    “It shouldn’t be a tooltip. On mouse hover, the battery icon should transform into a charge percentage for 5 seconds and then turn back.”

  • nnonix said:

    I think you’re looking at this the wrong way. It is easier to move your mouse to a target and click than it is to move to a target and “hover”. It’s a more positive action and one that people are good at. You only need to click a second time to restore focus to your application. This isn’t a problem because you’ve already moved your mouse there. Additionally, this solves the problem of unwanted tooltips where they are triggered accidentally and get in the way.

  • Chris Johnston (author) said:

    I disagree. I don’t believe that it is easier to make two mouse clicks than to pause the mouse for a second for a tooltip.

  • w1ngnutz said:

    Isn’t the icon enough?

  • Chris Johnston (author) said:


  • David said:

    A similar issue: before Lucid I could turn volume up/down with mouseover the sound control icon + using the scroll button. Now in Lucid I have to clic on the sound control icon, then move the mouse on the slidebar and then I can use the scroll button. Usability regression 🙁

  • Anish Mangal said:

    I have been using lucid-beta2 for the past week or so and find the missing tooltip an annoyance.

    This is particularly accentuated by the fact that nearly every other icon in that area has informative tooltips integrated, eg. sound, network, date. Further, nearly every app that has an icon in that area boasts of meaningful tooltips.

  • ia said:

    Hello. I’ve clashed with this problem too a couple months ago,
    and I had my vision of applet for displaying battery status,
    so I’ve started small project, and now I would like to make announce
    for first version of public release here. See pages:
    for more details. Any [constructive] feedback are welcome.
    I hope, that this applet will solve problem of showing power state information in a convenient way.
    I also can’t wait fixing this bug – https://bugs.edge.launchpad.net/indicator-application/+bug/541858
    so I could add label with battery charge/time information for indicator as I did it for applet.

  • Zoltan Szilvasy said:

    Yes, I am also frustrated by disappearing tooltip of battery status. I regularly use my laptop from battery and sometimes I need to check, how much time remains to work. The status indicator icon is not enough to know it. First, I thought that I have misconfigured something to disappear tooltips, but reading the net I see it is “normal” behavior in Lucid. I hope this “feature” will be repaired to work this icon as earlier did.

  • Aaditya said:

    Here’s how you voice your opinion: mark this bug as “Affects me too“.


  • Allen said:

    “It shouldn’t be a tooltip. On mouse hover, the battery icon should transform into a charge percentage for 5 seconds and then turn back.”


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