I have spent 10 minutes integrating Caja with Ubuntu Unity, so this is far from exhaustive research. However, I have completely removed Nautilus from the system and have Caja handling desktop management. This is what it looks like:
How to replace Nautilus with Caja
To reproduce this do the following:
Unlock the entry for Nautilus in the Unity dock. Run the following from a terminal:
sudo apt install caja caja-sendto dconf-editor
sudo apt purge nautilus nautilus-sendto
/etc/xdg/autostart/caja-autostart.desktop with the following contents:
Exec=caja --force-desktop --no-default-window
/usr/share/applications/caja-unity.desktop with the following contents (I’ve removed translations for clarity):
Run the following in a terminal:
Search for Caja in the dash, open it, lock Caja to the Unity Dock and move it to the top slot. Use
dconf-editor to change the
Now reboot. When you log in Caja should be managing the desktop.
All of the above can be accomplished automatically via simple packaging changes and gschema overrides.
What doesn’t or might not work
- Right clicking on the desktop provides an option to Change Desktop Background which attempts to launch
mate-appearance-properties. That will need a patch to launch to appropriate Unity alternative when the desktop session is Unity.
nautilus-thing extension would need to be replaced with Caja alternatives. For example,
- Does Unity Control Center expose UI to configure Nautilus? If so those would need changing to reference Caja.
caja-file-management-properties.desktop could also be modified so it is exposed in Unity Control Center. Trivial, but not essential.
- There are likely mime types configured to make Nautilus the default file manager. Those would need changing to reference Caja.
- There are likely many other integration points, your test feedback is welcome