A few weeks ago I switched back to Linux as my primary OS, on a newly acquired refurbished Framework Laptop 11, and one thing that’s since been bothering me on my chosen desktop environment Gnome1 has been the HUGE titlebars:

Before: A quite tall title bar with a lot of padding, wasting space

So I finally dug into solving this quickly, and came across this post on Reddit with a quite nice solution. I modified ~/.config/gtk-3.0/gtk.css and added the following contents:

window.ssd headerbar.titlebar {
    padding-top: 2px;
    padding-bottom: 2px;
    min-height: 0;
window.ssd headerbar.titlebar button.titlebutton {
    padding: 1px;
    min-height: 0;
    min-width: 0;

That resulted in this:

After: The title bar reduced to the bare minimum in height, with only a minimal amount of padding, no more wasting space

And now I’m happy, at least with non-Gnome apps, my chosen development environment VSCode included.

Update 2023-04-30: Alas, that no longer works under Gnome 44, so for now I’m stuck with oversized titlebars again.

  1. Currently Gnome 43.3 running under Wayland on Fedora Workstation 37 ↩︎