Guake is an open source and free software project that has been designed from the ground up to act as a drop-down terminal emulator in the style of the old-school Quake first-person shooter (FPS) games. It has been designed especially for the GNOME desktop environment.
How does it work?
First of all, we should mention again that Guake is no more than a terminal emulator, which can be used to execute commands inside a GNU/Linux operating system. It is designed for modern users who need to quickly open a Linux terminal window and type some commands, like you would do in the Counter-Strike or Quake games.
A keyboard shortcut is assigned to the Guake executable, which can be changed in the program’s settings whenever you want. Pressing the respective key combination will display the terminal emulator no matter what you do on your desktop environment at that particular point in time.
The Guake project is somehow similar to the well-known Yakuake and Tilda drop-down terminal emulator software, but is aims to bring the best features from both apps into a single, accessible package.
Under the hood and availability
Guake is an open source software written from scratch, which means that it is not based on any existing project, entirely in the Python programming language. Of course, this means that it is a portable application that will work well on all GNU/Linux operating systems.
It also means that several Python packages are required for running Guake on your Linux distribution, including pygtk 2.10 (for gtk.StatusIcon), python-gconf, python-appindicator (only for Ubuntu), python-vte, python-dbus, python-xdg, python-notify, as well as Python 2.7 or later.
To compile Guake from sources, you will also need to install the development versions of the Python, GTK+ 2.0, PyGTK and GConf2 packages. The software is distributed as an all-in-one package in the tar.gz file format.