I like Ubuntu’s new Unity interface, but one of the downsides of Ubuntu’s switch from Gnome is that Ubuntu users lose access to years of tools developed for Gnome or other desktop environments. To be sure, more popular software was ported quickly.

One piece of (niche) software that had not been ported to Unity was an indicator for active hard-drive protection systems, like Lenovo’s Hard Drive Active Protection System. This system uses an accelerator to determine when the computer might be falling and pause the hard drive by moving the hard drive’s read/write heads away from the platters, where they can’t do any damage. This is implemented on Ubuntu for my Thinkpad X220 by the tp_smapi module.

Of course, when the hard drive is paused, your computer can’t read from it. But there’s no way to know precisely when the hard drive is paused. So, I built an indicator for HDAPS and Unity.

It’s on github. Feel free to submit pull requests. I’ll eventually package it into a .deb and submit it to Ubuntu’s app store.