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Gui And Window Manager Discussion


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#1 BlackSpyder

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 01:40 AM

I thought it would be nice to have a discussion about the GUI's and Window managers for *nix systems. Please no trashing of other GUI's (as is common on most Distro's forums)

I like Gnome. Its the default for both Ubuntu and Fedora. Its twin panels are very nice (what I've come to expect in a Linux desktop).
Nautalis is a very nice window manager and comes default for GNOME.
Metacity is a lightweight Window Manager that I havent got around to trying yet (installed but cant figure out how to switch from Nautalis to Metacity)

KDE is very slick and come with Kubuntu as default. its very easy on the eyes and easy to customize.
Konquer is the default Window manager and is very nice but is used as the default Internet browser which I dont care for but easily fixed

Xfce- Lightweight and fast GUI based on Gtk. Great GUI but not very easy to customize

Enlightenment- Default for Symphony OS. It confuses me but is very different from any GUI out there.

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#2 anderson8605

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 01:51 AM

hi im still learnin so um what are gui's and what are the programs you're discussing they sound interesting
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#3 arcman

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 02:17 AM

I like the minimalism of GNOME, but there are things about it that irk me.

Linus Torvalds said a while back he literally couldn't stand to use it.
http://www.linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?...013-26-OS-DT-GN

"This 'users are idiots, and are confused by functionality' mentality of Gnome is a disease. If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it. I don't use Gnome, because in striving to be simple, it has long since reached the point where it simply doesn't do what I need it to do," Torvalds wrote.

"Please, just tell people to use KDE," he added.

And I see his point on stuff like the GNOME screensaver. I'm sorry, but that quagmire is just retarded. For those that are not familiar with the situation, GNOME comes with a screensaver manager, but its functionality is limited in that you can only select which screensaver you want to use. You cannot set any options for it. So for example, you can use a screensaver that will scroll through a picture directory, but you have no way to set what that directory should be. As I understand it from the GNOME team, they view this as the way it is supposed to be, and any interface that actually lets you select options for a screensaver is "too complicated" or "an incorrect design". Last I heard they had no intention of changing it.

EDIT: Ah yes, here is exactly what the developer said in response to this being submitted as a bug, which was subsequently marked "WONTFIX"

"My view is that any screensaver theme that requires configuration is inherently broken."

So you could have a scrolling marquee screensaver, just as long as you're happy with the default text. You can't change it, because that would make it broken. (And, let's face it, you're just too dumb to figure that out anyway Posted Image )

Edited by arcman, 16 July 2007 - 02:31 AM.

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#4 cybormoron

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 04:23 AM

i tend to prefer whatever manager is native to whatever distro i'm exploring. i've seen comments that say using different managers just don't feel right on some distros. for example; kubuntu is said to feel "stapled together". i felt this way also about kubuntu but i'm sure there are many that have no probs. this is just my opinion and it is an inexperienced opinion so take it FWIW. i have seen other similar comments but i'm sure there are folks that have no problems and some that have problems so there really is no hard and fast general rule. i say the more managers the merrier. they all have strong and weak points. it's all about freedom and tweaking your system till it suits ya. i think development differences in the managers is good. all theories and schools of thought definitely give us all more choices. but there's nothing like a good kde/gnome flame war for entertainment, :-p

@#3 i've seen those words before from our benevolent dictator linus and practically fell out the chair. he sure can be outspoken sometimes. sheesh linus, just leave the gnomies alone and find a manager that works for you. gnome is ok. weird but ok. i have some gnome applications that i really like on my konqui system.

i'm using KDE on mandriva and like it. i have gnome installed but whenever i switch over to it my whole system acts funny so i just stick with KDE. gnome on mandriva just doesn't feel like gnome on ubuntu. so that kind of reinforces my opinion about native managers. i would really like to use xfce more. i like the engage panel a lot. i used to like enlightenment 16 on elive but the new version doesn't impress me much. ice is cool on vector. i wish i could get those 3d environments (looking glass, and compiz/beryl/fusion) to work on this machine. i think i need a better video card.



@#2 here's a few links that might help
http://xwinman.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X_window_manager
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desktop_environment
http://www.osnews.com/story.php/3064/The-D...ent-Comparison/
http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Desktops
you should be able to install a few different desktop environments / window managers on whatever distro you're running and explore to see what you like. or you can run a few different live cd's to see the different managers.

good topic,thanks BlackSpyder

Edited by cybormoron, 16 July 2007 - 04:42 AM.

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#5 nforce

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 10:46 AM

I agree. I tend to stay with what the distro is natively released with. Right now, im using Ubuntu with default gnome and Beryl. I love the 3d desktop. It impresses everyone who sees it :thumbsup:

I haven't tried that many distros though so there could be something I like better out there.

Edited by nforce, 16 July 2007 - 10:48 AM.


#6 BlackSpyder

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 03:26 PM

One thing I miss in the new version of GNOME (the version that comes with Ubuntu 7.10 and Fedora 7) is the removal of the ability to configure the Screensaver beyond just choosing it. i used to be able to change the speeds and texts and other feature in an advanced dialog box but now I cannot.

Wonder if this has anything to do with what Linus said?

Good news for us is that (rumor) compiz and beryl are reuniting making tweaking a little better for all of us.

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#7 twardnw

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 03:37 PM

I hadn't heard of Beryl till now, but I have to say, I am quite impressed :D eat your heart out vista!!! my old 1.6Ghz laptop can do all those fancy visual effects just fine, and not need gobs and gobs of RAM and a video card that sucks enough power to run a 3rd world country.

#8 arcman

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 05:02 PM

One thing I miss in the new version of GNOME (the version that comes with Ubuntu 7.10 and Fedora 7) is the removal of the ability to configure the Screensaver beyond just choosing it. i used to be able to change the speeds and texts and other feature in an advanced dialog box but now I cannot.

Wonder if this has anything to do with what Linus said?

Good news for us is that (rumor) compiz and beryl are reuniting making tweaking a little better for all of us.

Yeah, Linus has commented that this is a bit of a trend with GNOME. http://mail.gnome.org/archives/usability/2...r/msg00022.html
I might give Kubuntu a shot on my Linux box the next time they come out with their new version, we'll see.



And yes, I :thumbsup: Beryl. Vista's visual effects have absolutely nothing on its looks, efficiency, and usability.
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#9 anderson8605

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 05:57 PM

so i guess my question goes unanswered?
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#10 BlackSpyder

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 06:26 PM

@#2 here's a few links that might help
http://xwinman.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X_window_manager
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desktop_environment
http://www.osnews.com/story.php/3064/The-D...ent-Comparison/
http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Desktops
you should be able to install a few different desktop environments / window managers on whatever distro you're running and explore to see what you like. or you can run a few different live cd's to see the different managers.



I believe this was meant to answer your question anderson8605.

But here is a basic definition. The GUI (Graphical User Interface) is what you see when you boot up the system and log in. It is what the background, panels (Start menu bar in Windows), Screensavers, and menu are built around. The Window manager is what controls the windows you open (Firefox, Folders, Programs, ect) In Gnome the default is Nautalis, in KDE the default is Konquer, in Windows its Explorer. How ever with Linux you can change anything you want and make it fit your needs.

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#11 anderson8605

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 07:31 PM

so i can get a linux gui and it will handle my everyday tasks just the same?
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#12 BlackSpyder

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 07:39 PM

No, Linux is a whole new operating system. Windows uses a Propritary (EULA copyright protected) Kernel (the core of the OS) where as Linux uses a OSS (Open Source Software) Kernel (which is covered under the GNU License).

Linux is the kernel of the OS and used to describe any and all OS's that are based on it, like Ubuntu, Fedora, Knoppix, ect.

Edited by BlackSpyder, 16 July 2007 - 07:41 PM.

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#13 no one

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Posted 16 July 2007 - 11:00 PM

I'm pretty (well not really) much a KDE kinda guy , tried Ubuntu again (7.04 ) and really don't care for the GNOME at all ,tried Zenwalk (XFCE ?) didn't really like it that much either, possibly due to Zenwalk , to each there own. I like the Fluxbox set up in DSL though, as a "Live" setup it's fast , Dang fast. would have to have a better (more user friendly) file manager if I was to install it (which I'm sure could be done). Having never seen anything but screenshots and such of 3d desktops I am unimpressed (go figure). Without GUI's everything would have to be done through the command line...and I'm not gonna sit in front of my screen for hours doing that :thumbsup: :flowers:

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#14 BlackSpyder

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 05:06 PM

Metacity is worth trying. Works like Nautalis and is much lighter. (In otherwords I'm really enjoying my switch to Metacity)

Edited by BlackSpyder, 17 July 2007 - 08:09 PM.

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#15 no one

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Posted 18 July 2007 - 11:49 AM

If I ever get around to installing DSL to HD will no doubt give it a try , Thanks BlackSpyder

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