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I won't say that nautilus, dolphin or thunar are unusable, but as file managers go, konqueror is my favorite, although it seems a bit buggy at times. Features like fish and the adress bar make life a lot easier. I've found myself in a basic gnome/Ubuntu having to install konqueror off the bat. I'm sure there are ways to change the defaults in XFCE.
Yeah, but that solution creates it's own sets of problems. Seems Xfce (like the nasty bearded Gnome) depends on the file manager to handle desktop icons and such... something Konqueror isn't designed to do. Why would you design an OS like that?
If it only weren't such a glitchy, bloated resoruce hog.
Regarding the "glitchyness": I don't know about earlier versions; I didn't upgrade from 3.5 until just a few months ago, so I started with 4.3.4. I haven't seen a single glitch in KDE 4.x on my Debian Squeeze installation. Most of the complaints I've seen come from Ubuntu users, and it's not KDE's fault that Ubuntu is garbage.
Regarding resources: I guess it depends on how modern your computer is. I frankly can discern no performance difference between Gnome and KDE on any of my desktop boxes at home. On my wife's laptop (2.2 Ghz AMD, 4 GB RAM) Xfce does provide a very slight performance improvement over KDE or Gnome, but on my personal desktop machine (2.9 Ghz AMD, 6GB RAM) any difference is so slight as to be unnoticeable. There's a certain brand of Linux user that defines "resource hog" as "runs slow on eight-year-old computer". Sorry, but that definition is absurd.
Because this thread is still relevant & timely....
Thunar still blows. I haven't tried xfce in a while, because it blew so hard last time I had to relocate my family to another part of the state. Just tried moving some files around on my server (NFS) with Thunar and it tried to copy them through my desktop instead. This is fail deserving of capital punishment. Might be fine for mammy & pappy who don't know what a network is & use a 'puter for email & such, but for someone who actually uses computerS for most of the things they were designed to do this is utterly pathetic.
Of course it does that. It is only logical that it does this. Thunar is not aware that you have mounted a NFS file system, it doesn't support NFS currently (at least in XFCE 4.6.2, don't know about later versions). So it copies the file through the RAM on the local machine (you know about caching?). Someone who knows what he is doing should be aware of that and use an appropriate tool for work like that, instead of using a tool that doesn't come with the needed function and complain about that.