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Old 10-28-2006, 12:11 AM   #1
Philips
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Fluxbox, Blackbox, Openbox, IceWM, or other?


Im looking for the most lightweight as im running a P3 500mhz 192mb RAM. Im willing to learn, experiment, and tinker with stuff to get it working. What im really looking for in order of importance: speed, functionality, appearance, ease of use. I would love it if someone would reccomend a desktop environment. I have heard good things about the ones listed in the subject. Please reccomend one of thoes to me, and also one that is not listed if you feel that it is best, and please explain why. BTW, I have tried XFCE and its being dumb. Dunno if it matters, but my max res is 800x600. Thanks
 
Old 10-28-2006, 01:03 AM   #2
Penguin of Wonder
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Fluxbox is based off of Blackbox. Same code base. Any of the three boxes are probably your beset bet. I use Fluxbox. On my 'slow' and 'fast' computer. Runs great either way. XFCE is nice, i prefer it for my liveCDs though.
 
Old 10-28-2006, 01:52 AM   #3
alred
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>> "BTW, I have tried XFCE and its being dumb. Dunno if it matters, but my max res is 800x600. Thanks"

i think you can try make toolbars(those at the top and bottom) in xfce "tiny" and you can even auto-hide them if you are able to work naturally in that way(honestly , i cant) ...

try all of them if you want , they are not big installations anyway ...


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Old 10-28-2006, 02:37 AM   #4
duryodhan
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this is a noBrainer KDE !!!

seriously, I think Blackbox is your best bet. But if you are unable to make do with its style XFCE is also a good option- it doesn't take tooo much memory and is more like the standard WMs one is used to.

But yeah, speed only; I think Blackbox!

That Max Resolution problem is probably a problem due to your X config and not XFCE.
 
Old 10-28-2006, 12:12 PM   #5
Philips
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I was reading around and thinking of using openbox. Reading what you guys are writing, ill try blackbox first, and make my way around to the others. The max res is due to my LDC screen, not XFCE or X. I just threw that in so you could take into consideration how "large" the stuff on the desktop is. alread understood what i was trying to get at, and thanks for the tip for xfce.n Ill let u know how it goes, once i get ethernet working first :-/
 
Old 10-28-2006, 12:57 PM   #6
Philips
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Alright, I got my ethernet working, and updated my system (archlinux 7.2) and installed blackbox and its dependencies with

pacman -Sy blackbox
 
Old 10-28-2006, 01:30 PM   #7
alred
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care to show us your screens ... ?? ^_^


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Old 10-28-2006, 01:57 PM   #8
pdw_hu
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I also use blackbox. It's just teh shit. (sorry )
 
Old 10-28-2006, 02:04 PM   #9
alred
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oh , dont be like that ... balckbox could helps a lot in "shifting of mentality" things ... ^_^


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Old 10-28-2006, 02:28 PM   #10
Philips
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that message is incomplete. I was writing that it wouldnt start, but beofre I submitted it, i wanted to reboot and try again. But then the kernel pacnic-ed. Gotta reinstall. Ne Idea what causes kernel panics? Says could not mount something on block 0,0/ It has has happened numberous times with arch after updating the system. Im going to partition the drive myself this time instead of letting it auto prepare it. Lets see how it goes.
 
Old 10-28-2006, 02:55 PM   #11
Philips
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Alright, i reinstalled. This time I didnt update the system. Installed blackbox after a nice clean insatll. After I rebooted after the install. I try "blackbox" and it says: "bt:: Display: failed to open display ''"
I tried "exec blackbox" and it gives me the same error, but it also logs out and brings me to the login screen. The "startblackbox" command was not found.

Last edited by Philips; 10-28-2006 at 09:01 PM.
 
Old 10-30-2006, 06:46 AM   #12
alred
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if you still cant get into your blackbox , you can also try ' xinit /usr/bin/blackbox '


//hope that helps ...


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Old 11-04-2006, 04:13 PM   #13
Cyber_Paladin
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Well, I've tried Gnome, KDE, XFCE, Blackbox, Fluxbox, IceWM, Enlightenment and WindowMaker before.
Apart from Gnome, KDE and XFCE, all the rest have problem with displaying Chinese characters in window titles. I'm not sure if its my problem though , but I just can't get them to work.

Yep you can specify a Chinese font on all window title in their respective settings, but doing that will make all English characters look very very ugly, to an extent that you'd rather confess and sacrifice speed for some "eye-candy".
It all displays fine inside windows. i.e. Engligh fonts for English characters, Chinese fonts for Chinese ones. Its just windows titles that suffers.
Been through Google for ages but still can't find any solution. So my guess is that window titles aren't quite "internationalized" like the rest.

But if that's not a problem for you then I can give you my on this:

Gnome / KDE:
Out of the box, both are resource hogs . KDE "feels" worse.
Applications aside (I bet you know that running which application is actually independent from what WM you're using, right? ). Choosing between Gnome and KDE actually depends on whether you like GTK or QT interface more in my opinion.

Blackbox / Fluxbox:
Well, didn't spend too much time on it.
Both feels quite fast and looks "minimalistic" out of the box. Suits my taste.
But it takes quite some time to get used to its funny way of managing stuff.

IceWM:
Its got the word FAST spelled in its name. You saw it didn't you . Its blazing fast.
But it looks too "Windowish" so... well...

Enlightenment:
Very very very beautiful. Almost an artform to gaze at.
Out of the box it runs like a snail. My experience is that its even worse than "out-of-the-box" Gnome / KDE. Heard that there's a ton of stuff to customize if you want, but the documentation is a bit hard to follow.
Again perhaps its My Problem(tm)

WindowMaker:
Quite fast and quite good looking if you have the time and energy to decorate it with various dockapps.
I actually used WindowMaker for quite some time before switching to XFCE. The reason to abandon it was that focused too much on the "right click" menu to launch apps. But my style is to use:
1. Keyboard shortcut
2. Hotkey to launch a *tiny* "command line" where I type in commands to launch apps. And this has to be quick. Quick means that I shouldn't feel any delay.
3. Launcher bar.
Generally I hate to leave my hands off the keyboard unless there's no other way.

So now I'm with XFCE.
Reasonalbly fast. Quite good looking if you like something *cute*. Well .
Setting up custom keyboard shortcut is simple. And you don't have to RTFM too much to do various settings. The interface is handy and on-screen help is "on-time" and concise such that you don't have to RTFM a lot. That's important. Spending 10 months to learn a WM inside out to customize it just doesn't worth it.
If I had that 10 months perhaps I'm still with Windows.

That's my Hope that helps.
 
Old 11-04-2006, 05:40 PM   #14
Penguin of Wonder
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I think Paladin hit it pretty much on the head with his summary. All of the window managers do a good job at managing windows. It really comes down to the picky stuff in my opinion. Are you looking for eye candy or efficiency? Resource hog or resource friendly? I personally would rather have speed and low resource use than window eye candy. Eye candy comes in multiple forms too.
 
  


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