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being a complete novice to linux I've read many articles in magazines (&suse documentation) about the relative merits of gnome & kde. can't see what the fuss is all about from my point of view (uses a few applications etc) as they seem pretty similar.
neither the mags & documentation say anything about windowmaker, which seems pretty user friendly and fast
IMHO, the goal of any kind of promotion is to get someone to try your product. The magaizines are promoting linux, and KDE and Gnome are the most popular because it gives Linux users that "warm, fuzzy feeling" they are used to when they run their computer. That being said, KDE and Gnome alos make it very easy (if they are configured right) to do anything that you want to do if your are a novice.
I consider myself a novice still, after too many installs and foobars over the past couple of years. I used to love KDE, but it ran slow. I switched to Gnome, and didn't like the interface and dock. I dabbled with WindowMaker for a while while using KDE, along with Blackbox. Windowmaker is not as cluttered as other GUI's, however configuration can be a pain in the arse if you want to customize it beyond what the packager for your distro did.
Although, using Debian, I get a weird message saying the menu I have is not right when I go into WMPrefs and try to edit the menu. I let it do it's thing once and lost my whole menu, so I don't edit the menu...any thoughts?
I love WindowMaker, but then again I used to run NeXT. There was survey done in 97 or 98 that showed WindowMaker was the most-used window manager at the time.
The hype today about KDE and GNOME has two aspects as far as I see it. First, vendors are trying to get Windows users to switch to Linux, and both KDE and GNOME are essentially Windows-like in their operation. Second, there is a KDE vs. GNOME battle, and that tends to drive interest.
We just need to get AfterStep and WindowMaker into more head-to-head combat!
Bro - there is no answer to this question. The relative merits of one WM vs. another is entirely subjective, and what seems to work best for you might not be the best choice for someone else. Just try them all out, and go with the one that suits you best. Regards -- J.W.