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taylorkh 06-06-2012 10:26 AM

Xubuntu or Lubuntu vs. installing Xfce/Lxde on Ubuntu
I have been playing with Xubuntu 12.04 and Lubuntu 12.04 and find their interfaces to my liking (especially compared to Unity). However, Xubuntu and Lubuntu 12.04 are not long term support releases per their web sites.

So my question is... If I install Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and then put Xfce or Lxde on top of the Ubuntu install will I have a long term support environment or will it turn into a pumpkin when the 'buntu of the add on desktop ends its support?



amani 06-06-2012 10:32 AM

usually *buntu upgrades are problem free and xubuntu upgrades will be even more so.
xfce development has always been sensible.
So dist-upgrade often

taylorkh 06-06-2012 10:55 AM

Thanks A. Mani,

Let me try and state my question a little more clearly. The Xubuntu site states

Xubuntu is designed with security in mind. You get free security updates for at least 18 months and with the Long Term Support (LTS) version you get three years support.
Xbuntu 12.04 support ends 4/2015
Ubuntu 12.04 support ends 4/2017

If I install Ubuntu 12.04 and add the Xfce desktop will I be fully supported between 4/2015 and 4/2017? The instructions I found and followed at least for testing state

sudo aptitude install xubuntu-desktop
so I guess I am installing Xfce as used on Xubuntu 12.04.

Thanks again,


snowpine 06-06-2012 10:58 AM

Ubuntu, Lubuntu, and Xubuntu all use the same software repositories. These repositories will be updated through April 2017.

It is possible that the LXDE and/or Xfce-specific packages will only be updated for 18-36 months (I don't have the definitive answer; just going off what you said) but your kernel, applications, web browser, etc. would get the same updates as an Ubuntu user.

In short: If you are happy with your current setup, there is no benefit to replacing it with Ubuntu.

taylorkh 06-06-2012 11:26 AM


In short: If you are happy with your current setup, there is no benefit to replacing it with Ubuntu.
:banghead: I am happy with my current setup which is Ubuntu 10.04. However, it will be going off support in less than a year and 12.04 with Unity - just let me say I would use Windoze first. So I am working on migration plans for my netbook, 3 desktops and my server. All are running 10.04 now and doing just fine. I HATE upgrading operating systems.

I am starting with the netbook as it is the simplest and least critical. I had about decided on Mint 13 Mate (except that Mate breaks remote desktop - I have documented with a bug report). I built a Mint 13 Cinnamon virtual machine in VMWare and had it reasonably pounded into a configuration I liked. Yesterday I installed Mint 13 Cinnamon on the netbook and found the interface to be considerably different. I have a post about that issue on the forums but no answers yet. And Mint seems VERY sluggish on the netbook(?)

In disgust I installed CentOS 6.2 on the netbook from the Live CD. Installed fine and was very responsive. Unfortunately ssh does not work. I confirmed by building CentOS 6.2 virtual machines from the DVD and Live CD that the Live CD will not install a working ssh environment. I then installed CentOS 6.2 on the netbook from the DVD image. I left that last night working on the Broadcomm wireless install which seems to be more trouble than it is worth. I think I will reserve CentOS for my quad core, dual monitor desktop.

This morning I decided to compare Xfce and Lxde by installing them onto a Ubuntu 12.04 virtual machine. Lxde is the winner and I am going to add it to the Ubuntu 12.04 install on the netbook. Sort of the path of least resistance. If it breaks some time next at the end of the Lubuntu 12.04 cycle... I will see what is available then.


snowpine 06-06-2012 11:34 AM

Lubuntu probably isn't going to mysteriously break someday, but it might stop getting updates/supports for the LXDE-specific packages as discussed here:

CentOS absolutely 100% supports SSH, so if you want some help with that I'll do my best. :) You'll find a how-to in the CentOS documentation or also in any Red Hat textbook such as Michael Jang's RHCE guide.

Their wiki has instructions for Broadcom wireless (but I can't personally vouch for them):

taylorkh 06-06-2012 01:00 PM

Thanks snowpine - great info.

I started out with Red Hat 5.something. At the time I was reasonably proficient in CP/M DOS and Windows NT with a little experience in MVS. Linux was something to play with a little. I poked at the Red Hat family through RH 9 and RHEL Workstation then some of the Fedora Core releases. I stumbled onto Ubuntu around 6.something. Compared to the RH family Ubuntu was really easy to USE. I got really serious with 8.04 and ran it until it finally ended. 8.10 was hosed but 9.04 which came on the netbook from Dell was fine. I participated in alpha and beta testing of 10.04 and finally after about a year had everything working to my liking. But of course I will have to upgrade again in a little while thus I am looking...

I just came across an issue with Lxde on the netbook. I moved the default panel to the TOP. I created a second panel on the bottom. I unselected Panel Preferences; Advanced; "[ ] Make window managers treat the panel as a dock" and selected it on the lower panel. Windows still dock only to the top (original) panel.

And then I noticed that when I logout/login and at random times the top panel will move down about a panel thickness from the top of the screen. I reconfigured the panels with the original on the bottom and the new one on the top. Again the top panel on occasion drops down from the top of the display. Perhaps Lxde is not my answer.

As to ssh and CentOS. Yes, I know that it is supported. The issue is just something with the Live CD and I did not want to spend the time tracking it down. The service was running and ssh was allowed through the firewall. Perhaps the Live CD did not generate keys(?) I did not check that. It is for someone else to figure out.


taylorkh 06-07-2012 06:17 PM

I finally threw in the towel and installed Ubuntu 12.04 with the gnome-session-fallback environment. I have most things beaten into submission except for the login screen which presents the usernames (a security weakness) and the garish background. I need to find a better theme and I guess I will live with it for a while. Next step is to get an SSD and start building a CentOS 6.2 install for my quad core desktop. I have Ubuntu 10.04 running on a Western Digital Velociraptor and it is quite snappy. An SSD should be even better.

Again, thanks for all the good input.


JohnSmith11 06-08-2012 03:08 PM

Lubuntu Updates & Quelitu 12.04
If you want Ubuntu without Unity, you should try Quelitu 12.04. It is based on Lubuntu (i.e. lightweight) but offers a lot more, including a HUD (first released in 11.10), a Maintenance Center, an Advanced Configuration Center as well as the Lxde interface that you seem to prefer and also a more advanced Enlightenment environment (as an optional desktop layout) with animations and effects (but still lightweight).

I believe that Lubuntu, Quelitu, and other Ubuntu derivatives rely at 95% on Ubuntu updates in terms of long-term support. Even if they disappear, you can continue on with the Ubuntu regular updates and version upgrades.

Quelitu 12.04 release notes & info:

PS. I would argue that Quelitu 12.04 with the forward-looking Enlightenment layout (named Quelitu Jazz by the developer) might actually be better than Ubuntu.

3r0s 09-05-2012 04:08 PM

I use Ubuntu at work and i need the proxy setting GUI that comes only with Gnome.

I find Unity much better on Ubuntu 12.04.

Both Gnome 3 and Unity are good to manage the whole PC.

Unfortunately, if you use Gnome 3 in Ubuntu or Fedora, there is apparently some bug that causes Nautilus to hang every time it starts, but it starts quicker under Unity.

If you need an interface like "Gnome 2 Panels" or "Windows XP", then you need the "Gnome Session Fallback" or "Xfce" interface.

How to get Xfce steps:

1. Install package: xubuntu-desktop.
2. On Ubuntu logon screen, select the Xfce session if you want Ubuntu apps available.
3. On Ubuntu logon screen, select the Xubuntu session if you only want Xubuntu apps available.
4. You will need to configure the Xfce panels to get something looks like "Gnome 2 Panels" or "Windows XP". All settings and tweaks in Xfce are mouse driven. No need to do any scripting.

How to get Gnome Session Fallback steps:

1. Install these three packages: gnome-shell gnome-session-fallback gnome-tweak-tool.
2. On Ubuntu logon screen, select the Gnome Classic session.
3. You will have a "Gnome 2 Panels" interface with all Ubuntu Gnome standard apps.

Selecting which session to run at Ubuntu logon works like on Windows 8 where you can choose the Metro interface or the Classic Windows XP interface.

Another option to simplify the all Ubuntu GUI (Graphic User Interface) without too many software to install or tweaks to do, I suggest to install "Glx-Dock (aka Cairo-Dock)" and you will get a Mac like interface with better control on what apps are open on the dock itself than the Unity launcher.

Just search for Glx-Dock or Cairo-Dock in the Software Center or Synaptic and install it.

tommcd 09-09-2012 10:32 AM


Originally Posted by JohnSmith11 (Post 4699041)
I believe that Lubuntu, Quelitu, and other Ubuntu derivatives rely at 95% on Ubuntu updates in terms of long-term support. Even if they disappear, you can continue on with the Ubuntu regular updates and version upgrades.

This is absolutely correct. Xubuntu and Lubuntu 12.04 will receive the same long term security updates as Ubuntu 12.04.

Originally Posted by taylorkh (Post 4698253)
I finally threw in the towel and installed Ubuntu 12.04 with the gnome-session-fallback environment. ...

You may be interested to know that when Ubuntu 12.10 comes out in October there will be a pure Gnome version available without Unity and without the need to use the gnome-session-fallback environment:
This is good news for those Ubuntu users who like Gnome 3.
Of course the 12.10 release will not have long term support; but if you like Gnome this may be worth the upgrade for you.

I always do clean installs of Ubuntu instead of dist-upgrades. This is the fastest and most trouble free way to upgrade Ubuntu in my opinion.

I have been using Lubuntu for the last few releases. It is fast and light just like Ubuntu used to be before it became bloated:
Note that that article was written well before Unity and pulse audio came along. If anything, Ubuntu is much more bloated now than when that article was written.

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