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Old 08-21-2011, 04:49 PM   #1
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desktop (kde, gnome, unity or other) desision making :)

Evening all,

ok so heres my problem, i used to like gnome untill they released 3 and it broke alongside catalyst driver.

so anyway, i use an ati card (at the moment) that uses a hdmi lead to the tv (for music, movies, webbrowsing and so on)

now when people are round i like my desktop to look sexy, clean, smart for when playing music (as the tv is on the wall people tend to look)

anyway back to the subject, think of ubuntu;s unity layout without the solid taskbar etc, think of gnomes nice activitys (start) menu, think of kde's transparent effects and widgets....

thats what i want, ok most would of stopped reading by now thinking wtf but anyway,

i want somthing sleek,

kde - dosnt feel right to me, feels very... overfilled

gnome3 - video and audio will not work over hdmi (video works on opensource driver, audio works with teared video on amd's driver) but on other machines with the right themes its nice

unity - ok this is a nice desktop, i just have to theme it a little to make it more transparent but i dislike the lock down feel of ubuntu! (i tend to use arch linux) also there is the problem if they upgrade from gnome2 to 3 will i have the same driver issues...

so, for a sleek desktop, what do you surgest?
im not stuck to these desktops, i will consider others (openbox etc etc) but would like a screenshot if possible to visualise what i can do

anyway thoughts, comments, abuse all welcome

Old 08-21-2011, 07:22 PM   #2
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LXDE is a nice clean desktop. Or you could use a window manager such as openbox and a panel like tint2. LXDE is a small desktop environment using openbox wm
Old 08-22-2011, 12:26 PM   #3
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Since you said you use arch, im assuming you have at least some level of familiarity with editing configuration files. In this case, i highly recommend fluxbox. It looks great, and it's more lightweight, and while it doesn't really make a difference on most modern systems, it helps squeeze a little extra performance out. Here are a few screenshots of the fluxbox themes I've made over the past couple months.

Last edited by trademark91; 08-22-2011 at 07:36 PM.
Old 08-23-2011, 04:35 AM   #4
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If you liked Gnome 2 and find KDE over-the-top, you'll probably like Xfce. A lot of Gnome 3 refugees (including Linus Torvalds) have switched to it. LXDE is not much more configurable than a window manager like Fluxbox, and the documentation is not as good. I've just tried it again to see how it's getting on, and I couldn't find out how to set sub-pixel smoothing, for example.
Old 08-30-2011, 10:46 PM   #5
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Mint 11 looks nice and is still using gnome 2.
Old 08-30-2011, 11:35 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by DavidMcCann View Post
If you liked Gnome 2 and find KDE over-the-top, you'll probably like Xfce. A lot of Gnome 3 refugees (including Linus Torvalds) have switched to it.
Lots of KDE 4 refugees have switched to it too. Especially a couple of years ago, when KDE4 was a lot buggier.
Old 08-31-2011, 07:02 AM   #7
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If you want something that is "working" and "sleek," get rid of the traditional-looking things. Pick up a window manager (or full desktop environment, but one that doesn't come with all the forced stuff) that is mostly "nothing." A fancy background, yes, but no ugly tool/task/stuffbars, because they just take up space and look ugly on TV Maybe even one that can do shadows and transparencies on windows, if needed. Then pick up applications for music etc. that look good--widget-like good, if you please. Such things that on your TV you don't have to look at a huge taskbar, window geometries and decorations from the 80s etc., but fancy apps or even better, widget-interfaces to those apps (because they are typically aesthetic-ized). I'm sure most folks would rather look at a rolling 3D vinyl disc that played the music with some animal dancing to the beat, rather than a box-like window with a title like "ThisOperatingSystem's (r) (c) Integrated Music Application (r) (c) (TM)" and some dull equalizer bars that look like toothsticks...

As a personal choice, I'd just stick to plain old black-and-white text console, with something fancy like mpg123 doing the job, on the command line. That'd surely catch some eyes Especially with verbose output...
Old 08-31-2011, 04:45 PM   #8
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Hi, have you tried configuring kde to the way you like it because it's very configurable. You can make it look bulky or sleek, or almost anything you want.
Old 08-31-2011, 07:17 PM   #9
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The desktops I use given the choice are Gnome 2 (if available), XFCE or Openbox. I like KDE but it seems to be too heavy and complex for what it actually does.
Old 08-31-2011, 07:38 PM   #10
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I moved to Fluxbox several years ago and haven't looked back.

You can see some of my Fluxbox destops here (along with a couple of others).

Fluxbox configuration is done entire through text files, so there's a little bit of a learning curve, but once you have rounded it, you can make Flux a beautiful, functional, and very lightweight thing.


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