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Edstorm 07-26-2008 06:00 AM

How to use XFCE themes?

Recently I installed Zenwalk standard edition onto my laptop. Was amazed at the speed (this is one old laptop).. I didn't like the interface very much, however.

I want to make it such that it will be of a single bar (something like that of kde) instead of two separate panels. I know this has been done before for distro-specific xfce solutions, but I'm wondering how to do the same for zenwalk.

Also, at xfce-look, there are a lot of themes that I would really like to try out. However, after a sieving through the net, couldn't find any definitive one that could tell me how I would be able to use those themes and make my desktop look like what is shown on their screen shots ):

Anyone can help me here? Thanks a billion in advance!

johnson_steve 07-26-2008 01:12 PM

Menu --> Settings --> Panel Manager
will let you configure, add or remove panels

Edstorm 07-27-2008 02:07 AM

alright, i got the panels into a single one that i like very much. thanks for your help, johnson_steve!

but theres still the other part.. how to use the themes available at What I know is that xfce is not built using GTK+ so many themes have been created. but i dont know how to put them in.. any ideas?

jomen 07-27-2008 02:43 AM

If it is any help:
all my themes are in /usr/share/themes
there are subdirectories with the name of the theme - and inside that another directory "xfwm4" - in which the theme files are.

example: Theme "Meenee"

ls -al /usr/share/themes/Meenee
insgesamt 12
drwxr-xr-x  3 root root 4096  1. Jun 00:53 .
drwxr-xr-x 147 root root 4096 18. Jul 12:06 ..
drwxr-xr-x  2 root root 4096  1. Jun 00:53 xfwm4

An alternative place for this should be the directory ~/.themes in your Home directory - with the same structure inside.


Edstorm 07-28-2008 05:28 AM

So am I right to say that this is what you do:

1. Extract the theme downloaded from xfce-look..
2. Put them inside /usr/share/themes (i.e. if the theme is called abc, there will be a folder called "abc" inside
3. Inside /usr/share/themes/abc, there is a folder that you create called xfwm4 that will contain whatever files that is included with that theme?

If the above procedure is correct (haven't gotten around to try it yet), where would I be able to select this theme for usage?

Thanks a lot, jomen!

jomen 07-28-2008 06:02 AM

I don't like to modify the standard system files - so I tried a custom theme from and put it into ~/.themes (without the subdirectory "xfwm4") and it worked - selectable from the theme-manager.
Try both - one way will work.

Edstorm 07-29-2008 09:59 AM

AWAIT, i think i've figured out what problem I am facing.

its regarding metacity..

or something like that.

Are these theme engines or what they I have to install to make use of the GTK+ 2.0 themes? And if so, how would I get them..?

jomen 07-29-2008 10:27 AM

metacity is another window-manager - it is used in the Gnome-Desktop (but can be replaced)
Xfce uses its own window-manager - unless you configured it differently.

You say you figured it out - good!
But then again:
What are you asking?

Edstorm 07-30-2008 06:01 AM

okay, so there are a lot of themes available on xfce look.

yesterday i noticed they were distinctly separated between GTK+ 2.0 themes and xfce themes. (blur me).

so if i were to want to use those GTK+ 2.0 themes on xfce, would that mean that i would have to switch it to metacity instead of using xfwm?

johnson_steve 07-30-2008 01:10 PM

No. xfwm and metacity are window managers. they do just that: manage windows and draw the little decorations at the top and the border around the window. xfce is based on GTK+. GTK is responsible for drawing everything inside the windows (as long as it's a gtk or gnome application and not a Qt or KDE application.) you install the gtk theme and then select it in:

Menu --> Settings --> User Interface Settings

you select your xfwm theme in:

Menu --> Settings --> Window Manager Settings

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