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Old 01-02-2017, 06:37 PM   #1
Roy_SRC
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Edit the source code of an existing Desktop Environment to change the look and feel and functionality.


Hi,

I might be biting off more than I can chew, but now that I've been playing around with LFS for a few months, I was wondering if it might be possible to change the source code of a currently existing desktop environment such as xfce to make it look like something different. The reason I'm wanting to do this is because, right now I'm working on a media system, and that system needs a GUI when hooked up to a TV or a large screen and I want to totally customize that GUI, but writing a GUI from scratch is out of the question as that would take me about 20 years or so. So, I was thinking of modding the source code of an existing DM to get the GUI look I want. If doing that is possible I'd really appreciate it if you could link me to an xfce source code documentation because when i look at the xfce source code, I cannot make out where the head or the tail of the thing is or which is the first line of code that gets executed or even where that line of code is.

Thanks!
 
Old 01-02-2017, 06:39 PM   #2
goumba
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What exactly do you wish to customize? XFCE is very customizable as far as plug ins and such, and uses GTK+ 2, so any GTK+ 2 theme will work.

See:
www.xfce-look.org
www.gnome-look.org
 
Old 01-02-2017, 06:45 PM   #3
Roy_SRC
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Originally Posted by goumba View Post
What exactly do you wish to customize? XFCE is very customizable as far as plug ins and such, and uses GTK+ 2, so any GTK+ 2 theme will work.

See:
www.xfce-look.org
www.gnome-look.org
I think getting rid of all of the existing themes and adding a custom theme which does not include the titlebar or the dock and getting rid of a few, by few I mean most, keyboard shortcuts will do.
 
Old 01-02-2017, 07:15 PM   #4
Keith Hedger
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most de's including xfce are not actually one peice of software but contain a number of discreet programs that do a specific job, so xfce for instance uses:
xfwm4 - window manager, does the title bar and buttons.
xfdesktop - draws the desktop, icons etc.
xfce4-panel - does the panel that you see at the top etc with the application menu etc.

these are the three main peices and these are common to a number of different de's, xfce also uses a session manager to remember what apps you had open, xfconf for things like what icons you are using etc, etc, etc.

some of these can be replaced by others of a similar function, xfwm4 by meta city as an example, some you can do away with completly again like xfwm4, although of course you will lose functionality.

have a look at the LFS Desktop project ( mine ) to see the basic stuff you will need
 
Old 01-03-2017, 06:15 AM   #5
ondoho
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maybe if you tell us what your actual problem is we can help you?
what functionality/transformation do you need for that tv?
why can't you use one of the existing media centers (kodi)?
what's missing?
what ARE you trying to achieve?
 
Old 01-03-2017, 07:37 AM   #6
BW-userx
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XFCE4 is modular, depending on what it is you want to look different then it already does. I'd look into creating a theme to do this. Maybe take one that is already written to what you almost want it to look like. Then make changes to it to get it to give you the look you want. then save it under a different name and back it up in github.

and from this statement of yours:
Quote:
I think getting rid of all of the existing themes and adding a custom theme which does not include the titlebar or the dock and getting rid of a few, by few I mean most, keyboard shortcuts will do.
Are you sure that XFCE4 is the DE you want to use to strip it down to almost nothing. Leaving just, or mostly keyboard shortcuts to perform operations?
did you know that:
i3
Fluxbox
WindowMaker
blackbox
dm

and others all work mostly off the keyboard, that have hardly anything else. if anything in the screen area.

Last edited by BW-userx; 01-03-2017 at 07:45 AM.
 
Old 01-03-2017, 07:46 AM   #7
Keith Hedger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BW-userx View Post
XFCE4 is modular ...
didn't i just say that?
 
Old 01-03-2017, 08:13 AM   #8
BW-userx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Hedger View Post
didn't i just say that?
redundancy is what?
double redundancy is what?
what did I give him that you did not?
what size are your shoes?
why do you feel the need for me to tell you something you should already know?
do you always doubt yourself in the things you did, or events that have transpired before your eyes?

Last edited by BW-userx; 01-03-2017 at 08:15 AM.
 
Old 01-03-2017, 09:01 AM   #9
Keith Hedger
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you just made my brain hurt
 
Old 01-03-2017, 09:15 AM   #10
BW-userx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Hedger View Post
you just made my brain hurt
Sorry. That was not my intention.
 
Old 01-03-2017, 10:20 AM   #11
Shadow_7
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Why not use CWM? The only decoration is a 1px border (which you can remove). It functions like a window manager via hotkeys (or mouse + key combinations). The ones I like are Control+Alt+X which is functionally xkill. And Control+Alt+F which toggles fullscreen. Various other keys to move, resize, and other things. You can do just about everything except trigger a mouse click with hotkeys. And it's super light weight so things just run faster under it. Seems like that would be an easier route than modifying something or re-inventing the wheel.
 
Old 01-03-2017, 04:39 PM   #12
Roy_SRC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho View Post
maybe if you tell us what your actual problem is we can help you?
what functionality/transformation do you need for that tv?
why can't you use one of the existing media centers (kodi)?
what's missing?
what ARE you trying to achieve?
The reason I can't use an existing media center is because it is not only a media system but also a storage system. and besides just using an existing solution wouldn't be fun.
 
  


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