LinuxQuestions.org
Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices


Reply
  Search this Thread
Old 01-27-2013, 02:34 AM   #1
J_L
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2013
Posts: 5

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Lightweight Desktop Environment with Menu Search and App Pin


Why is it that most (if not all) lightweight desktop environments don't have these two modern features, at least by default? Sure they were introduced by Windows and OS X, but that doesn't mean only heavy desktop environments should have the new features while lightweight ones stick to the traditional interface (which I hate conforming to).

The thing is, I have a netbook that runs fine, but is of course on the slow side with Windows or Ubuntu. I tried Unity 2D and LLVMpipe, but it's still slow. So laggy that why shouldn't I just use the Windows 7 Starter that comes with it? I'm pretty sure KDE wouldn't be much better, but maybe I should try it out.

I'm looking for a lightweight Linux distro that comes with at least menu search. It shouldn't be that hard to find, right?
 
Old 01-27-2013, 04:38 AM   #2
J_L
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2013
Posts: 5

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Gonna try out Linux Mint MATE tomorrow. It appears to be close to what I'm looking for, except without (easy) app pinning. By app pins I mean Windows 7, OS X, and Ubuntu style where the icon gets an indicator instead of a new icon appearing in the taskbar.
 
Old 01-27-2013, 06:17 AM   #3
grail
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Sep 2009
Location: Perth
Distribution: Manjaro
Posts: 9,565

Rep: Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901
Have you thought about the fact that maybe the features you would like to have are not very lightweight and hence including them by default would go against the paradigm those environments
are looking to hold?

That being said I would take a gander at one of the distros with an XFCE environment as they often have more features than say fluxbox or openbox by default
 
Old 01-27-2013, 07:00 AM   #4
TobiSGD
Moderator
 
Registered: Dec 2009
Location: Germany
Distribution: Whatever fits the task best
Posts: 17,148
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853
For the application pinning you could use a dock like AWN, but I am not sure what you mean with Menu Search, so please give a description of the wanted functionality.
 
Old 01-27-2013, 07:51 AM   #5
GazL
Senior Member
 
Registered: May 2008
Posts: 4,519
Blog Entries: 9

Rep: Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003
The menu search thing kind of sounds like what 'dmenu' does, but some folks find dmenu a little too minimal. I use it in combination with dwm window-manager and I don't think you can get a lighter desktop environment. There's no reason why you couldn't use it with another WM however.

Because the OP is also looking for things like app-pinning I suspect my environment might be a little too lightweight though. dmenu + WindowMaker might do the job however.

Last edited by GazL; 01-27-2013 at 07:53 AM.
 
Old 01-27-2013, 05:55 PM   #6
J_L
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2013
Posts: 5

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
@grail: How are they not lightweight? Menu search only conveniently filters your installed applications and app pinning shouldn't take up any noticeable resources. I think environment developers are just catering to people with old computers looking for traditional interfaces. Yes, I've looked at XFCE, but there doesn't seem what I'm looking for.

@TobiSGD: Does AWN behave like Windows 7, Mac OS X, and Ubuntu? Meaning the pinned icon doesn't just launch the application, but also manages it (minimize, change focus, etc.) By menu search I meant the start menu or whatever Linux users call it.

@GazL: I'll take a look at dmenu and WindowMaker, but they look quite daunting. I might get what I'm looking for, but very likely will also find it lacking in user-friendliness.

Lastly, I'm looking for an Ubuntu-based distro for (easy) hardware compatibility and home encryption.

Last edited by J_L; 01-27-2013 at 06:10 PM.
 
Old 01-27-2013, 06:28 PM   #7
TobiSGD
Moderator
 
Registered: Dec 2009
Location: Germany
Distribution: Whatever fits the task best
Posts: 17,148
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853Reputation: 4853
Quote:
Originally Posted by J_L View Post
@TobiSGD: Does AWN behave like Windows 7, Mac OS X, and Ubuntu? Meaning the pinned icon doesn't just launch the application, but also manages it (minimize, change focus, etc.)
Don't know about Ubuntu or OS X, I don't use them, but Windows 7 behaves pretty much like AWN (AWN is the older one).

About dmenu, I don't use it, but my favorite WM (i3) has an in-built function that is quite similar (only that it also reads .desktop files, so that it knows about the names you will see in the menus and the names of the actual application binary), but I can't see how it can not be user-friendly, just type in a part of the name, if necessary use the cursor keys to choose what you want to launch and press the Enter key.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 01-28-2013, 08:21 AM   #8
GazL
Senior Member
 
Registered: May 2008
Posts: 4,519
Blog Entries: 9

Rep: Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003
WindoeMaker is actually quite easy to use, and it provides the dock features you're looking for. I believe it is also in the Ubuntu repos and so should be relatively easy to install and try out. 'dmenu' is just a tool and its usefulness really depends on your ability to wield it. It can be made to do what you want, but unless you're fairly comfortable with shell scripting it's probably going to be challenging to setup.
 
Old 01-28-2013, 08:33 AM   #9
GazL
Senior Member
 
Registered: May 2008
Posts: 4,519
Blog Entries: 9

Rep: Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003Reputation: 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiSGD View Post

About dmenu, I don't use it, but my favorite WM (i3) has an in-built function that is quite similar (only that it also reads .desktop files, so that it knows about the names you will see in the menus and the names of the actual application binary),
I wasn't aware that i3 had implemented a dmenu-like feature. Interesting.

By default dmenu comes with a script that just allows you to chose one of the entries in /usr/bin which I don't find particularly useful. It shouldn't be particularly hard to write an alternative that parses the *.desktop files, but I just have mine read the contents of ~/.dmenurc which I maintain manually (kind of like a favourites menu).

What I do like about dmenu is that if you get imaginative you can do some really useful things.
e.g. here's an example I have bound to a hot-key that I use for quick access to my CD Album collection.
Code:
( cd /local/music && album="$(ls -d */* | dmenu -l 20 -i)" && exec ogg123 -q "$album" )
 
Old 01-28-2013, 10:59 AM   #10
TroN-0074
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2011
Location: Michigan USA
Distribution: OpenSUSE 13.2 64bit-Gnome on ASUS U52F
Posts: 1,444

Rep: Reputation: 340Reputation: 340Reputation: 340Reputation: 340
I dont know if you already solved the problem but for what I heard Bodhi Linux gives you a really light weight desktop with lots of tools, You said that you want a Ubuntu base so Bodhi should fit the bill with that requirement.

You should look at it here is the link -------------> http://bodhilinux.com/

Good luck to you.
 
Old 01-28-2013, 11:06 AM   #11
fbobraga
Member
 
Registered: Jul 2010
Location: São Paulo - Brasil
Distribution: Debian 7 / Crunchbang 11
Posts: 229

Rep: Reputation: 41
by "menu search", the OP is not looking for http://docs.xfce.org/xfce/xfce4-appfinder/start ?
 
Old 01-28-2013, 02:50 PM   #12
grail
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Sep 2009
Location: Perth
Distribution: Manjaro
Posts: 9,565

Rep: Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901Reputation: 2901
I am running synapse under openbox and it seems to do what you might be looking for as far as application (or anything else) searching goes.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 01-28-2013, 07:41 PM   #13
fbobraga
Member
 
Registered: Jul 2010
Location: São Paulo - Brasil
Distribution: Debian 7 / Crunchbang 11
Posts: 229

Rep: Reputation: 41
Wink

Quote:
Originally Posted by grail View Post
I am running synapse under openbox and it seems to do what you might be looking for as far as application (or anything else) searching goes.
I don't knew that https://launchpad.net/synapse-project - I will try it in my LXDE netbook, it really seems lightweight

Thanks by the tip

Last edited by fbobraga; 01-28-2013 at 07:44 PM.
 
Old 01-28-2013, 08:12 PM   #14
fbobraga
Member
 
Registered: Jul 2010
Location: São Paulo - Brasil
Distribution: Debian 7 / Crunchbang 11
Posts: 229

Rep: Reputation: 41
it's really lightweight (it starts in "no time": I've not noticed a startup time change with it on auto-start), and have few dependencies to install (in my setup, was a 777KB download - my setup: Fedora 17 LXDE on Acer Aspire One 110L)

thanks again
 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Your favorite lightweight desktop environment? cheese1343 Linux - General 27 04-09-2013 11:32 PM
LXer: Lightweight Equinox Desktop Environment needs polish LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 05-23-2008 01:20 PM
LXer: Xfce 4.4: The best lightweight desktop environment LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 02-20-2007 09:01 PM
lightweight desktop environment? andrewlkho Linux - General 26 07-15-2003 01:22 PM
lightweight desktop environment? andrewlkho Linux - Distributions 2 07-05-2003 10:03 PM

LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:32 AM.

Main Menu
Advertisement
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration