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Openbox: A lightweight window manager

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The 'open' in Openbox means something quite specific...
Openbox complies with both the Inter-Client Communication Conventions Manual (ICCCM) and the Extended Window Manager Hints (EWMH). Originally derived from Blackbox, Openbox version 3 was completely rewritten in C. Among its fancy features, it supports chainable key bindings, customizable mouse actions, and multi-head Xinerama.

Unlike GNOME or KDE, Openbox as a window manager is a drawing board; you have to add your own desktop icons and panels. It's not as difficult as it sounds, and it gives you the freedom to design your own desktop.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:8211 | -Ray, February 5, 2006

Comparison: Window Managers for Linux

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Fluxbox and more...
There is and will be an everlasting “Gnome vs. KDE” debate. The trend is that developers concentrate building distributions around one of the two. But not everyone wants to use Gnome/KDE, mainly because of having older hardware or not wanting to stick with the traditional panel/menu approach. After all, GNU/Linux is about freedom and choice, and there are several good window managers too choose from and to build a fully customized and lightweight desktop.

I will look at five window managers plus Xfce, considering speed, features, and configurability.

The test system was an old-school Gericom compatible laptop with a 233 MHz Intel Pentium CPU and proud 64 megabytes of RAM, running Vector Linux. On fairly new hardware, you will hardly notice any differences in performance.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:7911 | -Ray, February 21, 2005

Introduction: The Enlightenment 17 Window Manager for X (Ubuntu 11.10)

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This tutorial is supposed to show some features of the Enlightenment window manager as an alternative to the often used Gnome and KDE managers. I will install Enlightenment on a desktop computer with Ubuntu 11.10 installed. Apart from the login screen however, all of the controls shown on the screenshots should be the same for every installation of enlightenment, whatever distribution you install it on. Enlightenment is already included in the Ubuntu repositories, therefore Ubuntu users and those of any Ubuntu derivatives won't have any problems installing it. It is also available for download for most other distributions though. read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:7623 | -falko, January 8, 2012

Fluxbox, The Slickest Window Manager...

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...you've never heard of.
It should be pointed out that the instructions at the Fluxbox site for making Fluxbox your default window manager only apply if you are starting X from the console. If you have Mandrake configured for a graphical login, there aren't any other steps necessary beyond installing the rpm. This worked very well on my test system. I only had to logout and log back in selecting Fluxbox as my window manager. Instructions for users that run "startx" from the console are included at the Fluxbox Web site and, are reasonably well written.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:7474 | -Ray, May 1, 2002 (Updated: June 14, 2003)

aewm++: a minimalist X11 window manager

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One of the most hackable window managers available.
aewm is a minimalist window manager for X11. It has no nifty features, but is light on resources and extremely simple in appearance. It should eventually make a good reference implementation of the ICCCM. A few separate programs are included to handle running programs, switching between windows, etc.
read more...
permapage | score:7468 | -Alex, August 24, 2003

Ion, an efficient window manager

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A fast minimalist WM...
The philosophy behind Ion is that window managers aren't meant to be seen, but to manage windows; anything more is dross. A few window managers out there share this aesthetic, such as Ratpoison, but they're rare in today's world of photogenic desktop environments, which seem to always be looking for an opportunity to add more decoration and ornament.
read more...
permapage | score:7467 | -Ray, June 28, 2006

Review: Fluxbox window manager

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Derived from Blackbox, but with more features.
"Visually, you may first notice the window tabs, something absent altogether from Blackbox. Window tabs are hardly the only difference, as Fluxbox provides support for KDE and Windowmaker dock applications. This is a little strange, coming from years of Blackbox use, because the lack of docked application support has always been one of its defining features. I do believe that Blackbox's stability, speed and simplicity are still retained in Fluxbox and, if you're not inclined to run docked applications, you'll never notice a difference. If you have ever looked at Blackbox and said, "That's nice but, I wish I could run that," your wait is over. Support for docked applications is well done, and works just as you would expect."
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:7293 | -Ray, February 6, 2002

Window Manager Comparison Review

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Window managers compared include: FVWM, IceWM, Window Maker, Sawfish, and Metacity.
Given the volume of entries in this category, I can't hope to cover all of them in any sort of detail, so instead I will concentrate on a select few in more detail. I've tried to pick a selection representing a range of styles and philosophies, weighted by their current popularity and importance in the development of windowing technologies. Many of the features explained along the way are found in other window managers, and each window manager's level of support for the GNOME and KDE environments is also discussed.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:7050 | -Ray, December 5, 2002 (Updated: January 20, 2003)

The Blackbox Window Manager

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GNOME/Sawfish takes a long time to load on my systems, and failed to properly work with a 4096x3072 virtual desktop (don't ask!)... but I'm going to stick with it ... until I have time to try something else, anyway.
Blackbox is that fast, light window manager you have been looking for without all those annoying library dependancies. If you have a C++ compiler and the X Window System you can compile and use it.

Blackbox is known to run on the following OSs:
  • BSD (all flavours)
  • Linux (all dists)
  • IBM's OS/2
  • Cygwin
  • Apple's Mac OS X
  • Sun Solaris
  • SGI Irix
  • HP HPUX
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:6963 | -Ray, June 16, 2003

Matchbox: A tiny open source window manager

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An unusual approach to window management yields a very small WM...
...Matchbox, a 50KB highly flexible window manager that depends only on xlib, which makes it lightweight enough to run on small devices without using too many resources.

Matchbox "stacks" open windows one on top of another and allows access to each through the use of a drop-down menu on the title bar. Users can't move or resize windows, which sounds restrictive, but actually works well because of the extremely limited screen space on small devices.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:6921 | -Ray, June 20, 2005

Lightweight Window Managers for X11

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This article talks about WindowMaker, FVWM, Blackbox, Fluxbox and more.
My personal favorite lightweight Window Manager is the WindowMaker window manager. This WM offers dockable applications, multiple workspaces, and a very lightweight graphical display with many (okay, thousands) standard themes, styles and backgrounds. Additional themes are available as are additional dockable applets that can be built, added or used to perform the desired tasks.
read more...
permapage | score:6497 | -Ray, December 1, 2004 (Updated: March 24, 2007)

Mandriva One and the Metisse window manager

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Metisse is a window manager developped by the In Situ project. It is available under the GPL Licence. Mandriva Linux is using Metrisse in its latatest Live-CD. Metisse differs from a classic 3D desktop ("the cube") in the way that it offers innovative windows interactions, thus enforcing work efficiency. It is using basic openGL commands for most of its feature and can run on entry level 3D graphic cards. This workshop describes the hard disk installation and Mandriva One setup. Additionally you wll find information how to use the Metrisse 3D Desktop. read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:6368 | -fn-eagle, February 15, 2007

Control your window manager with WMCTRL or Devils Pie

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Two utilities to help you manage your window manager...
wmctrl is a command-line utility that can be used to manipulate or control various aspects of application windows and the desktop environment. Fedora and Ubuntu users can use yum or apt-get respectively to install wmctrl on their machines, or you can grab the compressed tarball from the software's Web site. According to the site, wmctrl is known to work with IceWM, Blackbox, Metacity, Openbox, Kwin, Enlightenment, and several other window managers.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:5600 | -Ray, December 21, 2007

The Openbox window manager

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A light-weight, adaptable window manager...
Openbox is distributed as a single package, but users should also download ObConf, the Openbox configurator. The configurator can tweak several aspects of Openbox, including themes. Openbox binary packages are available for Ubuntu Feisty, Debian Etch, Arch Linux, and Slackware. If you run another distribution, you can download the source tarballs (720KB for Openbox and 208KB for ObConf) and follow the instructions on the installation page.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:5493 | -Ray, July 13, 2007

Matchbox -- a Small Footprint Window Manager

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A tiny window manager aimed at embedded devices such as the iPAQ.
Matchbox is a window manager that aims to maximize usability on 'limited' platforms. It is also designed to be small in terms of binary size (approx. 50 KB), have few dependencies (only xlib), use minimal system resources, and be extremely flexible.
read more...
permapage | score:4490 | -Ray, August 3, 2002

Fun with the Ion window manager

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Take a look at the Ion windows manager, a powerful and simple program that manages the windows that applications bring up on your desktop. Ion isn't flashy, but once you get used to it, it can greatly enhance your productivity and make you wonder why you ever used those other window managers. read more...
permapage | score:3604 | -Idean Momtaheni, October 1, 2004

Fluxbox Window Manager Review

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A little bit review, a little bit HOWTO...
Fluxbox is a minimalist window manager based on Blackbox, which is, in turn, is another minimalist window manager. What do I mean by minimalist? Well, the aim of the most popular window managers, as far as I can tell, is to make it easy to get around. The result is a lot of choice of buttons and icons and menus. This makes getting around easier for some computer users. However, there are some who find all this to be distracting. All these choices, opine some, including this author, clutter up the desktop. Though both the KDE and GNOME projects have improved greatly in terms of memory usage, there is still a increased memory load when using them compared with a window manager like Fluxbox.
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:3148 | -Ray, September 13, 2005

3Dwm: when a 2D window manager is not enough

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For the curious among you.
3Dwm is a three-dimensional desktop project. It does not run atop XFree86, it runs in place of XFree86. (To us, that is one point in its favor already.) It is not, though, at the point yet where you are likely to decide to delete /usr/X11R6 in its favor.

The inevitable first question is "why the hell bother?" Most things that are done with computers are done very well in two dimensions -- in fact, optimally in two dimensions. A word processed in three dimensions says no more than one processed in two; it is easy to think that some 3-D stunt might hinder rather than help.
[Note: the original article has dropped off the web. Click the 'read more' link below for an information page about 3DWM including a technical report in .pdf format. -Ed.] read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:2736 | -Ray, September 6, 2002 (Updated: March 31, 2005)
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Articles are owned by their authors.   © 2000-2012 Ray Yeargin