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phlux
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 1:35 pm    Post subject: Does anyone else change DEs or WMs often? Reply with quote

I feel like ever since I began my *nix venture (~2001) I've swapped back and forth between DEs and WMs way too often. I'll get hung up on one for a while, and then move on to something on the opposite end of the spectrum.

I started out with KDE back then (FreeBSD 4.3) and I've enjoyed watching them change over the years, but I always end up finding something else and giving it a try. So far with Gentoo (I've been using Gentoo as a primary OS for roughly 2 years now) I've been through GNOME3, KDE, XFCE, fluxbox, openbox, and I'm currently using i3wm.

I've been using i3 for the longest time now, and I honestly don't see myself changing again (although I've said that before.) I think I've really been looking for a tiling WM this entire time, but never even entertained the idea for whatever reason. Now that I'm used to it, I really enjoy being able to watch youtube on one half of my screen, and IRC on the other. I'll attach a link containing a screenshot for those interested.

So honestly, just out of curiosity, do any of you find yourselves trying out new DEs or WMs just for the heck of it? Do you give it a fair chance (a week or so of regular use) or do you immediately move on after starting it up for an hour? Do you think you've finally landed on that DE or WM that you'll use as long as its in development?
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phlux
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgot to post the screenshot!

http://imgur.com/u6PVHjO
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had DE + distro hopping period about a year ago. After some time I realized how much of a control-freak I am settled down with Gentoo and i3. i3 is great, feature rich (I've contributed some code too) and enables you to arrange your screen in about any way you need.
Some time ago I had another period of tilling WMs hopping.
It's very hard to find the optimum between manual and dynamic tilling. And another factor is the ease of configuration and the features included.
The worst part is that each tilling WM always has some great feature that other WMs lack, but has another feature/trait that puts me off.

i3 came out as the winner in the end (for now), because it offers the features I use and like and behaves well with multi-monitor setups. But sometimes the manual tilling is too cumbersome, so I'm learning Haskell to give Xmonad a try.

As for the length of testing a WM (especially a tilling one), I use it at least for a month before I decide whether it suits my workflow. This has also the advantage that you get a different perspective on your workflow and can improve it.
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GFCCAE6xF
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to hop around the "main" DE's a few years ago, however I got stuck on AwesomeWM a couple of years ago and never moved away :)
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genstorm
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I pretty much started with KDE3 and never really used anything else. Enlightenment e17 has always been some kind of holiday trip in case of frustration during early days of KDE4 and while updating the latter.
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andjeng
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the de that i've ever use : unity (yeah i know) -> gnome3 -> e17 -> kde4 -> lxde -> openbox -> xmonad -> awesome -> many tiling wm -> xfce (for a year or so) and finally xmonad.
i use xmonad for haskell playground.
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sitquietly
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 11:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Does anyone else change DEs or WMs often? Reply with quote

phlux wrote:
I feel like ever since I began my *nix venture (~2001) I've swapped back and forth between DEs and WMs way too often. I'll get hung up on one for a while, and then move on to something on the opposite end of the spectrum.....Do you think you've finally landed on that DE or WM that you'll use as long as its in development?


It took me a long time of using, and exploring, KDE 4 to discover how to take advantage of it. Now that I've got activities set up for each of my courses and video work and programming and general desktop use, with four workspaces for each activity, and the right apps and documents and web pages opening up in each workspace every time I resume that activity... well, I've finally landed on that DE that I'll use as long as it's in development. :)

Only gentoo and funtoo allow me to enjoy KDE without akonadi and nepomuk getting in the way; KDE (-semantic-desktop) on Gentoo is the greatest Linux Desktop that I've ever worked with. It's a great reason for using Gentoo -- KDE without nepomuk is not available anywhere else!

For me the only environment that can compete with KDE is xmonad with rox-filer, using custom scripts to open activity-specific panels and desktops. My xmonad environment also took months of use and tweaking to evolve into a great working environment.
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Fran
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I've used every WM/DM since 1997 :lol:. Probably in order (only those I used for several months): FVWM95, AfterStep, Window Maker, Gnome 1, Blackbox, IceWM, Fluxbox, KDE, Enlightenment (0.16 ofc), FVWM, Gnome 2.x, Openbox, i3, dwm. I doubt I'll replace dwm with something very different. I've seen the light of tiling WMs; XEROX did it right from the start :P
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LoTeK
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have tried and changed my DE/WM so many times that I sometimes was at panic stations so I'm quite appeased that many of you seem to have the same problem :) First I've used the standard Gnome 2 with Linux Mint 3 (my first Linux distribution). Back then I didn't even know what a DE/WM is and that are many others. Then came the time of my first computer science course in which we used OpenSUSE with KDE. I felt in love with the nice KDE interface (for example the transparent-folder-container). This was the first struggle between the beauty of KDE with the (in my opinion) more stable, simple Gnome2. The mad-switch period began. Sometimes I've installed OpenSUSE or Mint one day with KDE, the next day with Gnome again, repeat, repeat. :)

Then came my minimalistic period mixed with the desire to understand and control (maybe sometimes mad control-addiction :lol: ) my whole system, therefore I've switched to fedora with LXDE (I know compared to dwm lxde is a monster, but back then I didn't know more than Gnome, KDE, LXDE, XCFE). But this wasn't a good set up (I don't know if LXDE with Fedora is not stable or if I wasn't capable of running my system, I guess the latter) so I've switched to Gnome3 which I liked because it was something different (and it didn't try to look as Mac or windows) but the lack of configuration made me very angry so I've switched back to KDE with the Ghost theme and tried to tweak my desktop to a dark-sciencefiction-interface that is as strange as possible.

This was parallel to distro hopping, I've tried at least 15 different distributions, always on the path to find the perfect system but of course I've get disappointed. Like you said in every system is something cool, but it lacks something that another system has which on the other hand lacks of the cool stuff of the former system, etc. Then came Gentoo and for me it's the only possible distribution (besides LFS, or Lunar) because it's source based, so at least this struggle ended (not with a perfect system but at least with one that is close to my needs).

Then came the DE/WM switching phase only. I've stayed with openbox for a long time (maybe 6 months) but I was not quite content with it so I've looked into hackedbox and tried to use compiz as a standalone which failed and moreover I don't like ccsm because it's GUI. So I've made the hard decision between "eye-candy" and "minimalistic-only" and the minimalistic approach won. On one hand I like modern, futuristic stuff and on the other hand I like minimalism and dwm looks like an 80ies desktop. Thanks to BoneKracker I've discovered dwm and now it seems I won't change anymore because I'm a novice C-programmer and whats cooler than a 2000 line C-code WM?!

But again there are several things that disturbs me, for example that one can't resize windows in tiling mode (at least I don't know how). Then I've programmed a little C-program that displays a short movie sequence from terminator 2 when I switch to battery power on my laptop (the alternate power scene at the end of the movie :) ) but I want that the mplayer window appears at the middle of the screen in a small window although I'm in tiling mode, so now it appears fullscreen. I've heard of i3 (and tested it for a few hours) but its way bigger than dwm and at the moment my 4 monitor set up with dwm works fine.
euclid, awesome, stumpwm, xmonad were tested for a few hours too, but since I'm not into haskell at the moment I will try xmonad and stumpwm again when I have to learn haskell and lisp.

So at the moment I stay with Xorg and dwm, but I'm not totally content or happy with it.

btw a new struggle seems to appear because I've read that the x-system is considered old and that it should be replaced, but on the other hand wayland is not yet stable and it seems there aren't any non X-server dwm's. But at least as I understand it the "server-client" model seems to be good for people like me with more than one monitor/computer that are connected.

EDIT:
lol, because of this thread I've just switched to euclid-wm and its seriously awesome. it's 22kB large (therefore 2kB larger than dwm :) ) but you can change the size of all window in all 4 directions!!
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I started with kde2, moved on to kde3, eventually made it to kde4, always been content with my choices
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got stuck with ion3 about 5 years ago, and never had to change it since then. Once of my machines had KDE installed though, but it sucked utterly.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Does anyone else change DEs or WMs often? Reply with quote

sitquietly wrote:
Only gentoo and funtoo allow me to enjoy KDE without akonadi and nepomuk getting in the way; KDE (-semantic-desktop) on Gentoo is the greatest Linux Desktop that I've ever worked with. It's a great reason for using Gentoo -- KDE without nepomuk is not available anywhere else!


I'm in this camp too. Absolutely love it. :!: (so much so it's in my sig)

Have tried almost everything else.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use gnome, and love it.

Everything just works, easily intergrates into my google business account.

I used to use *box and it was OK, but I love all the features that Gnome gives me :)
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