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matt2kjones
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Joined: 03 Mar 2004
Posts: 87

PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:41 pm    Post subject: Suggestions for Desktop Environment for work Reply with quote

Hello,

I work for a document management company, and im currently trying to move away from windows on my work machines. At the moment I have a dual boot of windows 7 + gentoo with Xfce. As it stands I am able to use linux for most of my work. As I work in IT, most of my work is networks, servers and programming, so using Linux is ideal for me.

But occasionally, I do help out with production work, which includes working with images (convering between formats, mainly pdfs, tifs & jpegs) as well as OCR (although, there doesn't seem to be many good open source ocr packages available yet).

My main issue I have at the moment is my desktop environment. Using thunar, I am unable to just browse network shares without first mounting them. I have tried to use fuse to automount network locations with no success.

Another issue with Thunar is the lack of search. I did install catfish, to add search functionally to Thunar, but its an external implementation so I can't, for example, view thumbnails of search results.

Also, things like ristretto image viewer is very basic, and doesn't really support large images very well.

I installed Nautilus as a test. This provides network browsing and searching, which is great... but its thumbnailing isn't as good as thunar. I have to keep refreshing folders for the thumbnails to load... which gets really frustrating.

So my question really, is what desktop environment would be good for this. I know KDE is rather large and bulky, but would it be a good solution for this. I know konqueror supports network browsing, and I assume it has thumbnail support and searching, but how well do the features work.

I am trying to find a desktop environment where I can do as much as possible in regards to image editing, network browsing, thumbnails and file searching without having to install lots and lots of packages and work arounds like i seem to have to do currently with xfce.

Thanks
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BradN
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Joined: 19 Apr 2002
Posts: 2391
Location: Wisconsin (USA)

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 1:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think konqueror is the best file manager I've ever used, and in the top two or three web browsers. The ioslave system works wonders for seamlessly accessing remote shares and things like that (and many other KDE apps can use them natively as well), plus if you need to do a quick google, gg:searchquery is quick to enter in the address bar. The password wallet system is nice for securely storing authentication details. If you're accessing a remote share and want to check what a stored web page looks like in a web browser, this is the way to go (second only to fuse based or native mounting).

You can easily switch view modes, change thumbnail size, and when dealing with odd directory structured sets of large data, the file size view mode is perfect for finding what's eating all your space at a glance, or even rough guessing what will fit on a CD or DVD. (Speaking mostly of KDE3 here as I haven't done a whole lot with KDE4's dolphin or konqueror)

Konqueror's file search is good but not exceptional (it's fine to search for files but manipulating them in the results can be awkward sometimes).

KDE3's kuickshow is a nice minimal interface image viewer with convenient hotkeys for frequent actions (full screen, 1:1, zoom, brightness adjust, prev/next image, etc). I don't remember if this is in kde4 or not, but I don't like gwenview much - just too much stuff going on in the interface when you only want to see an image.

Kate is a nice programming text editor with built in terminal and lots of syntax highlighting support. I can also recommend jedit for a non-kde (but unfortunately java) substitute. Of course if you like emacs/vi interface there's probably other options you'd like better.

I know with KDE3, it wasn't a big deal to run konqueror outside of full blown KDE (a little extra startup delay, but manageable). I haven't tried such a thing on KDE4 yet. I worry about all the half baked akonadi background service shit that never seems to work right even when you're running KDE4 normally.


This all said, I've started to like LXDE's rather low resource usage (it's better than xfce in this respect from what I've read), and I think it might be beneficial even on rather beefy systems when you deal with enough stuff open to push the system into swap. All the tons of RAM in the world won't help your window manager to swap in faster, only less data to pull in (or permanently locking it in RAM) will help there.
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bytenirvana
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Joined: 10 Jun 2006
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Location: Volksstaat Hessen

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fluxbox or LXDE with Konqueror (or Dolphin), KWallet, wine + IrfanView (graphic conversion / thumbnail view) + Word (+ Excel?).

You still need PDF (KDE => okular?) and OCR software
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matt2kjones
Tux's lil' helper
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Joined: 03 Mar 2004
Posts: 87

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I dont use office that much in work, so I was using openoffice which is fine for me. We use to use access allot but since I have been here all the databases we use I have pushed onto sql servers.

I do so little in word and excel that openoffice should be fine.

Thanks for everyone's suggestions!
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yngwin
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Joined: 19 Dec 2002
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Location: Suzhou, China

PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 9:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would say KDE is your best choice. Gnome would be a possible second.
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