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After several weeks, I can say I very much like Linux Mint as my home box distro but have discovered that LXDE is not a good WM/DE for me. It ...
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  1. #1
    Trusted Penguin Dapper Dan's Avatar
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    Back to IceWM


    After several weeks, I can say I very much like Linux Mint as my home box distro but have discovered that LXDE is not a good WM/DE for me. It looks great and is fairly simple to use and configure but I've noticed a severe hit in responsiveness and speed over my previous home box distro, CRUX.

    CRUX with IceWM is just blindingly fast so it would be unfair to expect Mint with LXDE to be even close. I was curious though to know just how much of the sluggishness was related to running LXDE so I installed IceWM, my old tried-and-true standby window manger since 2002. The difference is very noticeable. Now, my machine isn't running a lot of unnecessary apps, videos play more smoothly and programs open quicker.

    So, it's back to IceWM for me! I know it's old, plain and a little clunky looking compared to other WM/DEs, but it's well worth it when running one of the fastest Window Mangers available.
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  2. #2
    Linux Engineer hazel's Avatar
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    That's interesting. My Crux runs Openbox, which is essentially the same as lxde. I use pypanel with it but there's no "unnecessary apps". What ones does lxde run?

    Do you think IceWM is faster than Openbox? If so, I might try it.
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  3. #3
    oz
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    Quote Originally Posted by hazel View Post
    Do you think IceWM is faster than Openbox? If so, I might try it.
    I'm always running Arch rather than Crux, but find Openbox to feel faster than IceWM each time that I've tried it. Note that I've not done any kind of tests in an attempt to time it, though. While I have tried LXDE a few times, it has never appealed to me.
    oz

  4. #4
    Linux Guru Cabhan's Avatar
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    I switched over to tiling window managers not long ago, and I'm finding them to be pretty minimalist and responsive (and entirely keyboard-driven!). Have you ever tried wmii or i3 (which I'm using now)? How do they compare?

  5. #5
    Trusted Penguin Dapper Dan's Avatar
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    LXDE depends on openbox but has other processes added to get the full LXDE desktop. Straight openbox (which I also like) is perhaps slightly faster than IceWM but IceWM feels like an old friend. I just did a comparison of processes running when logging into both. IceWM: 63. LXDE: 85. Under CRUX, I think total processes running under IceWM was around 3...

    LXDE takes a bit to get up and going whereas IceWM comes up almost instantaneously. I also find IceWM easier to configure than either LXDE or openbox but that's just my personal preference since I've been running it for so long. Cabhan, I'll check those out. Thanks!

    EDIT: It could be Mint-LXDE is different than vanilla LXDE. I wouldn't know though since this is my first experience with it.
    Last edited by Dapper Dan; 11-13-2011 at 06:09 PM.
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    oz
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    One thing I'd like to see the IceWM devs do is make it where you can easily disable the frames around any application launch icons in the IceWM panel. If that can be done easily already, I never was able to figure out how to do it, although I have seen a patch that comes with some themes that apparently allows the user to disable them.
    oz

  7. #7
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dapper Dan View Post
    So, it's back to IceWM for me! I know it's old, plain and a little clunky looking compared to other WM/DEs...
    I've never found it to be clunky looking in the least.
    For me, it provides a clean, simple and attractive desktop that I don't mind looking at.
    In comparison, I find some of the newer DEs* to be clunky in a polished kind of way.


    *Unity and Gnome Shell.
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  8. #8
    Linux Guru rokytnji's Avatar
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    Old bikers never grow old. They get better with age.

    I know it's old, plain and a little clunky looking compared to other WM/DEs,
    I had to smile at that Dan. You know from my screenshots and customization of Icewm and Fluxbox that I am in a different camp than that. I have spent a lot of time though searching, and building cool themes for Icewm and Fluxbox and tweaked my installs to the point that Icewm can be far from plain (at least for me).

    We both are longtime Icewm users. Glad to see ya back in the pack. Just to show how pretty and light. Here is my tweaked Fluxbox .

    http://antix.freeforums.org/download/file.php?id=940

    and tweaked Icewm

    http://antix.freeforums.org/download/file.php?id=691

    Plain and clunky they aint. Notice all the cruft opened up plus extra stuff runnuing on fluxbox, (first link), and the ram usage in conky.

    I also played with Semplice Linux which uses Open Box. I only played with it a few days though. I don't have another box to run it on so I just ran off of a persistent USB.

    http://antix.freeforums.org/download/file.php?id=936

    If I was to install it. Believe me. I would trick that baby out also. Nothing like a paint job and some new chrome to make a old clunker vehicle/chopper look like the bees knees.
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  9. #9
    Trusted Penguin Dapper Dan's Avatar
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    Guys, I know IceWM can be made to appear all sorts of interesting ways but with the stock themes it appears plain looking compared to other more recent WMs and DEs and... that's how I prefer it. Good old Icedesert for me! Plain and fast suits my sensibilities of function over form. I know I'm in the minority here but eye candy has just never been important for me. I think every screenshot I've ever posted here is a testament to that.
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  10. #10
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    And that is why I love it.
    And it's thanks to you, Dan, that I came across it to begin with
    Jay

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