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  1. #1

    Eyecandy, Compiz, KDE, XP, Vista Home basic.

    Before I actually begin my question let me make a brief comment. Whenever I ask about working in a mixed Windows/Linux environment, I always get a few idiots who say "why dose you use Windows linux will do everything you need". Uh no it won't and yes I already know about wine (and VMs). So unless you are willing to shell out the 100 million it would take to write versions of those Windows applications for linux, I suggest you take Abraham Lincoln's advice about taking in a room full of people.

    Sorry for the digression. Now on to my comments.

    Recently I've been tweaking my XP desktop. This caused me to want to spruce up all my desktops. So I got compiz running. Eek no minimize, maximize or close buttons on the upper right. Can't move or resize the window. So now confusion.

    I now am using three operating systems XP pro, debian and Vista Home Basic ( came with my laptop and I am not going to pay to upgrade though I did make it dual boot with debian). I want to tweak all three desktops, but in such a way that
    all three have the same base feel to them. Obviously they are never going to be identical, but I don't want a rotating cube on one desktop, a sphere on the other and a cylinder on the last.

    The first tweak I would like is a sidebar on the right with decent looking ( and a decent selection of ) widgets. I have this on XP and Vista, but not on linux. I tried putting a kde panel on the right but the widgets were just awful, looking like they were drawn with crayon by a second grader. I think there is a google sidebar for linux, but I took off the google sidebar on XP and replaced it with the Vista sidebar using the XP hack because the google sidebar was sucha CPU hog. If the google sidebar uses the same amount of cpu time on linux I hope to find better.

    The second thing I want is some sort of application dock similar to RocketDock, For those not familiar with RocketDock ( or one of it's clones there are many for Windows ) it is ( as I am told ) an application similar to the Macs application dock. I want, in particular, a feature similar to the stack addon. The way this works is that I click on the stack and it opens a temporary window showing a directory. Click on one of the items and it opens. Click elsewhere the window goes away.

    The final thing I want is a virtual desktop manager, and common key bindings/mouse bindings for all three systems. Things I expect from a VDM are: ways of moving to the next/previous desktop, a way of jumping to a particular desktop, a way of having an object on all desktops, and a way of moving objects between desktops. While there are times I like to use the mouse to do these things, it is important that I be able to do these things using only the keyboard. ( Since I'm running three different desktops, I want both key bindings and mice bindings to be customisable. )

    As to the "eyecandy" features of a VDM, let me say that if it helps me do stuff, I don't think it is eyecandy. If it doesn't help but doesn't use CPU time and works with a "standard modern day graphics card" ( the kind that will come with your run of the mill business computer ), then I don't care whether I have it. As examples: I'm pretty sure that water ripples will not help me do anything; stacking windows when I "alt-tab" probably will make it easier to see which window I want; and I won't be sure about rotating cubes/spheres/cylinders/whatever until I try. They might make it easier to navigate desktops, they might not.

    Keep in mind that I already have something for the Windows side for a sidebar and a dock, but for a VDM it is not enough to simply recommend a VDM, I want VDMs which run on Vista,XP, and linux and are similar to each other.

    So can someone help?

    PS I am using KDE ATM but am willing to change to Gnome if it helps with what I want.

    PPS Whatever VDMs you suggest, can you please make sure to also suggest a site where the key/mouse bindings are described.
    One where more obscure keys like Super and Button5 are described so i can figure out what they are.

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer b2bwild's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Behind You!
    Codeplex VMD
    For Windows XP and Vista..

    However you don't need on on Linux. ( But you can change the shortcut keys )
    Have you ever tried Screenlets, Avant Window Manager, Compiz Fusion+Emerald,

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by b2bwild View Post
    Codeplex VMD For Windows XP and Vista..

    However you don't need on on Linux. ( But you can change the shortcut keys )
    Have you ever tried Screenlets, Avant Window Manager, Compiz Fusion+Emerald,

    AWN seems to be almost perfect. Can you change the orientation ( dock on left, dock on right,dock on top... )?
    I hadn't heard of Emerald. It looks good, is there something like it for XP/Vista Basic?

    I'm a bit confused about Screenlets. They look the same as gDesklets and plasmoids to me ( a person who is only vaguely familiar with all of these ). To me aside from l;ooking decent, the most important thing about a sidebar and gadgets is that they always stay on top and they map out an area of the screen where windows do not overlap when maximized. On some screen shots it looks that way but on others it doesn't. What's the case?


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