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A very newbie question. How does KDE, X-Windows, GNOME fit together. I mean I am REALLY confused and trying to read alot to learn this technology. I come from a ...
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  1. #1
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    KDE, X-Windows, GNOME, etc..


    A very newbie question.

    How does KDE, X-Windows, GNOME fit together. I mean I am REALLY confused and trying to read alot to learn this technology.

    I come from a pure MS Windows environment and totally new to GNU/Linux. etc.

    Thanks.

    Mazen

  2. #2
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    When someone says Linux, they are really referring to the Linux kernel which is the heart of the operating system. It controls everything from program to hardware.
    Linux by default doesn't include any GUI. What you need to do is install the X server known as XFree86. Once you have that, you will install a window manager. Then on top, you install a desktop such as KDE or Gnome.
    The best things in life are free.

  3. #3
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    The thing with the X server is that it handles only primitive operations, such as window creation, moving, hiding, graphics rendering and so on. It is the programs themselves that control what gets displayed in the windows. Remember that windows aren't only the big ones with a titlebar, but every button, scrollbar, menu, etc., is also a window in its own right.
    Therefore, it's not hard to implement several different desktop environments on top of an X server.
    There are some additional layers as well, though. As bpark mentioned, there is the all-important window manager. You know in Winbloze, when a program hangs, or even if it just goes unresponsive for a limited time, you can't even move or resize its window, right? That's because in Windoze, all programs manage their titlebars and stuff themselves. In UNIX and Linux, however, the window manager manages the titlebars and stuff, which means that even if a program hangs or becomes unresponsive for a while, you can still move a window out of the way or resize it or anything. Most window managers also allows you to close windows even though they are unresponsive, but unfortunately, not all do. Having a window manager also allows you to customize the behaviour of windows. For example, you can bind different key combinations to different window actions (like maximizing, minimizing (or iconifying as it's called in X), moving, etc.), and different window managers allows you to operate on windows in different ways. All window managers have their own functions.

    The desktop environments (KDE and GNOME), are mainly a set of programming tools to help coordinate programs, and they also tend to implement it in a way that programs that are programmed to use them look and fell similar as well.

  4. #4
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    Which one should I use?

    Terrific. Thanks for the explanation. My next question would be: which desktop should I install with Red Hat Linux; GNOME or KDE?

    Thanks.

  5. #5
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    Many people would recommend KDE, but I wouldn't recommend it on RedHat. RedHat has done a lot of strange things to their KDE distributions, so it doesn't work very well. Use GNOME if you're using RedHat.

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