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Is there not a sensible Linux desktop any more?

post #1 of 32
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Gnome 3 is still a pile of barbecued sheep arse designed by (less gifted) who think that "user interface/interaction" are obscure arts that can only be understood by Great Gnomeh (praise be him for he's most compassionate, most merciful). Nobody without 4000 years of g_user_interface_experience is qualified to tell that their decisions are bad. Gnome 3 completely breaks my workflow not because their design choices are idiotic, but because I'm just too dumb and unhiggy to get their grand master plan. Users of interfaces can't possibly know how they want to use them or what they want to do with them.

Unity is like its slightly more sensible bigger brother but is still too buggy/annoying for me to want to deal with it.

KDE is the only DE that keeps me excited any more. I can barely wait for each new release to fix some of the three-billion bugs, glitches and annoyances that make me tear my hair out every time I have to use it for more than 2 minutes.

Xfce is the least annoying but also the least powerful. Tiling is nonexistent up to 4.10 and in 4.10, wrong. I feel about as happy and productive an when I'm stuck using Windows XP. It even looks as bad.

OpenBox was fantastic but root login/typing long and incomprehensible dbus strings just to sleep/hibernate isn't really my thing. Also no tiling.

The obscure ones (flvw, enlightenment, i3, xmonad, LXDE, whatever) are one or more of hideous, broken on multi-monitors, broken all over, unhelpful, useless.

(end exaggerated rant)

Is there not a decent DE for Linux any more? I'm beginning to feel that I'd be a lot happier in Windows 7. Would Mint with MATE/Cinnamon be of any help?
post #2 of 32
Quote:
Would Mint with MATE/Cinnamon be of any help?

If you liked the older version of Gnome, then I would say yes. MATE is just Gnome2 that was taken in a different direction. So it has newer development without the issues that Gnome3 has. I haven't tried Cinnamon, but I may install it into a VM tonight to check it out.
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post #3 of 32
Get some good theming in and xfce can be amazing. Other then that, cinnamon or the gnome 2 based MATE. Atleast for me gnome3/unity arnt that bad once you get over the learning curve

As for openbox- you could always just write a good script to do those things
post #4 of 32
This made think back to the 3 semesters of Debian I took.We were not even allowed to have a desktop installed as it is foremost a command line product.I think if people keep trying to make Linux "flavors" desktop environments they are not going to be happy.I can see there is just getting to be too many partialy developed products before they are dropped and work starts on the next oneThe best day was when I asked one of my Linux instrustors for some Open Office tips.His reply was that when he wants to get something done he works in Windows.
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post #5 of 32
Install Xfce, minimal KDE. Start an Xfce session
Code:
kwin --replace

99.9% of the bugs and issues in KDE are due to the bloated mess that is plasma. The window manager itself is relatively lightweight and stable.
    
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post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by PCCstudent View Post

This made think back to the 3 semesters of Debian I took.We were not even allowed to have a desktop installed as it is foremost a command line product.I think if people keep trying to make Linux "flavors" desktop environments they are not going to be happy.I can see there is just getting to be too many partialy developed products before they are dropped and work starts on the next oneThe best day was when I asked one of my Linux instrustors for some Open Office tips.His reply was that when he wants to get something done he works in Windows.

I take it you didn't learn much then.

But OP...what horrible bugs and what versions of KDE do you speak of? I haven't noticed any since the 4.5/4.6 days.

And if you're not happy with what is given to you...you make your own thing. At least in Linux you have that freedom. The choice is simple; get used to something someone else makes (which is a lot of life) or suffer the inconvenience of making your own.
     
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post #7 of 32
Hrmm ... I thought a base LT Debian with XFCE was rather usable. confused.gif

Maybe give it a try? (Assuming you haven't? tongue.gif)
    
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post #8 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by frozne View Post

If you liked the older version of Gnome, then I would say yes. MATE is just Gnome2 that was taken in a different direction. So it has newer development without the issues that Gnome3 has. I haven't tried Cinnamon, but I may install it into a VM tonight to check it out.
I never particularly "liked" it, but it was stable, functional and worked like I expected a desktop to work. Anyway, if you do that, that'd be awesome biggrin.gif but no pressure if you're busy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrl1357 View Post

Get some good theming in and xfce can be amazing. Other then that, cinnamon or the gnome 2 based MATE. Atleast for me gnome3/unity arnt that bad once you get over the learning curve
As for openbox- you could always just write a good script to do those things
The problem isn't so much the themes, they're plain but tolerable. It's just... well, really, it's the panel that looks like crap to me. All the icons are just hideous, blurry smudges. This might seem like a nitpick, but xfce really needs to get on with symbolic icons.

I'm just not that big on extensively customising Linux... yea, it's cool to have that ability, but weird as it might sound, the reason that I originally started using Linux was because everything was more or less ready from the get-go. Just install the distro, then some extra stuff that didn't come with the CD/DVD, and off you go. Now, it seems that I have to tweak everything to have a system that I like... sure, it's one of the great freedoms of Linux, but I don't care for that great freedom as much as I care for sane defaults. In the end, I use my computer (and the OS) to do stuff, not customising it. That's one of the reasons why openbox turned me off (it wasn't just sleeping/hibernating) - fantastic thing, had to spend too much time getting it to work the way I wanted, no longer interested.
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathris View Post

Install Xfce, minimal KDE. Start an Xfce session
Code:
kwin --replace
99.9% of the bugs and issues in KDE are due to the bloated mess that is plasma. The window manager itself is relatively lightweight and stable.
I thank this is a solution I could actually live with... though the tiling with four corners is one of the top KDE annoyances on my list, I hardly ever use it but it's too easy to end up with a window taking up only a quarter of the screen frown.gif

EDIT:
Quote:
But OP...what horrible bugs and what versions of KDE do you speak of? I haven't noticed any since the 4.5/4.6 days.
4.8 primarily, haven't got to 4.9 yet. Anyway, I could write an entire essay on the bugs and annoyances of KDE, but I'll just pick a few off the top of my head:

-Having to type 3 letters for KRunner/"the K menu" to give search results. Annoying. Gnome 3, Unity, even Windows as of now do it right. If I type in 'f' in Gnome3, Unity or Win7, I get Firefox (and in the two former, file manager which might be the other thing I'm looking for). It works the way it should. KDE doesn't.

-The dialogs that open up when clicking stuff in the notification area (such as calendar) appear off the screen, hiding half the stuff on it. And of course they can't be moved.

-Dolphin sidebar icons as of 4.8 automatically resize, which ARRRRGGGHHHHH BOMFUNK SMASH BOMFUNK SMASH BOMFUNK SMASH DOLPHIN! GAH! Good thing is, apparently it's fixed in 4.9, but my home internet is crap so I'l have to wait till next week to update my netbook at university (not using KDE on my desktop).

-Already mentioned tiling in response to nathris.

-Krunner search results don't show options like "suspend" unless it's completely and fully spelled out - "sus" or "shu" display nada.

-The task bar still glitches up time to time, sometimes leaving huge gaps in between applications.

-Multimonitors... too much to explain. But here's one absolutely brilliant one: when disconnecting an external monitor from my netbook, KDE instead of reconfiguring the thing asked me if I'd like to. Which seems like a stupid question - yea, I just disconnected a monitor, of course I would like to shrink the desktop to normal size, what do you think I want to do with extra virtual screen space that I can't actually see, Good KDE? Of course, even better, it displayed the dialog asking this on the same monitor that I JUST BLOODY DISCONNECTED. That's mighty helpful.

-...and many, many more.

Quote:
And if you're not happy with what is given to you...you make your own thing. At least in Linux you have that freedom. The choice is simple; get used to something someone else makes (which is a lot of life) or suffer the inconvenience of making your own.
Nah. Freedom of choice isn't much good if all the choices are crap. If time was an unlimited resourse, then sure, but I've got things to do.
Quote:
Hrmm ... I thought a base LT Debian with XFCE was rather usable. confused.gif

Maybe give it a try? (Assuming you haven't? tongue.gif)
It was usable, but that's it. Windows, too, is usable. That by itself isn't very impressive (unless you compare it to Gnome 3, then yes, xfce and Windows are mighty impressive from user interface point of view). But though mostly functional, firstly the tiling is crap (could just use KWin or even Compiz I suppose), and at least on both F16/F17 there's a peculiar bug that causes the visuals of KDE applications to constantly glitch up. I'm 99% sure that this is because they're using some gtk theme since they all work fine in native Qt look, but that really doesn't help. Xfce's fault or not, if it doesn't work in xfce, I can't use it.

But yes, I'm a big xfce fan. Would use again (if I could).
Edited by bomfunk - 9/26/12 at 4:41pm
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by bomfunk View Post

OpenBox was fantastic but root login/typing long and incomprehensible dbus strings just to sleep/hibernate isn't really my thing. Also no tiling.
The obscure ones (flvw, enlightenment, i3, xmonad, LXDE, whatever) are one or more of hideous, broken on multi-monitors, broken all over, unhelpful, useless.

Multi-monitor DWM / XMonad user here, not broken there or at all. Hideous is subjective, I like the more minimalistic window managers. They just take time for a normal desktop user to adjust to, and to hack and make their own, which is half the point of them.

And if you're taking DE's/WM's for their face value you'll likely never be happy. You can add tiling to just about any wm/de if it isn't included by default. Along with many other features.
Edited by Shrak - 9/26/12 at 4:21pm
post #10 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by PCCstudent View Post

This made think back to the 3 semesters of Debian I took.We were not even allowed to have a desktop installed as it is foremost a command line product.I think if people keep trying to make Linux "flavors" desktop environments they are not going to be happy.I can see there is just getting to be too many partialy developed products before they are dropped and work starts on the next oneThe best day was when I asked one of my Linux instrustors for some Open Office tips.His reply was that when he wants to get something done he works in Windows.

Sensible way to approach Linux IMO. Once you learn the terminal you can operate any Linux system without having to relearn the UI. The GUI also offers only limited functionality. The terminal will be needed at some point.
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