Sunday, 10 April 2011

A Sampling of Linux Desktops/Window Managers

Copied from Linux Journal

The Second-String Desktop

Mar 31, 2011  By Shawn Powers,2

Table 1. A Sampling of Linux Desktops/Window Managers
Desktop/Window Manager Description Design Goals Based On Advantages Disadvantages
KDE Full desktop environment Full system integration, including applications Uses KWin window manager and Qt libraries Great application integration, highly customizable Distinct look; non-KDE apps often seem awkward
GNOME Full desktop environment Full system integration, including applications Uses Metacity window manager, based on GTK+ libraries Wide variety of native applications, wide adoption in corporate environments Non-GTK apps often look odd and use more RAM
LXDE Lightweight desktop environment Speed and beautiful interface Uses Openbox window manager and GTK+ libraries Works well on older/slower hardware, maintains compatibility Lacks some of the features found in GNOME or KDE
XFCE Lightweight desktop environment Full-featured desktop environment, but light on resources Usually uses XFWM4, but works well with other window managers Somewhat lower system requirements than GNOME or KDE Possibly a bit too resource-hungry for low-end systems
Enlightenment E17 Window manager with the features of a desktop manager Speed and eye candy with integrated functionality A window manager plus a set of libraries for developing apps Fast without sacrificing style Still in beta but quite stable
ROX Desktop Desktop manager based on the ROX-Filer Approaches the OS in a file-centric way ROX-Filer file manager and the OroboBox window manager Unique file-based design makes installing apps drag and drop ROX Desktop is either a love or hate affair
IceWM Hybrid window manager and desktop manager Speed and simplicity Simple menu and taskbar design Fast and easy to make system-wide configuration changes No way to make desktop icons, requires additional software for some features
Blackbox/Fluxbox Very minimalistic window managers Speed and small memory/CPU footprint Fluxbox is based on Blackbox (it's a fork) Blazingly fast Very limited in features, but by design not immaturity
Openbox Very minimalistic window manager Speed and small memory/CPU footprint Originally based on Blackbox, original code since version 3.0 Simple and fast Limited in features by design
AfterStep/Window Maker Clones of the NeXTSTEP interface Functions and looks like NeXTSTEP Designed after the unique design of the NeXTSTEP interface Unique Often difficult to configure, and the interface is an acquired taste
Ratpoison A window manager that doesn't require a mouse Kills the need for a mouse Designed after GNU Screen No need for a mouse Very limited in features, which the developers consider a feature
DWM An extremely minimalist window manager Manages windows and nothing more The ideas of other minimalist window managers Small and fast No configuration files, must edit source code to coconfigure

CrunchBang Linux:
Enlightenment E17:
Puppy Linux:
ROX Desktop:
Window Maker:

No comments: