<RESOLVED> Installing Additional DEs

<RESOLVED> Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Tue Jul 29, 2014 12:10 pm

Can anyone point me to a guide for what additional desktops I might experiment with that don't clash with each other? I am running LMDE 64-bit Mate edition. I know in general terms how to install another desktop via SPM or apt-get. (i.e. mint-meta-debian-cinnamon). But I know that Mate and Cinnamon can be problematic if you load them both.

I'm not really interested in Cinnamon btw. I'm more curious about pcmanfm and any others that might be cool to try out, providing one doesn't mess up the other and result in having to "fix" a dozen issues that may arise. I'd like to be able to just experiment with selecting one or the other at the login screen without too much hassle. I guess XFCE might work, but I'm leaning more towards the "cool" ones.

Does anyone know if trying Compiz is a bad idea? I'm not sure it's even well supported, the last stable release date I saw is July 2013.
Last edited by gtsfer on Sat Aug 02, 2014 8:39 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby steanne on Tue Jul 29, 2014 12:48 pm

i installed xfce on my lmde mate and haven't used mate since.

in terms of the fun stuff, consider a live dvd. linux bbq cream has a ridiculous number to explore and seeing which ones they included and how may give you a hint at what conflicts.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby xenopeek on Tue Jul 29, 2014 12:49 pm

I've not had any DEs clash with each other, though Compiz might be asking for trouble. What has worked for me in recently testing 20+ DEs and WMs was to create a new user account for each DE/WM that I tried. That way, the user account you try with a new DE/WM hasn't been "polluted" by settings and autostarts from other DEs/WMs and it will also not touch your current user account. It worked for me that way, but as always YMMV. Keep note of the packages that get installed as you install a new DE/WM, so you know what to remove if you've seen enough of it.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:18 pm

steanne wrote:i installed xfce on my lmde mate and haven't used mate since.
In terms of the fun stuff, consider a live dvd. linux bbq cream has a ridiculous number to explore and seeing which ones they included and how may give you a hint at what conflicts.

Thanks Steanne, that link looks like something I'll drop on a Flash drive and play with some. Some 76 DEs sounds like a lot, but a good way to explore.

xenopeek wrote:I've not had any DEs clash with each other, though Compiz might be asking for trouble. What has worked for me in recently testing 20+ DEs and WMs was to create a new user account for each DE/WM that I tried. That way, the user account you try with a new DE/WM hasn't been "polluted" by settings and autostarts from other DEs/WMs and it will also not touch your current user account. It worked for me that way, but as always YMMV. Keep note of the packages that get installed as you install a new DE/WM, so you know what to remove if you've seen enough of it.

This is a great tip, creating a user account for each DE/WM. And yes, I'll keep good track of installed packages and dependencies too. I like to keep a fairly clean system. Thank Xenopeek.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby PatH57 on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:20 pm

and you could use a VM like yours and then play around with it to see if something clashes.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:26 pm

PatH57 wrote:and you could use a VM like yours and then play around with it to see if something clashes.

Using Virtualbox is also a good idea. I primarily asked this in a post because I had the impression that installing the Cinnamon DE for instance, would remove some components of Mate. That may be wrong, just based some posts I have seen in the past.

But a separate user account or virtual machine eliminates that potential hassle.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby xenopeek on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:40 pm

It might have conflicted with Gnome Shell at one time, but no longer (at least not with current version, LMDE is one version behind IIRC). I can't recall it conflicting with MATE. But yes, if you've log in to the same account with both Cinnamon and MATE you'll have a bad time (irrespective of which you log in to, you'll have components of the other running from your polluted autostart config).

Anyway, always best to experiment from LiveISO or VirtualBox :wink:

Linux Action Show had a cool product recommendation this week, the Zalman ZM-VE300 (http://www.zalman.co.kr/eng/product/Pro ... hp?Idx=674). External hard disk case that has a jog dial on the side and LCD screen to let you select any ISO file you have put on the hard disk (product comes with a hard disk) and then emulate a CD-Rom drive to the host computer with that ISO. Put a couple of LiveISOs on there, and experiment at top speed on real hardware without risking your main installation.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby PatH57 on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:45 pm

comes even with a screwdriver? need to get my hands on it. :lol:
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:05 pm

xenopeek wrote:It might have conflicted with Gnome Shell at one time, but no longer (at least not with current version, LMDE is one version behind IIRC). I can't recall it conflicting with MATE. But yes, if you've log in to the same account with both Cinnamon and MATE you'll have a bad time (irrespective of which you log in to, you'll have components of the other running from your polluted autostart config).

This is exactly what I was trying to avoid. Conflict, pollution or whatever it's called. :D

xenopeek wrote:Anyway, always best to experiment from LiveISO or VirtualBox :wink:

Linux Action Show had a cool product recommendation this week, the Zalman ZM-VE300 (http://www.zalman.co.kr/eng/product/Pro ... hp?Idx=674). External hard disk case that has a jog dial on the side and LCD screen to let you select any ISO file you have put on the hard disk (product comes with a hard disk) and then emulate a CD-Rom drive to the host computer with that ISO. Put a couple of LiveISOs on there, and experiment at top speed on real hardware without risking your main installation.

This looks like an extremely cool product. In any case, I'm going to stick with some LiveISOs and/or Virtualbox for now rather than loading up more DEs and make a mess of things. Unless I find one I want to add permanently to LMDE that is.
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Wed Jul 30, 2014 2:27 pm

I decided to leave this as thread open as I'm going to run some experiments. Maybe someone else will add on here later too. I'm installing LM17 Mate 64 to a Flash drive (I mean installing it there, boot from DVD and target the install to the partitions I'll make on the stick) so I have a flash with full persistence. Will then run updates and then I'm going to try Enlightenment (e17) as a second DE. I may even mess around with Compiz since I have nothing to lose when booting the OS from this device. If I screw it up, no worries. 8)
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Re: Installing Additional DEs

Postby MikeF90000 on Wed Jul 30, 2014 8:25 pm

All the above hints are fine, but I've also had to resort to menulibre (or just any old editor) to tweak the name of some common apps.

For instance, every DE creates a 'File Manager' entry. I may want to change the title to 'File Manager (XFCE)' in whichever .desktop file in /usr/share/applications invokes thunar. Or caja, nautilus, pcmanfm.

And so on. :)
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Re: <RESOLVED> Installing Additional DEs

Postby gtsfer on Sat Aug 02, 2014 8:45 am

Having tried adding Enlightenment, KDE Plasma, Xfce and Compiz I marked this as resolved. Experiment complete for now.

I did all of the above with a flash drive that had LM 17 Mate installed to it. Compiz is a bear to configure but I managed to get the cube and effects working. Note that Compiz is not a DE in itself, it's desktop effects. Thanks to all for suggestions and hints....
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