Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

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Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby hoppimike on Mon Aug 06, 2012 11:06 pm

Here are mine!

Only small things :)


1) I change the Menu button logo from that strange cog to the Mint logo!

(right-click it and select properties, and replace its icon with /usr/share/linuxmint/common/artwork/logos/22.png)


2) I change the shortcuts next to it to my three most used apps - Thunar, Firefox and Pidgin

(just drag them there from the Mint Menu and delete whatever you want too)


3) I stop the bluetooth app initializing so it disappears from the tray

(Settings Manager -> Session and Startup -> Application Autostart -> Blueman Applet)


4) I install Electric Sheep as my screensaver as I'm really not too big on the default ones

(run "sudo apt-get electricsheep" in terminal or install from software manager, and then edit /etc/X11/app-defaults/XScreensaver-nogl and scroll down to the long list of screensavers with /n/ after them and add this line somewhere in there:

Code: Select all
electricsheep -root /n/


if it's the last one just omit the trailing slash. You can now select it in the Screensaver menu.)


5) I edit the ~/.gtkrc-xfce and change line 2 from:

Code: Select all
XfdesktopIconView::label-alpha = 0


to

Code: Select all
XfdesktopIconView::label-alpha = 100


to give the icon text a nice translucent white border.


6) I turn on compositing to give the windows shadows, and so forth :)

(Settings Manager -> Window Manager Tweaks -> Compositing)


7) Some other minor tweaks like disabling some of the icon types on the desktop (like mounted filesystems)

(Right click desktop -> Desktop settings -> Icons)



And that's it!

Is there anything you do? ^^
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby Darksun1 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 6:10 am

good tips !!!
thank you.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby hoppimike on Tue Aug 07, 2012 1:58 pm

np dude :D

I might write how to do them too actually as I didn't say that! :)
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby DrHu on Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:12 pm

I stop bluetooth and remove the app(s), I stop modem, because I don't connect to a cell phone type connection (modem) for ISP
I stop some services (bluetooth, pcsd (smart cards), unattended updates and various others: any I don't think I want running and that are safe to remove..)

--I speed up menu responses (reduce delays)
    I don't have to remove applications I don't intend to use or even need, but I do it anyway
    --it does recover some small amount of hard drive space..

I disable almost all special menu effects, since I am mainly interested in getting the OS loaded, and don't particularly need a special screen background (image) even if I would like to look at it occasionally, such as a panoramic or nature view

I also usually remove icons from the desktop and instead just pick/select from the menus or right-click and select from menus from the empty desktop; and if I really want a link to a specific directory/folder, I create it, but I try top avoid cluttering up the desktop..
--its a minor delay, and prevents the icon clutter, that often enough makes it harder to find a specific launcher (except by habit)
In general, I am quite satisfied with the boot loader speed of LMDE 13 and its responsiveness on my system.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby Bruce McL on Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:08 pm

I changed the pop-up messages by installing xfce4-notifyd. The new messages have rounded corners and don't go all the way to the edge of the screen. I had to uninstall notify-osd, and made sure that notification-daemon was uninstalled as well. I did all of this in Synaptic Package Manager. It takes a restart for the changes to show.

http://goodies.xfce.org/projects/applic ... e4-notifyd

While you are in Synaptic, you can install Microsoft fonts such as Times Roman and Arial. That package is called ttf-mscorefonts-install. The package is available in Software Center but the install doesn't work there.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby jjaythomas on Thu Aug 16, 2012 11:28 pm

Personally...

1.Add/install package 'gnome-system-tools' (perl scripts to make life easier) exspecially if a multi-user system (I have a Admin user with sudo rights and a every day user with out sudo). Extra security, a pain my son says or old school prefering root type account take your pick :lol:

2. Seeing how nautilus cause problems (not as much lately) I un install nautilus-data and related and install other apps for ones depend on it! :shock:

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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby mintman112 on Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:36 am

1) I change the Menu button logo from that strange cog to the Mint logo!

(right-click it and select properties, and replace its icon with /usr/share/linuxmint/common/artwork/logos/22.png)

I have tried several times to do this but nothing happens when i click properties is it because i have the mintmenu installed?
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby caribriz on Mon Aug 20, 2012 1:01 am

mintman112 wrote:1) I change the Menu button logo from that strange cog to the Mint logo!
(right-click it and select properties, and replace its icon with /usr/share/linuxmint/common/artwork/logos/22.png)
I have tried several times to do this but nothing happens when i click properties is it because i have the mintmenu installed?

Right-click it and select "Preferences" instead, then click "Button icon".

At the moment, when installed in xfce, many of the mintmenu applet's right-click options don't function (like they do in Mate).

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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby black veils on Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:50 am

the main things are:

i always just have a top panel, for task buttons and notification area.

install temperature monitor.

i alter my themes so the panel and window decorations contrast, for easier distinction.

i will probably make desktop icon font white-ish with transparent black bubbles, though i rarely put anything on the desktop, clutter distracts me.

i must change the system notification to a shorter timeout, because it is making me crazy, i used to do this when i used gnome 2 http://www.webupd8.org/2010/05/finally-easy-way-to-customize-notify.html

i launch my apps using synapse, it is great for all sorts of things: opening apps, specific directories, directory path, calculator calculations, commands, recent activity, web search etc it has a couple of different layout options also. this is only useful if you know the names of things! although i suppose the default generic app names nullifies that issue. there is only one thing which needs tweaking for this, and that is the menu file for settings manager.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby chefbaja on Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:49 pm

-First thing I do is go to workspace to get rid of the window border.

-install Clementine for music

-install mintmenu (even though it's buggy) and change the panel transparency and add icons. I added a side panel for running programs as well as a button on my main panel. I adjust the size of the side panel so it doesn't get in the way. Here's a screen shot.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby XMice on Tue Sep 18, 2012 6:40 am

Bruce McL wrote:I changed the pop-up messages by installing xfce4-notifyd. The new messages have rounded corners and don't go all the way to the edge of the screen. I had to uninstall notify-osd, and made sure that notification-daemon was uninstalled as well. I did all of this in Synaptic Package Manager. It takes a restart for the changes to show.

http://goodies.xfce.org/projects/applic ... e4-notifyd

While you are in Synaptic, you can install Microsoft fonts such as Times Roman and Arial. That package is called ttf-mscorefonts-install. The package is available in Software Center but the install doesn't work there.


Yes this is what I also suggested here :)
viewtopic.php?f=110&t=112567
I did not saw that it is already mentioned somewhere :roll:

1. I always change the icon size of the desktop to 42px.
2. I make the bottom bar a little bit bigger and move the "show dekstop" icon to the right and a terminal and thunar launcher besides the notification icons on the left.
3. I also setup the clock widget to show the date in a smaller font than the clock
4. I disable workspace switch when moving a window to the left or right screen side. Instead I use window tiling only.

Image

Anyway here are also some nice ideas, too :D
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby usbtux on Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:50 pm

Just a quick pointer to spatry's mint 13 xfce bootcamp - http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL81899EC1B6C54594
A little out of date in parts but still a good set of tutorials from beginners onward.

Just to say spatry has nothing to do with me but its useful info.
http://goo.gl/DXKgM LinuxMint tutorials.
Running LinuxMint 17 Cinnamon/KDE/XFCE
http://goo.gl/WFu0u Installing Mint - the screen cast videos.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby Neolander on Mon Nov 05, 2012 2:28 pm

My own list is mostly made of power management-related items since I use a laptop...

1. A few cosmetic and usability tweaks like adding a few frequently used program launchers, increasing panel size, switching the theme to Adwaita, changing the wallpaper and enabling compositing

2. Since blueman seems unable to grasp the concept of keeping bluetooth disabled on reboot, I have removed it from autostart. Now my rfkill'd bluetooth will stay dead unless I tell it to wake up :)

3. For some reason, the mdm+xfce combination does not remember screen brightness across reboots. To fix this, I have installed xbacklight, and adjusted the /etc/mdm/Init/Default and /etc/mdm/PostSession/Default scripts so that they use xbacklight to store and recall screen brightness.

Adjusted the end of /etc/mdm/Init/Default like this:
Code: Select all
#Recall previous screen brightness from /etc/xbacklight.bak
xbacklight -set $(cat /etc/xbacklight.bak)

exit 0


And adjusted the end of /etc/mdm/PostSession/Default like this:
Code: Select all
# Save screen brightness for next boot, with a little tweak to work around xbacklight's bugs
echo "$(xbacklight -get)+1" | bc > /etc/xbacklight.bak

exit 0


The latter scriptlet that saves screen brightness may sound positively weird, but that hack is made necessary by to the strange way xbacklight -set rounds screen brightness numbers.

To my own surprise, I have also discovered that my keyboard's screen brightness controls did not actually change screen brightness as probed by xbacklight. So I replaced them with my own equivalents, based on xbacklight -inc and xbacklight -dec.

4. While I was at it, I have also installed Bumblebee so as to take advantage of my laptop's Optimus setup. Works like a charm, although I don't like the way the ubuntu package tries to forcefully install the proprietary NVidia driver: nouveau works for me, so I really don't need to deal with that buggy stuff.

5. I also tweaked xscreensaver settings so that it turns off the screen (and by that I mean actually turning it off, not leaving the backlight on and displaying a black image which is perfectly useless as far as power consumption is concerned)

6. And finally, I have enabled translucent desktop icon labels and switched to xfce4-notifyd as a notification daemon (thanks for the tips guys !)
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby igor83 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 10:33 pm

hoppimike wrote:Here are mine!
Only small things :)

2) I change the shortcuts next to it to my three most used apps - Thunar, Firefox and Pidgin

(just drag them there from the Mint Menu and delete whatever you want too)


Yep, I made a shortcut to Firefox too, but also Thunar, with the exception that my Thunar shortcuts (there are two) open specific directories: 1. Videos 2. Music

Htpc, after all.

hoppimike wrote:3) I stop the bluetooth app initializing so it disappears from the tray


Ditto, except I also did some other things to kill bluetooth. I'm always reading about new ways to eliminate Bluetooth from Linux. It is so integrated into modern distros that there's more than one setting to kill it, seems to me at least. I thought removing it from Startup would be enough but then I found all these errors in some log file about Bluetooth.

hoppimike wrote:4) I install Electric Sheep as my screensaver as I'm really not too big on the default ones


I like slideshow since I have 14,ooo high res pictures in my collection.

hoppimike wrote:5) I edit the ~/.gtkrc-xfce and change line 2 from:

Code: Select all
XfdesktopIconView::label-alpha = 0


to

Code: Select all
XfdesktopIconView::label-alpha = 100


to give the icon text a nice translucent white border.


I wish there were a way to disable tooltips on the desktop in Xfce. Doesn't seem like anything works. So when the mouse pointer hovers over Firefox, a huge tooltip obscures one-fourth the screen (800x600) telling me the extremely important information that Firefox is an Internet browser and that the launcher was created on such-and-such a date and time. I spent a couple hours researching how to kill tooltips in Xfce, but nothing worked out so I just leave it for now. I hope a future version of Xfce either disables tooltips altogether or provides an option for it. I think that most people know what their apps are. They don't need reminders. Although that depends on one's age I guess. When I get to be ninety or so then I might feel differently.

hoppimike wrote:7) Some other minor tweaks like disabling some of the icon types on the desktop (like mounted filesystems)


Never done that one, because periodically I connect drives to perform a complete clone. Everyone should do this really; hard drives crash. I downloaded Clonezilla's little Linux distro recently--they came out with a new version a week or two ago--and plan to try it out tonight, now that I've got my Xfce desktop all nice and spiffy.

It would be a real heartache if the drive crashed after so many hours customizing the install. I always keep a couple drives spare just for cloning.

hoppimike wrote:Is there anything you do? ^^


Yeah I was working on Xfce for about 20 hrs give or take, tweaking and customizing everything. You know Thunar requires customization if you want to open a file or a directory with your media player. For me, that media player is ---> VLC <--- for both music and video. I was surprised that Thunar did not have "Open With..." built in. I can't agree with those who say Thunar is slow though. It copied 1.6 TB in just 3 hrs. The only real beef I have with Thunar is when moving files on the same partition, I suspect it actually does a delete and copy, rather than a real move, because moves take a long time with Thunar, whereas they are fast in Windows.

I like how Xfce automounts drives for me, that is nice. I don't recall installing pysdm either.

I got rid of the pop-up bottom panel. I know some people like it, but for me, the little tiny panel at the top of the screen is enough. I think the bottom panel is redundant, takes up too much space and also creates problems in applications like Firefox when you have a horizontal scrollbar.

One of the best tweaks I made was to add a "Show Desktop" shortcut to the top panel. That is such a time-saver. I was missing that, and I'm so glad I found out how to add it to the panel. Can be done through the gui, just click on Settings and Panel customization. Panel 0 is the top panel I think, and panel 1 is the bottom.

Took me a while to get the screensaver and slideshow configured on Xfce, as well, but at least it works.

Overall I'm sticking with Xfce because to me it seems the most stable, fast and functional option at this time. If you read the developer's notes, it is clear they didn't play games last release, they just polished and improved the product, which is what the users want, or at least that's what I want, stability and bug fixes, all the time. The most innovation I want in a desktop is hardware drivers and hardware support. I don't see anything wrong in "copying Windows" as it were, because Windows copied Mac, and Mac copied Xerox, and so on.

I could be wrong but I believe that htpc performance is better on an Xfce-based desktop. At any rate I do hope that Linux Mint Xfce continues as a flavor of Linux Mint, because I like the Linux Mint menu and other nice little features.
My desktop runs 64-bit Kubuntu 13.04, my htpc runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia Xfce, my answering machine runs 64-bit windows 7, and my laptop runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia KDE. Each seems suited to its purpose.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby jjaythomas on Fri Dec 07, 2012 3:14 am

Like to...

Start with base ISO and update and get backports (going to stick on ;mint13 awile :lol: ) Then get normal packages I install ect. then make remastersys (installable backup) onto a pen drive (be aware of 4GB limit thou :o )
or clonezilla (read limitations also)

JJay
P.S. I tinker and distro hop (break system alot :mrgreen: ) makes a reinstall alot easier!
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby igor83 on Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:13 pm

jjaythomas wrote:Like to...

Start with base ISO and update and get backports (going to stick on ;mint13 awile :lol: ) Then get normal packages I install ect. then make remastersys (installable backup) onto a pen drive (be aware of 4GB limit thou :o )
or clonezilla (read limitations also)

JJay
P.S. I tinker and distro hop (break system alot :mrgreen: ) makes a reinstall alot easier!


Yes, if you don't spend hours and hours customizing, then reinstall is definitely easier. I'm planning on sticking with my Xubuntu and Linux Mint Xfce for at least a couple o' years so I can reap the benefits of all the customizations.

I tried using clonezilla to clone Linux Mint Mate. The cloned drive would boot on the original computer, but when I connected the cloned drive to a different computer with the same motherboard model and BIOS revision, it would not boot. I don't understand why. In the end I reformatted and did a complete reinstall, but I chose a different flavor of Linux Mate, Xfce.
My desktop runs 64-bit Kubuntu 13.04, my htpc runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia Xfce, my answering machine runs 64-bit windows 7, and my laptop runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia KDE. Each seems suited to its purpose.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby kuckunniwi on Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:38 pm

Bruce McL wrote:I changed the pop-up messages by installing xfce4-notifyd. The new messages have rounded corners and don't go all the way to the edge of the screen. I had to uninstall notify-osd, and made sure that notification-daemon was uninstalled as well. I did all of this in Synaptic Package Manager. It takes a restart for the changes to show.
.


Great tip, Bruce McL! I also prefer these pop-up messages. Aside being nice, they aren't as buggy as the notify-osd ones, which disappeared when mouse hovered over them, but reappered afterwards, and had no close button, which made them rater annoying.

Just for the record, after installing xfce4-notifyd (and removing notify-osd and notification-daemon), upon reboot, I found my system windows had no minimize/maximize/close buttons. Right-click menus were no longer accessible, and window switcher was not present. After a quick google + Mint search, I found out the window manager was not running.

For anyone else who may encounter this problem, the solution is EXTREMELY simple:

1) Open a terminal (via menu, which should still work, or Alt+F2 > gnome-terminal)

2)
Code: Select all
xfwm4


Solved!

To make sure the solution persists and the window manager is still enabled upon next reboot, make sure "Save session for future logins" is marked before rebooting/switching off.
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Postby Future Science on Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:54 am

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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby Adelante on Fri Dec 28, 2012 11:24 am

I haven't had the tooltips problem in 14, but in LM 13 Xfce, it almost drove me insane.

You may have tried this already, but it's what worked for me:

Hidden files on.

Home>.gtkrc-2.0

Right click and open the file with gedit.

Add: gtk-enable-tooltips = 0

Save. Log out. Log in.

This also does away with panel tooltips.


I hope it helps.

igor83 wrote:I wish there were a way to disable tooltips on the desktop in Xfce. Doesn't seem like anything works. So when the mouse pointer hovers over Firefox, a huge tooltip obscures one-fourth the screen (800x600) telling me the extremely important information that Firefox is an Internet browser and that the launcher was created on such-and-such a date and time. I spent a couple hours researching how to kill tooltips in Xfce, but nothing worked out so I just leave it for now.
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Re: Initial tweaks when installing Mint 13 Xfce

Postby igor83 on Fri Dec 28, 2012 12:35 pm

Adelante wrote:I haven't had the tooltips problem in 14, but in LM 13 Xfce, it almost drove me insane.

You may have tried this already, but it's what worked for me:

Hidden files on.

Home>.gtkrc-2.0

Right click and open the file with gedit.

Add: gtk-enable-tooltips = 0

Save. Log out. Log in.

This also does away with panel tooltips.


I hope it helps.

igor83 wrote:I wish there were a way to disable tooltips on the desktop in Xfce. Doesn't seem like anything works. So when the mouse pointer hovers over Firefox, a huge tooltip obscures one-fourth the screen (800x600) telling me the extremely important information that Firefox is an Internet browser and that the launcher was created on such-and-such a date and time. I spent a couple hours researching how to kill tooltips in Xfce, but nothing worked out so I just leave it for now.


Thanks Adelante, I actually got the word via a private message from a user who will remain unnamed. I don't why he sent the PM rather than replying here, I don't know his reasons but feel obligated to preserve his privacy since that seems his intention.

PM wrote:This is what you do:

Tooltips (icon mouse flyovers) can be disabled by adding the line below to ~/.gtkrc-2.0. If that file doesn't exist in your home folder, then create it. Open the file and add the following line to it:

gtk-enable-tooltips = 0

save and close the file then reboot.



This worked for me too. You know, seems to me this should be default behavior everywhere, or if not, there should be a GUI to turn it off, because those tips can be awfully annoying after the first few days.

Xfce gave me a rocky start in the form of Xubuntu, which is such a mess, where to begin? I like Linux Mint's Xfce much, much better, although it'd be nice if there were more dark themes installed from the get-go rather than just one (dusk). I don't understand the logic in having twenty, thirty themes if they're all similar. Why not have half dark, half light? I find dusk unrefined, making certain things too dark to read. Dusk showed me there's such a thing as too dark. I know I can log onto xfce.org to look for more themes and backgrounds, but ten darks in the distro would be a nice touch, accommodating those of us with sensitive eyes and/or bright monitors.

Overall, I feel that Xfce is better than Mate at this time, though whether that will remain the case, I don't know. I haven't given KDE or Cinnamon a fair shake yet, so I withhold judgment, but am eager to try them out as well in the future, especially for desktop, never for htpc. For htpc, Xfce makes a lot of sense because it's light on resources, and the computer is only used for playing media. I like Xfce over Mate because Thunar lets me define custom actions, which is so very, very important, and the screensaver works better. I uninstall gnome-screensaver and install xscreensaver and then begins a long process of trying to iron out all the glitches that come with xscreensaver's slideshow, namely the font problem. I'm hoping the newer versions of xscreensaver fix these problems, and that the next release of Ubuntu includes the latest version of xscreensaver. Xscreensaver doesn't handle high-res pics well at all, showing just a portion of each picture rather than auto-scaling, and it seems to have problems with fonts, even when no text is to be displayed.
My desktop runs 64-bit Kubuntu 13.04, my htpc runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia Xfce, my answering machine runs 64-bit windows 7, and my laptop runs 64-bit Linux Mint Nadia KDE. Each seems suited to its purpose.
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