Questions about the project and the distribution - obviously no support questions here please
- Level 20
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Petermint wrote:Last time I used XFCE, I ended up replacing the file manager
That was a bad mistake to begin with. The file manager isn't simply an application; it's the very backbone of your desktop environment.
Even installing another full-blown file manager next to the existing one is bad, because that tends to start behaving like a backbone as well, which creates conflicts. If you want a second file manager, install a stand-alone one like Gnome Commander or Double Commander.
Petermint wrote:it would have to be ten years old to need the lower resource usage.
Not so. Xfce is ideal for noticeably increasing the performance of much younger computers; this is useful in almost any case in which one doesn't need bling-bling or advanced features.
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Petermint wrote:How do LXDE and MATE compare? LXDE works well in Raspbian.
Unlike Xfce or Mate, LXDE actually IS genuinely lightweight. It's much, much faster than Mate or Xfce, which just pretend to be lightweight. And it actually has a good file manager. Lubuntu is probably the best way to use it IMO.
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I regularly install Mint w/ xfce4 on older computers, most are early dual core processors from the 2005 to 2010 era. The cpus are typically AMD 3800+ or similar, or Intel Core Duo. These computers can't run all the GUI bling offered by today's advanced DEs.
xfce works well on them. It's reliable. Its traditional applications menu structure is so simple you don't need to train Windows end users how to use it.
Most only have 2 gig of ram, yet xfce rarely goes into the swap file for typical office and personal tasks like email, web surfing with a few tabs open, watching youtube, etc.
Xfce isn't perfect... I find it's best if I set up a new user's desktop for them in advance (no one understands why you must issue chattr +i to lock your icons in place!)
But overall I'd highly recommend xfce when machine resources are limited.
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Thane of Fife wrote:I'm curious - what is it that makes Xfce lightweight?
- Requires very little RAM, but most of all, VRAM.
- Comes with the Thunar file manager which is simple and so very fast.
- By default,
xfwm4 handles basic compositing.
xfce4-terminal is very fast, while still maintaining configurability.
xfce4-panel is also very fast, yet still very configurable.
- Other programs which come with XFCE tend to be very light.
IMO, with XFCE, less is more.