Are you sick of Gnome? KDE? or XFCE? Do you have a very old machine that you want to run Linux on, but the newer Desktop Environments are just too clunky? Well thanks to Linux, you have a choice of which Desktop Environment or Window Manager you want to use.
Personally I use Fluxbox as my Window Manager, and have had a great experience with it on Fedora. So, I decided with the recent release of openSUSE 11.3, I’d give it a shot on the new distribution release.
First start by installing openSUSE 11.3 onto my personal computer, I opted for the minimal X install so that my machine wouldn’t be cluttered with un-needed RPMs.
After the installation, boot into the default Window Manager TWM. Next add the Window Manager, and X11:Utilities repository so that you’ll have access to Fluxbox, feh and a few other great X applications.
The Display Manager I use is lxdm, previously it was SLIM but SLIM seems to be pretty much abandoned upstream, so I decided to support the LXDE movement.
You can add the repositories by doing the following:
sudo zypper ar -f http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/X11:/windowmanagers/openSUSE_11.3/ openSUSE 11.3 WindowManagerssudo zypper ar -f http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/X11:/Utilities/openSUSE_11.3/ openSUSE 11.3 X11 Utilities
Now, you can install fluxbox, lxdm and feh by running:
sudo zypper in fluxbox feh lxdm
You’ll have to configure fluxbox to be your new default Window Manager, and configure LXDM to be your default Display Manager. This can be done via the sysconfig yast2 module, or by modifying the following files in /etc/sysconfig/windowmanager & displaymanager. You want the following settings in /etc/sysconfig/displaymanager:
And the following setting in /etc/sysconfig/windowmanager:
Once done, log out and you should see see a nice new LXDM installation. Log in the fluxbox fluxbox Window Manager. Later I’ll on customizing Fluxbox and LXDM.