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Thread: For Dummies please.....

  1. #1

    Default For Dummies please.....

    As some of you know, I am a bit of an idiot..... I am lately getting a bit confused (again!). Could someone tell or point me to somewhere in village simpleton terms, the difference between
    DM (Desktop Manager)
    DE (Desktop Environment ?)
    WM (Window manager)

    and where does Compiz fit in with all this?

    FWIW, I am happily running 11.1 with KDE 3.5.1 and compiz.
    I have set up my girlfriend as a user, defaulting her log-in to XFCE.
    Whilst experimenting with xfce I found I quite like it.
    Some random fiddling about and googling and I find I can issue:

    Code:
    xfwm4 --replace
    from within my KDE/Compiz GUI
    and I am in XFWM, no compiz which is great, as some of my Wine Apps don't like to play nice with compiz.
    I have never got compiz-fusion, compiz-switch, fusion-Icon or compiz-manager to work reliably but, if I get the icon in the panel, and right click, xfwm IS an option there, but refuses to do the right thing.. However as the wee command is so simple I am happy with that!.. I might even make a desktop or panel icon/button for it myself.

    openSUSE 13.1 (kernel 3.11.6-4-desktop) /KDE 4.11.2/NVidia 6150/304.116driver/AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600/4Gb DDR2 RAM

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    1,036

    Default Re: For Dummies please.....

    Quote Originally Posted by wakou View Post
    As some of you know, I am a bit of an idiot..... I am lately getting a bit confused (again!). Could someone tell or point me to somewhere in village simpleton terms, the difference between
    DM (Desktop Manager)
    DE (Desktop Environment ?)
    WM (Window manager)

    and where does Compiz fit in with all this?
    I'll have a go, and as always stand ready to be corrected:

    KDE, Gnome, XFCE etc are desktop environments. You can install two or more of them concurrently and switch between them but they come with different sets of default applications for various standard tasks and your menus might get a bit cluttered by having several file managers, CD burners, etc.
    Compiz, Metacity, and Kwin are window managers. They provide the basic window operations as well as special effects (from exploding or wobbly windows to the famous cube). They can be themed for their overall appearance, and further modified by using specific window decorations (as provided by Emerald under Compiz, Aurorae under Kwin, etc).

    Desktop Manager??? Pass.
    Günter

    Desk: openSUSE 12.3, KDE4.10.2, Intel i3, 8Gb, Kingston 64Gb SSD, 2 SATA, dual monitors.
    Lap: Toshiba Satellite L300, openSUSE 12.3, KDE4.10.2, Intel C2D 2.1GHz CPU, 4Gb, Intel X3100 video.

  3. #3
    palladium NNTP User

    Default Re: For Dummies please.....

    > DM (Desktop Manager)
    > DE (Desktop Environment ?)
    > WM (Window manager)


    don't feel bad (you are running openSUSE *and* have a girlfriend using
    it, so you are NO Dummy)--go to wikipedia.org and look up "Desktop
    Manager" it automatically redirects you to "Desktop Environment", so
    to understand DE *or* DM, see:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desktop_manager

    for WM, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Window_manager
    for info on 21 different WMs, see:
    http://www.linuxlinks.com/article/20...wManagers.html


    > and where does Compiz fit in with all this?


    Compiz is one of several WMs

    it works kinda like the below (very simplified) building *up* from the
    hardware are different 'layers' of software which operate on top of
    the hardware:


    Desktop Manager/Environment (DM/DE) [KDE, etc]
    Window Manager (WM) [Compiz, Enlightenment, etc]
    Operating System (OS) [Linux, BSD, MacOS, OS/2, etc]
    Basic Input/Output System (BIOS) [Phoenix, Award, etc]
    Hardware [IBM, DELL, Compaq, Hewlett-Packard, Acer, etc]


    some folks don't realize that you can (and many do) operate in a
    Graphical User Interface (GUI) X Window environment without any DE at
    all....you _can_ run in a WM and find the true meaning of speed..

    you will have to get along with less glitz and glamor, however...yet,
    it can be 'pretty'...

    have a good look at SOAD Linux: Possibly the most light weight live CD
    around, a Russian effort based on openSUSE-11.1 and Enlightenment WM
    is SOAD (SuSE On A Diet) Linux: http://sda.scwlab.com/soad_linux.html

    --
    palladium
    Have a lot of fun..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    15,617

    Default Re: For Dummies please.....

    O yes, memories memories.

    Without a WM, the X-server will still display your windows, but without any border, title bar, etc. It is the WM that sits along the path between your program (the X-client) and the X-server and adds all the niceties to the windows.

    The DE is the software that builds for you the Desktop Metaphore. Desktop metaphor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. It uses the WM and the X-server to display all sorrts of things we could not dream of in the begin of X. That is why the latest DEs ask for sophisticated WMs.
    Henk van Velden

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