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Thread: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

  1. #1
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    Default Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    OK, Here's the deal:

    (pre-ramble)
    I installed SusE 13.1 (i586) on a Celeron 2.4Ghz, 1GB RAM, 30GB HDD system. It runs very sluggishly, unlike my last install (SuSE 11.0 (i586) on a P3-1Ghz, 1GB RAM system, which runs very nicely).
    I'm a distro hopper desperate to finally once and for all separate myself from Windows. (I've been a software developer for 22+ yrs, and am sick and tired of everything Windows related). I've been tinkering with Linux since Slackware 3.5 (1997), and have tried out 25+ flavors-to-Sunday different Linux distro's.
    I really liked SusE 11.0, and decided that SuSe is the flavor for me. , anyway...
    I burned the DVD, did a media integrity check on it, tested my RAM, installed 13.1 , without a hitch.

    ***Bottom line: KDE is just too heavy for this old desktop (CPU runs @ 75-100% all the time)
    *** I simply want to install either LXDE or XFCE instead.
    Well, nothing in Linux is ever straight forward (except the install process, in most cases).
    I haven't looked at SuSE since I installed 11.0 back in 2008, but I was fairly familiar with the interface.

    SO, I went into YaST , to the package management/software install tool , and clicked on packages, and saw XFCE as an option (didn't see one for LXDE), however, I found no straightforward, intuitive way of knowing what to select. (In the install process you could simply choose XFCE in the "Other desktops" , and the default packages would be chosen).
    What doesn't this exist in the package manager ??
    ( I also noticed that in HELP>SYMBOLS, all of the icons that used to show up in SuSE 11.0 for install, update, delete, etc. are all blank! Not much help there! Hard to believe this bug slipped by in such a critical part of the Software Manager!).

    I saw an XFCE package present, but, I know I don't have to select every single item in it to get a default XFCE desktop (just like not every item is selected in the KDE desktop). Why isn't there something simple like "Click here to install the default XFCE desktop, idiot!" - lol.

    Yes, I scoured the internet and some postings in here, but I'm not a trust fund baby with beaucoup bucks, and endless amounts of free time on my hands...
    I saw someone say to click on the "gear" on your login screen to select XFCE, but I don't even have a login screen.

    So what is the easiest, simplest way to just change my desktop from KDE to XFCE or LXDE ?

    PS-2 yrs. ago I did try to change desktops in Lubuntu 11.04 from reading forum postings on their website and the results were disastrous! , and the upgrade from Lubuntu 11.04 --> 12.04 was even worse.

    Part of the reason I've never completely transitioned from Windows to Linux is due to the plethora of "simple little problems" that take a ridiculous amt. of time to solve, and the sometimes disastrous outcomes that occur.

    Yes, there are cute little completely functional distro's like Puppy, Lubuntu (if you don't try to change the DE), Mint, etc. , but when it all shook out, I liked the SuSE distro best.

    Can anybody help?

    Thanks,
    brick.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Addendum: I also noticed that there are duplicate/quadruplicate entries for each item in the package! Something I never saw in 11.0. I checked the "technical" tab to make sure I wasn't missing anything, and sure enough, they are true duplicates. What's up with that?
    They don't say "dev" or "debug" or anything like that either. Has the Software Manager changed that much? Is this a bug?


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Even on old hardware CPU should not be that high when idle

    Run top and see if you got a run away process

    open a konsole and type top

    It may be the Nepomuk indexer it takes forever to index the file system and eats CPU for breakfast. Turn it off

    Open Configure Desktop select Desktop search and uncheck enable. Note that if left on eventually it will finish and CPU usage should be reduced. Also if you limit what it indexes it helps because by default It wants to index the universe

    You might want to go here if you need you hand held for searching for software

    software.opensuse.org: Search

    In addition what is the video card? proper drivers can make a difference

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Quote Originally Posted by brickheap View Post
    Addendum: I also noticed that there are duplicate/quadruplicate entries for each item in the package! Something I never saw in 11.0. I checked the "technical" tab to make sure I wasn't missing anything, and sure enough, they are true duplicates. What's up with that?
    They don't say "dev" or "debug" or anything like that either. Has the Software Manager changed that much? Is this a bug?

    There was a bug but I thought it was corrected. Did you do an Update?

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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Quote Originally Posted by brickheap View Post
    So what is the easiest, simplest way to just change my desktop from KDE to XFCE or LXDE ?
    In Yast software management, click the "View" at the top left, and select "Patterns".

    Then, in Patterns, select "XFCE base system" and "XFCE desktop environment" for XFCE, or select "LXDE desktop environment" for LXDE.
    openSUSE Leap 15.3; KDE Plasma 5.18.6;

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    On 2013-12-13 04:46, brickheap wrote:
    > SO, I went into YaST , to the package management/software install tool ,
    > and clicked on packages, and saw XFCE as an option (didn't see one for


    You have to search on "patterns", instead of packages. There should be
    one for xfce.

    --
    Cheers / Saludos,

    Carlos E. R.
    (from 12.3 x86_64 "Dartmouth" at Telcontar)

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Quote Originally Posted by gogalthorp View Post
    Even on old hardware CPU should not be that high when idle

    Run top and see if you got a run away process

    open a konsole and type top

    It may be the Nepomuk indexer it takes forever to index the file system and eats CPU for breakfast. Turn it off

    Open Configure Desktop select Desktop search and uncheck enable. Note that if left on eventually it will finish and CPU usage should be reduced. Also if you limit what it indexes it helps because by default It wants to index the universe

    You might want to go here if you need you hand held for searching for software

    software.opensuse.org: Search

    In addition what is the video card? proper drivers can make a difference
    Ok, I ran top and the CPU was idling between 1%-20%(if I moved my mouse around a lot). This was different from last night when I performed the install. Nepomuk wasn't doing much at all, it must have finished up, as you suggested. Thanks for the heads up on that.
    I used the System Monitor (KSysGuard) last night to determine the CPU usage. Interestingly enough when I ran KSysGuard again, the CPU jumped to 100%, while TOP showed 50%.
    Conclusion: KSysGuard shows DOUBLE the CPU usage that TOP shows, and it's eating up the CPU cycles! - lol

    The Search you suggested above is a lot nicer than the Software Manager (which I used extensively in SuSe 11.0).

    My video card (or lack of one) is the stock Intel i845 or 945? (using i915 drivers) onboard graphics. Unfortunately, this MOBO is so cheap they didn't even install a PCI-16 or AGP socket to plug a graphics card into.
    Maybe, that's why my P3-1GHz runs so smoothly. It has a 128MB AGP dedicated graphics card in it. Could also explain why KSysGuard is taking up so much CPU time. The onboard graphics card uses only RAM.

    Thanks,
    brick.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    With that weak of a video I think I might try turning desktop effects off. For the most part it is just eye candy

    Again in Configure Desktop open desktop effects and turn it off. Might help some

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    Thanks for your all's help! Much appreciated.

    "Patterns" of all things! Never thought to look there, and never had a reason to. lol
    In all my monkeying around with Linux youda thought... oh well.
    The old, "can't see the forest for the trees".... kinda thing.

    Thanks guys!

    brick.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Does changing a Desktop Environment really have to be that difficult?

    On 2013-12-13 06:36, brickheap wrote:
    >
    > Thanks for your all's help! Much appreciated.
    >
    > "Patterns" of all things! Never thought to look there, and never had a
    > reason to. lol
    > In all my monkeying around with Linux youda thought... oh well.
    > The old, "can't see the forest for the trees".... kinda thing.


    It is called "progress" :-P {kidding smiley}

    --
    Cheers / Saludos,

    Carlos E. R.
    (from 12.3 x86_64 "Dartmouth" at Telcontar)

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