GNOME 46 - feature free computing

I really cannot understand what has happened to Linux community over the years.
Can someone explain to me what is the point of GNOME nawadays?

  • It’s completely featureless
  • What they mean by distraction free except being featureless?
  • Is this a special needs tool for Genration Z pushed for everybody?
  • I’ve seen some comments about Gnome 46 as beeing snappier - It’s very basic it should be ultrafast, but its the slowest & heaviest environment.
  • Try using Nautilus for anything LOL - maybe the point is to force people to CLI
  • The only thing which GNOME did that was positive was the fury of its users and starting other projects such as MATE, Cinnamon desktop, Ubuntu Unity & LXDE.

So, why would you ever use GNOME?

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I use Gnome 45 on my Slowroll host, it’s fast enough but I did notice Gnome 46 being snappier in a TW VM.
It’s bloated when it comes to resource usage for what it offers, but I like that most of it works out of the box without any bugs.
Also I just prefer Gnome’s OOTB keyboard oriented workflow to KDE’s or Cinnamon’s (my previous DE) traditional wiper motion to switch apps.

I do agree the natural progression is tiling window managers and configuring everything myself. Don’t know if I would ever have the time to do that to save a few hundred MBs of RAM when Chrome with all of 3 tabs open is hogging around 2GB of memory and VSCode with 4 tabs and some light scripts is using the same. Compared to that the less than 500 MB used by gnome-shell is not that egregious.

Been using GNOME for a long time, it just works for me… Only thing at the moment for me with 46 is laggy terminal, but that seems to be an Nvidia issue…

First of all… I like Gnome and has used it for a long time. Gnome 46 is the desktop I now use on my main computer, a Radxa Rock 5B under aarch64 Tumbleweed.

So, with that said… Gnome seems to be the bloated and dumbed down desktop that quite a lot of computer users are looking for. Both Windows and macOS are additional proof of that. “I want everything but I want it to be simple.” Gnome seems to be designed to fit that demographic, more or less.

But I’m a minimalist, a long time Linux advocate that doesn’t avoid terminals, and fairly close to being a power user. So why do I use Gnome? The answer is easy. All my computers have been used by the other members of my household. Having a system that seems simple and yet is different enough to avoid mix-ups with other systems is what has worked best for them. Gnome is well suited for that, It is designed to be just that, as noted earlier.

Now that my family situation has changed drastically it is perhaps time to reconsider my choices, especially as having too much bloat doesn’t work well with the (solar powered off grid) future I’m hoping for. Gnome is closest to the system I would like to have and now that the sufficient level of bloat has been achieved it would be nice to see some optimization. Gnome 46 is a step in that direction, imho.

I am eagerly waiting for panthor and aarch64 Slowroll, but quite happy as it is.

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I use GNOME and have been happy with it for years.

My purpose for using a computer is to use applications, so ultimately, the DE environment is secondary. I like GNOME because it’s clean and stays (mostly) out of my way.

But here’s the thing: It’s a personal choice and preference. If you don’t like it, don’t use it. Use something you like. :slight_smile:

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OK guys, I see you like Gnome.
I don’t agree with comparison of Windows or MacOS with Gnome as those are far superior environments, especially MacOS which is what clearly Gnome is trying to copy.

In my opinion the biggest flaw is Nautilus, it has been so dumbed down that its virtually unusable and must be replaced with Nemo just after fresh OS install.

The other annoying thing is that Gnome renamed all apps and gave them common names.
Is really current user pool so mentally limited that you have to call Nautilus a File Manager and Gedit a Text Editor etc etc?

KDE Plasma is nice but it went to the other end of exreme overload.

Am I just old grumpy fart, which is stuck loving MATE and XFCE?


@Zuse The grumpy comment :wink: I also run Hyprland…

Nautilus works fine for me, I can connect to all my machines over sftp. But I use the command line a lot more than GUI apps…

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There’s no need to denigrate people who use something other than what you prefer.

There’s nothing “mentally limited” about having names for applications that make sense.

You don’t like it - find, use what you like. If MATE and XFCE do it for you, then that’s great - that’s what open source is about: having choices and using what you like. There’s no need to look down your nose at people who make a different choice or have different preferences.

BTW, I also like pineapple on pizza - and it drives me nuts when people who don’t like it think nobody should ever have that option available to them either. Your tastes are your own - wouldn’t life be boring if we all liked the same thing all the time?


@hendersj a person after my own heart, love Pineapple on Pizza…

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I’m always amused that there are people out there who have to declare their choice the one and true only “right” choice, and declare that anyone who thinks differently is somehow inferior.

Use the DE you like, eat the kind of pizza you like. Personal preferences are going to vary. :slight_smile:

I agree, especially about the pineapple. But the question of the OP still remains. What is the reason for Gnome’s existence?

@hukka bit like asking why openSUSE exists…

Well… It is indeed a good thing to figure out the answer, isn’t it?

Because someone wanted to create it. Beyond that, you’d have to talk to the GNOME developers.

Having users while developing further is a significant part of the equation, imho. Active participation by users (and critics) is probably a necessity too. Besides, what harm would thinking about it do?

The harm comes from people who decide to denigrate those who make choices other than what they prefer.

The constant flame wars about “what the best DE is” are tiresome at best.

That’s not to say there isn’t room for constructive debate. But it’s long been my experience that discussions about the “best” anything degenerate into nothing particularly constructive, and get needlessly personal about the individuals’ choices.

That’s why I made the joke about pineapple on pizza.

Here in these user support forums, we’re not going to change the GNOME developers’ minds about how things should be done. If that’s a discussion that interests you, there are GNOME communities specifically devoted to providing design feedback to the GNOME developers. And those developers generally are interested in feedback, both positive and negative.

But the question “what is the reason for GNOME’s existence” is nothing more than an existential question along the lines of “why are we here?”.

I’ve watched these debates rage on for years. Every single time, it degenerates into a discussion about how GNOME users are “mentally deficient” or KDE users are “snobs” (or vice-versa, depending on who’s engaging in the name calling).

Honestly, these never-ending debates escalating into flamewars are nothing but a drain on everybody, and I’ve yet to see one be actually constructive.

Heh. Maybe I’m the “old curmudgeon” here. So I’ll just remind folks that the code of conduct for the openSUSE project is a real thing, and following it is something the staff here expects every user to abide by.


@hendersj - I understand what you are safeguarding and fully respect that. Being new to this forum (due to a recent distro-hop) I don’t have the historical experience of the debates here. The question of the OP just sparked my interest and left me wondering. Where I live, both physically and digitally, where the furthest edge of the Linux community passes into complete wilderness, the experience is different and less conflict-ridden. The norm here is rather that of solitude or even isolation. Silence while using whatever is available. Regrettably, that furthers my curiosity.

It would have been nice to see other users exchange more about their experiences with Gnome. It is something I rarely get to see. But hopefully there will be more chances to do so further into the future. In other threads.

FInally, if I may… You are indeed being the grumpy old man here, a bit at least and rightly so, but I still have the nagging feeling that you are my junior regarding age. I’m 58. Age has in no way diminished my curiosity. Feel free to remind me if I get too tedious, though.

@hukka nothing really to say about GNOME, it just works… openSUSE follows upstream so what you see is what you get, switcherooctl integration for dual gpu setups (a must for three of my systems), don’t think Plasma has that (yet)? I have a few extensions added appindicator, ddterm, round corners and user themes.

We see way more Plasma related issues in the Forum, one could say that’s because there are more consumers of that DE, or is it because GNOME users don’t have any issues with the DE… who knows…

For me it’s just a tool to do what I want to do…

pinxi -Fxxz

  Kernel: 6.8.1-1-default arch: x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc v: 13.2.1
  Desktop: GNOME v: 46.0 tk: GTK v: 3.24.41 wm: gnome-shell dm: GDM
    Distro: openSUSE Tumbleweed 20240329
  Type: Desktop System: Hewlett-Packard product: HP Z440 Workstation v: N/A
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  Mobo: Hewlett-Packard model: 212B v: 1.01 serial: <superuser required>
    part-nu: 3SB04US#ABA UEFI: Hewlett-Packard v: M60 v02.61 date: 03/23/2023
  Info: 18-core model: Intel Xeon E5-2695 v4 bits: 64 type: MT MCP
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  Speed (MHz): avg: 1224 high: 2100 min/max: 1200/3300 cores: 1: 2100
    2: 1200 3: 1200 4: 1200 5: 1200 6: 1200 7: 1200 8: 1200 9: 1200 10: 1200
    11: 1200 12: 1200 13: 1200 14: 1200 15: 1200 16: 1200 17: 1200 18: 1200
    19: 1200 20: 1200 21: 1197 22: 1200 23: 1200 24: 1200 25: 1200 26: 1200
    27: 1200 28: 1200 29: 1200 30: 1197 31: 1200 32: 1200 33: 1200 34: 1200
    35: 1200 36: 1200 bogomips: 150897
  Flags: avx avx2 ht lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx
  Device-1: NVIDIA GP104GL [Tesla P4] driver: nvidia v: 550.67 arch: Pascal
    pcie: speed: 2.5 GT/s lanes: 16 bus-ID: 02:00.0 chip-ID: 10de:1bb3
  Device-2: NVIDIA TU117GLM [Quadro T400 Mobile] driver: nvidia v: 550.67
    arch: Turing pcie: speed: 8 GT/s lanes: 16 ports: active: none off: DP-2
    empty: DP-1,DP-3 bus-ID: 03:00.0 chip-ID: 10de:1fb2
  Device-3: NVIDIA GK208B [GeForce GT 710] vendor: ZOTAC driver: vfio-pci
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  Display: x11 server: X.Org v: 21.1.11 with: Xwayland v: 23.2.4
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  API: EGL v: 1.5 platforms: device: 0 drv: nvidia device: 1 drv: nvidia
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  API: OpenGL v: 4.6.0 compat-v: 4.5 vendor: nvidia mesa v: 550.67
    glx-v: 1.4 direct-render: yes renderer: NVIDIA T400/PCIe/SSE2
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  Device-1: Intel C610/X99 series HD Audio vendor: Hewlett-Packard
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  Device-2: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8211/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet
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  IF: enp8s0 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
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  IF: enp10s0 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
  Device-5: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8211/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet
    driver: r8169 v: kernel pcie: speed: 2.5 GT/s lanes: 1 port: 2000
    bus-ID: 0b:00.0 chip-ID: 10ec:8168
  IF: enp11s0 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
  IF-ID-1: br0 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: unknown mac: <filter>
  IF-ID-2: br1 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: unknown mac: <filter>
  Local Storage: total: 1.39 TiB used: 468.38 GiB (33.0%)
  ID-1: /dev/nvme0n1 vendor: Silicon Power model: SPCC M.2 PCIe SSD
    size: 953.87 GiB speed: 31.6 Gb/s lanes: 4 serial: <filter> temp: 27.9 C
  ID-2: /dev/sda vendor: Western Digital model: WDS500G2B0A-00SM50
    size: 465.76 GiB speed: 6.0 Gb/s serial: <filter>
  ID-1: / size: 60 GiB used: 30.46 GiB (50.8%) fs: btrfs dev: /dev/nvme0n1p2
  ID-2: /boot/efi size: 247.9 MiB used: 53 MiB (21.4%) fs: vfat
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p1
  ID-3: /home size: 99.95 GiB used: 67.49 GiB (67.5%) fs: xfs
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p3
  ID-4: /opt size: 60 GiB used: 30.46 GiB (50.8%) fs: btrfs
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  ID-5: /var size: 60 GiB used: 30.46 GiB (50.8%) fs: btrfs
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p2
  Alert: No swap data was found.
  System Temperatures: cpu: 27.0 C mobo: N/A gpu: nvidia temp: 52 C
  Fan Speeds (rpm): N/A gpu: nvidia fan: 40%
  Memory: total: 128 GiB note: est. available: 125.7 GiB used: 4.84 GiB (3.8%)
  Processes: 594 Power: uptime: 14h 37m wakeups: 0 Init: systemd v: 255
    default: graphical
  Packages: pm: flatpak pkgs: 17 Compilers: clang: 18.1.2
    alt: 15/15.0/15.0/16/16.0/16.0/17 gcc: 13.2.1 alt: 12 Shell: Bash v: 5.2.26
    running-in: gjs pinxi: 3.3.33-6
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Plasma has lots of pretty buttons and switches for people to “change” things in an easy manner.

As it currently exists, it’s basically always going to require more “support” than GNOME is, because the GNOME developers have chosen not to include all of those pretty buttons and switches to help you deviate from the defaults.

Just the nature of the beast. For good, or for Ill.

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