Anyone else dig IceWM?
December 26, 2006 12:30pm CST
I think I may have found a home. For months, I'd switched back and forth between KDE and Gnome. I dabbled in XFCE, too, but none of them could really satisfy me. In Gnome, I hated how my choices were: A) Fading lines whenever I minimized or unminimized applications B) Wire frames whenever resizing windows C) "Empty" entries in my Firefox bookmarks In KDE, I hated how the removable drives and media settings were so complicated. In XFCE, I hated how it was difficult to edit the applications menu and how the "maximized" windows were never really maximized. Of course, each of the above had its own strengths, too. But IceWM seems to be where I'll find a home. I've tried Fluxbox and Enlightenment. Those just made no sense to me. IceWM gives you just enough point-and-click functionality but also some easy-to-understand text configuration files. For anyone who's interested in exploring IceWM, here are some tips from my last day's exploration: 1. If you launch Nautilus, be sure to launch it without it controlling the desktop (nautilus --no-desktop). Otherwise, you won't be able to log out of IceWM without explicitly killing nautilus from the terminal (killall nautilus) first. 2. If you use Gnome applications, you may notice they appear extremely ugly. IceWM won't automatically inherit the preferred theme you specified in Gnome before. So launch gnome-theme-manager and define it again. 3. Themes--there's a package in the repositories called icewm-themes. It has tons of themes, about 80 of them. Most are crap, though. If you want good themes, go to http://themes.freshmeat.net/browse/925/ I would highly recommend IceBuntu and IceHybrid. 4. Don't bother with the GUI frontends for configuring IceWM (those are also in the repositories--iceme, icepref, iceconf, etc.). Believe it or not, they're actually more confusing than hand-editing the actual configuration files. Before you do anything, copy all the files from /etc/X11/icewm to /home/username/.icewm You can modify those config files later, and I think they're pretty self-explanatory (in the Preferences file, 1 means true; 0 means false). 5. Any time you change a configuration file, you can go to the arrow next to Log Out and restart IceWM or you can change a theme, and the settings will take effect. 6. If you want to define keyboard shortcuts for volume controls up and down (and mute--which doesn't toggle mute/unmute; it just turns the volume to 0), you should install aumix through the repositories. The keys config file from /etc/X11/icewm you copied over has the up and down controls defined already. In the end, it's a lot of fun, and I think I'll stick with it. Of course, I don't have any native IceWM programs (are there any?). I use Rhythmbox for music, Thunderbird for email, Firefox for web, and Thunar for file management. Anyone know how to shut down from IceWM without logging out first? (And I don't mean sudo shutdown -h now from the terminal)