Custom config hints before starting configuring....

Hello everyone. I am a FVWM noob, and I’ve already started customizing my desktop. But before I do anything serious, I could use some help from a veteran, because, frankly, FVMW’s options are bewildering… even overwhelming.

What do I intend to do? Do a sort of Xfce + Openbox mix, but even lighter and faster. The bling could come later (maybe).
So my plans are:

  • vector image border - I heard this is possible, will have to read more about it
  • as few or no icons at all - can I have launchers with text on them?
  • get rid of all FVWM gray “visuals” - resize frame (did that), resize dimensions, switch window, …
  • find some sort of tray or use CDE-ish minimized apps
  • thumbnailing or other effects which slow everything down are out

So I want a desktop like this:

I’ll do all the digging required, but a guiding hand would be mighty helpful…

About the icons: yes, you can have only text on launchers. Thats pretty easy to to with FvwmButtons.

About the resize and move geometry, this will take rid of that:

HideGeometryWindow Always

You can use a tray like xystray, trayer, or one of the many other standalone programs that there are out there to do that. Then swallow it into a FvwmButtons. FvwmButtons can be used to make a taskbar, a buttons panels of whatever, and in adition you can swallow some external programs, for example a system try program. So, the icons (or text buttons) the tray, pager, and your taskbar problems can be solved with a single FvwmButtons. For the pager you can use a external program, but I would recommend you to use FvwmPager, that can be also swallowed into FvwmButtons.

For the bar on the bottoms you can use a second FvwmButtons, menus are manageable by fvwm and can be also be displayed when pressing a button in a FvwmButtons.

About the vector image borders. are you talking about window borders? I dont understand so well…

In any case, wellcome.

Yes, I was talking about window borders. I want to make a clean, simple config that should be very portable (think something like from Debian to NetBSD, and everything in between). And I don’t want to carry around icons and pixmaps. Plus they diminish the overall speed of the system.
So FVWM doesn’t have a systray… Maybe I’ll discard it (or find the most common one to swallow).

Thank you very much about the hints.
Things are a bit clearer now, and when I’ll have the time to do some RTFM’ing (about 2 weeks time), I should be able to start modelling (for now I’ve borrowed a config :slight_smile: ).

The general idea is to do as much as possible with FVWM, by itself. And maybe the most common X utilities (beware Xorg7.0 which will be modular…).

I dont know anything about vectorial graphic borders. I didnt either ever used pixmaps in my title bars because I personally preffer simplicity and functionality, keeping you decorations low on resources is good, overall if you plan to use them in so much different machines.

About the systray, if you really feel that it will be a good thing in your interface, you can always compile it for i386 and put it into your config folders (i did that with some of the programs that I use, like a hacked version of wmpop and htop) here: viewtopic.php?t=976&highlight=

I put that files into the .fvwm/ config directory so they are in the tarball, along with the configs (so you can see how I did it, is nothing too hard to do). You could add, as well, some checks (maybe system variables or the output of uname?) to use a different binary, depending if you are running freebsd or linux, so the config would be totally portable out of the box.

Anyway, my advice is to go without systray if you really dont need it, and, remember that almost no kde/qt application will work with that system tray applets. So that will make the system tray even more useless of what it already is. Feel free to ask about any doubt.

  • Regards.

EDIT: Note also that my config does not rely on any of the X utilities, the clock is in FvwmScript, the mail applets are wmpop (included into the config) and the temp and vol applets are also FvwmScript. I use a custom program to catch the thumbnails (included in the config but I dont use them either…) and fvwm-root (intead of any of the x tools) to set the background. I’m using the modular xorg 7.0-rc2, by the way.

I’m not really doing some sort of industrial install :stuck_out_tongue: It’s just that I would like to move to some new ground, and some of these new grounds require quite a bit of compile time(Gentoo, NetBSD)…
So FVWM is the best choice: it’s small, powerfull, and comes with almost everything I need.

Do you mean to say that all these “small” trays are not ICCCM compliant?
Nice theme, BTW :wink:

Some are, some aren’t. The one who’s not ICCCM compiant (at least not fully) are the kde/qt apps. For the rest of applications you will have no problem (should not).

Otherwise, kde applications will work as well as any other under fvwm (I use some, like amaroK, Kuser and Kaffeine), their only downside is that you will not have the tray icons (wich I don’t care because I dont want a tray).

Maybe the thing is different with amaroK and Kaffeine (they are not really kde applications, but only are based in qt and kdelibs) but I haven’t tried, so I don’t know.

  • Good luck in your quest. :wink: