October 11, 2010

Openbox and Ubuntu

A few days ago I got bored of waiting 5-10 secs for my Ubuntu to load (and a little bit more for my KDE desktop). I never liked lxde/xfce/IceWWM or any of those, they were too "different" and if you install those, you end up having a LOT of programs that you'll probably never use... (I had enough with all the gnome+kde stuff). Don' get me wrong, I DO enjoy the looks of what you can do with Gnome or KDE, but it's just too slow sometimes...

Then I came into OpenBox, I did know about it but never tried it, I said, well, let's see how it goes.

sudo apt-get install openbox obmenu

That made it all. Login in a OpenBox session, nothing there! It was instantaneous!!! There was nothing to load xD. Just a menu that pops up wherever you right click on the desktop. This menu has a really useful terminal and a web browser (default is firefox, I always recommend chromium/google chrome), modify it using obmenu to add your favorite programs and stuff.

Note: if you're under a wireless connection, execute "nm-applet &" in a terminal.

But you might want a panel, so you go and do

sudo apt-get install tint2

That's cool, configure it? Sure, download this magic tool TintWizard. (It's on my google site)

What now? You want another not-so-empty wallpaper? Sure! Do this...

sudo apt-ge install feh

How it works? feh it's a image viewer... Without too many explanations, just do this

feh --bg-scale "route/to/your/background/file.jpg"

Note: It doesn't have to be a .jpg file, it can be any image extension.

Right now you might want the whole lightweight thing xD. (I know I did) So... Basically, a filemanager, some system info and a media player.

sudo apt-get install pcmanfm conky audacious

There you go... Everything you need, so far. But you don't wanna open everything every time you login, right? Go to ~/.config/openbox/, or create it if for some reason it doesn't exist, then edit/create the file autostart.sh and add this at the end

tint2 &
nm-applet &
conky &
eval `cat $HOME/.fehbg` &

Don't forget to put the last &!!!

PD: I recommend GOOGLE for howtos about conky, as well as many configuration files. Good luck!

Enjoy!

1 comment:

Neil McLeish said...

Nice description, thanks.

I have been looking for a way to streamline my netbook and this fits the bill, except for one small thing: On running tint2conf my panel icons have grown to a silly size (for a netbook)
I cannot find any way in the conf of reducing this. The systray_icon_size param is there and no problem with that, but the conf too won't accept a value for task_icon_size, for example.
Any hint as to how to change this please? I could not find info for icon size on the Google site.

Many thanks in advance,

Neil.