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Sunday, February 6th, 2011, 3:40 pm


Today I set up my alternative machine in a way which enables me to get the best of GNOME and KDE. It was set up in a way that I never tried before. Back in 2001 or thereabouts I would have gnome-panel imported into my desktop session (from another computer) and I repeated this type of practice locally around 2005-2007 when I wanted my KDE desktop to also have gnome-panel and therefore allow easy access to GNOME-side administration tools or applications. Today I tried something different altogether by installing KDE alongside GNOME and then running plasma-desktop in GNOME, which obviously imported panels and the background utilities, including 2 folderview plasmoids that import directories over SSH (the remote server on which I run workloads).

The bottom line is, there need not be a strict choice between GNOME and KDE. Both are compatible with one another and can run alongside one another in the very same session. In this case, it’s a dual-head machine with free graphics drivers and I might post some screenshots soon. This helps debunk the myth of incompatible desktop environments.

3 Responses to “GNOME From KDE vs KDE From GNOME”

  1. Bender Says:

    And it is getting even better when tools like oxygen-gtk are introduced to make everything look the same. Though i personally stay away from mixing desktop environments for performance and memory usage purposes. Despite that i’d love to see some GNOME applications ported to qt/kde (gimp, inkscape, firefox, google-chrome).

  2. twitter Says:

    Free software plays nicely with other free software but Plasma and Dbus have presented me with some challenges. I like to run just a few bits of KDE and Gnome on E16 because I like E16′s light weight and its pagers. This also avoids starting the entire framework of each so that the system performs excellently. Try “nautilus –no-desktop” and “gnome-panel” sometimes in another window manager if you like most of Gnome. Cairo Dock is very nice and E16 has its own systray. There are many light window managers that can serve as a host for Gnome and KDE. In the past, I’ve used Window Maker, OLVWM, After Step and Black Box. I’m experimenting with other light window managers in Virtual Box. Sadly, KDE 4′s plasmoids did away with the kicker and Gnome panel has not been quite as nice. Dbus, which has replaced DCOP and Bonabo seems to be less stable and heavier than either. I suspect this has something to do with ACPI.

    What you are doing should work well. Gnome Panel still acts like a nice X11 application. You can also stick a full blown Gnome session in a single virtual desktop if you like, by starting nautilus and then using your other window manager’s menus to “unstick” the desktop background. It may also take a geometry argument, so that it is not the same size as your other desktops but I have not played with that. Gnome Panel is a little hard headed about placement, but you can easily run it in other window managers. It’s the KDE plasmoids that are now stumping me. It seems like an all or nothing proposition was required to achieve smooth scaling but parts of applications achieve this outside of the a full blown KDE session, so there’s hope that I might figure things out.

    Some of the stability problems may be my own. A rebuild when Squeze goes stable will probably fix most of my bugs on my upgraded 64 bit Lenny box. Several fresh 32 bit installs had almost no issues. In fact, I’m very pleased with a netbook install of Squeeze.

  3. Roy Schestowitz Says:

    @Bender: yes, Qt-based GIMP, for example, would be nice.

    @twitter: maybe I’ll try GNOME 3 this week. I wonder how that may affect KDE-GNOME cross-compatibility.

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