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Enlightenment GUI Software Linux

Enlightenment DR17 On the Linux Desktop 356

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the zen-and-the-art-of-x dept.
StephenJoiner writes "There's a new review on Mad Penguin of the latest VectorLinux release, which includes the in-development Enlightenment DR17 desktop. As far as I know, this is the first time DR17 has appeared on a production desktop... even as a "technology preview". All I have to say is Enlightenment on VectorLinux is absolutely off the scale." Enlightenment was in Slashdot news earlier for both the involvement with Elive and their use of Epeg bits to deal with thumbnailing.
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Enlightenment DR17 On the Linux Desktop

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  • Ok.. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Karamchand (607798) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:04PM (#13391580)
    - but where's the review now? Did you wonder this too? Well, here it is! VectorLinux 5.1 Deluxe Review [madpenguin.org]
  • by keilinw (663210) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:07PM (#13391615) Homepage Journal
    I was wondering what happened to Enlightenment!
  • LiveCD (Score:3, Interesting)

    by amembleton (411990) <aembleton@ b i g f o o t .com> on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:09PM (#13391631) Homepage
    Is there a live cd distribution that contains Enlightenment? I can't be bothered with installing a distro just to try it out.
  • Ubuntu + E17 (Score:5, Informative)

    by trevordactyl (908770) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:10PM (#13391641)
    There was recently a how-to posted on getting Ubuntu and E16-E17 paired up on ubuntu forums if anyone is interested and hasn't seen it:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=54476 [ubuntuforums.org]
    • Re:Ubuntu + E17 (Score:5, Informative)

      by RiotXIX (230569) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:15PM (#13391688) Journal
      Also, www.get-e.org is the best site i've come across for installing e17 (would have been lost without it).
      • Re:Ubuntu + E17 (Score:5, Informative)

        by MynockGuano (164259) <hyperactiveChipmunk+slashdot.gmail@com> on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @03:23PM (#13392258)
        I agree; I stumbled upon that site yesterday--just AFTER I had finished installing Enlightenment CVS for the first time in about 6 months to see where they're at.

        And where are they? It's there, it's usable, and I'm loving it. Obviously, it is also still in-development, but aside from the total lack of configurability by GUI or textfile--nearly everything must be configured via obscure, undocumented enlightenment_remote commands (thank goodness for the included zsh completion script!)--once you've managed to configure it, it's completely usable. I was extremely impressed, and will be back to using Enlightenment from here on out.

        For those of you who prefer it, another thing I found right after installing was this great page [nus.edu.sg], which has binaries and source rpms of CVS snapshots, and includes apt and yum repositories! Very nice! I wrote a script to install the whole she-bang from CVS a long time ago, but this would be an even easier way to keep tabs on the development progress, if you use a distro that supports rpm.

        ----

        Personal recommendations:

        I like the engage launcher/tray better than the default ibar. You can enable it as a module with these commands:
        $ enlightenment_remote -module-unload ibar (not essential, but having both is rather redundant)
        $ enlightenment_remote -module-load engage
        $ enlightenment_remote -module-enable engage
        I also edited the data/themes/module/images/bg_[hv].png files in the engage source before compiling to be completely transparent (instead of 65% opaque) to remove the (in my opinion) ugly background rectangle on my engage bar. I think get-e.org had another solution for this which involved editing the module.ecj file, instead, which probably would have been easier had I known to do it before I did the install. >8)
        • Re:Ubuntu + E17 (Score:4, Informative)

          by the_greywolf (311406) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @05:38PM (#13393168) Homepage
          Personal recommendations:

          I like the engage launcher/tray better than the default ibar. You can enable it as a module with these commands:
          $ enlightenment_remote -module-unload ibar (not essential, but having both is rather redundant)
          $ enlightenment_remote -module-load engage
          $ enlightenment_remote -module-enable engage
          I also edited the data/themes/module/images/bg_[hv].png files in the engage source before compiling to be completely transparent (instead of 65% opaque) to remove the (in my opinion) ugly background rectangle on my engage bar. I think get-e.org had another solution for this which involved editing the module.ecj file, instead, which probably would have been easier had I known to do it before I did the install. >8)

          i take a bit of a different tact. i keep both the ibar and engage around. i settled on this for my normal configuration:

          enlightenment_remote -module-unload temperature
          enlightenment_remote -module-unload cpufreq
          enlightenment_remote -module-unload battery
          enlightenment_remote -module-load engage
          enlightenment_remote -module-enable engage
          enlightenment_remote -module-load monitor
          enlightenment_remote -module-enable monitor

          enlightenment_remote -desks-set 4 2

          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 0 0 "Communications"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 1 0 "Browsing"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 2 0 "t3h 3mail"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 3 0 "Downloads"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 0 1 "Programming"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 1 1 "Testing"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 2 1 "Hacking"
          enlightenment_remote -desktop-name-add 0 0 3 1 "Images"
          and i have a unique background image on each desktop, including Firefoxy and iCandy from ToyboxArts.
    • Re:Ubuntu + E17 (Score:5, Informative)

      by i_should_be_working (720372) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:16PM (#13391696)
      This thread [ubuntuforums.org] is a bit more straightforward as it's focused only on installing e17.
    • Re:Ubuntu + E17 (Score:3, Insightful)

      by anagama (611277)
      Wow - thank you for the link. Enlightenment never entered my consiousness before today. Needless to say ... I'm not merely impressed, I'm amazed. The eye candy it puts out on the old pIII laptop I decided to test it on is amazing -- and that's with just 256mbs of ram. Now, I truly like my KDE and Gnome desktops (KDE a bit more though I do like Gnome too), but they aren't the kind of thing I can show someone and watch their eyes fall out in jealousy. They're like introducing a cute girlfriend to your bu
  • by PetriBORG (518266) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:10PM (#13391648) Homepage

    Clearly the editors know their readers so well! Due to the overly popular method of not reading the article, editors have apparently stopped including links to them all together so that readers aren't bothered by those nasty changes in text colors.

    Well done.

  • Fedora & E17 (Score:5, Informative)

    by SlashdotOgre (739181) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:11PM (#13391653) Journal
    For anyone interested in testing out Enlightenment 17 in Fedora, you can find a repository here: http://sps.nus.edu.sg/~didierbe/news_e17.html [nus.edu.sg] I've used it with FC2 & 3, haven't tried FC4 yet, but so far it's been fairly stable. I do still prefer E16, but it's worth a shot.
    • Re:Fedora & E17 (Score:4, Interesting)

      by kwalker (1383) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:44PM (#13391926) Journal
      I've been running E17 from that repository for a while now (On FC3) and I really like it. I still use E16 as my primary window manager because E17 is missing a few things I use (like remembering where windows go and a few other things) but it is really nice.

      It's also fun running E17 inside a nested X server under E16. I had to pick up my Mac-loving graphic-artist friend after I showed him what a fully eye-candy E17 (animated background, animated menus, animated titlebars, etc) looks like without shutting down my X session.
      • Re:Fedora & E17 (Score:3, Informative)

        by the_greywolf (311406)
        I've been running E17 from that repository for a while now (On FC3) and I really like it. I still use E16 as my primary window manager because E17 is missing a few things I use (like remembering where windows go and a few other things) but it is really nice.

        got good news for you then! window memory was implemented a couple of weeks ago. as were a lot of other must-have features from e16.

    • Re:Fedora & E17 (Score:3, Interesting)

      by rdieter (112462)
      What be even *more* useful to more end-users would be to submit all those packages to Fedora Extras (http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Extras [fedoraproject.org])
  • by Sv-Manowar (772313) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:11PM (#13391657) Homepage Journal
    Looking at the screenshots, Enlightenment seems to be bringing amazing eye candy to the standard X server. As they haven't yet leveraged the additional transparency & acceleration features present in some developmental X servers, its exciting to think how far they can speed up and enhance these visual effects even further. Despite being in development for so long, I think this presents an interesting design/style challenge to the more conservative KDE & Gnome desktops.
    • Cairo (Score:2, Interesting)

      by mnemonic_ (164550)
      I wonder if they'll start taking advantage of Cairo [arstechnica.com] and Glitz [freedesktop.org]. Doing so would let graphics cards accelerate GUI drawing via OpenGL, a la Quartz on OS X. Hardware accelerated GUIs are a hallmark of modern operating systems (OS X, Windows Vista), it'd be nice if Linux could join the party too.
      • Re:Cairo (Score:4, Insightful)

        by jericho4.0 (565125) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @05:18PM (#13392999)
        Yes. IIRC, a lot of it is already available in CVS. I played around with Cairo and Luminocity a while ago, and some o the other bits and pieces going into our next desktop. I must say, I'm very impressed. The feature list is huge, the flexibility will allow designers to deliver nice looking stuff, and the performance is going to be stellar.

        I've been using Windows a bit lately, after a long hiatus. It was apparent to me upon booting that my ubuntu desktop looks far better out of the box. When did that happen? Gee, I remember when we didn't even have X. Now it looks like we might even pull ahead of Apple in gooey eye candy goodness.

      • Re:Cairo (Score:4, Informative)

        by dbIII (701233) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @05:31PM (#13393105)
        I wonder if they'll start taking advantage of Cairo and Glitz ... accelerate GUI drawing via OpenGL
        They've been using Evas for a few years - which supports OpenGL and hardware acceleration. Cairo wasn't around, and they are a few years and a lot of features ahead of it.
  • Hook!! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:11PM (#13391661)
    Its off the hook! Not off the scale.

    Jeez, don't you know anything about the hip-hop subculture?
  • by dhasenan (758719) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:12PM (#13391665)
    I've been using E17 for the past few days. It's beautiful, and it's as stable as any desktop environment I've used--perhaps more so. Not all the features have been implemented; it still needs a menu editor to be really useful (or just tell me which config file to modify, and put one there by default), and I'd like to see an e17 terminal.

    Still, it's lightweight, beautiful, features real transparency, and is unusually stable for being in heavy development.
    • by crimson_alligator (768283) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:39PM (#13391884)
      I'm not trying to be snarky, but comments like this regarding "stability" just baffle me.

      You've used E17 for the "past few days", and it is "as stable as" or perhaps more stable than any desktop environment you have used.

      Therefore you have never used a desktop environment that could run for more than a "few days" without crashing?

      I thought "stable" means runs for days/weeks/months/years on end without crashing. Am I wrong? If not, how do you already know that E17 is EITHER as stable as OR more stable than any other desktop environment?

      This reminds me of someone telling me that Mandrake 9.2 was more stable than 9.1---the day after it was released! (No, they hadn't been using cooker.)
      • by flithm (756019) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @03:34PM (#13392342) Homepage
        Well put. Unless you've been using it non stop for a year or so, you probably can't comment on its stability... unless it's to say that it is unstable.

        Having said that, I've been using E17 on and off for about a year, and although I still wouldn't qualify myself able to comment on its stability, I will say this:

        It feels solid. You know how you can just feel the difference? Like when you first tried OS/2 and compared it to Win 3.1... you didn't exactly know why, but you knew it was rock solid.

        That's the way E17 feels.

        I haven't had it crash on me, but I certainly wouldn't suggest people rush out to start using it as their main WM. It's just not ready yet. There are tons of features that still need to be implemented before it's usuable full time.

        I look forward to it though, for those who like the E style, it's going to be awesome!
      • Stable can also refer to a relative lack of change. Software called stable can even be somewhat buggy - but at least the bugs are predictable. Software in SLES and RHEL (and Debian Obsolete^WStable) tends to fit this definition. Of course, it usually fits the "doesn't crash" definition as well.

        Software under heavy development usually doesn't merit being called stable according to either definition.

    • by the_greywolf (311406) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @05:25PM (#13393057) Homepage

      there is a menu editor. entangle.

      also, you can edit the menu itself in ~/.e/e/applications/ wherein you can find engage's sticky icons, your icon bar, startup apps, apps to run on restart, as well as your favorites menu.

  • Got it on FreeBSD (Score:4, Informative)

    by FromWithin (627720) <stuff@fromIIIwit ... inus threevowels> on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:21PM (#13391737) Homepage
    I use it daily on my laptop here on FreeBSD 5.4. It really is superb. I previously used xfce4, but have switched over to this now. Startup time is about 3 seconds, speed is excellent with loads of graphic effects. Themes available are really nice. The only criticism I have is the use of binary files for some config stuff (menus and icons).

    I highly recommend it. Can't wait for the full release (not least because I haven't bothered to compile the extra utils).
  • by glimt (717527) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:22PM (#13391749)
    I'm not a Gentoo apologist or advocate, but it has had DR17 available as an ebuild (like the rest of the distribution) for months.
  • by Danathar (267989) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:23PM (#13391755) Journal
    Can somebody explain to me the reasoning behind WHY they use such a strange numbering methodology for Enlightenment?
  • Slashdotted (Score:3, Interesting)

    by nikremt (842570) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:29PM (#13391805)
    I have installed DR17 from CVS on my gentoo distribution, so I was really interested in looking at vector linux's website after reading this. However, it appears to me that since I can't get through, then they must have been slashdotted.
  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:30PM (#13391816)
    All I have to say is Enlightenment on VectorLinux is absolutely off the scale.

    Which way?

    • All I have to say is Enlightenment on VectorLinux is absolutely off the scale.

      Which way?

      Well, to quote "Ghostbusters":

      "Went right off the top of the scale. Buried the needle! We're close on this one, I can feel it!"


  • eHave eYou? (iApple and KDE?)
  • by bad_outlook (868902) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:35PM (#13391856) Homepage
    I run e17 (16.999.whatever) on Ubuntu from a HOWTO available in the forums. There is a .deb repository you can tie into, so now even the 'Ubuntu update' auto thingy even finds updates to those, so it's part of my system now. It's very slick, feels like the speed of Fluxbox but the look of, well...nothing really; it's in a class by itself.
  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:36PM (#13391859) Homepage Journal
    Anything to speed up desktop drawing. I installed Ubuntu v5.04 on my Inspiron8000/512MB/GeForce2GO, and gnome-terminal was sucking up 80% CPU, just by dragging the cursor across it! After searching all kinds of maillists, I learned to drop antialiasing, which still puts gnome-terminal at 5-15% CPU when cursor dragging. To say nothing of the rest of the drawing updates: I can see the pixels redrawing as I drag windows around, nevermind the slimetrail of "windowprints" where I dragged it from, until I drop it.

    Linux usually gets much more efficient use of the same HW than Windows. But I never saw GUI lethargy like this with Windows installed on that Inspiron.
    • by kwalker (1383)
      A couple of things:

      First, Gnome Terminal is dog slow and fat-ass. I never use it because it's such a resource drain. I use Eterm 0.9.3 actually and with the exception of it not liking some UTF-8, it works great. It takes up about 1/6 of the resources GT does.

      Second, are you using the nv (Open Source) driver or the nVidia (Proprietary) driver? I've noticed the nv driver is incredibly slow compared to the nVidia driver, especially dragging windows around. I don't see pixels update, but refresh goes to about 1
      • gnome-terminal is just an example of slow GUI apps, which are bogging down my whole Ubuntu system. The whole desktop is slow to start apps (5-20 seconds to start FireFox after a fresh reboot), or even to respond to menu item selections that open dialogs (5-20s). It reminds me of when you used to have to upgrade to a $200 VGA card to get useable performance out of Windows, because the GUI bottlenecked everything. But I will probably try to Eterm anyway, if that's all I can do.

        As for my driver:
        # diff /etc/X11
    • There has to be something wrong with your system. I currently am running Hoary on my Acer Celeron 2.0 GHz Machine with only 256 MB of ram and Ubuntu is pretty responsive. Only 2 things take some time to run....OpenOffice.org 1.1 (I have never liked it) and firefox is a bit slow launching. Once running, they are both fine usually. I am definitely going to try the new Enlightenment tonight.
  • girls (Score:2, Funny)

    by shawn443 (882648)
    Real men don't use desktops, they use twm and throw down with some .twmrc

    Seriously though, while those screenshots do look nice, I haven't yet looked at a flashy desktop and wished it on my system. I prefer every ounce of my cpu going to my applications. top -p 4148 just showed twm using .07 of my memory and exactly 0.0 of my cpu.

  • e17 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @02:51PM (#13391988)
    I used e17 for a few weeks last month as my primary WM. It is indeeded beautiful and all of the fancy effects worked smoothly even on my toaster 800mhz transmeta laptop, but I eventually switched back to something more stable.

    It's really not ready for prime-time yet, although it is certainly close. Maybe they've fixed these bugs in the last few weeks, but I noticed-

        * sometimes windows refuse to close after their owning process has been killed. These things just linger on the screen, filled with random garbage.

        * multiple monitors profoundly confuse the desktop-switching gadget and pager

        * evidence CVS was broken, so there's no e17 native file manager and I resorted to using nautilus

    And of course it needs an e17 native version of eterm... that will be excellent when it shows up :P

    The themes available so far don't really make use of the way-cool stuff edje can do... e17 is going to be really amazing once more themes and applications are built with its core libraries.

  • by poofyhairguy82 (635386) on Wednesday August 24, 2005 @03:02PM (#13392095) Journal
    The best way to run E17 is inside of Gnome. I call it Enlightened Gnome [ubuntuforums.org]. Then Gnome Apps look nice, you get to have nice Gnome things like it panel and its volume manager without dealing with the worst problem in Gnome (its default Window Manager-Metacity).

    If you want the full effect you have to go into Gconf and tell nautilus to not draw the desktop, but otherwise it works pretty good. I have found that overall its faster than Metacity, and is more stable with xcompmgr. I just wish I could find another way to task switch in E17 that is not alt-tab, and I hope that one day E17 will conform to Freedesktop standards so I can use Kompose with it!

  • The last time I tried enlightenment, I was not impressed. Eye candy is great, but I also want something that lets me work efficiently and consistently (Please, somebody modernize OS/2's WPS and make a WM that uses those concepts!). If enlightenment can deliver consistency and a usage model that gives us power (simple things are simple, hard things possible, etc), that would be great. If not, I'll just settle to next best thing to WPS I can find on linux, which is currently windowmaker with Rox-Filer.

It's a naive, domestic operating system without any breeding, but I think you'll be amused by its presumption.

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