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LXQt in Arch

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Since HJ and I have been playing around with Sparky Linux and I sorta like the LXQt desktop I thought I would try it out in Arch Linux.

All I needed was to install the lxqt group and the oxygen-icons from the Arch repos and then choose LXQt from the menu on the lightdm greeter and I was in business. Loads and runs rapidly here too. It's probably a good choice on this old laptop.

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I've been working on you for years. I knew I could get you to come around to the Lightweight X11 distros (LXDE and LXQt). But you were more stubborn than I thought you'd be... :pirate:

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Here is a screenshot.

 

lxqt.jpg

 

I am pretty stubborn it's true. Just have to find the right place and time. I did try LXQt on another old netbook back when it was a flavor of Manjaro, but I like it better in Arch.

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I don't mind experimenting with it because it's on an old machine that I don't use all that much and certainly not for any serious computing. Arch is great for installing a new desktop because you get all the instructions in the Wiki and it's pretty stable after you get the job done.

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@HJ I think one of the reasons I was reluctant to use the LX** DEs was their very modular nature and their use of those laconic and rather weird Window Managers like OpenBox or IceWM. I ran into these window managers early on in my Linux journey and I was never comfortable with their operation or text configuration. Call me shallow but I like drag and drop icons and GUIs.

However, I must admit that LXQt is very nicely polished and does allow me to at least add icons to a launcher panel. The menu is very well laid out as well.

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Hm, looks nice. I think I'm gonna hold off until LXQt 1.0.0. I'm still using LXDE in Arch sometimes, though.

 

The version in Sparky & Siduction is 0.13, while Lubuntu is currently using 0.12. I can honestly state that LXQt is very usable and stable in its current form. Where it comes up short, IMO, is "feature parity" with LXDE. The devs have made great strides in the past year, but even I'm not ready to use LXQt as a "daily driver", from a feature perspective. And it's the little things, such as, I can't "center" my world clock/calendar plugin in my top panel. There are no "session flags" for lxqt-session, so that I can configure different desktop layouts as login choices; alternatively, LXQt uses a "panel.conf" file for desktop panel configuration, and the layouts could be configured there and re-named "windows-panel.conf" or gnome2-panel.conf or something similar, but calling the panel.conf file is hard-coded in the lxqt-session file. And sometimes there are ever so slight variations in font kerning/padding...which I don't notice until I see it in a bug report and then it bugs me. And a small but extremely important thing...there is very little documentation of how to do things in LXQt....google searches yield very few results. Little things...but important for a "major" desktop environment.

 

In my opinion, it is STABLE for everyday use, but it needs more POLISH for uptake in more distros. JMO...

 

Also, Lubuntu has a sizable user base and has stated that LXQt will be their default desktop starting with 18.10 forward, and that 20.04 will be their first LTS version of LXQt; at which time, they will switch to Wayland in 20.10, with Mir compositing. I believe Lubuntu will be the first "major" distro to offer LXQt as their preferred default, and I'm hoping there will be a massive leap forward in development with such a large infusion of users and bug reports.

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@HJ I think one of the reasons I was reluctant to use the LX** DEs was their very modular nature and their use of those laconic and rather weird Window Managers like OpenBox or IceWM. I ran into these window managers early on in my Linux journey and I was never comfortable with their operation or text configuration. Call me shallow but I like drag and drop icons and GUIs.

However, I must admit that LXQt is very nicely polished and does allow me to at least add icons to a launcher panel. The menu is very well laid out as well.

 

I can relate. I truly didn't like Openbox, or Flux, or some of these other lightweight WMs...until I "got it" and the light bulb came on. They were just using the WM for its "lightweight" characteristics, and using LXDE components as the "skin" instead of pimping the default configs. Most folks arent aware of how easy it is to change the WM in LXDE. Even fewer are aware that it is even EASIER to switch the WM in LXQt!

 

The most popular combos that I've seen so far are using Kwin, xfwm, and openbox. If you really like XFCE and want to keep some of your favorite themes, install the xfwm in LXQt and choose it as your preferred WM in LXQt config settings (it's in the GUI combo box). If you like some of those KDE window decorations, install Kwin and select that! Could it be any easier to change your window manager than a GUI pull down menu and click? Just an FYI...

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Very cool. I had the LXQt desktop also installed in my Thinkpad (Debian Stretch) and it was using xfwm4 as the default WM. I installed openbox and fluxbox and switched the WM to fluxbox using the Session Settings in the LXQT Configuration Center. I really don't see a big difference in the desktop display but I can verify I am now using Fluxbox in LXQt in Debian Stretch. Learned something today!

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You shouldn't see a big difference in the desktop display. LXQt is still the "skin" with the only visible change being window decorations and behavior.

 

I use flux as default for its tabbed windows and right click menu (which must be allowed in pcmanfm-qt settings...pcmanfm manages the LX** desktops). I also hide the flux taskbar, as I prefer tint2.

 

Switching WMs shouldn't really change the desktop appearance. Other than window decorations, the only changes are "under the hood" features and behaviors.

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I noticed in Arch you have Midori, Chromium & Firefox; with Chromium, Chrome & Firefox in Debian. Wondering why you have Chromium AND Chrome in Debian. Just curious...

 

I always have a combo of Firefox and Chromium OR Chrome, as I like system redundancy. When the primary fails...go to the backup until the primary is restored. Midori is probably a good idea for a lightweight alternative, although I'm hearing that Falkon (formerly Qupzilla) is a nice lightweight qt browser, although I don't know if its lighter than gtk-based Midori.

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I have both Chrome and Chromium in Debian because I prefer to use Chrome to browse but it's easier to manage the Gnome Shell Extensions with Chromium. I have Midori on Arch because the old netbook runs a lightweight browser a lot better than Firefox and Chromium.

I'm having a real LXQt festival around here. I have Sparky installed in both VBox and VmWare on my Windows desktop, an LXQt desktop with Openbox on Arch on the netbook (where it's probably a good idea to keep it as my go-to desktop) and LXQt with Flux in Debian on my Thinkpad (where I have lots of power and RAM so it isn't quite as necessary.)

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To add to your LXQt festival, one of the MX devs has created an unofficial respin as a personal project. He also made a KDE version.

 

https://forum.mxlinux.org/viewtopic.php?f=100&t=46126

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Interesting. MX is such a nicely polished Xfce distro I would hate to muck it up by introducing an LXQt desktop myself, but a respin might be nice. I prefer adding desktops in Debian and Arch because they are more of a blank canvas - not as much tweaking has gone on previously.

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On one of my Arch installations, I finally got around to replacing LXDE with LXQt!

 

I was scared to do it! I backed up everything, then I looked back at my notes to see what packages were brought in when I first installed the lxde package. Then I checked to see what would be taken out if I removed that same package. pacman -R lxde wanted to remove openbox so instead I typed in the entire list of packages without openbox. Removed all that, then I installed the lxqt package.

 

LXQt in Arch looks ok. I have Xfce, LXQt, and Openbox on that system; I really prefer the Openbox sessions, and it's nice being able to take advantage of certain Xfce and LXQt apps from within Openbox.

 

Not all of the LXDE config files and so forth were removed, but I'm okay with that for now. I haven't gotten LXQt all set up yet, but I spent some time fixing up my Openbox menu, and putting an icon on the panel for qterminal, and checking that other LXQt apps ran okay in Openbox. I used a couple of lines that contain "lxde" in some Openbox config files, and they still work in this situation.

 

Anyway, I'll get back to setting up LXQt later. I wanted to take care of Openbox first. Hey, I had different wallpapers on different workspaces in LXDE, but I don't see a way to do that in LXQt!

Edited by saturnian

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Hey Saturn, you are correct...LXQt hasn't implemented this feature yet. But some fella on the LXQt forum developed a workaround script for that. If you're interested:

 

https://forum.lxqt.org/t/wallpaper-in-multiple-monitor-workaround/387

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As I'm understanding things, they're talking about different wallpapers on different monitors (screens, viewports). I'm talking about something else -- different wallpapers on different desktops (virtual desktops, workspaces). Looks like they're called "desktops" in LXQt.

 

In LXDE I used three desktops and each one had its own wallpaper.

 

We used to be able to do it on different virtual desktops in KDE (users now have to use "Activities" to get something similar), and I remember doing it in Enlightenment (they had workspaces as well as virtual desktops!). I have different wallpaper setups for different workspaces in Xfce. Xfce is the best at this right now, seems to me. With most other DEs/WMs, though, it's one wallpaper shared by all workspaces/desktops.

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For what its worth I installed the LXDE in my Mint 19.2 with Cinnamon and it works great. Will do QT when it gets a little better and more advanced. I am also waiting for the latest Siduction to see if it will install. below is a screen shot of LXDE on mint cinnamon 19.2

screen2.png

Edited by mhbell

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