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7 Best Desktop Environments for Linux
7 Best Desktop Environments for Linux
Published: 2016/06/27
Channel: It's FOSS - Linux Blog
EXPLAINED : DESKTOP ENVIRONMENTS OF LINUX [KDE/GNOME/XFCE/LXDE]
EXPLAINED : DESKTOP ENVIRONMENTS OF LINUX [KDE/GNOME/XFCE/LXDE]
Published: 2015/04/26
Channel: XPSTECH
Desktop Environment Comparison for New Linux Users
Desktop Environment Comparison for New Linux Users
Published: 2017/06/30
Channel: LinuxTechShow
Linux Customization 101 - Ep 1: Desktop Environments
Linux Customization 101 - Ep 1: Desktop Environments
Published: 2016/02/29
Channel: Tech Pills
Top 10 Best Linux Desktop Environments
Top 10 Best Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2017/03/04
Channel: World Top Best
How to Install a Desktop Environment in Arch Linux
How to Install a Desktop Environment in Arch Linux
Published: 2017/02/09
Channel: goguda55 Tech Tutorials
Desktop December - LXQt Desktop Environment
Desktop December - LXQt Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/12/20
Channel: quidsup
Desktop December - Deepin Desktop Environment
Desktop December - Deepin Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/12/11
Channel: quidsup
I ramble about desktop environments while trying out the Antergos installer for about 27 minutes
I ramble about desktop environments while trying out the Antergos installer for about 27 minutes
Published: 2017/02/07
Channel: Chris Were's Tech Channel
Desktop December - CDE Review - Back to the 90s
Desktop December - CDE Review - Back to the 90s
Published: 2016/12/04
Channel: quidsup
Best Linux Desktop 2016
Best Linux Desktop 2016
Published: 2016/12/28
Channel: quidsup
Cinnamon: The best desktop environment
Cinnamon: The best desktop environment
Published: 2017/06/22
Channel: Linux Tex
Linux Desktop Environment-Gnome,KDE,Xfce,MATE,Cinnamon
Linux Desktop Environment-Gnome,KDE,Xfce,MATE,Cinnamon
Published: 2013/02/09
Channel: Arashium
Rambling about the Gnome desktop environment on Manjaro GNU/Linux
Rambling about the Gnome desktop environment on Manjaro GNU/Linux
Published: 2017/03/16
Channel: Chris Were's Tech Channel
KDE Plasma 5 - Linux Desktop Environments
KDE Plasma 5 - Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2015/05/11
Channel: Nerd on the Street - Tech
Desktop December - Enlightenment Review - What a disaster
Desktop December - Enlightenment Review - What a disaster
Published: 2016/12/09
Channel: quidsup
Desktop December - Pantheon Desktop from Elementary OS
Desktop December - Pantheon Desktop from Elementary OS
Published: 2016/12/16
Channel: quidsup
CentOS 7: GNOME vs MATE Desktop Environments
CentOS 7: GNOME vs MATE Desktop Environments
Published: 2015/04/20
Channel: 45 Drives
Introduction to the Cinnamon Desktop Environment
Introduction to the Cinnamon Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/10/08
Channel: Switched to Linux
Desktop December - Trinity Desktop Environment
Desktop December - Trinity Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/12/21
Channel: quidsup
Linux Mint 18.1 Desktop Environment Showdown! Cinnamon vs Mate
Linux Mint 18.1 Desktop Environment Showdown! Cinnamon vs Mate
Published: 2017/02/22
Channel: Switched to Linux
Unity vs Gnome Shell - Desktop Comparison
Unity vs Gnome Shell - Desktop Comparison
Published: 2012/06/09
Channel: Nixie Pixel
Cinnamon - Linux Desktop Environment Review
Cinnamon - Linux Desktop Environment Review
Published: 2015/01/15
Channel: Chris Were's Tech Channel
Desktop December - EDE Equinox Desktop Environment
Desktop December - EDE Equinox Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/12/14
Channel: quidsup
Linux Desktop Environment Challenge!
Linux Desktop Environment Challenge!
Published: 2016/07/18
Channel: FastGadgets
Desktop December - XFCE Desktop Environment
Desktop December - XFCE Desktop Environment
Published: 2016/12/12
Channel: quidsup
Lumina Desktop Build in FreeBSD / TrueOS - BSD Licensed Desktop Environment
Lumina Desktop Build in FreeBSD / TrueOS - BSD Licensed Desktop Environment
Published: 2014/10/29
Channel: TrueOS
INTRODUCTION TO KDE DESKTOP ENVIRONMENT [ March 2016]
INTRODUCTION TO KDE DESKTOP ENVIRONMENT [ March 2016]
Published: 2016/03/13
Channel: XPSTECH
Desktop December - MATE Review
Desktop December - MATE Review
Published: 2016/12/05
Channel: quidsup
Cinnamon - Linux Desktop Environments
Cinnamon - Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2014/11/25
Channel: Nerd on the Street - Tech
#1 How to create a custom Linux GUI (Desktop) almost from scratch
#1 How to create a custom Linux GUI (Desktop) almost from scratch
Published: 2016/12/19
Channel: Doriandotslash
Arch Linux Desktop Environments/Window Management Install: Openbox
Arch Linux Desktop Environments/Window Management Install: Openbox
Published: 2016/12/14
Channel: George Balageorge
XFCE - Linux Desktop Environments
XFCE - Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2014/06/15
Channel: Nerd on the Street - Tech
MATE - Linux Desktop Environments
MATE - Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2014/09/01
Channel: Nerd on the Street - Tech
Theming the Linux KDE Desktop Environment
Theming the Linux KDE Desktop Environment
Published: 2017/03/03
Channel: Switched to Linux
How To Install KDE Desktop on Kali Linux 2016.2 || linux kde ||Desktop environment  ✔
How To Install KDE Desktop on Kali Linux 2016.2 || linux kde ||Desktop environment ✔
Published: 2017/02/06
Channel: SSTec Tutorials
Add a New Desktop to your Antergos Install
Add a New Desktop to your Antergos Install
Published: 2016/09/29
Channel: Don't Call Me Lenny!
How to install Pantheon Desktop Environment on Ubuntu
How to install Pantheon Desktop Environment on Ubuntu
Published: 2015/02/10
Channel: Naim Baroudi
Cinnamon Desktop Environment 3.0.1 Review
Cinnamon Desktop Environment 3.0.1 Review
Published: 2016/05/03
Channel: Souris
LXDE - Linux Desktop Environments
LXDE - Linux Desktop Environments
Published: 2014/06/22
Channel: Nerd on the Street - Tech
Fedora 21 XFCE Desktop Environment
Fedora 21 XFCE Desktop Environment
Published: 2015/03/06
Channel: Linux Scoop
Multiple Desktop Environment - Linux
Multiple Desktop Environment - Linux
Published: 2012/03/26
Channel: gotbletu
Ubuntu GNOME 16.04 LTS overview | Ubuntu featuring the GNOME desktop environment.
Ubuntu GNOME 16.04 LTS overview | Ubuntu featuring the GNOME desktop environment.
Published: 2016/04/19
Channel: Riba Linux
Installer Deepin Desktop Environment sur Archlinux et Manjaro Linux
Installer Deepin Desktop Environment sur Archlinux et Manjaro Linux
Published: 2016/05/05
Channel: Frederic Bezies
KDE - Linux Desktop Environment Review
KDE - Linux Desktop Environment Review
Published: 2015/01/16
Channel: Chris Were's Tech Channel
Vaneggiamenti vari sui desktop environment GNU/Linux
Vaneggiamenti vari sui desktop environment GNU/Linux
Published: 2015/07/28
Channel: Marco Giannini
Deepin Desktop Environment on Archlinux
Deepin Desktop Environment on Archlinux
Published: 2016/10/24
Channel: Otrebla Blaotre
Mac OS X Yosemite Desktop Environment
Mac OS X Yosemite Desktop Environment
Published: 2014/12/15
Channel: Bit2Brain
Checking out UKUI Desktop Environment
Checking out UKUI Desktop Environment
Published: 2017/02/14
Channel: Linux & Other Stuff
Arch Linux Desktop Environments/Window Management Install: i3
Arch Linux Desktop Environments/Window Management Install: i3
Published: 2017/01/09
Channel: George Balageorge
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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In computing, a desktop environment (DE) is an implementation of the desktop metaphor made of a bundle of programs running on top of a computer operating system, which share a common graphical user interface (GUI), sometimes described as a graphical shell. The desktop environment was seen mostly on personal computers until the rise of mobile computing.[1][2] Desktop GUIs help the user to easily access and edit files, while they usually do not provide access to all of the features found in the underlying operating system. Instead, the traditional command-line interface (CLI) is still used when full control over the operating system is required.

A desktop environment typically consists of icons, windows, toolbars, folders, wallpapers and desktop widgets (see Elements of graphical user interfaces and WIMP).[3] A GUI might also provide drag and drop functionality and other features that make the desktop metaphor more complete. A desktop environment aims to be an intuitive way for the user to interact with the computer using concepts which are similar to those used when interacting with the physical world, such as buttons and windows.

While the term desktop environment originally described a style of user interfaces following the desktop metaphor, it has also come to describe the programs that realize the metaphor itself.[4] This usage has been popularized by projects such as the Common Desktop Environment, K Desktop Environment, and GNOME.

Implementation[edit]

On a system that offers a desktop environment, a window manager in conjunction with applications written using a widget toolkit are generally responsible for most of what the user sees. The window manager supports the user interactions with the environment, while the toolkit provides developers a software library for applications with a unified look and behavior.

A windowing system of some sort generally interfaces directly with the underlying operating system and libraries. This provides support for graphical hardware, pointing devices, and keyboards. The window manager generally runs on top of this windowing system. While the windowing system may provide some window management functionality, this functionality is still considered to be part of the window manager, which simply happens to have been provided by the windowing system.

Applications that are created with a particular window manager in mind usually make use of a windowing toolkit, generally provided with the operating system or window manager. A windowing toolkit gives applications access to widgets that allow the user to interact graphically with the application in a consistent way.

History and common use[edit]

The first desktop environment was created by Xerox and was sold with the Xerox Alto in the 1970s. The Alto was generally considered by Xerox to be a personal office computer; it failed in the marketplace because of poor marketing and a very high price tag.[5] With the Lisa, Apple introduced a desktop environment on an affordable personal computer, which also failed in the market.

The desktop metaphor was popularized on commercial personal computers by the original Macintosh from Apple in 1984, and was popularized further by Windows from Microsoft since the 1990s. As of 2014, the most popular desktop environments are descendants of these earlier environments, including the Aero environment used in Windows Vista and Windows 7, and the Aqua environment used in macOS. When compared with the X-based desktop environments available for Unix-like operating systems such as Linux and FreeBSD, the proprietary desktop environments included with Windows and macOS have relatively fixed layouts and static features, with highly integrated "seamless" designs that aim to provide mostly consistent customer experiences across installations.

Microsoft Windows dominates in marketshare among personal computers with a desktop environment. Computers using Unix-like operating systems such as macOS, Chrome OS, Linux, BSD or Solaris are much less common;[6] however, as of 2015 there is a growing market for low-cost Linux PCs using the X Window System or Wayland with a broad choice of desktop environments. Among the more popular of these are Google's Chromebooks and Chromeboxes, Intel's NUC, the Raspberry Pi, etc.[citation needed]

On tablets and smartphones, the situation is the opposite, with Unix-like operating systems dominating the market, including the iOS (BSD-derived), Android, Tizen, Sailfish and Ubuntu (all Linux-derived). Microsoft's Windows phone, Windows RT and Windows 10 are used on a much smaller number of tablets and smartphones. However, the majority of Unix-like operating systems dominant on handheld devices do not use the X11 desktop environments used by other Unix-like operating systems, relying instead on interfaces based on other technologies.

Desktop environments for the X Window System[edit]

A brief timeline of the most popular modern desktop environments for Unix-like operating systems (greyscale logos indicate when the project's development started, while colorized logos indicate the project's first release)

On systems running the X Window System (typically Unix-family systems such as Linux, the BSDs, and formal UNIX distributions), desktop environments are much more dynamic and customizable to meet user needs. In this context, a desktop environment typically consists of several separate components, including a window manager (such as Mutter or KWin), a file manager (such as Files or Dolphin), a set of graphical themes, together with toolkits (such as GTK+ and Qt) and libraries for managing the desktop. All these individual modules can be exchanged and independently configured to suit users, but most desktop environments provide a default configuration that works with minimal user setup.

Some window managers‍—‌such as IceWM, Fluxbox, Openbox, ROX Desktop and Window Maker‍—‌contain relatively sparse desktop environment elements, such as an integrated spatial file manager, while others like evilwm and wmii do not provide such elements. Not all of the program code that is part of a desktop environment has effects which are directly visible to the user. Some of it may be low-level code. KDE, for example, provides so-called KIO slaves which give the user access to a wide range of virtual devices. These I/O slaves are not available outside the KDE environment.

Initially, CDE was available as a proprietary solution, but was never popular on Linux systems due to cost and licensing restrictions.[citation needed] In 1996 the KDE was announced, followed in 1997 by the announcement of GNOME. Xfce is a smaller project that was also founded in 1996,[7] and focuses on speed and modularity, just like LXDE which was started in 2006. A comparison of X Window System desktop environments demonstrates the differences between environments. GNOME and KDE were usually seen as dominant solutions, and these are still often installed by default on Linux systems. Each of them offers:

  • To programmers, a set of standard APIs, a programming environment, and human interface guidelines.
  • To translators, a collaboration infrastructure. KDE and GNOME are available in many languages.[8][9]
  • To artists, a workspace to share their talents.[10][11]
  • To ergonomics specialists, the chance to help simplify the working environment.[12][13][14]
  • To developers of third-party applications, a reference environment for integration. OpenOffice.org is one such application.[15][16]
  • To users, a complete desktop environment and a suite of essential applications. These include a file manager, web browser, multimedia player, email client, address book, PDF reader, photo manager, and system preferences application.

In the early 2000s, KDE reached maturity[17] along with GNOME.[citation needed] The Appeal[18] and ToPaZ[19] projects focused on bringing new advances to the next major releases of both KDE and GNOME respectively. Although striving for broadly similar goals, GNOME and KDE do differ in their approach to user ergonomics. KDE encourages applications to integrate and interoperate, is highly customizable, and contains many complex features, all whilst trying to establish sensible defaults. GNOME on the other hand is more prescriptive, and focuses on the finer details of essential tasks and overall simplification. Accordingly, each one attracts a different user and developer community. Technically, there are numerous technologies common to all Unix-like desktop environments, most obviously the X Window System. Accordingly, the freedesktop.org project was established as an informal collaboration zone with the goal being to reduce duplication of effort.

As GNOME and KDE focus on high-performance computers, users of less powerful or older computers often prefer alternative desktop environments specifically created for low-performance systems. Most commonly used lightweight desktop environments include LXDE and Xfce; they both use GTK+, which is the same underlying toolkit GNOME uses. The MATE desktop environment, a fork of GNOME 2, is comparable to Xfce in its use of RAM and processor cycles, but is often considered more as an alternative to other lightweight desktop environments.

For a while, GNOME and KDE enjoyed the status of the most popular Linux desktop environments; later, other desktop environments grew in popularity. In April 2011, GNOME introduced a new interface concept with its version 3, while a popular Linux distribution Ubuntu introduced its own new desktop environment, Unity. Some users preferred to keep the traditional interface concept of GNOME 2, resulting in the creation of MATE as a GNOME 2 fork.[20]

Examples of desktop environments[edit]

The most common desktop environment on personal computers is Microsoft Windows' built-in interface. It was titled Luna in Windows XP and Aero from Windows Vista onward. Also common is Aqua, included with Apple's macOS.

Mainstream desktop environments for Unix-like operating systems use the X Window System, and include KDE, GNOME, Xfce, and LXDE, any of which may be selected by users and are not tied exclusively to the operating system in use.

A number of other desktop environments also exist, including (but not limited to) CDE, EDE, GEM, IRIX Interactive Desktop, Sun's Java Desktop System, Jesktop, Mezzo, Project Looking Glass, ROX Desktop, UDE, Xito, XFast. Moreover, there exists FVWM-Crystal, which consists of a powerful configuration for the FVWM window manager, a theme and further adds, altogether forming a "construction kit" for building up a desktop environment.

X window managers that are meant to be usable stand-alone — without another desktop environment — also include elements reminiscent of those found in typical desktop environments, most prominently Enlightenment.[citation needed] Other examples include OpenBox, Fluxbox, WindowLab, Fvwm, as well as Window Maker and AfterStep, which both feature the NeXTSTEP GUI look and feel.

The Amiga approach to desktop environment was noteworthy: the original Workbench desktop environment in AmigaOS evolved through time to originate an entire family of descendants and alternative desktop solutions. Some of those descendants are the Scalos,[21] the Ambient desktop of MorphOS, and the Wanderer desktop of the AROS open source OS. WindowLab also contains features reminiscent of the Amiga UI. Third-party Directory Opus software, which was originally just a navigational file manager program, evolved to become a complete Amiga desktop replacement called Directory Opus Magellan.

There is the Workplace Shell that runs on IBM OS/2 or eComStation.

The BumpTop project is an experimental desktop environment. Its main objective is to replace the 2D paradigm with a "real-world" 3D implementation, where documents can be freely manipulated across a virtual table.

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Desktop Metaphor". Csdl.tamu.edu. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  2. ^ Morris, John (2013-06-25). "Android invades the desktop". ZDNet. Retrieved 2014-04-26. 
  3. ^ WIMP Interfaces
  4. ^ Window managers and desktop environments - Linux 101
  5. ^ "The Xerox Alto". Toastytech.com. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  6. ^ "Operating System Market Share". Marketshare.hitslink.com. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  7. ^ Then, Ewdison (6 February 2009), Xfce creator talks Linux, Moblin, netbooks and open-source, SlashGear, retrieved 5 February 2011 
  8. ^ "KDE Localization". L10n.kde.org. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  9. ^ "GNOME Internationalization". Gnome.org. 2011-10-23. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  10. ^ Link 27 Dec Personalized Golf Ball Sign» (2011-12-27). "Where life imitates art". KDE-Artists. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  11. ^ "GNOME Art: Artwork and Themes". Art.gnome.org. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  12. ^ "OpenUsability". OpenUsability. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  13. ^ GNOME Human Interface Guidelines Archived February 1, 2004, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ KDE User Interface Guidelines Archived January 6, 2004, at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ "KDE OpenOffice.org". KDE OpenOffice.org. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  16. ^ "GNOME OpenOffice.org". Gnome.org. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  17. ^ "Linux Usability Report v1.01" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  18. ^ "Appeal". KDE. Archived from the original on 2007-01-06. 
  19. ^ "GNOME 3.0". GNOME wiki. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 
  20. ^ Thorsten Leemhuis (h-online.com), August 5, 2012: Comment: Desktop Fragmentation
  21. ^ Chris Haynes. "Scalos - The Amiga Desktop Replacement". Scalos.noname.fr. Retrieved 2012-02-04. 

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