Ubuntu on Gnome on Openbox on Arch

Edit: Unfortunately, the images originally included in this post are gone, because of hosting problems in late 2009. My apologies.

Don’t ask me why I did this. This is an Ubuntu Gnome desktop for Openbox on Arch.

Wacky, isn’t it? That’s my 300Mhz machine on strictly GTK+ apps, so nothing you see there is at all Gnome-based.

But I plucked from themes and wallpaper that look like the default Feisty desktop, installed icon and GTK themes from the Arch repositories, and cobbled together a pair of panels that (more or less, with technical restrictions) follow the Gnome look.

The result is … a desktop that can’t run Gnome, but took so long to put together I might as well have been using Gnome. ;) That’s all right. That means there is hope for Gnome addicts stranded on Pentium II machines.

(By the way, I didn’t do anything with Arch that couldn’t be done with Ubuntu as well, although I have a feeling speedwise, it wouldn’t be the same.)

Details are next door, on my Arch blog. :D

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3 Responses to “Ubuntu on Gnome on Openbox on Arch”


  1. 1 NerdyShinobi 2007/02/06 at 3:39 PM

    You are totally nucking futs. But I like it. Though, I do have a question: Is it possible to completely leave gnome behind once it’s installed, or does it leave lots of cruft behind? Is it possible to have the gnome app dependencies without the whole environemnt installing? I’d like to convert my wife’s laptop over to an openbox environment, but she’s totally hooked on F-Spot. You can reply in email if you wish. Thanks for another interesting post!

  2. 2 K.Mandla 2007/02/06 at 4:05 PM

    You can rip the guts out of a straight Ubuntu installation and you’ll have basically a server install, with some leftovers. It’s not impossible, but if you’re going to go that direction, you should probably start with the server and build up. It might save time, and it will be “cleaner.”

    Of course, you can install Openbox and pick it as the default window manager, which means the Gnome bulk is still installed, just not running. You just set up the Openbox menus to include the programs you want available. There are a couple of pages in the Ubuntu wiki that talk about that option. It’s kind of a best-of-both-worlds solution.

    As far as F-Spot goes, I think it’s going to depend on the dependences. ;) If for some reason it needs the entire Gnome infrastructure, there’s not much to be done about that. You’d have to check F-Spot on the package search page. If you get gobs of Gnome glut … well, sorry. Short of rewriting F-Spot to avoid it all, I don’t know if there’s a way around it.

    Aren’t there any other lightweight image management programs? Maybe something can do the same thing as F-Spot, but cast a slimmer shadow.

  3. 3 NerdyShinobi 2007/02/06 at 7:50 PM

    I learned long, long ago not to rock her computing boat too much. the fact that I got her onto Linux at all was a coup. I’ll do the research and see what can be cut and what can’t. Keep on keepin’ on. Thanks for the pointers.


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