GTK1.2 doesn’t have to be ugly

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

There are better, more refined GTK1.2 looks around the Internet, but considering my previous attempts (which I refuse to show), this isn’t too bad.

That’s Gutsy on the old Sotec machine, using the Mist GTK1 engine with Helvetica 12 as the GTK font and the menubar font set to the same (otherwise I get these enormongous captions on buttons). You can adjust that by editing /etc/gtk/gtkrc.utf-8, or the appropriate localized version. The background is set with xsetroot, and Openbox is the window manager … of course. ;)

It’s not what I would call an adorable desktop, but it no longer triggers my gag reflex when I see GTK1 apps.

And those are what I’m using on this machine, as a compromise toward speed. So far I’m using Dillo, emelfm, Sylpheed-GTK1, XMMS and a few others. I need a halfway decent GTK1.2 text editor and perhaps an image viewer, but most of those things I can circumvent with other programs. If you have any suggestions, I’d be happy to hear them.

Otherwise, I’ve gotten an acceptable mix of speed over aesthetics now, although there are some remaining quirks. I still get funky framebuffer behavior in Gutsy (and this is on a different machine, so I don’t think it’s my other laptop that’s doing it), dead screens at tty1-6, and when X exits, I get nothing at all. It’s still running, but there’s no video output. And I have a wonky triple-shadowed-X-cursor if I don’t use a mouse cursor theme. Curiouser and curiouser.

In other words, Gutsy is still maturing — so don’t get all crazy and start installing it now, unless you’re comfortable with fixing some things. :)

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7 Responses to “GTK1.2 doesn’t have to be ugly”


  1. 1 Onyros 2007/09/13 at 9:30 PM

    Greetings, mate!

    In terms of text editors, I always dig up the good ol’ Beaver. It’s a nifty little text editor which has been dropped systematically out of existence from most distros due to the fact it hasn’t been maintained in a while… but still works, and works well for me. Kinda like XMMS which is unbeatable in terms of system resources/functionality… but just isn’t maintained anymore.

    In terms of image viewers, if you want the all time most minimalistic there is, feh does the trick. You can even specify folders from a terminal (eg., feh Images/) and it starts a slideshow, which you can browse through with the arrow keys. It also has a context menu accessible through a right click of the mouse, but it has few options. Other than that, there’s a new kid in town being talked about (gpicview) but I’m not too sure about dependencies. Same goes for Mirage, which is really cool, but you’ve already blogged about it.

    Take care ;)

  2. 2 K.Mandla 2007/09/13 at 10:08 PM

    Wow, gpicview is perfect! I should’ve guessed PCMan would come up with something fast and lightweight. Thanks for the tip! I’ve got it running on my Arch and Ubuntu systems now. Cheers! :D

  3. 3 Onyros 2007/09/13 at 10:53 PM

    Yeah, PCMan has come up with great software, too bad he seems to have lost some interest in PCManFM (which is one of my favourite FM’s, btw), there were still a few bugs to iron out*, and his (true) desktop framework approach on the last versions of PCManFM was somewhat promising as well.

    Also, the version of Beaver I’m using is the one I compiled in Arch (it’s in the AUR), I even use the same binary in Ubuntu (just copied it over). I really recommend it, it’s under 1MB in RAM usage, has a cool TAB implementation (really handy), some rudimentary markup if needed (HTML, PHP)… All in all, a great app (and even the icon is hilarious).

    Keep on rockin’, your blog is a must-read every day, for me!

    * – Major deletion bug: if one deletes without selecting a file, everything in that folder and the folder itself are deleted! And all it took was greying out “Delete” when nothing was selected ;)

  4. 4 K.Mandla 2007/09/13 at 11:24 PM

    Alright, you sold me. I got started with the 0.3.1 version off the site, but the dependencies started to drag in libgnomeprint or something, and I decided against it. I see the earlier version doesn’t need the sourceview stuff; maybe I’ll try that one tomorrow.

    I really love PCManFM too, I just wish it didn’t drag in fam/gamin. And I’ve seen a few strange bugs too. I hope he gets the urge to fix them, because it’s a fantastic file manager. :|

  5. 5 embeddedlinux 2007/09/14 at 12:30 AM

    Unfortunately kubuntu does not seem to have proper support on install. For Fiesty the best method appears to install Ubuntu then draw in the KDE desktop.

    The fonts in KDE are always much better certainly more legible. Which of course pushes me to openSuSE which always has excellent legibility (and true type fonts) and most often works on a loptop. Probably why PClos2007 also has excellent reviews.

    Just in regards to the NY Times article KDE has synaptic and alps support for the touchpad as well. About as refined as Synaptics touchpad drivers were in 2005.

    And yes I code embedded linux firmware for a living. So I demand a easy to see font. Oddly enough my production machines are openSuSE 10.2 with KDE:/STABLE, openoffice:/STABLE and mozilla:/STABLE additional repositories on a desktop and HP Laptop with ATI/AMD cards yes with the new .41 driver;-).

    Cheers


  1. 1 Some system suggestions « Motho ke motho ka botho Trackback on 2008/02/12 at 11:52 PM
  2. 2 More fun GTK1.2 stuff « Motho ke motho ka botho Trackback on 2008/09/06 at 8:02 AM

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