For as much as I bad-mouth Gnome, I should probably give it the benefit of the doubt. After all, I know for a fact that the Arch version of Gnome is quite speedy, as are some earlier versions of Debian’s Gnome desktop.
And if you put it together in pieces, rather than installing an entire preconfigured suite, it is possible to make one that does all the things you want, keep it simple, and avoid a lot of the extranous crud.
So while it’s not fair for me to direct 100 percent of my invective toward Gnome in particular, it does mean that occasionally, sometimes, it is possible to use Gnome without incurring a huge debt. It’s still vastly overweight when compared with the alternatives, but it’s not impossible to use.
And since I’ve never really given it the chance to perform under (what I consider to be) the best circumstances, I decided I’d try something completely bizarre, and compile the entire business from scratch.
Well crazy is what it turned into. I don’t know if there are many people out there who install Gnome from source code, but in Crux, it proved ridiculous. Installing X wasn’t an issue, and the core system is of course, something I’ve done many times before.
But after the third or fourth sub-sub-subdependency spiraled out of control and exploded in a splatter of error messages, I decided it was a stupid idea. Chasing cryptic error codes and installing missing packages, all from source, in an effort to build a desktop I don’t even like … was a dumb idea from the start.
In the mean time if I know there’s something Gnomish I need to review, I’ll do it in Arch. It’ll be fast enough for my purposes.