LXQT-kwin11 (MXLinux based) - proof of concept

(Mark Rabideau) #1

Hello all.

I just completed building a new MXLinux/ LXQT-kwin11 spin/install (proof of concept if you will).

I have stripped out most, if not all, xfce4 related materials from base MXLinux. I may have deleted a bit more than necessary… hopefully someone will let me know if I nuked too much or if there’s more still that needs to be removed or replaced.

To summarize, neither Openbox nor xfwm4/xfce4 are part of this install. Also be advised that Conky does not appear in the LiveUSB session (I have no idea why), sorry. It does appear in the installed version.

Given I have found "very few’ themes to use in this platform (LXQT-kwin11), I built a modified version of Oxygen for this install. If there are other themes beyond Plastique, Breeze, and Oxygen that should be considered, please let me know where they might be obtained; I’ll try to get them working in a future build. I think the modified Oxygen theme makes this build look adequately ‘professional’ and ‘modern’, even though it is a ‘very’ light-colored theme. But then, what do I know?

Known bug (feature?) The current icon theme(s) does(do) not support the LXQT panel sound widget (pavucontrol); as a result I have found no way to make the sound icon visible on the LXQT panel. So, I have removed the function (widget) from the LXQT panel.

I tweaked an MX Conky to fit the install… even though this Conky comes from the MXLinux repos, it will need some additional work; not all functions operate correctly. But I think this one, with a little bit of love from you, will look good with this desktop. btw. I use a 2 cpu pc on VirtualBox, so you may, also, need to adjust ‘that Conky choice’ to suit your needs.

I, also, swapped a few of the MX standard GTK apps (like transmission) to those of their QT based brethren. There still remain a few U-gly gtk layouts to be fixed. (I’m not sure if my skills are adequate to that task.)

If you are familiar with LXQT, I hope you’ll agree this looks a bit, maybe a lot better, than a typical ‘vanilla’ LXQT install. This ‘snapshot’ also takes advantage of the wonderful MXLinux tools.

Enjoy, try it out, and let me know what you think.

The snapshot is available for viewing, testing, comments, etc. at:

Pax vobiscum, ManyRoads (Mark Rabideau)

Show your (LXQt) desktop.
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(Alf Gaida) #2

Only for my private understanding - what you are doing? I thought until now that MX uses debian packages - so why not just use apt to install the wanted packages to begin with? Like in:

apt install task-lxqt-desktop kwin-x11 (and maybe some more packages)

Hmm - ok, i don’t have to understand it, i’m only a part time linux user.

(Jim Shriner) #3

MX is, by default, an XFCE distro. I think he’s just making an LXQt flavor of MX, and trying to keep it as lightweight as possible by stripping out XFCE-specific packages. I’m a member of another forum with several MX users who LOVE their MX…they see it as a very super-polished and user-friendly Debian, if Debian did those things. But your only choice for MX is XFCE; unless you install the packages for another desktop environment, which starts chipping away at the user-friendly “default” concept.

I like what he’s done, so far. Certainly looks very nice and professional. I hope he continues to polish his baby! Every new flavor/spin with LXQt will help snowball the uptake of LXQt, IMO, so I’m all for that. JMO…

(Alf Gaida) #4

Ok, maybe it sounds harsh - but i’m not a fan of any remixes - it might be fine for private usage but should not be distributed. What i like: An image that is build reproducible, provide checksums, a package list, maybe the build protocol etc. So ok - i take an MX, remove all the polished parts (XFCE, xfwm, the theme and so on) install a few packages (only a guess - i will likely leave out some recommends, because they are fulfilled by some things that are already installed). Now i have a FrankenMX, Mary Shelly would be proud of. Might work, but to be true - i didn’t want to support it in any way or recommend it.

(Mark Rabideau) #5

@agaida Just to follow your logic… Lubuntu is Franken Ubuntu and Ubuntu is Franken Debian and Debian is Franken Linux Built from Scratch… :wink:

Actually the beauty of Linux is that pretty much everything is built using the work of others (in some manner or another).

(Mark Rabideau) #6

@hedon I have just begun work on moving the base to LXQT 0.13.

You are spot on regarding the distro issue. I am very found of MX Linux as a Debian distro; my primary distro is Franken-Arch (aka. manjaro XFCE) :slight_smile:

For those who would like to copy my efforts and port them to other platforms, please feel free to do that. I believe I am documenting everything I do so my work may be reconstructed elsewhere, by anyone who would like to do that; alternatively, they may have and use my work (which is why it’s in a full distro available for download).

My objective is to see if LXQT can be a slick-looking DE, offer decent eye-candy, be ‘fully’ functional, and work on my beater laptop (for my grandson). I am just about there. :wink:

(Alf Gaida) #7

@manyroads ok, to be blunt about. You misunderstood some basic ideas how to do things. As i said, remixing things for private usage is fine. That’s not the case for any other usage. Btw. Ubuntu is a legit derivative, Lubuntu is a legit Ubuntu spin. The difference is: They have their tools to achieve exactly the things i mentioned: A reproducible build process, they provide the recipes how to build the image, they provide a package list and checksums. Nothing less, nothing more.

(Jim Shriner) #8

That’s a fair comment Alf, and you and I have very similar outlooks and tastes when it comes to computers and OS, but I’ll respectfully disagree on this one. A matter of difference in opinion. No more…

From your developer perspective, I totally get where you’re coming from, and makes perfect sense to me. But many (most?!) of us lack that skillset. I totally DIG your Siduction LXTt distro…I’ve confessed to you that I’d like to make it my daily driver/production distro. But even though Siduction warns users not to, you have confessed that Siduction IS your daily driver. For folks like me, it’s a warning; for folks like you, it’s just a suggestion!

With that said, he’s scratching an itch many may have, but can’t reach. I’ve come a long way since I first discovered Linux circa 2009ish and didn’t even know what a LiveCD was, let alone how to install one. But at my age, I probably won’t live long enough to acquire the skills you already possess. I’ve gotten pretty good at troubleshooting, and I can certainly do what the OP did (and HAVE done that with Lubuntu, but currently eyeing up Sparky LXQt), but most of us can’t reach an itch that we need to scratch. That’s why we file bug reports and/or feature requests…but we’re beholden to others to make that happen.

What he’s doing is just scratching an itch, but on a different level. At one point in time, Ubuntu was redundant as a “very polished and newbie-friendly” version of Debian, that many Debian users could’ve accomplished on their own by heavily customizing their Debian. Mark Shuttleworth just did it for them, better than they could.

In this case, it’s not a new distro, it’s just a re-mix of MX for folks who dig MX but want to dip their toe in the LXQt pool without leaving their distro-of-choice. In that spirit, I say go for it Mark!

(Jim Shriner) #9

I think I also misunderstood Alf. Apologies. I get what you’re saying. But what you describe are legitimate “distros” in my eyes. When it comes to distros, I’m with you 100%.

But I see his endeavour as a “re-mix”. I don’t know if that distinction makes any difference, but it does to me. Who knows, he may come up with a cool new theme, or appearance, or something else that makes its way into the LXQt ecosystem?

I for one, would welcome some fresh ideas/tutorials on themeing and customization. LXDE is way more malleable, in its current state. I’d like to see LXQt catch up, or even surpass. I think more users experiementing with LXQt will accomplish that. Again, JMO…

(Alf Gaida) #10

I fully understand that - and there is nothing bad to do so. Ok, i started 2009 with Linux, after some searching i stayed with Ubuntu Karmic a while. After that i switched to Arch - ok, Manjaro wasn’t around that time so i just downloaded the fine arch netinstall and was done with.

One can test it out - just download a debian stable or better a testing iso and use the normal debian installer - in testing there should be LXQt available in the menu. If i want things more in my way i would suggest just to take a debian mini image with non-free drivers, start it and

apt install task-lxqt-desktop

Before i would do so i would have a look into the lxqt metapackage and see which alternatives a have to fulfill some dependencies (networkmanager, windomanager, displaymanager and others)

After that i would modify the original line to

apt install task-lxqt-desktop kwin-x11 kcmshell5 network-manager sddm ...

Then just wait some minutes, start the now ready system and start to tinker

(Alf Gaida) #11

@hedon - and i would like it if there where more people that care about a good looking LXQt, Theming and all the other things. And i would like it if that happend in a way that new LXQt user could simply reproduce it or if such things lead to an improved Wiki, some more themes and so on.

(Pedram Pourang) #12

It can already: a nice LXQt theme (none of the current themes are elegant enough to my eyes), a Qt widget style of your choice (there are many), a nice icon theme and you can have all that KWin offers: its desktop cube, blur effect, various title-bars, etc.

BTW, I may be the fist Linux user among you, having started Linux in 2005. IMHO, it’s good to experiment with various distros – even the derived ones – but it’s also good not to go very far away from the original ones. Debian is rock solid and offers a good basis for ISOs. Arch is so too.

(Alf Gaida) #13

@manyroads: And please do yourself a favour - for 0.13 you will need at least some testing as base, the Qt version in stable is just to old. So it might be a good idea to start with a testing-netinst. I would wait a few days doing so, right now there is a Qt transition in debian, 5.1.2 hit sid, it will trickle down to testing in 10-14 days i guess.

(Pedram Pourang) #14

@agaida This is somehow off topic and somehow related: it’s time to have a new release.

(Alf Gaida) #15

@tsujan - Right. And that means we should iron out some things fast.

(Pedram Pourang) #16

You have a work in progress, I think; a work is being done on pavucontrol-qt; I’ve added a PR for LXQt notificationd… It’ll take some time, I know.

I think libfm-qt and pcmanfm-qt are in a good state; want to see if users could prove that’s an illusion :wink:

(Alf Gaida) #17

I have a little problem - imho we should force the cmake things a bit - esp. the translation part. That would help me a lot.

(Pedram Pourang) #18

Take your time; I just wanted to remind you of it.

(Alf Gaida) #19

To be more direct - some reviews would help a lot. Changes in the build system base are not without pitfalls :dark_sunglasses:

That’s why i’m right now on a fully upgraded Arch. Debian is nearly unusable for development purposes the next few days i guess.

(Pedram Pourang) #20

I would add one if I knew enough about cmake; it isn’t my territory.