Themes & Scrollbars


Lubuntu-user here. I started Linux unfortunately during the transition of GTK-2 to GTK-3. I found this out one day when Firefox suddenly had a thin vertical line for a scrollbar. I was told that was because FF had just become ported to GTK-3.

Ever since, it’s been a wild goose chase trying to find answers to how to bring traditional scrollbars back and keep them back. It’s taken me about two years of off-and-on web-searching to find answers that will put the “good” scrollbars on all applications. (Synaptic was the lone hold-out for awhile. You have to edit the theme while in sudo!)

I’ve read that GTK-4 isn’t going to allow users to use some of the current hacks to have “good” scrollbars and are enforcing overlay scrollbars by default. The only way to change will be on an application by application basis.

This is all just a long prelude to my question about lxqt. I’ve installed Lubuntu-lxqt on a VM and the lxqt theme-picking at present is limited. A cursory look hasn’t been able to bring up any theme configuration files. Maybe I’m just overlooking something.

My specific questions about lxqt are these:

  1. Will there be some kind of interface that will allow us to see what each lxqt widget looks like? For GTK themes, one can either use the Customize Look & Feel app that I think is native to LXDE but works on many DEs, or A Widget Factory, which works with many distros as well.

  2. Will there be a way to change the theme configuration files so that the width of scrollbars, say, can be changed from one value to another? In GTK-3, that’s presently done using CSS.

I guess basically I’m asking if lxqt themes will be modifiable by the user in general, and scrollbars in particular?

I may be in the minority in wanting old-style scrollbars, but even I can both brag and chuckle a bit and say that my transition from Windows to Linux has been pretty uneventful except for the years I’ve spent on scrollbars. :smiley:

(Pedram Pourang) #2

LXQt themes are themes for LXQt panel, runner, etc. (like Plasma themes for KDE Plasma), not Qt widget styles. The scrollbar width in Qt apps is controlled by the active Qt widget style, not by LXQt theme. And Firefox has nothing to do with Qt at all.


Okay thanks.

Prepare for a lot of questions. :wink:

  1. In Lubuntu, there are three widget themes, but there is no preview that shows what they do. (You just have to do the ol’ trial and error.) Will there eventually be an interface that previews the widgets for each theme?

  2. Will the widgets be modifiable by the user? Again, I’m speaking primarily of scrollbars and increasing their width, if deemed appropriate.

  3. Do the QT developers have a bias towards overlay/skinny scrollbars? (It helps to know what the developer preference is, so one can gauge how much effort they’ll have to expend at customization.)

  4. Is it pretty conclusive that Firefox will always be pure GTK? Or is the plan to incorporate QT aspects at a later date?

  5. What is a runner?

Sorry for all the questions. Just trying to learn…

(Pedram Pourang) #4

LXQt has no Qt style previewer yet. Adding one is a good idea.

Widgets are made by the app code. You probably mean “widget style”. Qt has various widget styles. Some of them have a more or less fixed look (like Fusion, Qt’s default style), some can have different colors (like Breeze, the style of KDE), some imitate gtk themes (gtk2 style and Adwaita-Qt), and some are highly flexible (only QtCurve and Kvantum).

Don’t mistake LXQt theme with widget style! LXQt theme styles panel and some other LXQt componenets, while the widget style determines the look and feel of (almost) all Qt apps.

No! Qt widget styles determine how widgets look.

Actually, Firefox isn’t purely GTK; as far as I know, it has its own toolkit derived from GTK. You should ask those questions from Firefox developers but I don’t think Firefox will ever be based on Qt. The same is true for Chromium. However, there are nice Qt browsers like Falkon and some others whose names I don’t remember (I mostly use Falkon but have Firefox too – because of its extensions).

:slight_smile: Play with LXQt. If you want a standard LXQt experience, I highly recommend you never use Lubuntu!

(Alf Gaida) #5

one could simply install qt5-style-plugins - and style the widgets with GTK:

apt install qt5-style-widgets

Chose GTK as widget-style and be done with - and please leave out the bb-styles, they are horrible :smiley:

(Mark Rabideau) #6

@cliff You should also check/ read:

And as @agaida and @tsujan have said numerous times on these forums use a rolling release base like Arch (arch, manjaro or Artix); Gentoo; or Debian Rolling release like (siduction, sparky) for LXQt if you want to use current software. Consider any fixed release cycle Distro (like Ubuntu) as an archive for software in “some distant past” (oops, I slipped and showed my bias. ) :rofl:

(Alf Gaida) #7

This is nothing about bias - one can run LXQt nearly everywhere - if the needed packages provided even on a kerosine driven toaster - ok, the toolchain might be hard to find, but it is possible in theory.

It’s about installed packages first hand and knowledge about packages. Distributions do one job and they do it well - they assemble some things, configure it (hopefully sane) and provide it as a service to the end user. However - they don’t have the chance to make everyone happy, but thats the point where the user (maybe) have the knowledge to configure the base system to his needs. If not this will be hard with every distribution.


Thanks guys for all the replies.

It’s given me a better understanding of how themes work…and you’ve given me some good ideas to pursue.