If a default choice is set, which desktop environment the Pyra OS should have ?

If a default choice is set, which desktop environment the Pyra should have ?


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Swordfish II

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I don't understand why anyone would suggest to even consider i3. It's tiling. Why would you want to subdivide a really small screen into even smaller rectangles. XFCE is a really bad choice as well. It doesn't mattet that it is small in memory. The whole idea is that it's a traditional desktop, which is bad for small displays. The whole notion of a bar with an application launcher button and tree-like menus doesn't work well with a small screen or stylus for that matter. The only DE that makes an effort in that regard is Gnome3. It presents applications to launch on the whole screen and works well with landscape layouts of smaller size and high resolution. I'd disqualify everything that doesn't harmonize with small screens and xfce is probably the worst offender here. I don't use Gnome3 on my laptop (KDE), but my laptop has a huge screen and it works out well while it is painfully obvious that it would suck on a tiny screen. So, even as a KDE guy I would not even think about anything but Gnome3. I use XFCE as well, on my really old laptop. I know its benefits and its massive drawbacks...so.. no to that one. There might be something better than G3, but it's not a traditional DE for sure, it has to be something new.
I love xfce on my pandora (never used mini menu). I user lxde on my original eeepc 701. They are great on small screens, and familiar to most users.
 

ible

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https://i3wm.org/docs/userguide.html

@levi
2.2. Changing the container layout
A split container can have one of the following layouts:
  • splith/splitv: Windows are sized so that every window gets an equal amount of space in the container. splith distributes the windows horizontally (windows are right next to each other), splitv distributes them vertically (windows are on top of each other).
  • stacking: Only the focused window in the container is displayed. You get a list of windows at the top of the container.
  • tabbed: The same principle as stacking, but the list of windows at the top is only a single line which is vertically split.
To switch modes, press $mod+e for splith/splitv (it toggles), $mod+s for stacking and $mod+w for tabbed.
you find this out when you hit mod+s or mod+w accidentally, and wish you hadn't... :(

but yes, no one is arguing for i3 to be the default wm. it is also very little inconvenience to do "sudo apt-get install i3", as it is already more inconvenient to update the i3 configs as i like them.
 
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sqff

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I love xfce on my pandora (never used mini menu). I user lxde on my original eeepc 701. They are great on small screens, and familiar to most users.
Have you ever opened a piece of gtk2-gui that has no scroll bar but a fixed window size that is bigger than your screen? In such cases you can't hit the [cancel] and [ok] buttons.
I have; on a netbook with a larger screen and similar resolution.
I'm glad that it works for you... I'm not enthusiastic though.
New users will dislike that particular experience if it happens, which it hopefully won't.
 

Swordfish II

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Have you ever opened a piece of gtk2-gui that has no scroll bar but a fixed window size that is bigger than your screen? In such cases you can't hit the [cancel] and [ok] buttons.
I have; on a netbook with a larger screen and similar resolution.
I'm glad that it works for you... I'm not enthusiastic though.
New users will dislike that particular experience if it happens, which it hopefully won't.
Yep i have on the eeepc, and it does suck, a little alt-f4 takes care of it or i can hit the very top of the buttons with the mouse. The pandora has never had those issues as the porters do a great job of scaling the software. Even still that doesn't happen often.
 

sqff

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Here's a small surprise: A different desktop environment won't save you from applications having too large windows.
Alt-dragging is a thing when you do come across such a window.

Fixed windows that are too large at 720p should be rather rare nowadays, though.
I was thinking about that as well. Some DEs have this concept where the screen shows a part of your desktop and you move that screen like you would in an rts game, like warcraft. Plasma has that. And the pyra has perfect controls for it. Perhaps something can be done with that.
I am not entierly convinced that alt-dragging is a good solution, it's just a workaround maybe. You are of course totally right that it's the application's fault. But, in my experience (and i might be wrong) this doesn't happen as often with gnome3 as it did with 2. Perhaps because the design principles have evolved and designers & devs do a better job today. I am definitely willing to give anything a try if someone has put some thought into it. But, just picking someone's favourite WM or DE from a totally different context is weird.
 

Silent-Hunter

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Can you? Is there a keyboard incantation that does that, or does it require configuration?

The only way I can think to do that is with workspaces, having one window taking the full screen space (less the status bar and window title) per workspace thus them being nearly fullscreen.

If I full screen a window with mod+F then if I use the switch window keys then it pops out of fullscreen and returns to its previously spawned window, so I guess that isn't part of the solution.
Try mod+W, that does it for me, by default.
 

levi

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Have you ever opened a piece of gtk2-gui that has no scroll bar but a fixed window size that is bigger than your screen? In such cases you can't hit the [cancel] and [ok] buttons.
I have; on a netbook with a larger screen and similar resolution.
I'm glad that it works for you... I'm not enthusiastic though.
New users will dislike that particular experience if it happens, which it hopefully won't.
Yes, and I even find that often when I'm in the keyboard settings dialogue in the pandora OS (because I need to reenable some keyboard shortcuts it's omitted to enable during boot). But I just need to hold down the left shoulder button (shift) and the right stick left (left mouse button) and then I can drag the window at will. On my openbox laptop it's alt+left mouse and drag that moves windows around which I think it the standard keyconfig, but on Pandora the left shoulder is more accessible so that has been configured.

It would be better if that xfce4 dialogue was redone for Pandora, and it's not at all user friendly to have to know this magic incantation to handle big windows, but its something I'd advise any user of small resolution screens and various linux DE's needs to learn, because it's got me out of trouble on plenty of occasions and allows me to test websites at resolutions bigger than this screen by dragging the browser window mostly off screen then dragging it bigger, and repeating that process.

@Silent-Hunter Thanks, but ible already covered that in much more detail for me.
 

elvissteinjr

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Current Xfce versions handle that in the settings manager by plugging the separate dialogs into the manager window which is then scrollable. So it would be somewhat handled if we had a newer build.
 

Grench

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I know that it is and was the default. I would also say that XFCE and MATE both are pretty neat; it's great that there are no issues. That is really a strong point in favour of liking xfce and mate. But, a blind man can see that they are not meant for a physically small screen. The resolution is not the size of the screen. If you HDMI pandora's screen to a tv, at pandora's or pyra's native resolution, it will be fine, great even. But straining your eyes with tiny bars and trees is just painful. I shouldn't be all up in arms about this, but people's acceptance of xfce on a phone sized screen genuinly scares me. I am really glad that I can choose something else. Looking forward to the whole thing!

Merry Christmas btw :D
....
Yeah... minimenu is really awesome.
._.
IMHO - minimenu wasn't to my liking.

On the Pandora screen, the insane accuracy of the pointed resistive stylus/screen combo gave nearly pixel-accurate selection after a bit of practice.

The people who made the Pandora's PND system were very smart in how they set things up. Depending on what folder you stored the PND file in, the program could be selected from the menu or the menu & a desktop icon. If you like minimenu, just put the programs that you're wanting to have as desktop icons in the right directory and done - still with a full desktop OS in a handheld. I'm assuming a similar setup is in store for the Pyra.

If you have only used phone screens with fingers or gigantic rubber crayon styluses, you can be forgiven if you think it won't work. Yes, they have done a lot with predictive models to figure out that if you're right handed, your intended selection is offset X% from center of the registered blob contacted by your finger/stylus/salami. They're only as accurate as their algorithm and can be frustrating to use. It's like trying to write small with a crayon. You can go through the motions, but it isn't likely to be legible.

If you've ever used a Samsung Galaxy Note product's thin active capacitive stylus - that is similar in accuracy to the plastic stylus on the resistive screen Pandora. You can see the point of the stylus - and see the screen around it. It is far more like using a mini pen/pencil and it's inherent accuracy.

How about this. Take a pencil or pen and a piece of paper. Draw the smallest square that you can that can still be discerned as a square. Now try to touch the center of the square with the pencil/pen tip. Odds are pretty good you were able to.

But what if I don't want to get out a stylus and point-select on the screen or loose my stylus or...

Pretty much any plastic tipped object can be used as a stylus.

Those nubs in the middle of the Pyra are also usable as pointing devices. They are analog nubs. The further you move the nub from center the faster the mouse goes in that direction. Fine movement and fast movement are both available from the same control. This gives VERY accurate selection fairly quickly. No mouse needed.

If your only experience with small screens is on phones designed for fingers, then you're unlikely to know what a small screen is really capable of.
 

ljones

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Well I must admit I don't mind what desktop environment the pyra should use by default just so long as it can be changed. And I aplogise if it is slightly off topic, but I did a while back try running different DEs on a raspberry pi 3 to see how well they would perform. So maybe that gives a very rough idea of how they might be on a pyra? Not sure.

I chose four: kde plasma, mate, xfce and tde.

KDE Plasma was the slowest. It was certianly a fight - the raspberry pi 3 just dosen't cut the mustard with regards to kde plasma. Too slow.

MATE ran relatively well on the pi 3, but it was just a touch too slow. Not as bad as kde, but still. It also seemed have some very nasty screen window resizing/redrawing issues.

XFCE on the pi 3 worked better than MATE did. But it still seemed to be a little on the slow side but nothing like as bad. No screendraw issues.

TDE - at least for me - worked best on the pi 3. It was faster than all of the above and again no screen redraw issues. Actually it did pretty well (I'm actually using it right now on a pi 3). The only fly in the ointment - the tde desktop can be a bit buggy.

Maybe this provides a rough guide to pyra? (Why do I keep wanting to type *pandora* ?!).

ljones
 

Kippykip

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Well I must admit I don't mind what desktop environment the pyra should use by default just so long as it can be changed. And I aplogise if it is slightly off topic, but I did a while back try running different DEs on a raspberry pi 3 to see how well they would perform. So maybe that gives a very rough idea of how they might be on a pyra? Not sure.

I chose four: kde plasma, mate, xfce and tde.

KDE Plasma was the slowest. It was certianly a fight - the raspberry pi 3 just dosen't cut the mustard with regards to kde plasma. Too slow.

MATE ran relatively well on the pi 3, but it was just a touch too slow. Not as bad as kde, but still. It also seemed have some very nasty screen window resizing/redrawing issues.

XFCE on the pi 3 worked better than MATE did. But it still seemed to be a little on the slow side but nothing like as bad. No screendraw issues.

TDE - at least for me - worked best on the pi 3. It was faster than all of the above and again no screen redraw issues. Actually it did pretty well (I'm actually using it right now on a pi 3). The only fly in the ointment - the tde desktop can be a bit buggy.

Maybe this provides a rough guide to pyra? (Why do I keep wanting to type *pandora* ?!).

ljones
I've experimented with a couple myself.
Plasma as you said was really slow and plus I didn't really enjoy using it imo.

I tried cinnamon and it crashes and asks if I want to restart it endlessly. Although turning off GPU rendering in raspi-config did let me run it and warned me it was in software mode. Didn't seem too slow but then performance will suffer on everything else so...
A shame because I quite like the themes for that one when I played with Ubuntu in a VM.

XFCE-4 ran butter smooth for me, although I kind of miss typing in the apps menu to search for stuff easily. I had this running on my Pi 3 for a year.

MATE which is what I use on there now, runs just as fast and I like actually having a "My Computer" (don't crucify me pls). But also kind of miss not being able to easily search in the apps menu.

Haven't tried any others.
 

Yori

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I've experimented with a couple myself.
Plasma as you said was really slow and plus I didn't really enjoy using it imo.

I tried cinnamon and it crashes and asks if I want to restart it endlessly. Although turning off GPU rendering in raspi-config did let me run it and warned me it was in software mode. Didn't seem too slow but then performance will suffer on everything else so...
A shame because I quite like the themes for that one when I played with Ubuntu in a VM.

XFCE-4 ran butter smooth for me, although I kind of miss typing in the apps menu to search for stuff easily. I had this running on my Pi 3 for a year.

MATE which is what I use on there now, runs just as fast and I like actually having a "My Computer" (don't crucify me pls). But also kind of miss not being able to easily search in the apps menu.

Haven't tried any others.
I use Ubuntu Mate on my home PC and I use synapse for quickly opening programs!
 

ashdjones

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XFCE on the Pandora was superswish thanks to the screen DPI and ED's borderline genius nub control scheme with compass point clicks on the right hand side. It worked because the nubs move fast like air hockey, unlike PSP or later 3DS.

At higher DPI that's going to be stressful. Sadly certain apps like Firefox were half sucky at lower resolution too. As for the desktop, I was leader tester of the Ubuntu thing via chroot and still have the pnd files to boot this. Did that project die? It wasn't swift, but Gnome2 on the Pandora was an obvious upgrade from XFCE, GTK is GTK and you get more stuffs and features. Just wasn't Street Fighter 2 turbo enough at the time.

My instinct says go for Gnome2 with Android compatibility, like browser and Office apps. However, the amount of bugfixing of the old codebase ie legacy exploits and such is a burden. Especially with mobile phone internet enabled. Sheesh. Some kind of sandboxing need shall you Jedi. Debian chroot virtual machine mashup you do or do not. Intersplice with new PND replacement like Google Chromeos ideas isn't it hmm padawan. (Just thinking aloud)
[doublepost=1526469457,1526468062][/doublepost]Also, Mate creeps me out like a Terminator 1000 because they made it too similar to Gnome2 but too different, or what's called 'uncanny valley effect'. I would rather use IceWM or something. Don't ask me why, maybe it isn't rational but the small differences are very odd. Hey John... Come to me... Help me john... Sarah Connor shotgun moment kapow. Imposter vibes. So i theorise if it isn't just me, Mate is liable to sink Linux faster than the Titanic and needs to be design changed some more to make it more independant from Gnome2.
 

docbroke

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I voted for xfce, as a default DE. Though when I get pyra I am going to use i3 (or maybe sway) in tabbed mode with rofi. That way every window opens in fullscreen and can be easily switched using keyboard combinations or using rofi.
 
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