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Briareos
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Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:06 pm

Hello,
I managed to switch from LXDE to XFCE4, but can't figure out how to automatically start XFCE4, instead of LXDE. :oops:
I just removed lxde packages (sudo apt-get remove lxde), but it still launch at boot. :?:

So , my question are:
1) How to definitely get rid of LXDE on my raspian wheezy.
2) Would adding a .xinitrc in my homedir, be sufficient to start XFCE4, or should I tweak /usr/bin/startx instead ?

Thanks in advance
--
Jean-Philippe

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Briareos
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:34 am

Got it !

Here's the sequence.

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get install xfce4 xfce4-goodies
sudo dpkg --get-selections. 
Pick in the result list all names begining by lx ,and remove them to more or less get a complete rid of lxde

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get remove lxde lxappearance lxde-common lxde-core lxde-icon-theme lxinput	lxmenu-data lxpanellxpolkit lxrandr lxsession lxsession-edit lxshortcut lxtasklxterminal
removal of lxde packages call update-aternatives script, which fix by itself /usr/bin/x-session-manager, as shown in the following (french) excerpt :

Code: Select all

Suppression de libfm1 ...
Suppression de lxappearance ...
Suppression de lxde-common ...
update-alternatives: utilisation de « /usr/bin/startxfce4 » pour fournir « /usr/bin/x-session-manager » (x-session-manager) en mode automatique
Suppression de lxde-icon-theme ...
Suppression de lxinput ...
Suppression de lxpanel ...
...
Suppression de lxshortcut ...
Suppression de lxtask ...
Suppression de lxterminal ...
update-alternatives: utilisation de « /usr/bin/xfce4-terminal.wrapper » pour fournir « /usr/bin/x-terminal-emulator » (x-terminal-emulator) en mode automatique
A last, proceed with a subtle

Code: Select all

sudo reboot
That's all, folks !

At first glance, XFCE consumes far more resources than LXDE. Only 12 840 Kb left, as shown by top. Will obviously need some tuning, but the goal is reached.

Image
Click here for a full size screenshot : :ugeek: http://nexusstudio.net/SHARE/raspbian-xfce.jpg

Hope this will help some of you.
--
Jean-Philippe

bgirardot
Posts: 517
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Location: Switzerland

Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Fri Nov 16, 2012 3:02 am

Thank you for sharing your work to do this. It would be cool if you updated the thread with any changes or adjustments you make to help it run with less memory and/or cpu usage.

cheers

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Briareos
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Fri Nov 16, 2012 11:33 pm

I intended to do so, of course :D

First impressions are :
XFCE shoud be more comfortable within the 512Mb version of PI...
Removal of Xscreensaver is a must do, according to excessive cpu consumption, even while idle (for instance metaballs or swirl still use 53% CPU after their first launch, even if not present anymore on screen)

I plan to tune the box a bit more within the next few days, and will let the community know about my progress !!!

Cheers
--
Jean-Philippe

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Briareos
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:17 pm

My experience so far...

In addition to the removal of Xscreensaver, I would also suggest to remove openbox, which is now useless (LXDE relative)

For comparison purposes, my hardware settings are now :
- 240 Mb ARM / 16Mb Video Core
- 800 Mhz overclock

I don't think there's much left to uninstall (ps -ef shows only XFCE and Core debian process)
Have a look at the following screenshot to see what's left in terms of memory and CPU usage
Image
http://nexusstudio.net/SHARE/rasbpian-x ... ources.jpg

As a candy, my headless PI currently running via a Wifi dongle alongside his dude 'R2D2'...
Image
http://nexusstudio.net/SHARE/pi-r2d2.jpg

Cheers
--
Jean-Philippe

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cipha
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Sun Mar 17, 2013 3:11 pm

Thanks a lot for this tutorial, works like a charm! :D

Still I have some questions:

- did you in the meantime get a Model B to further fine tune your settings?
- if not, how are your experiences with XFCE TODAY? I mean, anything else we should know? some errors you encountered maybe?
- still using it??

I just wanted to sum up the updates for later review.

My current setup:
- Model B, Raspbian 3.6.11+, XFCE of course :geek:
- OC to 900MHz
- 64MB Video

Kind regards

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adminblinky
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Location: PDX

Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Mon May 06, 2013 5:07 am

I am also very curious about replacing LXDE for XFCE.

unwohlpol
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 5:03 pm

Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Tue May 28, 2013 5:37 pm

I've just switched to xfce and it works fast enough on the 512MB Raspberry. Almost no difference to lxde - exept that I now have a really usable GUI now.

Thanks for the tips briareos!

godsendpie
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2016 3:56 am

Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Wed Feb 24, 2016 7:33 am

Thank you for this detailed guide!

But may I ask how to change the theme?

I tried to switch to other themes via 'Appearance' but nothing changed. Is it because the default themes are not compatible with Raspbian?

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Briareos
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:33 am

@godsendpie

I have the same problem under Raspian Jessie.
Everything used to work fine under Wheezy when I Redacted this 'How-To', but I haven't figured out yet while the themes doesn't apply under Jessie.
i already tried to reinstall xfwm4, gtk2-engines-murrine, and a lot of other stuff without success.
Whatever the theme choosen is, the look is always the same, ie: a non GTK2 design witth 'old school' buttons.

Still searching...
--
Jean-Philippe

godsendpie
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2016 3:56 am

Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:56 am

@Briareos

I see, looks like I'll have to stay with lxde until this issue gets fixed. Thank you for your info tho!

fruitoftheloom
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Re: Raspbian: switch from LXDE to XFCE4

Wed Feb 24, 2016 9:27 am

godsendpie wrote:@Briareos

I see, looks like I'll have to stay with lxde until this issue gets fixed. Thank you for your info tho!
Would it not be easier to start with Jessie Lite and then install a Desktop Environment ?

The other alternative is ArchlinuxArm which is also a CLi Distro...
Retired disgracefully.....
This at present is my daily "computer" https://www.asus.com/us/Chrome-Devices/Chromebit-CS10/

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