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In this tutorial we will show you how to have a beautify your desktop.

Desktop environment

This article assumes you already have configured and functioning.

If you do not need a desktop environment such as KDE or GNOME, you can use a light window manager. GNOME and KDE are great environments, but sometimes you want something a little faster or a little lighter. The first change we want to do is add the following USE flags in /etc/make.conf: -kde -gnome. This will prevent KDE and GNOME from being merged if a particular package has these two flags. With that change in place, Portage has been configured to NOT download KDE or GNOME, the next step is the merging of the window manager that we're going to use. Below is a list of some of the popular window manager in use. Choose whichever one you think will suit you best.

Even though we've told Portage to not merge KDE or GNOME, if you install an application such as K3b, Portage will download the KDE libraries, since they are needed for K3b. You can use the output of emerge -av [program-name] to test what will be installed if you want to make sure that certain libraries wont be emerged.


With your window manager of choice installed, you'll need to configure it. Configuration varies from manager to manager, so be sure to consult the man page or website. In general, most window managers / environments will need to have the menus edited from their default state. Most, if not all of the above packages have themes available. Along with themes, most users use other programs to enhance their experience. See below for a list of additional programs which add functionality and eye candy to your new environment.

If you use GTK+ applications, be sure to pick up some themes for those as well, otherwise they may not quite fit in with the rest of the desktop look.

See also

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Last modified: Sat, 06 Sep 2008 10:24:00 +0000 Hits: 19,614