South Africa celebrated Freedom Day, Tuesday 27th April– a national holiday to commemorate the first democratic election. So I spent the day attempting to squeeze freedom out of my aging 1.8ghz PC with 1Gb Ram.
The solution to achieving the kind of brute-force computing and speed I need in order to have a faster Web experience was to use a different window manager. Creating an Openbox session which free’s up RAM allows my heavyweight Firefox browser to access more computer resources and hence greater freedom. Less caching means the browser can live totally in RAM, which is what the programme was designed to do.
A minimal environment in which the browser and associated applications take center stage delivers a lot more speed than my current Gnome setup. What’s more, it is gnome-friendly — All my apps just work.
Openbox is still alive –a continuation of the discontinued Blackbox project, a wm which only appears to live on amongst Windows modders. Finding lightweight alterntives to some basic tools took up most my morning and reading through code to implement the decisions and choices wasted the rest of my day, but the end result is probably a lot similar to what is going on in CrunchBang Linux world.
Window manager: Openbox
Panel: Fbpanel, Lxpanel, or XFCE4-panel
File manager: Rox-filer
Package Additions: OInstall
Wallpaper manager: Nitrogen
Obconf Theme: Simply Aubergine
3D Desktop support: 3ddesktop, brightside
TODO: Top panel is still a work in progress. None of the candidates do the job well. Issues like menu and icon placement all make the job of installation difficult.
Find way to save the desktop layout on logout. Am busy downloading Oblogout which might fix the problem
Find decent way to load conky at startup. Current configuration fails and it needs to be started manually.