Linux is very modular, you can find a bunch of different distro based on GNU/Linux in distrowatch. Even Android is using Linux kernel. Although Android doesn’t utilize GNU tools.
I’m not textbook guy, I don’t know exactly what is the different and I won’t give a definition here either.
Window Manager Perspective
There is a standalone WM, and WM tighted to a DE.
If you don’t know what is DE and WM are all about, here is the abbreviations.
DE: Desktop Environment
WM: Window Manager
WM tighted to a DE
Here is a list of DE with specific WM.
gnome-shell is using Mutter
Cinnamon is using Muffin
Pantheon is using Gala
Mate is using Marco
Unity is using Compiz
- XFCE4 is using XFWM4
- KDE is using either kwin_x11 or kwin_wayland.
Deepin is using Deepin-WM, utilizing HTML5.
Budgie is using Window-WM
DE with choice of WM
- LXQT can utilize openbox or xfwm4 or kwin
Standalone Window Manager
There are many kind of Window Manager
Stacking WM: openbox, fluxbox
Tiling WM: Awesome, i3, XMonad
Dynamic WM: You can switch from tiling to floating
Note that you should read from wiki for more comprehensive knowledge.
There is one more Category, The Compositor Before you ask. I will tell you that I don’t understand what it means.
Living on the Edge
Nowadays there is a tendency to replace X Display Server with Wayland Weston.
So we have a WM made for Wayland Only
- Velox, I never tried this. So I don’t know.
And sadly, some cool WMs made for X only.
Openbox cannot be ported to Wayland because it used internal X something.
Switch beetwen WM
Each DE can use different WMs. You can experiment replacing standard WM in a DE with this standalone WM. Prepare for weird result.
My favorite is using KWin in XFCE4 because I like to use Ghost Deco from KWin.
Let’s try in XFCE4.
and you can switch back to
How do I learn ?
For a beginner, let’s try every popular DE.
- XFCE4, gnome-shell, KDE, LXQT, Cinnamon.
And later Window Manager
Awesome, because it still have menu, it is easy
i3, intimidating for n00bs. But it is still easy because it only needs a configuration file.
XMonad. This one need coding, in Haskell. But once you got it running, you’ll love it.
I found a super duper good cast from Aline Abler in youtube.
I think that’s enough for today. Correct me If I wrong.
Thank you for reading