Linux Users Have Luxury of Choosing From Diverse Desktop Options

0-Linux Users Have Luxury of Choosing from Diverse Desktop OptionsLinux Users Have Luxury of Choosing from Diverse Desktop Options
1-GNOME Shell Runs on Multiple Linux Distributions
2-GNOME 3.8 Offers Classic Mode Option
3-GNOME 3.8 Classic Brings Back Apps Menu
4-MATE Delivers GNOME 2.x Linux Experience
5-Cinnamon Melds Shell Concepts With GNOME Look
6-Unity Desktop Is Ubuntu’s Take on GNOME Shell
7-Unity Includes Dash, an Integrated Search Feature
8-KDE Takes a Difference Approach to the Linux Desktop
9-XFCE Linux Desktop Works With Limited Resources
10-LXDE Is Another Lightweight Desktop
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Linux Users Have Luxury of Choosing from Diverse Desktop Options

By Sean Michael Kerner

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GNOME Shell Runs on Multiple Linux Distributions

The GNOME 3 project has multiple desktop environment options, with the cornerstone default option being the GNOME Shell. GNOME Shell runs on multiple Linux distributions, including Fedora 19 (shown here), and provides an Activities menu as well as an application task-switching capability.

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GNOME 3.8 Offers Classic Mode Option

The GNOME Shell approach is not one that is universally liked by GNOME users and represents a shift from the "classic" way that GNOME used to work. With the GNOME 3.8 release, a Classic mode is now available as an option, restoring part of the top menu that GNOME 2.x users used to have.

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GNOME 3.8 Classic Brings Back Apps Menu

The GNOME 3.8 Classic mode (running below on Fedora 19) reintroduces the Applications menu (instead of Activities, which is in GNOME Shell) as well as the Places menu for locating local and network files.

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MATE Delivers GNOME 2.x Linux Experience

For those who still want or need a GNOME 2.x type of Linux Desktop experience, there is MATE. MATE is a fork of GNOME 2.x and provides Applications, Places and System top menus.

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Cinnamon Melds Shell Concepts With GNOME Look

Another GNOME Shell alternative is the Cinnamon desktop developed by the Linux Mint project and is also now available for other distributions. Cinnamon aims to meld some of the shell concepts with a more traditional GNOME look and feel.

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Unity Desktop Is Ubuntu’s Take on GNOME Shell

The Ubuntu Linux distribution has also taken its own slant on a GNOME Shell. The Ubuntu Unity desktop environment (shown here on Ubuntu 13.04) makes use of a sidebar as its core menu system.

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Unity Includes Dash, an Integrated Search Feature

With Unity, there is also integrated search capability, known as Dash, which is intended to make it easier to find files and applications.

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KDE Takes a Difference Approach to the Linux Desktop

KDE offers a different take on the Linux desktop with a more fluid approach known as Plasma Workspaces. With KDE 4.10, shown here on openSUSE 12.3, in addition to the bottom menu there is the ability to add widgets for additional functionality and desktop views.

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XFCE Linux Desktop Works With Limited Resources

The XFCE Linux desktop aims to be a lightweight system that can work on desktops with low system resources. It's available on multiple distributions as well as in the stand-alone Xubuntu, a Ubuntu based Linux operating system.

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LXDE Is Another Lightweight Desktop

As is the case with XFCE, the LXDE desktop has the goal of producing a low-resource system.

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