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Openbox

Written on January 11, 2004

Emma suggested that I try Openbox, and so far I am very pleased. Unlike Blackbox, there are people still working on Openbox, and they are doing a fine job. So far it is not feature-perfect, but it is function-perfect as far as I can tell, and that is really something.

I was pretty happy with Blackbox, but I didn’t like some of the ways that things were configured, especially the fact that I had to elevate my priviledge to edit my menu or style file. Openbox uses locally specified XML files for configuration, and I am very pleased with how that system works. It is especially nice (though it would be good if it were clearly documented) that if you screw up your local settings you will get the default — but fully functional — settings and menu.

My wishlist for Openbox is for better documentation (so I’ve started to write it) and better management of where windows appear. I run two monitors, and the windows will spawn on the left edge of the right screen, which is not where I want them. I’d also like them to appear in columns rather than rows if I so choose. Still, it’s a nice window manager with active participation, and I’m glad to use it.

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