Window managers - was Re: interrogation

William Palfreman william at
Sun May 11 13:14:53 PDT 2003

On Sun, 11 May 2003 matrix at wrote:

> which Windows Manager do you recommend me
> I'm on a p1 233mhz MMX 64M Ram 4 gig hard disk
> thank you for your answer

I'm really enjoying using Evilwm.  It is ultra-minimalist, so it doesn't
have any buttons or title bars, but it still has all the features you
need, like multiple desktops.  It has keyboard shortcuts for everything
- for example, you use ctrl-alt-h,j,k,l to move windows around, mimicking
vi.  There is also ctrl-alt 1-8 for different desktop, also got at by
ctrl-alt-arrow keys.  Killing a window is ctrl-alt-esc. Active window
selection is done by hovering the mouse over the window, rather than by
clicking.  This is better IMO, as you can have a large windows in the
foreground, while allowing the windows you are working on to be mostly
overlapped. One pitfall for the new user is that the keyboard navigation
stuff does not work if numlock is on.  That might be a bug.

After the mega-bloat of KDE and Gnome (unsuitable for my impoverished
hardware anyway) and in-your-way-and-not-very-good-ness of some of the
lighter weight windows managers, like Afterstep, blackbox and sawfish,
evilwm is a real joy to use.  You also make much better use of the
screen, because there is no WM overhead taking up huge gobs of screen
with icons, start menus, and obscure controls that don't work.

I used to mostly use twm and a few others, and twm does look cooler, but
it is much less featureful, less useful to use and actually quite a bit
of a bigger program.  Twm is 133k, whereas evilwm is only 18k, nearly a
factor of ten smaller.

Kudos to Ciaran Anscomb for this really superb WM.  I use it all the
time. CC'd to him so he gets this hymn of praise, and also because he
was foolish enough to put an email address into the (very informative)


W. Palfreman. 			I'm looking for a job. Read my CV at:
Tel: 0771 355 0354

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