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#1 2021-06-17 13:32:48

Registered: 2021-06-15
Posts: 3

How to easily switch desktop environments?

This post is a replica of this one: https://www.linuxquestions.org/question … ost6259857

I have fully installed XFCE desktop environment including its window manager, panel, xfdesktop, xfce terminal and a bunch of xfce plugins on gentoo distro. Now, i wanted to try a new window manager, specifically suckless'es dwm.
My first problem came up when i didn't know how to change the default WM because dwm doesnt support --replace command. I had to disable it from "Current Session" by setting restart style to Never, and enabled dwm in application autostart. So its viewed as an application and not a core component of the environment. I also noticed the xfce4-panel and xfdesktop doesnt mix very well with dwm, its kinda wierd.

And here my question comes:
I don't want every time to modify the application autostart when i want to use full XFCE or dwm only, no xfce plugin or anything related to xfce. How can i easily isolate xfce DE from DWM and vice versa?
I want while dwm is running, xfce to not use any system resources, and use suckless'es terminal st, instead of xfce terminal. And when the time comes and i want to use xfce only, dwm to be inactive and use xfce terminal. I want to keep this compability, or better said ecosystem. How do i achieve this "dual boot", preferably without rebooting? Is it possible?

Last edited by George528 (2021-06-17 13:49:02)


#2 2021-06-22 13:55:46

Registered: 2018-01-28
Posts: 144

Re: How to easily switch desktop environments?

I don't use the feature but I think lightdm and gdm have DE options in the upper right menu of the logon screen.

I'd be tempted to also use different users for each and sync homes if needed.


#3 2021-07-03 05:23:01

Registered: 2020-07-24
Posts: 13

Re: How to easily switch desktop environments?

George528 wrote:

How can i easily isolate xfce DE from DWM and vice versa?

What I would do is:
-install a new window manager (or a new desktop environment)
-make a new user account - that will only log into the new wm(or de)

So useraccountxfce account logs only to xfce
useraccountdwm account logs only to dwm

This way your home directory will stay clean of foreign configuration files.
Done it many times, in my case it works.


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