Hi everyone. After about 5 years mostly on OS X, with various forays into crunchbang, lubuntu, and a couple of other distros I’m moving back to linux, and I need advice on which desktop environment will suit my needs.
I’m going to be running Antergos on a dell xps 15 with 16gb Ram, i7 core, 256gb SSD (for linux, another 256gb for Windows). I plan to dual boot with Windows, but will only be using Windows for games and the occasional piece of software that might not run on linux (for example the printer software my university uses).
I’m trying to decide primarily between Gnome and Openbox. I’ve used both in the past (though not seriously for about 5 years) but I’m not sure which one would be better for what I want. I have a very specific work flow which means I will likely not use many of the natively installed apps. I plan to spend 90% of my time using:
Chrome/Chromium (Including google docs, sheets, gmail, calendar etc.)
File Browser (Native or Replaced)
PDF Reader (Native or Replaced)
Search Functions (I really love spotlight on OS X, so something similar would be great)
Apart from that I’ll basically only be using VLC to play movies etc.
Some functionality from OS X that I really want/need:
Full Screen Mode for as many apps as possible (reducing wasted screen space) Workspaces/Desktops rather than minimising/alt-tabbing
Strong gesture control from the trackpad (2 finger right click, 3 finger drag, 4 finger swap workspace/full screen apps)
Tabs within as many apps as possible
I also use a semi-tiling window solution (Spectacle) that gives easy keyboard shortcuts to set a window to a half or quarter of the screen in a desired position. (I would be open to using a fully tiled window manager).
Things I like about Openbox: Extremely simple, as mentioned I have a pretty set workflow, so I don’t really need bells and whistles that I won’t use. Openbox menu: I really liked the customisable right click menus last time I used openbox.
Things I’m worried about:
Stability: This will be a work machine primarily so it needs to be stable. I can’t afford to regularly loose half a day fixing problems. This is another reason I’ll be keeping Windows installed, for those emergency times when you just need to get something done.
Out of the box-ness: While I really enjoy tinkering to get things working I don’t really have the time at the moment, so the more things that work out of the box without having to do anything the better (having to install a simple program/library with pacman is not a problem, but anything that requires complex config files etc. is a minus)
Battery Life: As long as possible.
Apologies for the longwinded post, any recommendations would be most appreciated.
TL:DR: Is Gnome or Openbox better for a stable, semi-OS X like, base for a full time writer using Chrome (and google apps) and Latex