Chapter 3. Getting Productive with the Desktop

In This Chapter

  • Logging in to Linux

  • Getting started with the desktop

  • Choosing GNOME, KDE, or Xfce desktops

  • Using the GNOME desktop environment

  • Switching desktop environments

  • Using the KDE desktop environment

  • Using the Xfce desktop environment

  • Using the Moblin desktop environment

  • Enabling 3D desktop effects

  • Getting your desktop to work

The desktop is the most personal feature of your computer. The way that icons, menus, panels, and backgrounds are arranged and displayed should make it both easy and pleasant to do your work. With Fedora, you have an incredible amount of control over how your desktop behaves and how your desktop is arranged.

From the initial login screen to the desktop background and screensaver, the latest version of Fedora is sporting distinctive looks for GNOME, KDE, and Xfce desktops, as well as improved efforts for a similar experience between the desktop environments. GNOME and KDE form the main Linux desktops and which one you should use is largely a matter of preference. For machines with less horsepower, the Xfce desktop can be an excellent choice. For low-end netbooks with small screens, you may want to try the Moblin desktop.

With each desktop environment, you can get a full set of desktop applications, features for launching applications, and tools for configuring preferences.

The basic desktop is provided by the X.Org X server. X is short for the X Window System and the X server provides the framework on which GNOME, KDE, ...

Get Fedora Bible 2010 Edition: Featuring Fedora Linux 12 now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.