Openbox or KDE?

As I mentioned in a comment I posted earlier in this forum, I’m getting a new laptop soon, and I’m planning to use it as my daily driver for coding and I don’t want to DE hop on it. What woud you guys think is a superior DE/WM for a stable workflow, Archlabs’ Openbox(which I’ve been using until now) or KDE?
btw, I have no clue about if KDE is customized in AL by default, because there’s now scrot, so please let me know.


I m pretty much on OB since the last few years, been too long without XFCE, with a little stint on kde, wasn t my cup of tea but each our own I guess.

Guess that you ll need to suit kde to your tasts on AL. While you ask, also wonder if kde has the AL themes all done, which would be of a surprise.

Guess that you ll need to try it, anyways some of the guys always pimp their installs.

Personally I don’t think there is any ‘superior’ DE/WM other than what works best for you.

We don’t customise the Plasma desktop it is supplied to you as default :smiley:

On a laptop I find that i3wm works best for me as I don’t need to use the touchpad so much. I am not a fan of the touchpad. :smiley:


KDE Plasma is great if you want a windows-esque feel with the defaults or you want to go to town with customisation and make it something different, you also need a somewhat modern cpu and some form of opengl acceleration for it to be a nice experience though.

Openbox is about as barebones as it gets for stacking WM while still having things like graphical config tools, you’ll also need to choose and setup everything else yourself (compositor, bar, power management, etc.) which can be a pro or a con depending on your view.

Personally, these days stacking WM aren’t my cup of tea. Have you considered giving a tiling wm a try?

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Do you code in the terminal with emacs/vim or do you use a gui text editor?

If you code in the terminal, not really going to matter. Konsole is nice, but you can use sakura or xfce4-terminal etc … to get the same feature set without having to install KDE.

If you prefer a gui text editor, Kate is really nice. Check out the kate text editor; if it fits your workflow you can go with KDE. The KDE desktop is really nice, runs pretty smooth on newer hardware and there are plenty of themes available.

I like Openbox. After a while I actually know what I am doing. (quite a while!)


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@womp yeah i totally know what you mean. This is my first openbox experience and I gotta say I absolutely love it! I like having full control of my DE, I really think it adds to the linux experience. I love to learn new things and it has really helped me develop and hone my skills. Also the Archlabs community is phenomenal; thanks guys!

I have used multiple DEs before coming to this conclusion, I liked XFCE a lot as well, and more recently LXQT! KDE-Plasma looks nice, but its a bit bloated for me and a little too much going on…I also tried Gnome, which is pretty and modern, but has lots of issues underneath. Lastly, I will say, I have tried other WMs as well, like i3, bwpsm, and fluxbox, but I like how openbox is implemented, its almost like its not that hard to toy around with…Anyways just my two cents :smiley:

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I got bad experience in KDE. I changed the themes and chromium froze. Just simply switching to other themes. The system settings app looks horrible. Forms embedded into forms and you have double scrollbars on the side… makes the UI look awful. Sorry KDE team :slight_smile:

@lajos, was that KDE Plasma?? I wonder as it looks pretty, but I can totally understand the ‘business’ of it…

Yes KDE Plasma. I do like it but they should simplify a bit.

So out of interest do you WANT a Archlabs theme for Plasma? I could plop in a Look and Feel if you want.

I agree wms add to the fun! DEs are okay, if you have the extra compute cycles and want things with a pre-defined work pattern ‘built-in’.

Neither of us uses plasma so it’s better directed to AL users who do.

If you make them user-independant and integrate it with our skel repo, make a PR we’ll use your plasma and offer it during install.

Ah… will try to do something along the lines of current AL style (I am a Plasma user) if I got time and do a PR… OR I could do that AND create a Look and Feel package as well (so anyone can install from inside Plasma)?

Yea that might be the way to go. Whatever’s standard in plasma and works best for you. I forgot they have their own theme packaging system so your previous mention of “Look and Feel” went right over my head :man_facepalming: