The Xfce menu
change desktop colours
change the clock format and colour
keyboard shortcuts (key-bindings)
The Xfce desktop installs a menu file to store content of menu, which are: root entries (Run program etc) and sub-menus. This file looks for 1. .directory files, to get the right icon for each sub-menu, 2. .desktop files so as to populate the sub-menus with programs, sorting them using the categories set in the .desktop files. To edit the menu root entries, to add or remove sub-menus, and to change the categories assigned to sub-menus, the menu file needs to be copied from /usr... to /home...
(so it can be edited without root privileges). Xfce will look in /home first before referring to the files in /usr. To put items under the right menus the .desktop file for each item needs to be copied over to /home as well.
Official guide is at the xfce wiki
Basically, copy the menu file "xfce-applications.menu" from /etc/xdg/menus/ to ~/.config/menus
navigate to /user/share/applications and copy the whole lot over to ~/.local/share/applications
then you must add a .directory file for the new sub-menu in ~/.local/share/desktop-directories with the content:
[Desktop Entry] Version=1.0 Type=Directory Icon=viking Name=GPS Comment=GPS apps
(my example) the name must be the same as for the sub-menu and the sub-menu entry must point to the .directory file name to locate it.
get the icon name from launcher properties "select an icon".
Handy tip: to omit a program from the menu entirely (such as things that get installed as dependencies, like nepomuk backup, nepomukcontroller, akonaditray, dngconverter, expoblending etc) open the .desktop file for each one and add the line NoDisplay=true and save it -it will not show any more.
The LXDE menu editor can be used* as well, to change the category of a program in the menu, by simply going to an entry and editing it's category. install lxmenueditor from sourceforge. Alacarte does not affect Xfce menu.
*It has its glitches though. I've had much better success with this by altering the .desktop files with the first method.
then I've removed window buttons (=icon box?) from the top panel (this made the notification icons join up with launchers on the left, so just added a separator and made it transparent in its properties).
then i made another panel to the right, horizontal (so it won't obstruct the scroll bar too much), quite long, and added window buttons to it (checked show flat buttons in properties), 0% alpha, auto show/hide and locked.
on the top panel i disabled tooltips for launchers (set one by one). It's a bit crazy.
window button panel: make size 49 to have large icons, length 1 to keep icons to the edge.
Or as shown below, move the new window button panel to the desktop bottom and increase the length so that it's easy to find with the mouse at bottom edge (this works much better!).
note: if opcacity of inactive windows is set to low, you need to make a quick mouse move from the window button to the window or else the innactive window underneath will appear as the mouse moves over it (with "focus follows mouse") - covering the active one (only from view not ontop of it).
Tip: mouse scroll button on the window buttons panel cycles -from one end to the other- through the open app's.
It seems to be buggy for me -sometimes no windows restore when clicking on a button, but the one clicked on starts flashing when mouse is off it, or it remains highlighted. Mouse scroll does nothing too. Alt-Tab works normally to cycle windows.
Have not had this happen since building 4.10
I have three panels at the left, fixed positions at top/bottom/middle, auto-hide, size 27,
(I changed some of the icons at the top for 'symbolic' ones which are grey).
note: the top launcher on the top left side panel can't cover the xfce menu button or the top button might disappear, so need to move the panel down and lock its position.
if you want to fill the panels with plenty of launchers you can add lines or rows of icons in panel pref's (xfce 4.10) or with a 'separator' (or more than one) which is set to 'new-line' (4.8).
my panels (normally set to auto-hide)
add launchers for documents:
1. add new launcher to a panel for xfwrite or LibreOffice 3.5 Writer, 2. follow the command with the file location
e.g. xfwrite ./Documents/subdir/doc.txt
or xfwrite ./Documents/subdir/new\ doc.txt
libreoffice3.5 --writer %U ./Documents/doc.odt (need to reset launcher icon after)
resize the notification icons in Panel properties > Items tab > edit Notification area
adjust the alpha of panels to give translucence, set to 0 to make panels invisible with bright icons (see below) -but 1st check "enable display compositing" in Windows Tweaks, Settings manager.
remove tooltips for launchers in panel peoperties >items
panels on left need 40% opacity at least so that the icons are visible when xfe is open
change desktop colours
got annoyed yet with the lovely square blue button showing on your panels when you hover on launchers? (depends on the theme you have)
you can change that and lots more, using gnome color chooser
-buttons tab >hover -set background, >pressed -set color
-specific tab >tooltips -set bkg (scroll bar/progress bar colors can be set here)
-engines tab >buttons -set the style of hover (progress bar style also, but start menu and tooltips have no effect)
Places and Mount drives applets didn't change hover color however, until I removed them and added them again to the panel.
also on the specific tab Window decoration >Compiz -sets window bar color (including Chromium) and the top window buttons.
>Global colors tab >Normal >normal bkg and >hover bkg will hit the xfce menu. hits other window material too including the system load monitor/network monitor applets!
>Global tab >Normal >disabled hits the inactive window bar, plus much more like inactive fields.
>Global tab >Entry fields >normal/selected/active -set colors -this colours a lot of app windows (makes kdenlive nice).
!if ever the windows manager goes hay-wire -like windows loose decoration and stick in the top left corner covering each-other, close programs with the menu quit, then open Run Program with ALT-F2 type xfwm4 --replace and hit enter
set inactive windows to 15% opacity in Compositor (Windows Tweaks) -moving the mouse off a window immediately brings others to life (with Windows Manager > Focus tab >Focus follows mouse -checked) but you must click in the window underneath the active one to bring it up and not have the active one reshowing. But if there's a typing field in a window underneath you can type there by focusing with mouse.
but if it drive you mad, especially with Gimp and pop-up confirmation boxes, set the opacity to 80%.
With "automatically raise window when window receives focus" checked there's no need to click to bring window to active. But if the window underneath is a maximised one there'll be no switching back to the previous window with the mouse focus, only Alt-Tab, Shift-Alt-Pgdn or panel. I prefer it unchecked.
In Settings Mgr >Notifications -set opacity, -default is quite xfce, smoke is gnome
there are some things that are only changed by the theme, such as the window title bar style and font colour
Window manager >style -change to Totem
Appearance >Style -change to Xfce-4.6 >icons tango >fonts -bitstream charter 10
Notifications >decrease opacity
libreoffice writer >Options >appearance -doc bkg to violet, application bkg to grey 80
with digital display you can select Custom Format, then use codes, %c full time n date n time %R hour n minute %H hour %M minute %S seconds %x date %X local time 12hr, %s seconds of the day! %A wk day %d day of month %m month numeral %h month name %g year numeral
with a span around it to change the colour/font e.g. <span color="#D5AE18" font="Webdings 10"> %R:%S %d.%h </span>
easy to set colour n font (foreground means the clock digits),
This one baffled me for a long time! I thought that keyboard shortcuts were disabled on my box. Until finally I looked at the Xfce docs page! here http://docs.xfce.org/...
also some help here http://wiki.xfce.org/...
It's really simple to set a keyboard shortcut for any app. For example Super-F1 for Thunar, Super-F2 for Chromium, Super-F3 for Xfwrite, Super-F4 for Xfce4-terminal etc.
Use the command xfce4-popup-applicationsmenu to pop up the menu on the panel (Ctrl-Escape for me).
I found that I didn't really need this app, although it is fast if you have to tile app windows often.
With Thunar I open two on their own workspace and arrange them to split the screen horizontally, top and bottom. Then I switch workspaces to get to other apps using Ctrl-Alt-left/right or the scroll button with the mouse pointer on the space between my two top panels (i.e. on the desktop) or on the workspace switcher buttons. A very helpful thing to have is the workspaces plugin on the panel, and I like it with "show miniature" unchecked (you need to make names for workspaces in Settings manager >Workspaces >click on the name twice or Enter).
Save session on logging out will have them open on their workspace the next time X is booted -or you can go to Sessions and save the session once its how you'd like it to be on start-up.
So here, below, are my Xfce4-Terminal with no window deco, and two thunar windows with the lower one shrunk down, on two of my workspaces.
my tutorials >