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The Ideal Puppy User Interface?
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Snail

Joined: 18 Oct 2009
Posts: 238

PostPosted: Thu 12 Sep 2013, 19:16    Post subject: Disciple's example and PupMenu  

Thanks to Disciple, I tried googling for an appfinder. I may have used a poor search strategy, because I found only two, one in XFCE, used on several major distros, and our very own PupMenu! I didn't even know it existed, one more reason for me to bitterly regret ever deserting Lucid 528 for Precise. If you haven't seen the latest PupMenu 3.3, it's here:

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=76713

It can do almost everything that I was asking for and much more! It even overcomes the problem of quickly getting an item out of the menu and onto the Rox desktop, in spite of Rox's lack of XDG compatibility.

Unfortunately, in my opinion, PupMenu is a far better menu editor than it is a menu displayer at present. It seems that Radky is concentrating on modifying the underlying .desktop files so that the existing menu systems can display the revised menu structure, rather than taking one more step and taking over the main menu display function as well. Since PupMenu already does have a display capability, the next step could be worth taking however. To me, the GUI layout is quite confusing and probably intimidating to the novice user. I believe that even novices should be able to customize, so that's a fault in my eyes. However, the basic technology work has been completely done by Radkey!

I have done a bit of lurking on the various programming threads here. It is clear that GUI programming for Puppy is hard, a lot harder than the limited GUI work I did using Borland Delphi way back in the last century. So I would feel a bit presumptuous making suggestions to Radky, that would involve a whole lot of work and may not even be possible with Puppy tools. But I can dream.

It seems to me, that if left and right click actions can be implemented with Puppy tools in a modified Pupmenu Gui, which I don't even know is possible, we might be able to have to have a totally customisable menu structure, including possible multiple custom menus, and an interface that initially looks like Disciple's example but can focus in on one category if required. Nirvana!
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Q5sys


Joined: 11 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 12 Sep 2013, 21:44    Post subject: Re: Disciple's example and PupMenu  

Snail wrote:
It seems to me, that if left and right click actions can be implemented with Puppy tools in a modified Pupmenu Gui, which I don't even know is possible, we might be able to have to have a totally customisable menu structure, including possible multiple custom menus, and an interface that initially looks like Disciple's example but can focus in on one category if required. Nirvana!


Right and Left click actions are usually determined by the Window Manager itself.

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Q5sys


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PostPosted: Thu 12 Sep 2013, 21:54    Post subject: Re: The Ideal Puppy User Interface?
Subject description: What should standard a puppy GUI aim for?
 

Snail wrote:
1. Firstly, absolutely everything should be easily customisable, the desktop, the taskbar, the menu and even the systray. I am not just talking themes and colour schemes, which are mostly well catered for already. I mean adding, deleting, moving, hiding and unhiding. The lack of a noob friendly GUI to do many of these things is a weakness in Puppy. Also, it should be easy to reset things back to original, which is not only of use for fiddlers with regrets but also for making it easier to remaster to standard format. One other bit of customisation of appearance that is in dire need of improvement is Pcur. Why on earth should you have to download a huge 40MB theme library, or indeed any theme, via the PPM when all the average user wants is to be able to select between half a dozen tiny icon files? When it is a choice between giving the user an easy way to do 99% of everything he could likely want and a hard, messy way to do absolutely everything go the easy way.


The closer to "everything" you get for customization - The further away you get from "easy"

Its actually NOT hard to change these things in Puppy once you know how. I admit, there aren't many sources for noobs to go to learn this knowledge, and I've been considering doing a few how-to's on desktop customization for Puppy, but I just haven't had the time to sit down and do it.

Also keep in mind most of how to do taskbar, system tray, etc is completely dependant on what WM you are using. So a guide for LXDE, wont help for Fluxbox, or KDE, or XFCE..

So first you have to decide which WM are you wanting to customize. Then you can set out to change it.

There are soooooooo many ways to tweak and change things in linux, it's going to be VERY hard for anyone to write a simple tool to do all of this for you. Is it possible, yes it is. But that's well beyond my coding skill level, and even if it wasnt it'd take an exceptionally long time to write something like that in the first place.

Snail wrote:

3. An additional thing which would be very nice would be if any such customisations were held in a single file that is standard between all puppy versions. It is impractical for it to be possible to upgrade complete savefiles or to convert them for different Puppies in many cases but this customisation file could be a way of allowing the user to easily carry his or her quirks across in many cases.


This isnt really a failing of the current savefile concept we are using. It's a matter that different puppies with different software will have different stuff in the save file. The save file technology itself is nothing more than saving a read/write layer of the file system to a single file.

If you took Slacko and installed 12 applications and used them for a few weeks, and you then took precise and installed 12 applications and used them for a few weeks, the save files would NOT be the same due to the differences between Slacko and Precise.

There is no way to have a universal save file that will work with every puppy, because a save file is unique to a users action on a certain puppy.

Think of the save file being the house you're building on top of a foundation. Different Puppies provide different foundations. As such you cant build the same house on two different foundations.

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disciple

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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 02:01    Post subject:  

Q5sys wrote:

Right and Left click actions are usually determined by the Window Manager itself.

I think you misunderstand. Window managers only control right and left clicks on things they draw, I.e. window decorations and their own menus. We're talking about a "start menu" or "start window" that is separate from the window manager.

Pupmenu uses gtkdialog - I know one of the workarounds to achieve right-click menus with gtkdialog was abandoned when it was discovered there is a proper way, but I'm not 100% sure if gtkdialog_menu (search for it) is a workaround or the "proper" way.

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Snail

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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 04:34    Post subject: Right-Clicks  

Hi Disciple, So it appears that setting up a right-click menu is possible but it's neither easy nor well-documented? But it IS possible! (It was so easy in Delphi it really makes me wonder why Lazarus never took off as the GUI writer for Linux. Delphi was not only RAD, it gave C compilers a run for their money both in size and speed of the executables. And the GUI to make GUIs really made Visual Basic look primitive.)

It starts to look a bit promising. I really need to get to grips with the configuration options of PupMenu before making any more wild surmises though.

QSys you seem to have misunderstood that sentence of mine you quoted and the post as a whole. I specifically noted that a completely cross-Puppy-version transferable savefile wasn't likely to be possible, so there was no need for you to tell me that. I was making the point that it might be possible to have a transferable file of certain customizations, but even that would require the developer to restrict themselves in some respects. I raised the hope that if a sufficiently customizable GUI for the base Puppy could be developed, most developers could be prepared to so restrict themselves. That may be an optimistic hope but not one arising entirely from ignorance of Puppy basics.
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mikeslr


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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 14:33    Post subject: Openbox with Lxpanel -- the ideal user Interface  

Hi all,

Sorry if this is off point. I only scanned the snail's initial post and responses and am about to go out.
Openbox with lxpanel is easily customizable, launchers for applications are easily added to the first panel which substitutes for a taskbar, and you can easily add a second (or third) panel to provide additional launchers so that all of your commonly used applications are only a mouse-slide-and-click away. Panels can be set to hide when not in use. Desktop drive icons can (but need not be retained). Desktop app icons can but need not be retained, as the second panel's launchers can instead be used. Add thunar or pacman as file-manager and "places" show up it their left-panel. Favorite places can be drag-dropped onto the left panel. It is xdg compliant.
Once you've configured openbox/lxpanel to your liking on one pup, your settings can be easily transfered to another. Those settings are in a config file. That file can be copied to storage, and from storage copied to a new pup, overriding the default config. But a better technique would be to create a pet including the config file and any applications you'll always want and icons you'll need. Thereafter, customization is a one-click process.
I don't know how you could set up a menu to sometimes show all applications, and sometimes not. But my experience is that there are about 10 applications I frequently use. Launcher's for them easily fit on two panels. Using Openbox+lxpanel, I only have to access the Menu on those few occasions when I want to run some application not launched from a panel.

mikesLr

Edit: For illustration I've added Screenshot I prevously took. It shows use of thunar file manager, so it probably used Xfce as window manager. Pacman, more often used with Lxpanel, can do the same: Left panel is a tree. If I wanted to, I could drag the clipart folder in the right panel to the bottom of the left and it would always be there for quick access to that place. The left panel on the desktop can be set to autohide, showing only when moused-over. An alternative to openbox + Lxpanel, is Xfce. I still have Saluki, which uses Xfce, on my Eeepc 701SD. The desktop has limited height, so I placed one panel on the bottom and one on the top. The top panel shows gauges, widgets and tabs of opened applications. The bottom panel has launchers for commonly used applications.
Screenshot.png
 Description   Use of 2 panels and Thunar showing tree
 Filesize   136.53 KB
 Viewed   608 Time(s)

Screenshot.png


Last edited by mikeslr on Fri 13 Sep 2013, 18:10; edited 1 time in total
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Q5sys


Joined: 11 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 17:02    Post subject: Re: Openbox with Lxpanel -- the ideal user Interface  

Snail wrote:
QSys you seem to have misunderstood that sentence of mine you quoted and the post as a whole.
I was making the point that it might be possible to have a transferable file of certain customizations, but even that would require the developer to restrict themselves in some respects. I raised the hope that if a sufficiently customizable GUI for the base Puppy could be developed, most developers could be prepared to so restrict themselves. That may be an optimistic hope but not one arising entirely from ignorance of Puppy basics.


Yea misunderstood what you were trying to say about customizations. You were specifically talking about customizations of a certain kind. I see customizations as anything beyond the OEM release. No worries, got what you mean now.

mikeslr wrote:
Hi all,

Sorry if this is off point. I only scanned the snail's initial post and responses and am about to go out.
Openbox with lxpanel is easily customizable, launchers for applications are easily added to the first panel which substitutes for a taskbar, and you can easily add a second (or third) panel to provide additional launchers so that all of your commonly used applications are only a mouse-slide-and-click away. Panels can be set to hide when not in use. Desktop drive icons can (but need not be retained). Desktop app icons can but need not be retained, as the second panel's launchers can instead be used. Add thunar or pacman as file-manager and "places" show up it their left-panel. Favorite places can be drag-dropped onto the left panel. It is xdg compliant.
Once you've configured openbox/lxpanel to your liking on one pup, your settings can be easily transfered to another. Those settings are in a config file. That file can be copied to storage, and from storage copied to a new pup, overriding the default config. But a better technique would be to create a pet including the config file and any applications you'll always want and icons you'll need. Thereafter, customization is a one-click process.
I don't know how you could set up a menu to sometimes show all applications, and sometimes not. But my experience is that there are about 10 applications I frequently use. Launcher's for them easily fit on two panels. Using Openbox+lxpanel, I only have to access the Menu on those few occasions when I want to run some application not launched from a panel.

mikesLr


+1 on this. As for Openbox and lxpanel, its really easy to back up your settings.
Using LightHousePup as an example
/root/.config/lxpanel
/root/.config/openbox
/root/.config/lxterminal
/root/.config/rox.sourceforge.net
/usr/share/themes
/usr/share/fonts
/usr/share/icons

Back up those folders once you have your system set up the way you want.
Now keep in mind that'll grab everything in those folders. If you want a smaller backup, then backup those folders above that appear under /initrd/pup_rw

A simple user run script could be written. Here's an example. (This can be done in ALOT less lines, but I wrote it out like this so that you could see and hopefully understand what each line of it does.

Code:

#!/bin/sh
#date - author - GPL version - description

mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxpanel
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxpanel /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxpanel
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/openbox
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/openbox /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/openbox
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxterminal
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxterminal /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/lxterminal
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/rox.sourceforge.net
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/rox.sourceforge.net  /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/root/.config/rox.sourceforge.net
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/themes
cp -r  /initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/themes /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/themes
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/fonts
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/fonts /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/fonts
mkdir -p /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/icons
cp -r /initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/icons /tmp/mybackup/initrd/pup_rw/usr/share/icons
cd /tmp/mybackup/
tar -zcvf mysettings.tgz ./initrd
tgz2pet /tmp/mybackup/mysettings.tgz
cp ./mysettings.pet /mnt/home
cd /tmp/
rm -r ./mybackup


When run, that will copy the directories I talked about above into a tmp directory tree, which it will then compress and make a pet out of, and put that pet in /mnt/home. Then a person has a single click install to redo their settings.

This can eaisly be expanded to include whatever directories are edited during the course of your fine tuning. Also keep in mind that the sample above will ONLY work for Openbox and a few LXDE apps like lxpanel and lxterminal.
If you use another terminal or another WM like xfce, JWM, etc. You will have to modify the script accordingly.

edit: fixed a typo in the sample script

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Last edited by Q5sys on Thu 19 Sep 2013, 21:24; edited 1 time in total
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disciple

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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 19:25    Post subject:  

If you're going to go that route I strongly recommend the lxpanelx + pcmanfm + openbox-git combination.
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mikeslr


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PostPosted: Fri 13 Sep 2013, 20:19    Post subject: Concur with disciple  

Hi All,

I concur with disciple.
The following is a link for illustration purposes to peebee's LxPup by SFS showing a screenshot of pacman filemanager displaying the tree view of drives, partitions and directories in its left pane: http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=722437&sid=7b0a75be10f4fd29cb92c852b40e19fc#722437. I've forgotten which of my "active" pups using LxPup by SFS achieves the same look as the screenshot I attached above. I'm a creature of habit. Ever since I had/installed fbpanel + newfbpanel + launcher in Lupu, I've customized all of my Pups to provide the same "mouse-over-to-display-launcher, click to open app" to provide quick access to my most frequently used applications.
I'm posting from pemasu's upup precise 3.8, currently my default Pup as it's first on grub4dos menu. Into this Pup I've installed vicmz's OpenboxPlus 1.5.3. [He's published a later version, which I haven't yet tried: If it ain't broke, don't fix it]. To illustrate a Tree-view file-manager, I considered installing either spaceman/pacman or thunar to this Pup rather than providing the above link. But the last time technosaurus or anyone developed any of those as a separate app was over two years ago. I'm not sure any work function in current Pups.
After enduring the learning curve Rox required, I'm used to it's quirks. Personally, I'm of two minds about either pacman or thunar. The Tree-view is convenient, but so are Rox's bookmarks. And its fairly easy to create an app which uses Rox to open my home partition. Just edit Rox's desktop file so that the executable argument reads "rox /mnt/home" and its icon argument points to a different icon; give it a different name ; then save. Then add a launcher on an lxpanel for that app.
Both pacman and thunar automatically mount drives/partitions when a directory on them is clicked. Accidents happen. I'm not sure that having to first mount a drive with pmount using Rox as file-manager [the routine's built into desktop drive icons] doesn't provide greater security.

Edit, 9/14/13: I tracked down jejy69's pcmanfm pet. See my post here:http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=725755#725755. I installed it in a precise pup. Although my memory tells me that pcmanfm automatically mounted the drive/partition in LxPups, the pet installed to precise did not.

mikesLr

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mikeslr


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PostPosted: Thu 19 Sep 2013, 15:06    Post subject: Emphasis on Puppy for the Ideal Interface  

Hi All,

The topic of this thread is ““The Ideal Puppy User Interface?” Perhaps it should have been started in the Next Puppy Development sub-forum, but then no one would have responded.
I would suggest that central to answering the question is a consideration of Puppy's purpose. For many of us, Puppy is something to occupy our minds and time, to tinker with, gossip about, socialize over and make distant friends and acquaintances. But I would also suggest that Puppy serves some useful external purpose: to provide a free operating system to owners of computers that lack the RAM and CPU requirements of the current batch being offered in retail establishments, or who wonder if with a different operating system they could achieve a more satisfying computer experience.
Puppy isn't the operating system packaged with new computers. By and large, those who find Puppy are people who are familiar with Windows XP, Windows 7 and, unless I'm mistaken, they will soon be joined by a new bunch fleeing from Windows 8. They come to Puppy with no technical knowledge, and no real interest in obtaining technical knowledge in general or knowledge of Linux in particular. But they do have ideational and muscle memory. They want something different from they know, but not radically different.
When I think of a Graphical User Interface, I think first of the Windows Manager: what does my desktop look like? and how do I get to my applications? Both XP and Windows 7 provide a Start Menu, a Taskbar (panel) with application launchers, and desktop application icons.
The following are consideration for a default configuration of a Pup: that is what you would get OOTB on installation, before user customizations.
Desktop application icons: Almost all Pups in their default configuration present desktop icons. The main improvement here might be the creation of an application by which the user could select which applications she/he desires on the desktop: something like lxpanel uses for adding and removing applications from a panel, to wit a graphical display repeating the applications found on the Menu, organized into categories, selected/de-selected by clicking “Add” or “Remove” buttons. Perhaps positioning of icons could be accomplished by reference to a grid or table, with the user clicking “before” or “after” keys (more restrictive) or (less restrictive) identifying the desired column and row. My guess is that a Gtk-dialog could handle the input from the user.
Taskbar (Main Panel): Again, this is something almost all Pups have in their default configuration. Populating a Panel with widgets, gauges and launchers should be as easy as doing so in lxpanel, or Xfce.
Start Menu: Again, this is something almost all Pups have in their default configuration. Perhaps the biggest obstacle for someone coming from XP or Windows 7 is their unfamiliarity with Linux applications. I'm not sure how, but perhaps “tool tips” --presenting the comment in an application's desktop file-- could be displayed when a menu selection is “moused over”. Rather than to go into great detail about what else is wrong with the default Pup Start Menu, I'll just mention four of its categories –Desktop, Setup, System, Utilities-- and the word “Confusing”. As a new-comer to Puppy, unfamiliar with what its applications are supposed to accomplish, how do I find what I want? Let me suggest a simple solution: add a new category “Controls” from which radky's Pup Controls and Pup Apps are launched. And another category, “Help ”. The Help category would contain a listing of Guides/Help files --in htlm, pdf format or even plain text, [perhaps, when possible, simply duplicating information already on the forum]-- found within the installation, displayed by clicking an item on the list. The help files should contain information basic to the running of a Pup that one would not expect emigrants from Windows not to know [such as routines Pups initiate by Right-Clicking]; and for those applications unique to Puppy which provide many options –such as pmusic-- a guide to their setup and use.
Maintaining a consistent “look”: In current Pups, when an icon theme is selected the icons on the desktop change to that theme. The icons displayed on the Menu and most panels ignore the theme selection and display the icons specified by the desktop files in usr/share/applications. The only way to maintain a consistent look is to hand edit desktop file icon arguments. When panels other than lxpanel are used –including rox's taskbar-- the user has to personally select each icon. Icons are scattered all over. In xfce, at least, during the icon selection process, a panel appears with a list of each folder which contains icons. Click on an folder on that list and the icons in the selected folder appear in a panel. One item on the list is essentially “all icons” --I've forgotten its name-- for those frequent instances when you know which icon you want to use, but don't recall where its located. [I guess the mechanism is 'search and symlink']. But the best solution would be that by default, as with desktop icons, the icons appearing on the Menu and in panels, should be first those for which there are icons in the selected theme, and where a theme does not contain an appropriate icon, the icon specified in the desktop file.

mikeslr
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PostPosted: Thu 19 Sep 2013, 15:15    Post subject: SpaceFm --File-Manager for the Ideal Puppy User Interface  

Hi Again,
Thought this was worth a separate post.
The second thing Graphical User Interface calls to my mind is the File-Manager. Coming from Windows, familiar with firefox and Microsoft Word, firefox is still firefox, and Abiword or LibreOffice Writer, will presents few surprises. In terms of how a user interacts with an application, Rox-filer, Pup's default file-manager, may be as different from Window's default file-manager, Explorer as you can get. And the philosophical distinction between Linux and Windows requires utilization of a File-manager more often than a Windows emigrant may be accustomed to. The casual Windows user will have allowed applications to save a file in the default location suggested by an application, secure in the belief that in several years that application or its successor will find and open the file. File structure and storage might just as well be magic. Now think of yourself as a first time user of a Frugally installed Pup. The Pup you are now using may not be the same Pup you even have several years from now. Wouldn't you want to know at least the basics of reducing your usage of the SaveFile? The difference between your Home directory and your Home partition and, of necessity, something about Linux file structure? [Information provided by the Help files I mentioned in my previous post]. And knowing, aren't you going to make use of your file-manager?
Don't get me wrong. I appreciate Barry K's loyalty to Rox, and personally like Rox. I like being able to left-click the eye on those occasions when I need to deal with hidden files. I like the ease of switching between icon view and thumbnail view. There's no easier way of copying/moving a lot of files from one directory to another than by lassoing a bunch, right-clicking to add or remove, and then drag and drop. Thunar and pcman's right tree-view pane may provide an easier method for navigating to a desired folder, but those panes occupy screen-space and can't be turned off. Frequently, two open thunar or pcman windows will overlap slowing down the process. But most importantly coming from Windows, what do I know about lassoing, right-or-left clicking?
What if there was a file-manager which could provide the best of everything? One unadorned pane, if that's all that's needed, through up to four tabbed panes

Well, there is. It's called spacefm. http://ignorantguru.github.io/spacefm/ . See also:
http://www.webupd8.org/2012/02/spacefm-highly-customizable-multi-pane.html
Not enough options for you? How about some plugins: https://github.com/IgnorantGuru/spacefm/wiki/plugins , https://gitorious.org/spacefm-plugins/spacefm-plugins/source/322baf00477b8066338b9aecebd965db67e0769c:
Add that spaceFM is theme-able.
SpaceFm is the default file-manager in Archbang, and slated to become the default in SlitTaz. Some time ago, technosaurus built an early version. It was available in Saluki and Carolina (T2-builds) and is the default file-manager in Archpup and AlphaOS (ArchLinux builds).
I was unfamiliar with spaceFm in operation, 'though it had sufficiently attracted my attention that, some time in the past, I had downloaded version 0.7.1 to include in an adrive build from the Saluki repo, and version 0.8.5 for use in an adrive build in Carolina. [I'm not sure where the latter came be found. My bookmarks to the Saluki and Carolina repos now only both show 0.7.1. But see Edit of 9/22]. SpaceFm's current version is 0.8.7. By now curious, I tested 0.7.1 in both Slacko, and 0.8.5 in precise. [It may be significant to note that on both those Pups, I installed and run vicmz's Openbox Plus 1.5.3 with lxpanel]. Although my exploration was not extensive, it appears that both versions of spaceFm work as advertised and are fully functional.
SpaceFm's default configuation is one panel to the right, with a second panel to the left showing a directory tree. It took me some time to figure out that the Folder icon on a toolbar was a toggle which turned the directory tree on and off. There's also a Drive icon on that toolbar which toggles displays of drives/partitions and loop devices. Clicking a drive does not automatically mount it. Rather, pmount is initiated offering the user the option to mount or cancel. Thumbnails are not shown by default. To display them, you have to check a radio button reached by clicking spaceFm's Menu:View>Preferences and selecting it from the General Tab on the dialog box.
SpaceFm can display up to four panes, each with or without a tree-view distinct from the tree-view of the other panes. A toolbar at the top displays four buttons which will toggle the panes on and off. The second button opens a pane to the first pane's right. The third and fourth button open panes below the first pane, and if both are selected the third pane will occupy a position on the left. If four panes aren't sufficient, or if for some reason an independent instance of spaceFm is desired, clicking new from its File Menu will open one.
The only aspect which did not appear to be intuitive, and perhaps not fully functional in 0.7.1 (or I haven't figured it out yet) was switching from detailed view to icon view. As far as I can tell, to switch views requires that the folder be right-clicked, and Style chosen from the View option on the pop-up menu that appears. With icon view selected, files in a folder will appear as icons with their names below. Except, sometimes no icon appeared leaving a blank space above a files name. Perhaps this was corrected by version 0.8.5, as I was not able to duplicate that behavior under it.
I have the impression (perhaps wrongly) that when Rox is the default file-manager it provides services other than just file-management. If so, whether SpaceFm alone, or a combinations such as spacefm + Openbox + lxpanel, can provide any necessary functionality in the absence of Rox, I'll have to leave to be answered by those more familiar with the inner workings of Rox. Or perhaps the advice of simargl, Marv or others familiar which ArchPup and AlphaOS could be sought.
At any rate, spaceFm has now earned the place as my supplemental file-manager (except when the extensive built-in keyboard short-cuts of Xfe are required). SpaceFm has a few built-in keyboard shortcuts, and enables the manual assignment of others.

Edit 9/20/13: Tested 0.8.5 in x-precise (xfce-thunar combo). Despite the absence of rox, openbox, and lxpanel, it was fully functional. So it appears to be self-sufficient as a file-manager.

Edit 9/22: SpaceFm 0.8.7, which rg66 was kind enough to compile after this post, can be found here: http://www.carolina-linux.com/rg66/X-common-packages/

mikesLr
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disciple

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PostPosted: Thu 03 Oct 2013, 03:59    Post subject:  

Quote:
I'm not sure how, but perhaps “tool tips” --presenting the comment in an application's desktop file-- could be displayed when a menu selection is “moused over”.

Yes, this is what most modern window managers do. Does JWM not support it, or is it just not implemented in (your?) Puppy?
Dude - have you tried the current pcmanfm and lxpanelx? If Puppy moves away from rox it should really go to a combination like this which implements as many standards and as much integration as possible. Last time I checked spacefm did not fit in this category - it did too much its own way, like Rox.

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disciple

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PostPosted: Thu 03 Oct 2013, 04:02    Post subject:  

disciple wrote:
Quote:
A utility which I think would be great would be an AppFinder. It would be able to search either the standard menu, or possibly all .desktop files in the system directories. It could work on three levels, search by name, including wild cards, search the categories in the .desktop files (dropdown list of XDG approved categories?), or free word search through both categories and tooltip text. It would return a picklist of app names, with icons and tooltip text displayed. Left-clicking on an item in the picklist would run it, right-click would allow the user to place a shortcut on the desktop, or possibly into a custom menu.

This is very popular for start menus these days, so you just need to figure out what a good lightweight one is, and install it. The problem with it of course is that you need to know that something exists in order to search for it.

Also there are a bunch of standalone programs to do this, maybe check out launchy.

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mikeslr


Joined: 16 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 03 Oct 2013, 11:04    Post subject: SpaceFm -- configurability  

Hi Disciple,

You're right. For someone coming to Puppy/Linux from windows, SpaceFm's many options could be just as confusing as rox's different way of doing things. However, one of the nice things about SpaceFm is the ease with which it can be reconfigured. The Dev can provide default settings so that when first opened it would look and function pretty much like Explorer: Single pane, thumbnail view. ['though I would recommend SpaceFm's single pane with tree-view panel as some window refugees will already be familiar with similar file-managers, and others will quickly grasp the concept]. Newcomers would be free to uncover (or not) SpaceFm's many options at their leisure.

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disciple

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PostPosted: Sun 20 Oct 2013, 13:47    Post subject: lightweight appfinder/launcher  

disciple wrote:
disciple wrote:
Quote:
A utility which I think would be great would be an AppFinder. It would be able to search either the standard menu, or possibly all .desktop files in the system directories. It could work on three levels, search by name, including wild cards, search the categories in the .desktop files (dropdown list of XDG approved categories?), or free word search through both categories and tooltip text. It would return a picklist of app names, with icons and tooltip text displayed. Left-clicking on an item in the picklist would run it, right-click would allow the user to place a shortcut on the desktop, or possibly into a custom menu.

This is very popular for start menus these days, so you just need to figure out what a good lightweight one is, and install it. The problem with it of course is that you need to know that something exists in order to search for it.

Also there are a bunch of standalone programs to do this, maybe check out launchy.

Or fehlstart or mercury

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