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Revision as of 17:00, 21 May 2006 by Hellwoofa (talk | contribs) (corrected typos + improved a lil' bit)
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First grab Openbox Package Either:

pacman -S openbox

or you use a PKGBUILD out of ABS.

Once openbox is installed you will get a message to move menu.xml & rc.xml to ~/.config/openbox/ in your home directory

Check your $HOME/.config/' and make sure the dir $HOME/.config/openbox/ is there (as your normal user)

If not create $HOME/.config/openbox/ directory by :

mkdir $HOME/.config/openbox/

then copy menu.xml & rc.xml from /etc/xdg/openbox/ to $HOME/.config/openbox/

To be able to log into openbox you can either go via graphical log in KDM/GDM or startx in which case you will need to edit your /.xinitrc (as user) to the following :

exec openbox

For KDM there is nothing left to do, openbox is listed in the sessions menu in KDM


OBConf is a very useful tool that you will need. So first get it with pacman.

pacman -S obconf

To be able to use obconf you will need to change permissions on rc.xml file in $HOME/.config/openbox/

as root

cd $HOME/.config/openbox/
chown <USERNAME> rc.xml

The above procedure for the permissions only applies if you copied the files as root. If you copied rc.xml and menu.xml as a normal user into your /home/[user]/.config/openbox you are all set and ready to go!

Now you can log into openbox right click mouse to get main menu...

Use menumaker to create your first menu

menumaker is a very usefull tool to create the xml-based menus for a various of WMs, and of course it works fine for OpenBox

First you have to get menumaker with pacman

pacman -S menumaker

as a normal user you can now run

mmaker -v OpenBox3

This will search your system for whatever applications you got, and it will create the menu.xml in your $HOME/.config/openbox/ directory

Openbox themes

Themes for Openbox should be extracted to $HOME/.themes and can be changed with OBconf.

A good resource for themes is

Gtk/icon themes

No one likes the default gtk2 theme and you don't need to run gnome-settings to change it.

pacman -S gtk-theme-switch2

Run 'switch2' to change your gtk2 theme. If you want to change gtk1 theme, install 'gtk-theme-switch', and run 'switch'.

Changing icons is a little harder, you should only really do this if you use the nautilus file manager.

Download some icons, I recommend the Tango icons. Extract the icons in /usr/share/icons/.

Open up a terminal and type nano $HOME/.gtkrc.mine

Add this:

gtk-icon-theme-name = "[name-of-icon-theme]"

Note:The icon theme name is the name of the folder in /usr/share/icons/ so if the folder was named archlinux-icons you would put archlinux-icons as the [name-of-icon-theme].

Fonts in gtk apps

If you want to change the type and size of your fonts, add this to $HOME/.gtkrc.mine

style "user-font"
font_name = "[font-name] [size]"
widget_class "*" style "user-font"
gtk-font-name = "[font-name] [size]"

where "[font-name] [size]" is e.g "Bitstream Vera Sans 9". You need to fill in both fields because of backwards compatiblity.

Using OpenBox with Gnome

  1. Install gnome.
  2. Setup ~/.xinitrc to run gnome: exec gnome-session
  3. Preferences -> Sessions -> Statup Programs
  4. As a high priortiy item, add: openbox --replace
  5. Restart Gnome, and you should be kickin!: (Openbox should replace Metacity, everytime that Gnome loads)

External Resources