Window Maker

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Window Maker is a window manager (WM) for the X Window System. It is designed to emulate NeXT's GUI as an OpenStep-compatible environment and is characterized by low memory demands and high flexibility. As one of the lighter WMs it is well-suited for machines with modest performance specifications.


To install Window Maker:

pacman -S windowmaker

Once installed create or edit the file $HOME/.xinitrc as follows:

exec ck-launch-session wmaker

Before starting Window Maker, take some time to setup GNUstep and the default Window Maker settings. Create a directory for your Window Maker settings. Traditionally, it is in ~/GNUstep.

makedir ~/GNUstep

Set the GNUSTEP_USER_ROOT variable to your GNUstep settings directory. You can set this variable in a file such as .bashrc.

export GNUSTEP_USER_ROOT="~/GNUstep"

Run the wmaker.init tool to setup the default settings.


To start Window Maker:



Applications don't always start

Sometimes an application, such as Firefox or Thunderbird, will start, and other times it will fail and no window will appear. If you experience this, the CRM Git version of Window Maker may solve the problem.

pacman -S windowmaker-crm-git

Although you can't have both versions of Window Maker installed at the same time, they both come with the same files, look and behave the same, use the same configuration files, and are started the same way.

Additional resources