GNOME 3 in Debian Wheezy

Story: Debian Stable -- set it and forget it -- spoils me for fresh Linux Mint 12 on some very nice ZaReason hardwareTotal Replies: 3
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Mar 21, 2012
7:38 PM EDT
I've been testing BSD and Linux installs on my Thinkpad R32 (circa 2002 hardware), and today I did an install of Debian Squeeze and then did a dist-upgrade to Wheezy.

Aside from /tmp filling up, then /var filling up (I was able to recover each time with dpkg --configure -a) -- not enough space allocated during the Squeeze install -- the dist-upgrade was smoother than any I've done before in Debian.

GNOME 3, however, is a different story. The system defaulted to GNOME Classic until I installed nonfree firmware. Then I could start GNOME (not classic), but the desktop would crash whenever I tried to open the app or places windows. So it's GNOME Classic-only for this old Radeon (not HD) card. Probably due to lack of 3D acceleration.

Unlike in Mint 12, little app windows do appear in the workplace switcher.

There are little bugs here and there, but we're far from the Wheezy freeze, and the goal is to get GNOME 3.4 into the release (it's on 3.2 now), so there's plenty of room for improvement.

This is the oldest hardware I've installed GNOME 3 on, and performance is adequate.

The good news for GNOME users is that Classic mode features "real" menus and panels. I don't know if Classic will still be available in GNOME 3.4 (anybody?).

I'd say GNOME 3 is usable on this 10-year-old laptop. I'm not sure it's a giant leap for mankind, but it will do.


Mar 21, 2012
7:44 PM EDT
The trouble with GNOME 3 "Classic" or Panel as it's correctly called, is that I have not been able to run it and use all the compiz and other 3D addons that I once had on GNOME 2 Panel. Compiz simply doesn't seem to function. It installs, and I can set the configurations I had, but nothing happens when I attempt to use those features.

Mar 21, 2012
8:16 PM EDT
I am running gnome classic on a completely updated Ubuntu 12.04 which has gnome 3.4 so the answer is yes.

Mar 21, 2012
9:39 PM EDT
I haven't figured out whether or not you can put icons on the desktop to launch applications and access folders. I wasn't successful in trying to add launchers to the panel either. Hopefully extensions or new versions will address this.

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