CH02 - FVTC IT

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Chapter 2:
Exploring the Desktop
The Complete Guide to Linux System
Administration
Objectives
• Understand the graphical system used by Linux
• Configure basic features of the GNOME and
KDE desktop interfaces
• Use graphical utilities such as editors, terminals,
and browsers
• Use productivity applications such as e-mail,
calendar, and word processing
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
2
Linux Graphical Desktops
• Graphical display
– Optional
– Most users choose to use GUI
• X window system
– Foundation of graphical display
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
3
Understanding the
X Window System
• Project Athena
–
–
–
–
Graphical environment for UNIX
Make UNIX easier to use
Eventually called X Window System
Released as public domain software in 1985
• The XFree86 project
– Dedicated to creating version of X for Intel-based
versions of UNIX
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
4
How the X Window
System Functions
• Macintosh and Windows graphical environments
– Successful because they run on widely available
computer hardware
• Developers of X took a different approach
– Difficult to install
• Xfree86 project
– Virtually all video cards are now automatically
configured by the Linux installation program
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
5
Components of the
X Window System
•
•
•
•
•
X server
X client
Window manager
Graphical libraries
Graphical application
– Provides a comprehensive user interface
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
6
Components of the
X Window System (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
7
Components of the
X Window System (continued)
• During Linux installation process
– Xfree86 X server program installed
• Use different components at any “level” in
graphical system
• twm (tab window manager)
–
–
–
–
Basic window manager
Available on most Linux distributions
Does not include desktop interface
Used to launch other graphical applications
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
8
Components of the
X Window System (continued)
• Window managers available for Linux
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
twm
fvwm (feeble virtual window manager)
wm2
Window Maker and Afterstep
mwm (motif window manager)
olwm (openlook window manager)
kwm
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
9
Components of the
X Window System (continued)
• Graphical library
– Installed on Linux system like any other
application
– Provides tools for other applications
– KDE
• Qt
– GNOME
• Gtk+
• Default desktop in Red Hat Linux
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
10
Starting X
• startx
– Standard command to start Xwindow system
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
11
Desktop Interfaces
• Graphical environment
– Provides collection of functions and utilities
– Makes using computer easier for those who do not
have many commands memorized
• KDE interface
– Most widely used desktop environment on Linux
systems
– Installed by default for most distributions, except
Red Hat
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
12
Desktop Interfaces (continued)
• KDE interface includes suite of applications
–
–
–
–
Internet access
System maintenance
Personal productivity
Other basic tasks
• Panel
– Set of icons at bottom of screen
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
13
Desktop Interfaces (continued)
• GNOME desktop
–
–
–
–
–
Stands for GNU object model environment
Very similar to KDE
Includes panel with integrated taskbar
Applications included similar to those with KDE
Installed by default for Red Hat
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
14
The Graphical Login Screen
• Provided X display manager
– xdm
– Display manager selects which programs to start
based on session chosen by user
• Session
– Defines set of graphical programs to run when
user logs in
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
15
Working with Graphical Windows
• Use mouse and keyboard to manipulate
graphical windows open on graphical desktop
• Can perform actions using mouse
– Maximize and minimize windows
– Close windows
– Resize and move windows
• Has internal “clipboard”
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Working with Graphical
Windows (continued)
• Common to have multiple windows open at same
time on desktop
• Workspace
–
–
–
–
Empty background
Can open application windows
Typically have four
Sometimes called virtual desktops
• Can use keyboard shortcuts
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
17
Working with Graphical
Windows (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
18
Configuring GNOME and KDE
• GNOME and KDE
– Both highly configurable
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
19
Switching Between Desktop
Interfaces
• switchdesk
– Followed by name of desktop to switch to
• Desktop switcher
– Graphical version
• Must exit X Window System and log in again for
change to take effect
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
20
Saving Your Configuration
Between Logins
• On logout
– GNOME can note which application windows were
open
– Same applications are opened automatically at
next login
• Can also save configuration between logins
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
21
Configuring the Graphical
Login Screen
• Before you are permitted to configure most parts
of graphical login screen
– Must be logged in as root or enter root password
• Select system settings, then Login Screen on
GNOME main menu
– Or runrun gdmsetup command
• Configure login options
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Configuring the Graphical Login
Screen (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
23
Configuring the Graphical Login
Screen (continued)
• Theme
– Collection of colors, fonts, and images that give
display certain look and feel
• Face browser
– Feature of graphical login screen
– Causes it to display small graphic image for each
user
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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The Panel
• Bar across bottom of GNOME desktop interface
– KDE includes similar bar
• Displays:
–
–
–
–
–
–
Main menu of desktop interface
Icons of programs you use frequently
Workspace switcher
Labeled button for each open window
Date and time indicator
Other informational items
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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The Panel (continued)
• Right-click any icon to:
– Move
– Remove
– View/edit properties
• Can have multiple panels on desktop at same
time
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
26
Configuring Other GNOME
Features
• Configure many additional features of desktop
interface, including:
–
–
–
–
–
–
Background
Keyboard shortcuts
Menus and toolbars
Preferred applications
Windows
Theme
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Configuring Other GNOME
Features (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Core Graphical Utilities
• Three key types of applications
– File manager
– Text editor
– Web browser
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Configuring the Nautilus File
Manager
• Nautilus file manager
– Provided with GNOME
• Can configure how Nautilus operates
– Using Preferences
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Configuring the Nautilus File
Manager (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
31
Configuring the Nautilus File
Manager (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
32
Configuring the Use
of Other Utilities
• gedit
– Default text editor
– Used to open text files in GNOME
• Choose web browser that GNOME opens
whenever Web page selected
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
33
Popular Graphical Programs
• Graphical personal productivity applications for
Linux
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
34
OpenOffice.org
• Office suite similar to Microsoft Office
• Includes:
–
–
–
–
–
Writer
Calc
Impress
Draw
Database integration
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
35
OpenOffice.org (continued)
• Application features
– Available for several operating systems
– Microsoft office file formats supported
– Export in Adobe PDF and Macromedia Flash
formats
– Macro recorder
– Development tool
– Available in over 30 languages
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
36
OpenOffice.org (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
37
OpenOffice.org (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
38
Using E-mail Clients
• Default Linux installation provides several
powerful graphical e-mail clients
• Evolution
– Similar to Microsoft Outlook
– Start first time
• Presents user several setup windows
• Must set up your e-mail account information
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Using E-mail Clients (continued)
• Mozilla
– Web browser
– Includes full-featured e-mail client similar to
Evolution
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Using E-mail Clients (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
41
Using E-mail Clients (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Using E-mail Clients (continued)
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
43
Summary
• X Window System
– Powerful and flexible graphical environment
– Components include:
• X server that interacts with video card
• X client graphical application
• Window manager or desktop interface provides
user interface to X
• Graphical libraries make it easier to create new
graphical applications
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
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Summary (continued)
• KDE and GNOME
– Provide convenient desktop interface with:
• Icons
• Menus
• Taskbars
– Graphical windows can be manipulated using
mouse actions
– Ability to use multiple workspaces
– Can save current state of desktop interface
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
45
Summary (continued)
• KDE and GNOME include graphical utilities used
for common system administration and
management tasks
• OpenOffice.org
– Full-featured office suite similar to Microsoft office
• Linux provides several e-mail readers
– Evolution
– Mozilla
The Complete Guide to Linux System Administration
46
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