Hello old friend - Gnome!

Posted on May 12, 2021

I am back to Gnome.

Gnome 40 got recently released! I liked what I saw when there were preview videos floating around on the interweb.

Ever since Gnome update to Gnome 3, my relationship has always been hate love. When the transition first happened I really hated just like many others during the initial time. For me it was mostly becuse Gnome was starting to feel heavy on resource utilization and was sluggish on my desktop wayyyyyy(more than 10 years) back!

That kind of made me look in the other direction and I found XMonad. I have stuck with XMonad for almost 9-10 years now. During that period from time to time I would try XFCE, Gnome, KDE whenever there was a new release. But almost always ended up going back to XMonad.

But recently with Gnome 40, from a visual standpoint I have really fallen for it! It looks really nice IMO.

In the wayland implementation it also has really nice mouse gesture to move between workspace, and expose activities. Sadly I am using Xorg because as of now Wayland doesn’t have support for Nvidia graphics so I can’t hook my laptop to my external monitor.

It’s been only few hours since I made the change. After few weeks maybe I will put up a more detailed post on what I like about Gnome 40.

Why I decided to leave XMonad?

For very long time XMonad has been my goto TWM1. While my workflow/setup wasn’t most optimized(something that has been in the todo for many years now!) it was pretty reliable and stable(one of the things that I really liked about XMonad). The config never broke and the WM in itself was rock solid never had a single crash in the many years that I have used it!

Reasons I have been considering going back to DE/Hybrid(stacking+tiling):

  1. XMonad/Tiling window managers generally work great for people with fixed workflow. I never really got to figuring my workflow.
  2. Probably one of the main reasons is that when opening multiple windows/applications it just gets unusable. I know this goes against the philosophy of tiling window managers, but from time to time I do have situations where I need to have my IDE, Web Browser, inspection window, terminal and couple of windows open. When that happens there just isn’t a better way to handle than stacking/floating them.
  3. Sometimes its just too much effort to get certain applications/ windows to work nicely on tiling window managers. Which kind of distracted me from doing the work I wanted to because I would go out try to figure out how to solve the tiling window manager problem as oppose to do the stuff I wanted to in the first place.
  4. More

And also now I have 32G Ram so resource isn’t an issue any more!

Why I didn’t make the switch earlier?

For long time now I have been associating learning Haskell with XMonad. Some part of me kept telling me that if I don’t have XMonad running I might give up on my desire to learn Haskell but in all this while that didn’t happen any way. I still have a strong desire to learn it so don’t think not using XMonad would prevent me from learning Haskell.

Also named scratchpad was a feature I really liked and used extensively on xmonad. Being able to use a keybinding to summon an app in any workspace that you are in. But recently I learned that there is a tool called jumpapp that lets me do the same thing on Gnome.

  1. Tiling Window Manager↩︎