MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

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GMaq
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MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by GMaq »

Hi LM friends!

I haven't been able to participate in my favorite 'Original Scores and Recordings' forum section much lately as I have been busy with this new project 'MXDE-EFL' which in a nutshell is an independent custom build of my home Distro (MX Linux) with the Enlightenment Desktop Environment. It has been several months in development and I like how it's turned out so in addition to it being useful as-is it is also going to be a template for the next AV Linux... To be clear the current XFCE4/Openbox AV Linux based on MX 21 (Debian Bullseye) is still the current active release and will be supported and updated until the next official full release of MX Linux when it moves to Debian Bookworm which is not until next year sometime.. On top of that MX Linux does an excellent job of supporting 'oldstable' releases so users of AV Linux MX Edition 21.X will literally be supported for years so to be abundantly clear 'MXDE-EFL' is not a new version of the existing AV Linux MX Edition! It is it's own thing and is a glimpse into the future of what the NEXT AV Linux will look like with regard to the Desktop Environment..

I'm not going to lie I'm personally extremely disenchanted with the situation of Linux Desktop Environments... (what follows is opinion, not empirical science) The light ones require constant futzing and reams of customized configuration scripting to pretend they are full-featured, this is great fun if you are a constant tweaker and end-user but not viable as a Distributor... The middle ones have ballooned the same-old bland features with extra needless RAM consumption and very generally Gnome/GTK strives to out-Apple MacOS and KDE strives to be Windows+ which may understandably be very appealing to some people but I want Linux to be an alternative unique and different experience like it was when I tried it all those years ago not just another blue-based business enterprise Desktop so my gaze turned to becoming Enlightened...

I would be remiss to not mention we have seen an Enlightenment-based Audio distro before: http://io.gnu.linux.free.fr/ so I don't pretend to have come up with a new idea nor do I have anything to do with that project which always looked interesting but sadly seems to have ceased development... To be honest with a few months of testing Enlightenment under my belt it addresses some of my concerns but is also incomplete and as a project independent of GTK/QT it still needs to function in a world of Applications coded in GTK/QT so some issues are solved and some new ones are created... What I DO like about it is IRC access to the developer (who is himself your typical iconoclastic genius), it's longevity, it's uniqueness, it's actual efficiency with the system resources and of course the compositing features. It is constantly being worked on and improved and the developer is pretty open to user suggestions and bug reports so it is an attractive alternative to me since I'm also working on a unique and niche product within Linuxdom..

In my long time here at LM's a few things have become clear... AV Linux will never be a mainstream standard-bearing candidate for Linux Audio, it has nothing to do with it's actual usefulness or functionality nor do I take it personally.. It has a stigma as a 'one-person' project regardless of how many years the one person has been around, many people here are equally (or indeed more) capable to build their own Linux Audio system and in the freedom-of-choice Linux world a working system is no match for the wide-open boundless world of other shiny options.. There is an alarmingly large tendency for people to throw away a cast iron core of a system for an ephemeral single new Plugin or a different Desktop Environment at the drop of the hat and that is the beauty of freedom but I also embrace the freedom to think that is crazy.. :wink: This tendency carries into things like PipeWire; as of this writing a literal 0.3.X beta-level Audio server being embraced and deployed by major Distributions and displacing 2 admittedly imperfect veteran Audio servers that despite their flaws still provide superior performance for actual Pro Audio Production (well as it exists on Linux anyway..). What's the point of this screed? The point is I'm not out to do anything but what I've always done which is share my working system with anyone who may find it useful and I will do it in whatever way I interpret to make sense and work to the best of my knowledge and experience. If moving to Enlightenment is yet another thing that 'puts people off' about AV Linux so be it.. To reiterate the current AV Linux MX Edition release will continue with XFCE4/Openbox and will see updates and maintenance until the end of Debian Bullseye/MX 21 as Stable Releases and the NEXT full release will move to Enlightenment. MXDE-EFL is a current side project that also serves as a glimpse into the future and a testing bed for the next AV Linux..

Why might you be interested?

- No docs or Videos yet, sorry just haven't got the time right now.
- 64bit features Liquorix Kernel 5.19; 32bit features a non-PAE 5.10
- IRQ-threading by default *64bit only
- Usual 'pajackconnect' AV Linux JACK/Pulse setup (credit to @tramp )
- Full yabridge/WineASIO/Wine-Staging setup
- Many essential Audio Plugins included in base.
- Fully-functional official Ardour bundle included
- Reaper Demo included
- Only English locale by default, others can be added post-install as usual.
- Custom additional MXDE-EFL utilities (Wine Utils, YADbridge, Desktop Apps etc..) are English-only for now.
- EFM (Enlightenment File Manager) is nice but not feature complete, zzzFM is provided as an auxiliary/alternative.
- AV Linux Audio-specific 'Open With' functions available in both File Managers
- Special Ardour focused udev rules included by default
- Neither File Manager has trash support! Deleted means deleted!
- This ISO uses Connman instead of Network Manager, if you have WiFi issues consult the Connman PDF on the Desktop.
- Enlightenment's menu appears on Desktop with right-click to emulate Openbox.
- An alternate searchable 'Appfinder' menu based on jgmenu has been provided with a Win+m hotkey.
- Enlightenment's 'terminology' Terminal has a Win+t hotkey.
- Enlightenment isn't terribly 'icons on the Desktop' friendly... A kludgy 'Desktop Apps' utility has been provided to help..
- Enlightenment uses it's own Packagekit frontend for Package updates.
- Enlightenment is best run with systemd, sysvinit doesn't support all functions (ie PackageKit)
- At this time I DO NOT suggest installing other Desktop Environments with Enlightenment, if you do you're on your own..
- Don't forget the MX Test Repo Tab within MX Package Installer has newer versions of many Audio Applications!!
- More to come as you ask me I suppose..

Before downloading and trying this I need to caution people that this project is very new, I'm still learning myself about EFL/Enlightenment and I'm also in the midst of a very busy work period in my offline life so if you have issues or questions please post them in the MX Respins forum and be patient as I'm spread pretty thin and TBH still catching up and recovering from a pretty nasty bout of Covid-19 I picked up a couple of weeks ago..

Please read carefully and download from the MXDE-EFL Webpage here:
http://www.bandshed.net/mxde-efl-build/

Best, Glen
Last edited by GMaq on Wed Sep 21, 2022 11:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by j_e_f_f_g »

Yeah, enlightenment, I like it.
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by sunrat »

I play for Enlightened faction in Ingress. :mrgreen:
Will check out MXDE-EFL soon. (what does that initialism stand for?).
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by bluzee »

Sounds interesting. I'm not particularly fussy about the DE as long as it's relatively light weight. I have used E in the past and it seemed solid. The things you do under the hood to eliminate things that run in the background and tweak performance are what I appreciate most.

Thank you for leaving out Pipewire.
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by GMaq »

sunrat wrote: Thu Aug 25, 2022 6:20 am I play for Enlightened faction in Ingress. :mrgreen:
Will check out MXDE-EFL soon. (what does that initialism stand for?).
You know you're old and irrelevant when.... you have to look up what 'Enlightened faction in Ingress' means :(

Road to initialism:
http://www.bandshed.net/mxde-a-custom-m ... xde-build/

MX Linux + LXDE build = MXDE... clever right? Then MXD'E' for Enlightenment was confusing since an M'XDE' already existed so MXDE-EFL (EFL being the name of the Enlightenment support framework) was chosen to hopefully avoid confusion..

https://www.enlightenment.org/about-efl
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by sunrat »

GMaq wrote: Thu Aug 25, 2022 4:49 pm
sunrat wrote: Thu Aug 25, 2022 6:20 am I play for Enlightened faction in Ingress. :mrgreen:
Will check out MXDE-EFL soon. (what does that initialism stand for?).
You know you're old and irrelevant when.... you have to look up what 'Enlightened faction in Ingress' means :(
Haha, I'm older than you. Still don't know what I'm gonna do if I grow up. :mrgreen:
When people ask what Ingress is, I usually say it's the game Niantic used as PokemonGo development base. It started 10 years ago way before PoGo and is more intricate with more collaborative features. Somewhat addictive especially when one gets involved with its player community. I count a few fellow players as good friends now.

Thanks for the lowdown on the initialism. :wink:
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by glowrak guy »

I disagree that there is a 'stigma" about your work being a 'one man effort'. We all understand the throng of developers
who place many thousands of works for free public access. If there is a stigma, it is that you are as excellent at picking and arranging
from all those thousands, as you are cheerful and generous with your sharing the results. 8)

One request would be to always use a login manager with a panel that fully supports browsing and choosing from the installed desktop sessions, so those sometimes needing alternate desktops have an easy solution.

I love Enlightenment, but it might also be worth looking at the Moksha variant used by Bodhi linux,
should there be easier access to support solutions they've experienced over the years.
So glad you've defeated the evil C-bugs! :D

Cheers
My current youtube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 8-_TqqZ7ij

The song title and cover art may be clues to song's theme. Also at Spotify. Hope you find a keeper! Artist name on good days, is: Franklin Cheney
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by GMaq »

glowrak guy wrote: Fri Aug 26, 2022 12:19 am I disagree that there is a 'stigma" about your work being a 'one man effort'. We all understand the throng of developers
who place many thousands of works for free public access. If there is a stigma, it is that you are as excellent at picking and arranging
from all those thousands, as you are cheerful and generous with your sharing the results. 8)

One request would be to always use a login manager with a panel that fully supports browsing and choosing from the installed desktop sessions, so those sometimes needing alternate desktops have an easy solution.

I love Enlightenment, but it might also be worth looking at the Moksha variant used by Bodhi linux,
should there be easier access to support solutions they've experienced over the years.
So glad you've defeated the evil C-bugs! :D

Cheers
Hi, thanks for the comments, very kind!

Just so you know, pressing F1 at SliM Login will cycle through any available sessions to start, in the past this has not been clear mostly because I never think about having multiple DE's installed at the same time.. but I added a visual cue to the greeter to make this more obvious this time.
NewSLiM.png
NewSLiM.png (240.76 KiB) Viewed 379 times
I will point out Enlightenment doesn't use GTK or QT and it ignores many of the XDG Freedesktop accepted norms (ie ~/.config/autostart/) so I really don't know how advisable it is to blend it with other DE's that are so heavily depending on existing XDG standards, I think even in a best-case scenario it's kind of asking for a muddled setup...YMMV
Last edited by GMaq on Wed Sep 21, 2022 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by GMaq »

Hi,

Just a quick note about an updated ISO: https://forum.mxlinux.org/viewtopic.php?t=71849
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by glowrak guy »

Hi, posting from the new live dvd, playing Nils K1 synth in Reaper.
Thanks for the ongoing stream of releases! I like the dark gui, and accent colors.
Very easy on the eyes. I'll install to a drive as time allows. With confidence!

In qjackctl, I ticked the box to add 'Enable D-bus interface', and for midi driver,
switched from seq, to 'none'. Enabled my midi keyboard in Reaper midi preferences, and there be TUNES!!!!

Really doubt launching a daw setuo on a mac, or on a pc with an old pci i7, would be that simple! :wink:
My current youtube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 8-_TqqZ7ij

The song title and cover art may be clues to song's theme. Also at Spotify. Hope you find a keeper! Artist name on good days, is: Franklin Cheney
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by Baggypants »

I love Enlightenment, but if you're leaving out pipewire then I'm not touching it. Pipewire makes my life a whole heap easier and I'm not going back to futzing around with Jack.
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by GMaq »

Baggypants wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 7:52 pm I love Enlightenment, but if you're leaving out pipewire then I'm not touching it. Pipewire makes my life a whole heap easier and I'm not going back to futzing around with Jack.
Fair enough although Enlightenment itself requires PipeWire's PulseAudio bridge to work and doesn't support PipeWire directly.. If the next Debian release moves to PipeWire I will follow suit. I don't know if you've ever used AV Linux but JACK and PulseAudio are very well integrated to work together, it's about as simple as it gets..
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by glowrak guy »

Got the new version installed, and having a great time jamming a couple rakarracks with Amazon Prime playing
'Becoming The G.O.A.T', and the great inspirational racing movie, 'Dust 2 Glory'! Baja at breakneck speed, and break-ride terrain
around every corner :shock: The documentaries make me crave excellence in general each time I watch them.
September has been rough around here. It's so nice to have something that just goes right. Thanks GMaq!
Cheers
My current youtube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 8-_TqqZ7ij

The song title and cover art may be clues to song's theme. Also at Spotify. Hope you find a keeper! Artist name on good days, is: Franklin Cheney
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Re: MXDE-EFL 21.1 Released (aka next AV Linux in development)

Post by glowrak guy »

Did two more AVLinux installs, these having separate partitions for /home, also nearly identicle to the previous successful effort,
so cross-pollination will be a breeze. One of the new ones is on a drive large enough to hold the IK, NI, and DecentSampler libs,
along with a backup of released songs, so I'll do some type of clonezilla routine as the dust settles.

I used a pclinuxos live dvd which has a nice gui for setting up partitions as part of it's installer. It commences installing pclinuxos after the partitions
are set, so I power off the computer, and switch to the avlinux dvd for the new setup.

So one install on an SSD, one install replacing a different linux in an ext4 filesystem, but avlinux was able to keep the old
/home partition intact and functioning well. The third install began on an ntfs backup drive, moved the important bits,
made the new partitions, and am using it at the moment.

I copied over a working wine-staging .wine folder, without needing to re-authorize the windows plugins. To enable this,
I replace the new default wine reg files in avlinux drive_c, with old ones that were achieved during previous registration
sessions. (bluer words come to mind about those times, but I'm pretty cheery atm) and wine doesn't seem to mind.

So I'm blessed with three record-ready setups, with interchangeable sleletons, and a single learning curve,
and experiments can be carried out on one of them, minimizing risk.
Doesn't get much better than this.



please, please, please, when will windoze 12 be ready? :wink:
My current youtube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 8-_TqqZ7ij

The song title and cover art may be clues to song's theme. Also at Spotify. Hope you find a keeper! Artist name on good days, is: Franklin Cheney
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