In my last screenshot-post I was still using LXpanel, which is part of LXDE (something I’ve been wanting to write a review about without ever getting to it). It’s a perfectly good panel, with the added benefit of easy GUI configuration. It’s just that it looks a bit boring…even with transparency turned on.
Enter: tint2. On the surface, this isn’t as good as LXpanel. It doesn’t have a system tray, doesn’t support launchers, and can only be configured by messing around in .tintrc (the config file). But hey, who needs launchers when you have keyboard shortcuts? Editing .tintrc isn’t that hard either, since it’s well documented. If even that isn’t enough, there’s a pdf file available here, which makes things even easier. And damn, doesn’t it look sexy?
Of course, it doesn’t have a systray, and that’s more of a problem. You can’t really use programs like Pidgin without the tray. Lucky us, there are separate programs that don’t do anything except provide a tray, like Stalonetray, Docker, or Trayer (which apparently doesn’t have a website, but is the systray of fbpanel, which is the base of…LXpanel).
Trayer is one of those applications that are so simple there isn’t even a configuration file. Everything depends on how you start it. Simply typing trayer -help at the prompt provides you with all the options. Here is how I start it:
trayer –expand true –transparent true –alpha 255 –edge bottom –align right –expand true –SetDockType true –widthtype request
which provides me with a tiny, transparent systray in the bottom right corner, expanding when freshly started applications add new icons to it, and which is visible on all workspaces.
This is what my panel layout looks like now:
Everything I want: simple, lightweight, and still looks great.
PS: No updates the next week…I’ll be in Coventry, on a holiday.