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customize start menu, and 32/64bit?

Started by boxemall, March 19, 2019, 01:00:20 PM

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Hey recently started testing sparky rolling (in vbox for now). It's supposed to land on a netbook with an atom processor and 1gb ram. 1st of all what irritates me the most is that full screen start menu... Can it be configured somehow? I've checked all settings (least i think i did,...)and did look up the forums but noone seem to have issues with the looks of the menu. On my box the start menu is fullscreen, starts slow and icons are of different size. Some icons are "normal" in size while others (just a few) are like quadruple so...

Also since I'm looking to put it on a low end machine... 32 or 64? I've heard that 32 runs better on lesser ram (but soon to discontinued due to newer kernels not supporting 32 any longer. Might be a rumor but that's what I've picked up on them webs). 64 is supported by the tiny   Atom™ N570, but i heard 64 has more overhead due to internals so it uses more memory by default.

Just another noob trying to get a foothold in the Linux ecosystem. Sry if it bothers you too much.



Hi boxemall. Welcome to the community. Based on description provided I'm guessing you are testing minimalGUI edition, which is designed to be lightweight and fast. But to achieve that Sparky miniGUI edition is equipped with only basic tools. One of those tools is sparky-dashboard, which is more of application launcher then start menu and has no settings menu or anything like that. It's still under development and hopefully will provide some configuration options in a future.
As of the second question I can't give you simple answer. Try both 32bit and 64bit and out what works better for your machine. One thing worth to mention is that Sparky follows Debian realese cycle. Which means that in a few months current Sparky testing (Sparky 5 Nibiru) will become sparky stable branch and new sparky testing will be "born" . And that new sparky rolling will support only 64bit.
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Hey, 1st of all much thanks for the timely response.
Good to know. Didn't figure that the ,,Dashboard" (now i know how it's called lol) is some kind of basic tool. I thought of what might be a useful DE and stumbled over Trinity. Not the best looking but after initially going with lxqt (went with lxde 1st but it seems lxqt is the continuation?) I have to say it feels slow.
Weird for a DE that's calling itself lightweight. Xfce feels slow too and so does cin/mate. Not even mentioning gnome/ plasma. There are others but I'm more the "traditional" desktop type. So sadly that is a decision i have to make on my own.
The only thing that bothers me was a Manjaro forum discussion. Ppl there were arguing that Trinity is full of bugs/security holes since it's based on Qt3 which i heard isn't being maintained anymore? The forums thread isn't active anymore and time moved on. Trinity got a few fixes and updated along the way. Would you say it's safe to use or should ppl stay away from it? I'd really like to go with mate since i prefer the old gnome looks but it doesn't feel as snappy as Trinity does.
Another thing that interests me is init... while i was looking for a lightweight distro (or one that can be tweaked to my needs like sparky) i heard a lot about systemd. There seems to be quite a controversy still... an argument i saw a lot was that systemd uses more resources and that it wasn't that suited for low end machines. How much resources are we talking about? Is it slower? Does it use more RAM? Does it slow down the whole experience or is it only boot up?

So much for now.



Personally I have no experience in this matter. I've never used it, and probably never will. So no help from me , sorry. Maybe others will assist you. Alternatively check Q4OS. It's considered by many as a distro with best Trinity implementation out there. Ask your questions on Q4OS forum.

Systemd is polarizing subject. Some folks hate it, some accept as "necessary evil". Yes , it's bloated and "eats up" resources (no, I can not provide exact numbers). But it's only init system able to answer needs of modern linux operating system. And it's only init system supported by Sparkylinux. If you want to be "Sparker" you will have to accept systemd, or rebuild entire system yourself.

DE feels slow
Intel Atom is CPU designed with mobility and battery life in mind, not performance. 1GB of RAM is just low. If I were you I would stick with sparky miniGUI (openbox) or in dire need of full desktop environment I would go Enlightenment.
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Paragraph 1 on Trinity - yes
Paragraph 2 on systemd - yes

I did try enlightenment  maybe 2-3 years ago on netbook - I think lxqt seemed faster.

Openbox is pretty minimal and I used for years (with CrunchBang on an EEE 901A).  Wrote work schedules on the bus in Winterpeg MB in gnumeric - openoffice or libreoffice too slow.  Edit .epubs, proofread, etc. I would go with that first.

One step up -  XFCE is about as lightweight a DE as you can find.    When browsing web - keep your tabs down to minimum in browser. 

Of course there are tiling wm's.  But you are newer and they utilize a lot of keyboard combinations and and it does not feel like a DE, (desktop environment).  It is a more minimal thing called a Window manager.    I3 seems slower on the same netbook, but, but is on a not so fast SDHC.  You have to learn the keyboard combinations for tiling.  Founder of I3 is stepping back from Debian after over a decade.

I have fluxbox installed on an EEE901A form 2008 but have not used in months, needs a usb keyboard.  That is another tiling WM. 

Best of luck.  peace out.
Search forum for "More info easier via inxi"    If requested -  no inxi, no help for you by  me.


I have sparky installed on a netbook; intel atom n450, 2gb ram (I upgraded the ram when I bought it). I've also put a 250gb ssd in. I tried a few desktops; they were just slow. Openbox is very responsive. I'm just starting it up now to see what it uses at the desktop: cpu usage is 2%, memory is 139mb, and that's with task manager running  :). 267 mb with opera open at a page, 276 with 2 pages open - cpu sitting at 7% now. 293 mb with 3 pages open, cpu @ 7%.  4 pages open - 321mb and cpu unchanged. I use opera for the web. I installed this about 18mths ago, and just working on it now to give away to a student in poverty. It's running ver 4 (tyche).

re the panel size, or whatever it is; mine is fine. It sounds like it might be a resolution issue - mine is natively 1024 x 600 and it is showing as that in the system too.

I see my processor is smaller than yours. I'm running 32bit, because that's what my processor is. Without researching it, I would have thought a 64bit OS is better on a 64bit system.

Consider upgrading the memory though - it's probably under $40 I imagine.

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