XFCE lost "lightweight" title


I am curious, before Xfce was known as a lightweight DE, for low spec PC, great performance etc.

But nowadays I think it is not like this anymore.

At least comparing RAM consumption with KDE for example.
And KDE seems snappier.



Yes, it has been that way for a while. It happened when xfce switched to gtk3.

kde/plasma is more cpu/gpu intensive out of the box due to all the effects/animations but that can be easily tamed by disabling some of those effects.

Where xfce is typically better performing than gnome or kde/plasma is when you are on an HDD. gnome and plasma seem to do more disk caching.


So basically Xfce is in Gnome range. :stuck_out_tongue:

For SSD they are fine ? (Xfce, gnome, kde ) ?

Actually gnome has lightened up a lot over the last few years. It is very comparable to plasma.

Yes. To be clear, they all run fine on an HDD, it is just that in my experience, out of the box with no tweaking xfce will be slightly more responsive in that situation.

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Yes I noticed that.
But you can tweak all 3 DE under 1 GB RAM consumption.

After all, everything is just about configuration. Depending what you like, and how deep you customize your desktop xD


Really, for most people, I think you should just use the DE you prefer using.


Until you go on internet, then your RAM consumption goes way up. Internet has become a big RAM hog these days. :wink:


Yes, especially with firefox. 3 tabs opened, and RAM consumption was 1,2 gb only from firefox…lol

Can you name a browser that works mainstream, so I’m not talking about Libre Wolf or something, that uses less? ( This is not sarcastically meant by the way)

Atm I am testing Qutebrowser. Nothing special, but it a light one.

I also saw on reddit that someone using Elinks, NetSurf etc.

Prrety sure none of those are “mainstream” :wink:


I knew it , because I am not sure what “mainstream” means in this case :sweat_smile:

Edit: Got it now xD


I still love XFCE even if Gnome and KDE surpassed it. I hope the xfce team will change this and optimize the DE. Also does gnome even have a compositor?

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I am not sure that using less memory is good measure of one DE surpassing another. :nerd_face:

Yes. Mutter provides compositing functionality.


I have a friend who just this week got into Linux for work and Ubuntu was his first Linux experience. His tutorials were specific to Ubuntu so I suggested he also tries Kubuntu or Xubuntu to see what he likes better as both XFCE and KDE resemble the windows paradigm closer than Gnome, as he seemed to struggle with the interface. It is an older PC with a HDD, so he thanked me a lot after trying Xubuntu and said his PC is like a rocket now after he compared it to Ubuntu/Gnome. At least his subjective feeling is that XFCE is snappier.

I hadn’t the chance to try out Gnome/KDE/XFCE on older machines, but I think on newer machines (and by newer I mean at least a i5-3317U+SSD) it absolutely doesn’t matter and you’re better off with going with the one you feel most comfortable with.


Yes, everything depends on which configuration you have. If you have newer laptop/pc than it doesnt matter.
In my case , Gnome and xfce are more snappier that KDE . dont know why xD

By default KDE/plasma has a lot of effects/animations enabled. If you disable some of those, you will see better performance on older hardware.

I just want to point out that you said the opposite 4 hours ago. :face_with_monocle:

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You got me :smiley:

Yes, KDE is snappier when I uninstall bloats, remove some effects, animations. With lot tweaks. (post installation work needed)
But with xfce and Gnome basically no need to do anything.

Maybe my graphic card is not so good and RAM xD

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Mate gets no love these days. :disappointed:


I never used mate :slight_smile: so don’t know