Xfce is an open source and freely distributed project that provides users with a standards-compliant and lightweight desktop environment for GNU/Linux operating systems. It has been designed from the ground up to be fast, while still being easy to use and visually appealing for the modern Linux user.

It’s comprised of a window manager, desktop manager, panel, session manager, application finder, file manager, and setting manager. A default Xfce layout uses a top panel from where users can access the main menu and launch applications, and a dock (hidden by default) for launching your favorite programs.

Comes with its own applications

By default, the project comes with its own applications, among which we can mention the Thunar file manager, Midori web browser, Xfburn CD/DVD/BD burning software, Xfce Terminal terminal emulator, and Orage calendar. In addition, it includes the Ristretto image viewer, Xarchiver archive manager, Leafpad text editor, and Parole media player.

Supported CPU architectures and operating systems

The project can be installed on several UNIX-like platforms. It is known to compile on Linux, OpenBSD, NetBSD, FreeBSD, Solaris, Cygwin on Windows, and Mac OS X operating systems. Supported architectures include x86, x86_64, PPC, Sparc, Alpha, and others. Xfce is distributed by default in many Linux operating systems, including the well known Xubuntu.

Among other popular Linux distribution that use Xfce as their default desktop environment, we can mention Manjaro Linux Xfce, Salix OS, SolydX, Emmabuntüs, Linux Lite, PC/OS, and SalineOS. We should also mention that anyone can install the Xfce desktop environment alongside any other open source graphical interface for GNU/Linux OSes, directly from their default software repositories. Switching between them is easy from the login screen.

Bottom line

All in all, Xfce is a very accessible, easy to use and low on resources traditional desktop environment designed from the ground up to be deployed on GNU/Linux operating systems for low-end machines.

Filed under

Desktop environment Window manager Xfce desktop Xfce Desktop WM Window