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Default window manager switched to CTWM in NetBSD-current

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BSD

For more than 20 years, NetBSD has shipped X11 with the "classic" default window manager of twm. However, it's been showing its age for a long time now.

In 2015, ctwm was imported, but after that no progress was made. ctwm is a fork of twm with some extra features - the primary advantages are that it's still incredibly lightweight, but highly configurable, and has support for virtual desktops, as well as a NetBSD-compatible license and ongoing development. Thanks to its configuration options, we can provide a default experience that's much more usable to people experienced with other operating systems.

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NetBSD Changes Its Default X11 Window Manager

  • NetBSD Changes Its Default X11 Window Manager After Two Decades

    It's 2020 and NetBSD has changed its default X11 window manager after more than two decades with TWM.

    NetBSD isn't going too far though away from TWM as its default X11 window manager in that they are now using the CTWM fork. As for the CTWM fork, they describe its benefits over TWM as: "the primary advantages are that it's still incredibly lightweight, but highly configurable, and has support for virtual desktops, as well as a NetBSD-compatible license and ongoing development. Thanks to its configuration options, we can provide a default experience that's much more usable to people experienced with other operating systems."

Wayland on NetBSD - trials and tribulations

  • Wayland on NetBSD - trials and tribulations

    After I posted about the new default window manager in NetBSD I got a few questions, including "when is NetBSD switching from X11 to Wayland?", Wayland being X11's "new" rival. In this blog post, hopefully I can explain why we aren't yet!

    Last year (and early this year) I was responsible for porting the first working Wayland compositor to NetBSD - swc. I chose it because it looked small and hackable. You can try it out by installing the velox window manager from pkgsrc.

NetBSD Has Some Wayland Support But X11 Is Far More Mature

  • NetBSD Has Some Wayland Support But X11 Is Far More Mature

    Following the news yesterday of NetBSD changing its default X11 window manager after two decades with TWM to now using CTWM by default, some wondered why they don't jump on the Wayland bandwagon.

    NetBSD does actually have Wayland support albeit very limited and thus far better off with X11 support until Wayland compositors have better BSD support and other improvements made for benefiting the NetBSD support as well as the likes of FreeBSD.

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