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#1 2007-10-14 19:16:52

justaleaf
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Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Sorry for the ambiguous title, I couldn't figure out what to call this post.

I'm new to Arch, though not Linux, and I must say, this is an amazing distro (I'm on the 64bit version). Dead simple, super fast, and nearly as flexible as a Gentoo system (that can use binaries!). Pacman is rockin'.

I'm a designer by trade: Web, video, and image. And I STILL boot into Windows for important tasks like Flash work, video work, and ftp work. I would obviously like to reduce that dependency, though there is little hope in the video department, right now.

But for web, I see no reason I couldn't do it all in linux. But I'm not sure how to go about it. Here is the workflow I need, and I was wondering if you could advise how I might set up such a system (I have just a base system with Gnome installed right now):

* WYSIWYG html and CSS editting (NVU/Kompose is fine for html, but NOT for CSS) for the design phase
* A way to output image slices with html (does GIMP do this?)
* Accurate web fonts
* Reliable ftp, preferably one with drag n' drop functionality (I use filezilla on Windows, but I think the linux version lacks the drag n' drop)

It's not a real complicated workflow, I just need to save time wherever possible because I need to work very fast. In windows, it's like having a ball and chain strapped to your leg, but it does work. With linux, I will very much appreciate access to terminal and file management advantages.

I'm not stuck on Gnome, I just like the simplicity. I'm mainly interested in speed and efficiency (NOTE efficiency... I like time savers and fluxbox always seems to add clicks to my tasks). Let me know what you think! I may be able to move my flash work over with a little help from VirtualBox too, but I think I'm stuck when it comes to video sad. Thanks for any advice you might have!

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#2 2007-10-14 19:42:02

Shaika-Dzari
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From: Québec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-14
Posts: 436
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Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Hello!

Reliable ftp, preferably one with drag n' drop functionality (I use filezilla on Windows, but I think the linux version lacks the drag n' drop)

You can use GFtp.
http://www.gftp.org/screenshots.html

Accurate web fonts

I'm not really sure what fonts you need, but you can install ms-font with pacman or simply dowload font you need here and uncompress it in your
~/fonts.

Welcome to Arch wink

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#3 2007-10-14 20:01:33

justaleaf
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Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Thanks for the tips Shaika, I actually haven't tried gftp before, I'll take a look at that. Does Konqueror do FTP too?

The MS-fonts should be fine, I just want to know that I am looking at an accurate representation of what I my windows customers will see.

Mainly, I'm just looking for a good pipeline here.

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#4 2007-10-14 20:09:34

thayer
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From: Vancouver, BC
Registered: 2007-05-20
Posts: 1,560
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Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

With GNOME (or KDE) the default file manager doubles as an excellent drag-n-drop FTP/SSH client.

Photoshop 7 works great under Linux with Crossover (a commercial app for running Windows apps under Linux) and I think it can be installed with the free Wine as well.  Personally, I use Fireworks MX and Photoshop 7 via Crossover and I love it.  Both can do slicing, etc.

Bluefish is a great GTK (GNOME-centric) HTML/CSS editor.  Many KDE users swear by Quanta +, which is very similar to the old HomeSite editor.  Again, you can run Flash MX and Dreamweaver under Linux easily with Crossover Linux.

For accurate web fonts, you can install any and all truetype fonts to ~/.fonts and it'll work fine.

pacman -S ttf-ms-fonts

That'll get you all the standard MS fonts, sans Tahoma.

Welcome to Arch!


thayer williams ~ cinderwick.ca

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#5 2007-10-14 20:12:19

[vEX]
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From: Sweden
Registered: 2006-11-23
Posts: 450

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

I'd argue gFTP is worse than FileZilla, it keept crashing for me so I switched. You can install the 'ies4linux' (found in Community) and you should be able to try out how your sites would look in IE 6.0 (well, 5.0 and 5.5 too if you want) as well (assuming you're running 32-bit Arch since it uses wine). That'll help you cover three different browsers to make sure it looks correct in each one, though you might have to boot your Windows install or install Windows in a virtual machine to make sure it really looks correct.


PC: Antec P182B | Asus P8Z77-V PRO | Intel i5 3570k | 16GB DDR3 | GeForce 450GTS | 4TB HDD | Pioneer BDR-207D | Asus Xonar DX | Altec Lansing CS21 | Eizo EV2736W-BK | Arch Linux x86_64
HTPC: Antec NSK2480 | ASUS M3A78-EM (AMD 780G) | AMD Athlon X3 425 | 8GB DDR2 | GeForce G210 | 2TB HDD | Arch Linux x86_64
Server: Raspberry Pi (model B) | 512MB RAM | 750GB HDD | Arch Linux ARM

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#6 2007-10-14 21:11:43

justaleaf
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Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Hmm... using Nautilus as a basic FTP and FileZilla or gFTP for larger operations sounds like a good plan of action. I didn't know Nautilus could connect to servers... pretty sweet.

So let's size this up:

* WYSIWYG html and CSS editting (NVU/Kompose is fine for html, but NOT for CSS) for the design phase - Kompose for simple html stuff and Bluefish for HTML/CSS editting
* A way to output image slices with html (does GIMP do this?) - Photoshop via Wine/Crossover or VirtualBox
* Accurate web fonts - N/A
* Reliable ftp, preferably one with drag n' drop functionality (I use filezilla on Windows, but I think the linux version lacks the drag n' drop) - Nautilus for drag n' drop and FileZilla or gFTP for the rest
* Flash - Virtualbox

Before I go building the rest of this setup, does anyone see any major problems with this being a 64-bit Gnome system?

And if you have any additional suggestions, they are still greatly appreciated. I'm really enjoying Arch smile.

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#7 2007-10-15 19:24:26

thayer
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From: Vancouver, BC
Registered: 2007-05-20
Posts: 1,560
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Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

If you are serious about using Linux and you require programs such as Flash and Photoshop for your career, Crossover Linux Standard is well worth the $39.95.  With it, you can run several Windows applications and games natively under Linux without the need to boot into a virtual environment.

Also, with respect to video editing... if you haven't already found a solution yet, I would definitely recommend ffmpeg, a command line utility that can do just about anything with audio & video.


thayer williams ~ cinderwick.ca

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#8 2007-10-16 07:46:41

Jerry
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From: Philippines
Registered: 2007-09-14
Posts: 126

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

FTP: I think the best way to deal with the ftp problem would be fireftp a firefox extension.  It just make sense to me to be able to do it in my browser.

CSS: For css you might want to try cssed, it's in the repository and I find it very convenient to use.

XHTML and PHP:  I primarily used bluefish and geany (AFAIK it has php autocompletion... I don't remember) but will eventually switch to emacs,

Webfonts are also my problem...  I still haven't figure out how to install ttf I find on the net so that I can use them.

For Window based apps  I was only able to use Photoshop 7 and Dreamweaver 8 to work properly (although it was a bit slower)

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#9 2007-10-16 07:51:07

Jerry
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From: Philippines
Registered: 2007-09-14
Posts: 126

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

...and I think your best bet with your windows apps in archlinux would be virtualbox,  I haven't tried it though because my PC wouldn't be able to handle the load, goodluck.

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#10 2007-10-16 08:02:08

Jerry
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From: Philippines
Registered: 2007-09-14
Posts: 126

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

I forgot to include that you have gimpshop if you want a gimp + photoshop hybrid.

Inkscape is also very cool,  I find using it quite a  lot these days.

###

offtopic:  hey thayer.w I'm currently in you website, I like your designs for archlinux, great job!

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#11 2007-10-16 08:48:11

plut0nium
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From: Mons, Belgium
Registered: 2007-01-18
Posts: 18
Website

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

if you're running KDE (and even if you're not ^^) there's KFTPGrabber [ http://www.kftp.org ] which supports drag'n'drop


Without evil there can be no good, so it must be good to be evil sometimes...

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#12 2007-10-16 09:53:01

ise
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From: Karlsruhe / Germany
Registered: 2005-10-06
Posts: 402
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Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

justaleaf wrote:

* A way to output image slices with html (does GIMP do this?)

There is a function in GIMP, called "Image map". I don't know, if it's that what you are looking for.

EDIT: And I have found this: http://www.websiterepairguy.com/ebooks/ … Image.html and that: http://www.gimp.org/tutorials/Perlotine/ (Maybe it helps)

Last edited by ise (2007-10-16 09:58:59)

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#13 2007-10-16 10:58:31

Xilon
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Registered: 2007-01-01
Posts: 243

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

No offense, but using WYSIWYG to design web pages doesn't sound very professional imo. They just don't offer the control that one would want with the code. I have tried a few (Frontpage, Dreamweaver, NVU, Bluefish, ...) and they all suck. They just don't do what you want it to. You drag something or add some formatting and it just messes up the code. It's better to just use a text editor and view the results in browser. Maybe that's slow or inefficient for you, but I find that's the best way to do it.

As for image slicing, I find that annoying as well. In Photoshop I never really liked the way it worked. I sliced a few images and then trashed most of the others. I tend to go for simple designs and focus on making it mostly CSS, so when I slice images it's usually a 1px wide/high gradient which would get repeated. I don't need image slicing for that. As for graphic intensive sites... well... really, you should review that. People still have slow connections and having a lot of graphics is just bad, even if your client wants it. You might as well go with flash, and waste some more bandwidth wink

If you really want to do it though, I think Inkscape is quite a nice tool. I do all my designing in it, and though I don't use slicing, you can do it quite easily (though it's a bit hackish) by adding a layer and creating transparent rectangles around the stuff you want, then just select the rectangle and export it. I'm not sure if there's a more automatic way - there are plenty of tutorials.

The MS-fonts should be fine, I just want to know that I am looking at an accurate representation of what I my windows customers will see.

Fonts won't help you much there. You know most people use IE, so you need to view the website in IE regardless, and that means you need Windows (I think wine uses some weird IE version which uses gecko). Maybe there's some good Linux alternative for viewing stuff in IE, but I just view it on Windows. Also the font shouldn't change the general layout of the site... I don't see how that would be a problem unless it's some weird font that not everyone has, in which case you'd use @font-face anyway...

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#14 2007-10-16 11:24:04

iphitus
Forum Fellow
From: Melbourne, Australia
Registered: 2004-10-09
Posts: 4,927

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Proper IE can be installed in wine reliably, using IE's rendering engine.  Just google it. The gecko thing you mention is so that you can use gecko for apps that use embedded IE. -- you can still install proper IE instead.

James

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#15 2007-10-16 12:55:12

Xilon
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Registered: 2007-01-01
Posts: 243

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Well there's still the problem that he uses x86_64, and wine doesn't run on it wink

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#16 2007-10-16 15:53:31

zodmaner
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Registered: 2007-07-11
Posts: 653

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Xilon wrote:

Well there's still the problem that he uses x86_64, and wine doesn't run on it wink

Isn't there a wine package in AUR for 64bit?

Link: http://aur.archlinux.org/packages.php?d … s=0&SeB=nd


Memento mori

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#17 2007-10-16 16:47:29

justaleaf
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Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

I would consider Crossover if it is 64-bit (or at least fakes it) since it would be nice to not have to float a big fat M$ on my nice lean Arch. But VirtualBox will give me complete compatibility and will run coherently, which is nice. I only have 1gb of ram though, so I would effectively be splitting my resources in half (I wouldn't want to run Flash and Photoshop on 256mb). It would be nice if Virtual box would simply share Ram as needed.

Xilon - I like to work with the code directly where possbile, but my sites are graphically intensive and, many times, contain flash (full flash sites still suck imho... I'd rather pair flash with a good CMS) and I need to use WYSIWYG just to get my bearings sometimes (though Firebug is VASTLY reducing the need for that). Especially though, when I'm creating a template from scratch... just to get all the elements positioned and working right is near impossible by hand (for me). It is a time issue and I'm not a W3 freak (don't get me wrong, I love standards and I hate table designs... standards don't always love my clients though and IE loves tables... *sigh*).

Jerry - Inkscape is rockin', I really like that app. Not a photoshop replacement... but it's great for vectors. And Gimp is OK, but not great. I can easily use it for most things though. It does not do half of what Photoshop does though.


Anyone have experience with WINE/Crossover on a 64-bit system? Or am I better off with Virtualbox?

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#18 2007-10-16 19:16:46

timtux
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From: Gävle, Sweden
Registered: 2005-10-04
Posts: 178
Website

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Hello everyone, I have no time to read all the posts. However I'm designing and web devving on my spare time.
But a thing that has been useful for me is ies4linux (pacman -S ies4linux) - run ie 4,5,6 in wine flawlessly.

* WYSIWYG html and CSS editting (NVU/Kompose is fine for html, but NOT for CSS) for the design phase
No professional web designers use WYSIWYG editors, learn to "code by hand" - and don't use tables wink

* A way to output image slices with html (does GIMP do this?)
I think GIMP does this. I don't really use GIMP that much, i prefer photoshop running in VMWare.

* Accurate web fonts
pacman -S ttf-ms-fonts  AND set your DPI to 96.

* Reliable ftp, preferably one with drag n' drop functionality (I use filezilla on Windows, but I think the linux version lacks the drag n' drop)
GFTP.

And if you are coding PHP then i recommend Zend Studio, which has FTP support. And for rails there is NetBeans Ruby IDE. smile

Last edited by timtux (2007-10-16 19:17:22)


http://timtux.net/ - my personal blog about almost everything

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#19 2007-10-16 20:29:16

pirx
Member
Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 15

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

some kde specific suggestions:

justaleaf wrote:

* WYSIWYG html and CSS editting (NVU/Kompose is fine for html, but NOT for CSS) for the design phase

What do you think about Quanta?
-> http://quanta.kdewebdev.org/

* Reliable ftp, preferably one with drag n' drop functionality (I use filezilla on Windows, but I think the linux version lacks the drag n' drop)

just use konqueror, type in the address bar: ftp://server.tld/dir/file.ext
you can handle remote files on webdav,ftp,sftp,etc as if they were on your local hardrive! (even open and edit them!)

I'm not stuck on Gnome, I just like the simplicity. I'm mainly interested in speed and efficiency (NOTE efficiency... I like time savers and fluxbox always seems to add clicks to my tasks).

I am sold to KDE, mainly because its so powerful when it comes to developing. I suggest you try it and see if it fits your need.

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#20 2007-10-17 15:04:49

justaleaf
Member
Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

just use konqueror, type in the address bar: ftp://server.tld/dir/file.ext
you can handle remote files on webdav,ftp,sftp,etc as if they were on your local hardrive! (even open and edit them!)

Interesting. I wonder if Nautilus can do this. My system is so clean right now that I almost don't want to install any KDE files. But if the Gnome/Nautilus environment won't give me the efficiency I want, I might sync KDE and give it a whirl (no reason to just get Konq with all it's dependencies... might as well grab everything).


Also, on Ubuntu, there was a package of scripts for Nautilus... anything like that on Arch? I added a bunch of contextual actions (like "Start root nautilus here") and other functions that were quite useful.

Thanks for all the tips so far guys, this thread has been very helpful! I'm sure it will benefit others too.


No professional web designers use WYSIWYG editors, learn to "code by hand" - and don't use tables

That's a pretty outrageous statement. I know many "professionals" who work full-time in major companies and depend on WYSIWYG editors to get the job done. It's not about whether one CAN code by hand in the commercial realm... it's about who gets it done faster and better. I could code a site by hand, but it would prove a huge time sink. I'm a visual designer and my sites are very graphic intensive (but yes, I hate tables), but it is unreasonable to design these sites with a simple text editor.

Now, I may actually do fine with Bluefish or Quanta... that's on my to-do list... but my goal is not to be a manly coder. It's to be a good and efficient designer. But I think the industry at large most certainly disagrees with your statement that "No professional web designers use WYSIWYG editors". That may still be true for developers, however...

Web design is parkour wink

EDIT: And obviously I can't type, so I need WYSIWYG.

Last edited by justaleaf (2007-10-17 17:18:53)

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#21 2007-10-17 21:32:19

justaleaf
Member
Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Ok. I bit the bullet and I'm downloading KDEMod-complet right now. I might as well just try both environments and see which proves the most useful for what I'm doing!

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#22 2007-10-17 22:33:59

Fackamato
Member
Registered: 2006-03-31
Posts: 575

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

justaleaf wrote:

Ok. I bit the bullet and I'm downloading KDEMod-complet right now. I might as well just try both environments and see which proves the most useful for what I'm doing!

It will be interesting to see which environment you prefer. smile

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#23 2007-10-17 22:43:17

skottish
Forum Fellow
From: Here
Registered: 2006-06-16
Posts: 7,932

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

Xilon wrote:

Well there's still the problem that he uses x86_64, and wine doesn't run on it wink

All of the required lib32 libraries are in community.

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#24 2007-10-17 23:46:18

justaleaf
Member
Registered: 2007-10-14
Posts: 38

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

KDEMod-complete is, well... complete.

I really should have just grabbed KDEMod-base though, because it added a serious bloat of software that I don't need. For now though, I don't care.

This is the first KDE install I've seen, with the exception of PCLOS, that doesn't look butt-ugly. It's actually quite pleasant. Konqueror ftp is much nicer than I anticipated and could very well be the deal breaker.

The fonts seem to have made the jump to KDE without a problem (I did get the fonts figured out... I like them better than Windows now!) and in general everything seems problem free. It's definitely a little slower, but not significantly. Firefox looks terrible right now (I think it's gtk, right?).

Is there a good quicksilver/launchy type app for linux, I don't want to flip through menus all the time or run commands.

Not bad, so far. I have some work to do the next couple a days... I'll try to split my time between KDE and Gnome and see how well each allows me to work.

Thanks for all the tips so far guys, really great stuff.

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#25 2007-10-18 01:48:39

elasticdog
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From: Washington, USA
Registered: 2005-05-02
Posts: 995
Website

Re: Arch workflow design advice for a designer?

justaleaf wrote:

Is there a good quicksilver/launchy type app for linux, I don't want to flip through menus all the time or run commands.

I haven't used it, but there is Gnome Launch Box, which is heavily influenced by Quicksilver...

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