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#1 2006-09-22 14:03:29

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Hi Arch folks!

I'm pretty new to arch. I did a couple of different installations, tried different desktops, window managers and all the stuff. I think I created a nice, working, all-purpose system now (using GNOME), but relating webdesign on that system I'm not satisfied at all.
It would be useful if the system and desktop were reduced to needs for webdesign.

Since some time I see more often people asking for the best webdesign applications, tools, widgets, gadgets, tools and linux-distributions which are best for webdesign.
But I don't think it's enough to just install the suggested software and use it within your existing system.

Now, the idea: As the most UI-Designers know, unnecessary stuff should be avoided, I think it would be easier and make webdesigners feel more comfortable when doing the work on a clean desktop.

@Webdesigners: Imagine you choose something like "Webdesign Arch" in the bootloader menu. Then you know, a working system will boot up which won't ask questions at all, autostarts needed stuff on bootup, a fast, sophisticated desktop will say hello and launchers can be found at the intuitvly expected, easy accessible place.

The targets:
1) a ready to use linux system

2) fast desktop, reduced to webdesign needs but ...

3) ... looking good, maybe some eye-candy like wallpaper, icons, themes and stuff which helps the webdesigner to get inspired

4) most needed tools ready to use: different browsers, editors, graphics tools, some note taking widgets for collecting ideas, working and configured LAMP, maybe some multimedia apps like xmms for listening to music while thinking, news-reader with some recommended feeds and blogs

5) at all: the webdesigner should feel comfortable on the desktop


The issues/questions at board users:
@ target 1) I do know how to setup up and install the system, but I don't really know about the system internals:
  - Are really all packages from the arch-base installation needed for this approach?
  - Howto get all the stuff on a CD - ready to install with a few clicks?

@target 2) The LnF-Thread (http://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?t=18880) could be useful for choosing the packages and software, but I think XFCE is the best choice for this approach. Other suggestions and oppinions?

@target 3) Suggestions? There should not be too much eye-candy-stuff to keep the system small, but most used and community-favourite eye-candy-stuff should be included.

@target 4) Software as mentioned above, should be a selection of some experienced webdesigners in the arch-community

@target 5) Any suggestions to for this task?


So far the description of the idea.
Are there interested people for this approach? What's your oppinion about it? Could it really be useful? In general, what do you think about it?

If there are people who like the idea, then I don't want to make a big project about it. Just give the child a name, discuss the targets and suggestions, create the system and give it to the community.

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#2 2006-09-22 14:38:24

dtw
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From: UK
Registered: 2004-08-03
Posts: 4,432
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

You could make a web-design flavour of Archie - that would be a piece of cake.  The current user interface is quite pretty as it is an easy to customize - technically all you need to do is make a list of the Arch pkgs you want in it...

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#3 2006-09-22 14:53:00

bluePoet
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From: Düsseldorf, Germany
Registered: 2006-01-09
Posts: 38
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Hi, I'm doing webdesign just for fun, means it's not my everyday job, and maybe this restrains my view, but woudn'd it be better to just create a nice guide at the wiki, or something like that, instead of creating some sort of webdesign distro?

LAMP isn't that hard to configure and already described in the wiki and you find lots of software in AUR. Also you plan to use software for everyday tasks like email, newsreader and xmms.

So I would create a guide for setting up a specific, lightweight system and maybe a sticky post somewhere in the forum, but I don't see the need of a separate system just for webdesign.

But, as I said, webdesign isn't my major task in using Arch. ;-)

Christian

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#4 2006-09-22 15:06:08

azucaro
Member
From: Washington, DC
Registered: 2005-05-03
Posts: 18

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

I agree with Christian. All you need to do is install the needed packages and modify some scripts for this - creating a distro-disk is taking a sledgehammer to the task.

I'm actually working on something similar for a MythTV install - I want Arch to boot up as fast as possible, automatically log in through GDM, and fire up the needed applications (namely mythfrontend). I am not considering creating my own Arch-disk for this...I'm not masochistic!

-Ant


df -h /my/head

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#5 2006-09-22 16:55:52

dtw
Forum Fellow
From: UK
Registered: 2004-08-03
Posts: 4,432
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

That need not be masochistic with Archie - it really is easy and you should certainly consider looking into it wink

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#6 2006-09-22 17:06:29

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Just a wiki-article or sort of a tutorial wouldn't be enough for the idea. Such an article would be a listing of recommended packages and a collection of URLs where to look for all the stuff. It would just be collecting packages and patchwork.
Somebody who already set up Arch is also able to install and configure his own Webdesign-Linux. That's exactly what I not want this creation to be lol

As I mentioned, more and more people ask for recommendations which distros or tools are the best for webdesign with linux. So actually the idea is, to give this people a ready to use system optimized for webdesign-tasks (not only design, also web-developing).
I know it's not that much work to create a system like this if you understand arch, but it if there is a preconfigured system, nearly ready to install and use, it would help more webdesigners out there to get started with webdeveloping under linux.

In short words: I want a Webdesign-Linux! It should be a solution for small businesses and amateur webdesigners and developers.

@dtw: I didn't take a look at Archie yet, but maybe this is a fine and the right solution! Are there infos around to get it workin' this way?

To start with the software selection:
At all webdesigners: Which software do you use for developing web applications and design webpages?

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#7 2006-09-22 17:37:00

bluePoet
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From: Düsseldorf, Germany
Registered: 2006-01-09
Posts: 38
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Such an article would be a listing of recommended packages and a collection of URLs where to look for all the stuff

depends on how you do it, you could set up a webdesign repo or something...

So actually the idea is, to give this people a ready to use system optimized for webdesign-tasks (not only design, also web-developing)

what do you mean? don't you have to modify the installation process, to get this going automatically? Otherwise you have to go through the usual arch installation anyway and then your repo could kick in.

if you don't want something like this, maybe archie really is the better place to start rather than arch itself

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#8 2006-09-22 18:07:33

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

To get it runnin' ... a list of packages which I think have to be included:

Browsers
There need to be different browsers/engines to test the pages, as you know the look different...
- Firefox representing the Gecko-engine
- Opera
- Internet Explorer: maybe a difficult challenge, and I don't like it cause for IE it's necessary to include wine...

Graphics
- GIMP or GIMP-Shop
- maybe Blender (I really often see it in recommendation-lists for webdesign with linux)
- xsane (scanning software), a must if you wanna use hand-drawn graphics

Other stuff
- XMMS: as I mentioned, an Audio-Player would be nice to help the designer to get inspired (sorry for my bad english, is it "get" inspired or "become" inspired or something different??)
- eye-candy stuff: nice, inspiring wallpapers, themes, mouse icons, icon-themes, gdm or other login manager themes
- PyPad: really easy and light editor for note taking or reading readmes of PHP-Scripts and all the stuff


What's left?
- Vector-Graphics software: Inkscape or, which I would prefer: XaraLX (see http://www.xaralx.org - any other suggestions?
- Source-Code-Editor: Geany (nice but no code-completion), Bluefish (no code-completion, syntax highlighting is buggy, generally slow and you'll come in troubles when dealing with long lines), Quanta (in my oppinnion a bit overloaded, tries to give the developer everything but not comfortable, and: it needs QT...)
- a simple picture viewer like the gnome standard viewer (don't know it's name)
- file browser: pcmanfm, tuxcommander, mucommander, rox ???
- something to manage network profiles, probably the simplest way is wifi-radar
- clipboard manager, i think there is a plugin for xfce (if "we" lol use xfce for this little project)
- FTP-client: maybe gftp or a filemanager with ftp-capabilities
- login manager: i think GDM would be the best solution if we are "GTK+-ed"
- any presentation software, something like powerpoint
- an organizer
- a note-taking tool
- brainstorming/mindmapping software
- RSS-reader

Configuration and Ressources
- launchers for the tools should be in place and easy accessible
- nice theme should be standard
- maybe include some short tutorials for things like power-managment (powernowd, cpufreq and the stuff) and for extending it with basic things which really should be users choice (IM, email-client)
- Ressource collection with useful links (tutorials, AJAX-libraries and stuff like this, ebooks, links to software like CMS, BulletinBoards, ...)
- RSS-reader configured with some recommended feeds (like A-List-Apart, and some others)


Any other suggestions? Would be nice if you post your choice, especially for the points in "What's left?" and "Configuration and Ressources"!

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#9 2006-09-22 18:18:07

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

@bluePoet: I didn't even dare to think about creating a new distro by deriving it from arch, I don't know enough about linux to create it this way. My hope was, that there is sort of a toolkit for such tasks or that somebody suggests something like dtw did with Archie. I started thinkin' about it when I found an article in the wiki on how to create your own Boot CD.
I think Archie is the solution.
Creating an arch-repo for webdesign software would not be useful cause it doesn't matter if I install the software from a special repo or from the official repos. I don't plan to include that much software which isn't at least in current, extra or community - nearly everthing needed for a webdesign flavour of Archie can be found in this official repos.


A question about Archie: is it possible to install the livecd to harddisk? Else it can't be used cause I don't think anyone likes productive working with a livecd...

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#10 2006-09-22 18:28:32

phrakture
Arch Overlord
From: behind you
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 7,879
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

clownfish wrote:

sorry for my bad english, is it "get" inspired or "become" inspired or something different??

Both work, but "become" is more proper... if I were to say that without thinking I would use neither and say "it would help with inspiration"

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#11 2006-09-22 23:37:18

bluePoet
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From: Düsseldorf, Germany
Registered: 2006-01-09
Posts: 38
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Creating an arch-repo for webdesign software would not be useful cause it doesn't matter if I install the software from a special repo or from the official repos. I don't plan to include that much software which isn't at least in current, extra or community

of course, but since you mentioned collections of urls and stuff I assumed you meant AUR and things like that. In that case a repo would be a central place to look for, but anyhow, I think we already passed that point of discussion, heading for a slightly modified Archie ;-)

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#12 2006-09-23 00:04:57

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

bluePoet wrote:

but anyhow, I think we already passed that point of discussion, heading for a slightly modified Archie ;-)

Not yet, I just tried to start collecting some information and oppinions. If there is nobody interested at all, I'll maybe just post the configuration or make the xfce-configuration public - including all eye-candy and stuff which can't be installed using pacman.
It's also possible that the idea ebbs away, because of a lack of interest, or simply becomes another list of package-recommendations and ressources.

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#13 2006-09-23 04:54:03

mallow005
Member
Registered: 2006-07-11
Posts: 20

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

I am a web designer/developer and Usability Expert/UI Designer/Frontend Designer/User Experience Expert/pixel pusher. I do make my living on it.

For mockups:
Inkscape
GIMP

For code:
vim
(any text editor with syntax highlighting here, although I would like Textmate-like functionality)

For FTP:
Transmit
ncftp
Konqueror
too many to name

IE4Linux to test on IE, or use http://browsershots.org

Firefox with essential web dev plugins.

If you need Dreamweaver-like stuff, use Bluefish.

Hope that helps.

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#14 2006-09-23 16:10:42

postlogic
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Registered: 2005-02-24
Posts: 410
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Some quick stuff for mounting using sshfs and curlftpfs, so it could be used through thunar (not necessarily nautilus), would be great.

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#15 2006-09-25 13:41:24

noriko
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From: In My Mind
Registered: 2006-06-09
Posts: 535
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

At all webdesigners: Which software do you use for developing web applications and design webpages?

i use geany.. nothing else coding wise.. gimp for all graphics..

i think (as suggested by clownfish.. a wiki / some sort of documentation is the way to go.. creating a new distro is simply pointless ... esp. when arch is a distro which is made to be costomized, i.e .. there are no pre-installeed packages..

if u preinstall 10 html editors to satisfy every web d~ you are simply creating a distro like... fedora, which is, let's face it. bloated to the ground.. (well it was last time i installed it)


The.Revolution.Is.Coming - - To fight, To hunger, To Resist!

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#16 2006-09-25 15:15:57

clownfish
Member
Registered: 2006-09-04
Posts: 68

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

if u preinstall 10 html editors to satisfy every web d~ you are simply creating a distro like... fedora, which is, let's face it. bloated to the ground.. (well it was last time i installed it)

Yes, but I wouldn't install many different editors and tools, that's why I ask for the best selection of software. But maybe a wiki-article with some scripts to automate some tasks, really is the better choice.

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#17 2006-09-27 21:33:47

johnisevil
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From: Hamilton, ON Canada
Registered: 2003-08-07
Posts: 221
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

At all webdesigners: Which software do you use for developing web applications and design webpages?

The Gimp, Inkscape, gvim and Bluefish.

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#18 2006-10-02 23:07:34

kozaki
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From: London >. < Paris
Registered: 2005-06-13
Posts: 638
Website

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Nice idea ! would it be wiki or Archie based optimized archlinux smile

Good software suggestions having allready been made, I'd say :
Basically each time it's possible put one console app along side with its gui counterpart. Dunno about you guys but I code web sites half of the time and sometime just love to get rid of those NNN windows, so I launch usefull apps from console within screen :
sftp, lftp, mc, rsync & openssh, vim (with appropriate configuration), tidy, linkchecker, image tools like those from imagemagick & scrot.

GUI apps : cssed is a nice lightweight gtk2 CSS editor.

Among language I'd add Python (with links to usefull ressources). There's some quite strong CMS / Frameworks that are based on it (as well as on LAMP) like Zope/Plone.


Seeded week #28: Arch 25 gig (stock 12, Talking 1, Anywhere 11, Apricity 1)
Desktop @3.30GHz 8 gig RAM, Arch linux-ck
laptop1 Atom 2 gig RAM, Arch linux stock i686 (5+H battery smile) & 2: ARM Tegra K1 4 gig RAM, ChrOS
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#19 2006-10-03 04:03:41

hugin
Member
Registered: 2006-05-19
Posts: 93

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

Well i think any self respecting web development disc, should have the following:
WebDev Packages
· lighttpd (no need for full apache)
· gVim
· gimp
· inkscape
· mysql
· perl
· python
· php  (yes all 3)
· opera
· firefox
· elinks (everyone should test with text based browsers as well)

not sure if seperate cgi packages are needed, haven't looked into it much yet, but those too if needed.

but like dtw said, with the newest version of archie; that will be 0.6; everything has been modularized and it is uber easy to make custom isos either based on an "official" archie module, or a completely custom one.  I  would expect more documentation to be up after release. dtw and z4ziggy are a small team; and i only have a small role.  In time all will be come known.

/swogs


Open Toes; Open Mind; Open Source.

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#20 2006-12-19 20:13:41

DerGuteMoritz
Member
Registered: 2006-12-19
Posts: 7

Re: a "Webdesign Linux" approach

I don't think it is possible to create a universally useful package selection for web developers at all. In most cases, people chose their tools by habit and not by quality or the like. Also, web development is not limited to PHP, think Ruby on Rails for example. You woldn't want to code a Rails app with Quanta or Bluefish. Many people use vim or emacs for everything, some are used to full blown IDEs such as Eclipse with their respective plugins. Selecting the pre-installed code editor for a web dev "distro" through voting would in most cases yield a mediocre result, since most web devs are using mediocre tools anyway (think PHP) and in most cases don't know about better alternatives. I think the best approach would be to collect a list of features, not editors, and then sort out which edtiors remain useful. Vim and Emacs can be left out, I think, 'cause people who are firm with these tools are not the target of such a distro anyway (they'd most probably create their own in a few minutes).

An essential aspect of web development are, obviously, browsers. Firefox, Opera, Konqueror and maybe IE + wine should in any case be part of the distro. Firefox should come pre-installed with certain crucial add-ons, such as: Web Developer Toolbar, Firebug, NoScript. There may be more.

Concerning the window manager: I don't know, that's a question of habit again. I sure wouldn't wanna miss certain features of Gnome (virtual filesystems, for example).

Many people here mentioned ftp-clients, even GUI apps. Why encourage the use of insecure and unflexible technology? Subversion or any other versioning system are way better tools for the task at hand.

Also: Why xmms? It's an ancient and ugly player without even library support. At least use beep-media-player or something. MPD is a resource-friendly alternative, too. But rhythmbox/amarok (depends on the preferred widget toolkit) will probably do best -- web developers do love their iPods, don't they?

Thanks for reading -- sorry if I came on a little too strong, I'm just sayin' smile

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