The past year or so I have had Gnome-Do in docky mode as a staple of my desktop environment. It beat out AWN and Cario for simplicity and stability, and I love the keyboard shortcuts it provides. The more I get used to actually using the core of Gnome-Do with its keyboard shortcuts the less I find myself actually utilizing the dock. When I upgraded to Karmic I decided I would try out going without and actually stumbled upon a more lightweight, less popular alternative to Gnome-Do called Kupfer. [caption id=”” align=”aligncenter” width=”372” caption=”Kupfer”][/caption]
Gnome-Do is pretty, and it works, what’s not to like? Well, it has always stuggled to open Nautilus for me, and occasionally it has just crashed. It crashes gracefully though, just isn’t there anymore, it doesn’t freeze anything and simply starting again is all it takes to solve this rare issue. Another down side it is a little heavy, eats about 28-35 MB of Ram according to my system monitor.It has way more features/plugins than I ever use. [caption id=”” align=”aligncenter” width=”430” caption=”Gnome-Do”][/caption] Kupfer is simpler, not quite so nice looking (though not bad) and I haven’t had it fail yet. Nautilus opens fast. It can act as a file browser in itself, and even moving files around and using it as an application switcher seems to work slicker than Do did. It has a fair amount of plugins, many of the same basic ones that Do does. The one I am missing is a pastebin type thing. In Do I could highlight some code, trigger Do, type ‘sel’ for selected text, tab over, and pick ‘send to pastebin’, then it would put the URL in my clipboard. Slick! However, Kupfer runs from 9-12MB according to system monitor, so about one third of Do. There are tradeoffs both ways I guess. I am going to stick with it for a while on my work machines because I like the simplistic approach it takes, and how it encourages me to use the keyboard more and mouse less. It just feels more efficient.