Xah's Linux Setup

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

This page is my personal Linux setup. I write them down here so i can follow them on new box.

LXDE Desktop and User Interface Tweak

Install lxde desktop. [see Linux: How to Switch to LXDE, Xfce]


  1. Set Dvorak Keyboard Layout [see Linux: How to Switch to Dvorak Keyboard Layout]
  2. Set key repeat speed. [see Linux: Set Key Repeat Rate]
  3. Disable the menu access key in terminal (i.e. stop Alt+f from popping-up a menu). Also, stop F10 from showing menu. (In terminal preference.)
  4. Disable Alt+Space from popping-up menu. [see Linux: Keyboard Software Guide]
  5. Set terminal scroll back to 9000 lines or infinite.
  6. Turn off Workspace (set it to just 1). Turn off all ~31 keys related to Workspace. (Linux: Xfce Keyboard Shortcuts) (i need it for Emacs!)


  1. Linux: Mouse Hover to Raise Window
  2. Linux: How to Swap Mouse Buttons


  1. Firefox: Set Mouse Wheel Scroll Speed
  2. Set Firefox custom hotkeys. How to Add/Change Firefox Keyboard Shortcuts.

Window Theme Preference

xah lxde openbox theme 2017 03 11
Xah LXDE/Openbox theme 2017-03-11

To set up lxde theme

  1. in terminal, run obconf, pick what you like, suppose the theme name is xyz.
  2. open /usr/share/themes/xyz/openbox-3/themerc, edit it. (backup the file first). Or, make a copy of the whole directory, name it as a new theme.
  3. In obconf, use arrow key to switch to the theme to see update right away. (relaunch obconf if you created your own.)
xfce window manager gtk theme
xfce window manager GTK theme year 2012. (no longer available).
  1. Simple.
  2. Have border around window.
  3. Front window must stand out by color.
  4. No color gradient.
  5. No transparancies.

[see Linux: Xfce Good Themes]


  1. Install Unicode font for math symbols and emoticon. [see Download Free Unicode Fonts]

Install Software

  1. sudo apt-get install build-essential (install essential build tools)
  2. emacs [see How to Build Emacs on Linux]
  3. sudo apt-get install vim [see Ubuntu Linux: vim Location and Versions]
  4. sudo apt-get install ssh (a meta package for both ssh server and client)
  5. sudo apt-get install tmux [see Linux: tmux Tutorial]

  1. sudo apt-get install git [see git Tutorial]
  2. sudo apt-get install subversion [see svn tutorial]
  3. sudo apt-get install curl [see Linux: Download Website: wget, curl]
  4. sudo apt-get install unison [see Linux Tutorial: 2-way Sync Files using Unison]
  5. sudo apt-get install htop [see Linux: Monitor Processes, htop]

  1. sudo apt-get install python3 [see Python 3 Tutorial]
  2. nodejs [see JavaScript in Depth]
  3. sudo apt-get install python-pythonmagick (interface to ImageMagick) [see ImageMagick Tutorial]
  4. sudo apt-get install perl-doc [see Learn Perl in 1 Hour]
  5. sudo apt-get install php5-cli [see PHP in 1 Hour]

  1. sudo apt-get install imagemagick [see ImageMagick Tutorial]
  2. sudo apt-get install optipng

  1. sudo apt-get install tree [see Linux: View Directory as Tree]
  2. sudo apt-get install bash-doc [see Bash Manual in Chapters; Using Emacs for Reading Info; Info Keys]
  3. sudo apt-get install wmctrl [see Linux: Keyboard Software Guide]
  4. sudo apt-get install lynx
  5. sudo apt-get install colordiff

  1. sudo apt-get install moc [see Linux: Music Players]
  2. sudo apt-get install feh [see Linux: Image Viewers]

Bash Setup

Linux: Bash Prompt Setup

Emacs Setup

How to Build Emacs on Linux

other optional install

  1. Ruby: What's RVM, Gem, Rake, Bundler, RDoc, ri, irb?
  2. sudo apt-get install ocaml [see OCaml Tutorial]
  3. sudo apt-get install scsh (Scheme Shell)
  4. sudo apt-get install clisp (Common Lisp)
xfce desktop screenshot 2012-10-15
Xah Linux desktop 2012, running xfce.

thanks to xfq https://github.com/xfq/

Xah Desktop

If you have a question, put $5 at patreon and message me.