Dwm configuration and installation linux - Debian/Ubuntu

Categories:  linux
Labels:  OS, bash, install

Overview:

Part 1: Preparation

Part 2: Configuration

Part 3: There are a lot of options

Part 4: Installation


This has led to it gaining a reputation as “experts only”, but the aim of this how to is to show that this is not necessarily the case. For me, after using openbox, fluxbox, ratpoison, evilwm, icewm, I found that I knew what features I wanted and what I didn’t, and dwm just does its job with minimal fuss and maximum speed.

Any commands with a # at the start means “as root”.

Note: *This howto will discuss two ways of installing dwm: the generic, quick-and-dirty “make install” way, and the ‘proper’ APT/Debian way. Both ways have their ups and downs; as always, it’s your system, just be aware of your choices.


Part 1: Preparation

Before we start, let’s get the dependencies: (they are probably already on your system if you’re using X anyway)

# aptitude install libc6 libx11-6 libxinerama1

or

$ sudo apt-get install libx11-dev libxinerama-dev

We’ll need the build-dependencies, and also make and gcc:

# aptitude build-dep dwm
# aptitude install make gcc

Also, we’ll want an application launcher like dmenu, although you could use gmrun or similar. dmenu is part of this package:

# aptitude install suckless-tools

The default font for the status bar is Terminus, so if you want that you’ll need this package:

# aptitude install xfonts-terminus

dwm can be installed as a normal package, but that would kind of defeat the purpose as you wouldn’t be able to customise it :)
So, make a directory to put the dwm source into, for example:

$ mkdir ~/Build

Then move into that directory, download the source, then move into the new dwm directory:

$ cd ~/Build
$ apt-get source dwm
$ cd dwm_6.0 # (or whatever it is)

Have a look at what you have now; check out the README in particular. But what we really want to do is customise this baby, so…

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