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Anyone use the i3 window manager? I'm trying to get the hang of it, and I see no advantages, it's just harder to use, which is a shame because I /want/ to like it!

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  • 3
    Loads of people here use it lol
  • 5
    I use sway (i3 on Wayland). The main selling point of i3/sway is the speed you can achieve with the keyboard, rather than having to drag your mouse cursor around your huge screen to do anything. There's quite a learning curve if you're used to traditional stacking WMs, but once you get used to it it's great
  • 3
    I am of course talking from a dev perspective, since you won't waste time or break your flow by taking your hands off the keyboard. There's some stuff that doesn't work with tiling WMs tho, with the biggest I've found being games. But then again, if you wanna play games better do it in Windows I guess hahaha
  • 1
    I don't think that it is a good idea to "want to like it". Either it is something for your or it isn't - there is no shame in using stacking vm's.
    I'm using awesome VM which brings the power of i3 but still supports stacking. By default it is set to tilding but when a program has difficulties with it, it will either change automatically or you can change it yourself.
    For my workflow this definitely is the best. I love tilding but don't want to get fucked by a few programs acting up
  • 2
    Practice a lot the divide / move spaces to be able to move them as you wish. The first few days, or weeks try to learn to group windows, then close with the keyboard (super major q, ctrl q, etc...).
    Also create key chords for your most useful apps, like your file manager (thunar or pcmanfm), your text editor, browser and terminal. Choose them, move them.
    Give a good try at dmenu. Then you have a very fast system, flexible and customized. But no one else could use it ;).
  • 0
    Wow, a lot of quality replies here!
    I'll definitely keep at it for a Bit - I can see how it would be more efficient, but since it doesn't work well for games, would It work well for game development?
  • 2
    @j4cobgarby not sure about game development, but @Jiii reminded me of something: you no longer have to worry about someone snooping around your stuff since no one will know how to use it 😂 (except for our own people of course)
  • 0
    @ChrRubin that's a good point, but not helpful if I can't snoop around my stuff either
  • 1
    @j4cobgarby i can confirm it works well with games on my i3, only downside is if game is running and you switch workplaces, when you switch back to workplace with a game, it show you bar above the game (i'm using polybar, but that is fixed by moving game window to place where is bar - i have floating game window). It might be good to try making game actually fullscreen and see what happens (mod+f)
  • 1
    @gitworktree that's useful to know - my problem was that I ran an executable from the terminal which should open up a game window- I'm still bad at i3, so what happened there? Where's my game window?
  • 1
    @j4cobgarby not sure, when i do that, new winow is always one of following:
    open as next tiling window (if application is not fullscreen as game),
    or is full screen floating window (like game),
    or is in different workspace (if there is i3config rule that matches application to force it on different workspace).
    Check the logs for this application, might be issue somwhere else
  • 1
    The first time i tried i was so fucking confused, but after a day or 2 you'll get the hang of it. The default config "makes sense"
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