Posts Tagged ‘snow


Have a merry x-mas… compiz style

One of the cooler, lesser-known plugins for Compiz, xglsnow, was sadly left in the dust with the inclusion of Compiz Fusion into Ubuntu 7.10. That doesn’t mean, however, you can’t still get it working in time for the holiday season! Check out the video below to see the plugin in action.

Here is a screenshot of what it looks like on my machine:

screenshot of xglsnow running on my desktop

Note: This tutorial assumes that you have Compiz or Compiz fusion setup already. If you don’t, however, try searching the forums– there is a huge number of guides floating around on getting Compiz running for different graphics cards.

Ready? Here goes…

I. Installing xglsnow

First, you need to install the necessary packages to build the plugin. Open up a console (alt+F2 -> “gnome-terminal”),
and type:

sudo apt-get install compiz-bcop compiz-dev build-essential libxcomposite-dev libpng12-dev libsm-dev libxrandr-dev libxdamage-dev libxinerama-dev libstartup-notification0-dev libgconf2-dev librsvg2-dev libdbus-1-dev libdbus-glib-1-dev libgnome-desktop-dev x11proto-scrnsaver-dev libxss-dev libxslt1-dev libtool

Create a directory in your home folder to install the plugin to:

mkdir -p ~/compiz/

Download xglsnow and extract it to the directory you just created:

Finally, navigate to the directory, compile and install:

cd ~/compiz/snow

make install

Now you just need to install some textures, configure xgl, and you’re done! :)

*The above steps are based off a tutorial by Scott at the Compiz Fusion forums. Thanks!

II. Adding textures

The above tarball doesn’t include any snow textures, so by default all you would see are some floating white blocks… not very pretty… The package from the xglsnow homepage, however, includes a texture which looks pretty nice. To set it up, go to the xglsnow project homepage and download xglsnow-0.2.0.tar.gz. Extract the files, and copy the file “snowflake2.png” to any location you would like, e.g. ~/.compiz/images or /usr/share/images:

tar -xf xglsnow-0.2.0.tar.gz

cd xglsnow-0.2.0/

mkdir ~/.compiz/images

mv snowflake2.png ~/.compiz/images

If you haven’t already, restart Compiz to load the new plugin (alt+F2 -> “compiz –replace”) and run the Compiz settings manager: alt+F2 -> “ccsm”. Find the “Snow” plugin and check the box to the left of it to enable it.

Compiz settings manager

Now click on the plugin’s name to modify its settings. Next go to “Textures” -> “add” -> “browse” (click the folder icon). Navigate to the location where you saved the texture from above and hit “okay.”

Compiz settings manager (snow configuration)

All done!

Press “Super + F3″ to start xgl snow. If you don’t see anything, check to make sure the the PNG plugin for compiz is enabled, and that the hotkey for xglsnow is in fact “super + F3.”

If you want to install some different snow textures, try the Snowflakes pack on Gnome-look.

III. Wallpapers

Finally, if you want to find some wintry wallpapers to go along with your new snow-covered desktop, take a look at Blue Christmas
from digital blasphemy (that is the one in the screenshot above). Gnome-art has a nice picture of a winter landscape in Alsace, France You can also find some winter wallpapers at Gnome-look and Kde-look.
Try searching for “winter” or “snow.”

That’s all!

Feel free to write any suggestions, or a link to a screenshot of your own holiday desktop :)


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