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Fluxbox is a window manager for X that was based on the Blackbox 0.61.1 code. It is very light on resources and easy to handle but yet full of features to make an easy, and extremely fast, desktop experience. It is built using C++ and licensed under the MIT-License.



root # emerge --ask x11-wm/fluxbox


exec startfluxbox

Customizing keybindings

# Locks the X11 display for the current user:
Mod4 l   :ExecCommand xlock
# Opens a number of programs with quickkeys. These are just examples, I am sure
# you get the point...
Mod1 f   :ExecCommand firefox
Mod1 t   :ExecCommand thunderbird
Mod1 o   :ExecCommand oowriter
Mod1 v   :ExecCommand gvim
# Fluxbox has no sound control; do a hack to get some
# (assumes alsa is being used; good luck if using oss :P )
Mod1 e   :ExecCommand Eterm -name alsa -e alsamixer
# This launches fbrun, which in turn launches other programs:
Mod1 r   :ExecCommand fbrun
# Program Control. It just makes life simpler...
Mod1 4   :Close
Mod1 m   :Minimize
# If using aterm (emerge x11-terms/aterm), the following opens a really nice
# transparent aterm with no borders, fitting nicely with 1024x768
# resolution, while still leaving room for conky. Once again, feel free to
# modify.
Mod1 a   :ExecCommand aterm -name aterm -sl 3000 -tr +sb -sr -sk -bg black -fg \
white -fade 90 -bl -tn xterm -fn \
-misc-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-*-120-*-*-c-*-iso8859-15 -g 116x57
# Similar to the above, but opens a transparent rooted terminal.
# The root password must be known to use this:
Mod1 s   :ExecCommand aterm -name aterm -sl 3000 -tr +sb -sr -sk -bg black -fg \
white -fade 90 -bl -tn xterm -fn \
-misc-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-*-120-*-*-c-*-iso8859-15 -g 116x57 -e su -
# Takes a screenshot using the print button, needs media-gfx/imagemagick
None 107 :Exec tm=$(date +%F,%T) && import -window root /tmp/screenshot$tm.png \
&& display /tmp/screenshot$tm.png
Mod1 107 :Exec tm=$(date +%F,%T) && import -frame -window $(xprop _NET_ACTIVE_WINDOW \

File Managers

Popular choices:

  • xfce-base/thunar
  • app-misc/mc
  • gnome-base/nautilus
  • app-misc/gentoo

Image Viewers

  • media-gfx/feh
  • x11-misc/nitrogen

Note: Feh and Nitrogen can also be used to set a desktop wallpaper

Additional Tools


  • x11-misc/xcompmgr

Some users prefer their window managers with true transparency, which can be enabled with X compositing manager:

user $ emerge --ask x11-misc/xcompmgr
exec xcompmgr &
exec startfluxbox