You can download the graphical installer from http://www.xfce.org/archive/xfce-188.8.131.52/installers/
It won't take long; it's only 18 Meg! If you've never before worked with the Xfce installer, you are in for a big
surprise. Building from source just can't be any easier than this!
The first issue is that the ALSA libraries required to compile the Xfce sound mixer just aren't anywhere to be found in the Debian repositories. This is a Debian problem, not
a Xfce problem. Your choices are (1) download the ALSA library tarball from ftp://ftp.alsa-project.org/pub/lib/
, build the source code, then
launch the Xfce installer, or (2) just not select the Xfce mixer at the start of the installation process and instead use either aumix
, both of which are available as Debian packages. My opinion is that aumix
still has by far the superior interface. YMMV.
The second issue is that the Xfce 4.4 panel code is significantly different than Xfce 4.2 panel code. Your customized Xfce 4.2 panel is history! Get over it! If you wanted an automated process for populating the panel, you never would have chosen Xfce in the first place.
The good news is that icon rendering on the 4.4 panel is DROP-DEAD GORGEOUS! Icon rendering on the 4.2 panel was a little screwy. No more! You're going to start drooling over your keyboard when that first custom icon pops up in front of you!
With 4.4, Xfce introduces their new file manager: Thunar. I'll be honest with you. I really liked the Xfce3 file manager, and the original Xfce4 file manager -- Xffm -- just didn't appeal to me at all. With Thunar, Xfce is back on the right track. Again, YMMV.
Xfce has traditionally used a blue colour scheme. The 4.4 scheme is a very attractive yellow and green. I find the new scheme easier on the eyes.
Otherwise, Xfce looks and acts much as it always has, which in my opinion, is A Good Thing! Most of the changes are under-the-hood changes, making the code base more compliant with the Freedesktop
standards. This is a goal that the Xfce programmers have been pursuing for a couple of years now, and the polish really shows!
Stable? Rock solid from what I've seen this evening.
What's not to like? :-)