How to install Compiz Fusion on Debian Lenny

The following tutorial covers the process of installing Compiz Fusion on Debian Lenny. Compiz is the original compositing window manager. By using 3D graphics acceleration via OpenGL to render, Compiz provided intense immersing graphical effects on Gnome and KDE desktop environments. The Beryl window manager was a fork of Compiz and had shown great success. Currently, Compiz Fusion is the result of a merge between Beryl composite window manager and Compiz. It exposes the best features of both products.
Installing Compiz Fusion on Debian Lenny:

Compiz requires that you have 3D hardware video acceleration. If you have not yet installed the necessary drivers for your video card, you should do so before proceeding.

  1. Open a terminal and type sudo su
  2. Type gedit /etc/apt/sources.list and add the following line to the bottom of the sources list:
    deb http://download.tuxfamily.org/shames/debian-lenny/desktopfx/unstable/ ./
    And then save the file!
  3. Back at the terminal, type:
    wget http://download.tuxfamily.org/shames/A42A6CF5.gpg -O- | apt-key add -
  4. Type
    apt-get update && apt-get install compiz-fusion-gnome fusion-icon

If your using nVidia drivers you need to do the following:

You can skip this section if your using ATI and or are not using nVidia drivers!

Follow this section to avoid the Checking for Composite extension: not present error code.

  1. From the terminal, type:
    nvidia-xconfig -add-argb-glx-visuals -d 24 -composite -allow-glx-with-composite
  2. Now press Ctrl+Alt+Backspace to restart x and login once prompted.
  3. Once your logged back in, open up a terminal and type compiz-manager

If all has gone well, you should be seeing the new window effects of Compiz-Fusion.

Making Compiz-Fusion run at startup:

  1. From the Gnome Panel, navigate to System-> Preferences-> Sessions
  2. Under the Startup Programs tab, Click New
  3. Name the program Compiz and add the Command fusion-icon as is seen below:
  4. Compiz Fusion auto startup

  5. Click OK and Close to save changes, Restart your Debian Lenny PC and Enjoy Compiz-Fusion!

Notes: Right click the fusion-icon that should appear in your Gnome Panel to make all of your adjustments.

Update 1/14/08: It appears that the Compiz "Stable" Repositories have been recently included into the official Debian Lenny Repositories. This article is left in place for those who wish to try the Unstable Repositories.

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