Distributions that use by default Xfce there are a few, and even some of them very good, but this time I want to propose a comparison (from my personal experience) between two of the most popular: Xubuntu vs LMDE Xfce.
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On the visual side, I think both distributions are pretty even. Xubuntu gives us an interface more to Mac OS: an upper panel with the list of windows and a lower panel acting as a Dock. While LMDE something else to Windows o KDE: the panel at the bottom with the Menu, the list of windows and the other traditional elements.
I think both cases the choice of theme Gtk and icon is adequate, but can be further enhanced or customized.
In this regard, as they must suppose, LMDE Xfce exceeds Xubuntu although the difference is not enormous either. Maybe it's because it's based on Debian, or that it includes fewer demons at the beginning, I don't know. In my case LMDE I was a little more fluid, consuming in a LiveCD unos 129 Mb in a PC with 1Gb of RAM while Xubuntu touched the 140Mb. But I repeat, nothing stands out from one over the other.
In this regard both have something that I have always criticized harshly: Excess of applications of Gnome. A simple example is the System Monitor. So Xubuntu as LMDE Xfce They bring the default Gnome and I wonder why? Yes Xfce It has its own System Monitor and it is very nice and useful.
Both distributions come with Firefox by default, when the browser «official»Or«recomendado" for Xfce es Midori and so on, other applications appear that do not have to be there, if the final objective is to make a lighter variant of the distribution.
Each one incorporates Extra Software own distribution (Mint Tools, Ubuntu One ... etc), although LMDE Xfce brings more utilities by default (and actions) guidance on Thunar. We must also note that the current builds of both distributions are different. The .iso of Xubuntu can burn in a while LMDE Xfce needs a DVD, as it includes a wider range of applications such as Audio and Video Codecs, FlashPlayer, something that personally seems very appropriate since with the default installation, everything works the first time.
So which one to choose?
It seems to me that the choice has to be based on the taste and needs of the user. One of the points that can influence is the release cycle of each distribution since with LMDE Xfce we will have something else Rolling Release being based on the repositories of Debian Testing, while with Xubuntu we will have to wait 6 months to enjoy their news.
If I had to choose I would choose LMDE Xfce, not only because it is based on Debian, but because once installed you don't have to adjust almost anything, although well, always you have to do something. Anyway, it is advisable to see other distributions that use by default Xfce and choose the one that best suits us.