I am a student working for PSC, and I am trying to get Matlab working for Bridges here at PSC. I am trying to understand the purpose of XFCE. What is the purpose of XFCE? If I am not mistaken, vlgrun already spawns a window where I can run matlab remotely. XFCE is a desktop environment, so why would I need that if virtualgl already accomplishes what I need?
XFCE is indeed a full desktop environment, and you are correct that it is not a functional requirement for using Matlab. The value we get out of using XFCE is the ability to manage windows, as well as having access to a terminal emulator and web browser inside the session. Prior OSC versions of certain Batch Connect applications (including Matlab) used Fluxbox as the windows manager which was lighter weight, but Fluxbox had a tendency to crash, hence the move to XFCE. We believe that the added functionality of XFCE is worth the costs (storage, CPU cycles, etc).
@ta12456 are you satisfied with Morgan’s answer above? Like most things in tech, it was a trade-off and we traded flexibility + stability for CPU cycles and storage.
Yes, thank you both for responding.