When I right-click on empty space of XFCE desktop the menu pops-up after about a 1.25 second delay. At the same time the menu pops-up immediately (with no notable delay) in case I call it by clicking on the menu button on a panel. Can I make desktop right-click to work as fast?

I use XFCE 4.10.

  • Per this Gentoo thread, seems like it might be related to svg-based icons in the context menu? Maybe switch to a different theme? – ckhan May 14 '12 at 7:01
  • 2
    @ckhan, doesn't the absent delay when clicking the panel's menu button contradict this? – sr_ May 14 '12 at 7:28
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    @Ivan if you right click a second time is there a delay similar to the first time, or is it almost instant? If it is instant then it would seem the menu is getting dynamically created, which leads to the delay. The main menu is probably cached already, hence it is quicker to load. – Rqomey May 14 '12 at 7:47
  • Second-time delay is the same as the first-time. – Ivan May 14 '12 at 15:09

There's a bug report, apparently application icon loading is the culprit (apart from building the application menu).

This comment indicates that deselecting "show application icons in menu" should make it faster.

If you don't want to do this, there's also a patch, which according to the numbers

Before patch with Icons
elapsed: 0.129740
elapsed: 0.143799
elapsed: 0.126939

Before patch without Icons
elapsed: 0.010751
elapsed: 0.009460
elapsed: 0.011937

Patch with Icons
elapsed: 0.020162
elapsed: 0.013139
elapsed: 0.019224

Patch without Icons
elapsed: 0.007701
elapsed: 0.012471
elapsed: 0.011793

also helps a lot.

  • If that's about icons loading, then why do not consequent loads to faster and why does pane button click work so much faster than desktop right click? – Ivan May 14 '12 at 15:11
  • Actually, here it seems faster on consequent loads. The panel button thing could seem like it does because the desktop menu appears on button release while the panel menu does it on button press (or similar, the bug report got the details) – sr_ May 14 '12 at 18:06
  • "the panel button thing could seem like it does because the desktop menu appears on button release" - I understad the point but the difference is too significant. I can click-and-release a mouse button very quickly (used to be a champion of Vorbis WinAMP-hidden "spinning fish" game :-)) and the menu appears immediately in case I click the panel button and after a notable pause in case I right-click the desktop. – Ivan May 14 '12 at 19:18

That's not a problem about thunar, there's menu popup delay config in GTK theme, you need to find that and reduce it to 0.

gtk-menu-popup-delay = 0
gtk-menu-popdown-delay = 0
gtk-menu-bar-popup-delay = 0
gtk-enable-animations = 0
gtk-timeout-expand = 10

That exists for reasons, sometimes when the menu pops up, the icons are not ready yet, you'd see screen flashes.


I experienced the same annoying delay with xfdesktop right click menu after moving from Xfce 4.8 to 4.10 on my Athlon64 desktop running Debian Testing (Wheezy). I noticed that this new problem wasn't present on my Atom powered netbook which also runs Debian Testing and on which I'd also just moved from Xfce 4.8 to 4.10. As far as I remembered both machines are set up almost identically with the exception of different modules being loaded for the different hardware. I also noticed that some heavy apps like Firefox didn't open any quicker on the much more powerful desktop PC, and that starting the Xfce desktop UI was slower on the desktop. All slightly odd. A little digging revealed that my desktop was running preload, an adaptive readahead daemon that is suppose to monitor and analyse app usage and cache stuff that is often loaded, hence speeding it up at the cost of a small amount of RAM which would likely have been used anyway. I installed it maybe 4 years ago when running Debian Etch and recall it had a measurable benefit at the time (or I believed it did). Looking in its cache revealed it was referencing libs and apps that had not been on my system for years. I uninstalled it and on rebooting the latency problem with xfdesktop menu icons is gone, the machine boots maybe 10 seconds faster, the xfce environment starts faster and apps open at least as quickly.

I'm pretty sure I've used distributions which have preload installed by default, and it is definitely something often recommended as a responsiveness/performance tweak, usually accompanied by unsubstantiated and hyberbolic claims of effectiveness (awesome, drastic yada yada yada). Uninstall it.

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