The first linux distro I ever used was Xubuntu 8.10. That was so long ago, I don’t even remember why I switched. I switched to Crunchbang, Debian testing + LXDE, minimal Ubuntu + LXDE, Linux Mint Debian and then Lubuntu. I would have been fine sticking with Lubuntu if I thought they would have a 64-bit edition out anytime soon, but it doesn’t look like they will. I know I could use the 64-bit minimal Ubuntu and add the Lubuntu-desktop package, but I’m lazy. I wanted to see how much better my 64-bit machine would preform with a 64-bit OS. So I just went with a 64-bit Xubuntu and tacked on the LXDE desktop. At first I started just randomly picking a desktop, then one day I just stopped logging into LXDE all together. This past weekend I formatted both my machines with Xubuntu and have yet to install any LXDE apps other than PCManFM (I need tabs in my file manager), LXRandR and GPicView. In fact, I like the look of the Xfce desktop more.
Openbox was always one of the things I liked about LXDE, but Xfwm is just as good. And as a bonus, I can get a shiki theme for Xfwm to match my shiki gtk theme. I could never get it to quite look right with Openbox, and that always bothered me. Also, LXPanel never looked right with the shiki theme, but the xfce4 panel looks great with it. Xfce looks better, has better default apps and is just as fast as LXDE. There’s also a 64-bit version and the live installer always works (I’ve had some problems with the Lubuntu one in the past).
The final straw was that I got really comfortable using Tilda as a terminal with full transparency. For whatever reason, that just does not work with LXDE. I’m sure there’s a way to fix that, but I don’t have time. Like everything else with Xubuntu, it just works out of the box. Why Xubuntu isn’t more popular, or Xfce is never discussed as being the default desktop for any major distribution is beyond me, I can’t think of one aspect of any desktop that suits my needs better than Xfce. My goal is to make it 6 months without switching, and I feel pretty good about being home again.