Graphical Toolkits for Linux Programs

A brief look at several popular toolkits available for Linux.
Motif, the Standard

Motif has been the standard graphical toolkit for years on UNIX and other platforms. It is a commercial standard and has its own look. Motif is the base for the popular CDE desktop environment, also a standard on many commercial UNIX systems.

On Linux and other open systems, developers have made a free Motif clone called LessTif. LessTif is source compatible with Motif and available under the L-GPL. Motif and LessTif offer cross-platform compatibility among UNIX systems. While Motif code will not work on most non-UNIX systems, many commercial UNIX systems come with Motif libraries. Also, Motif has the advantage of having passed the test of time.

LessTif is available from LessTif documentation is available from

While I have not covered all existing toolkits, I have briefly covered the most popular ones. Most programmers are concerned about two things: graphical look and portability. GTK and QT are probably used the most in the Linux world, mainly because of the GNOME and KDE desktop environments. Users want a desktop that will provide all utilities using the same graphical look. I use both GTK and GraphApp, but this is a personal choice which every programmer must make for himself.

The GNOME web page is at The KDE web page is at

Patrick Lambert is currently a student in Computer Science at the University of Montréal. He has been using various UNIX and Linux systems for 5 years, doing software development and systems administration. He can be reached at


One Click, Universal Protection: Implementing Centralized Security Policies on Linux Systems

As Linux continues to play an ever increasing role in corporate data centers and institutions, ensuring the integrity and protection of these systems must be a priority. With 60% of the world's websites and an increasing share of organization's mission-critical workloads running on Linux, failing to stop malware and other advanced threats on Linux can increasingly impact an organization's reputation and bottom line.

Learn More

Sponsored by Bit9

Linux Backup and Recovery Webinar

Most companies incorporate backup procedures for critical data, which can be restored quickly if a loss occurs. However, fewer companies are prepared for catastrophic system failures, in which they lose all data, the entire operating system, applications, settings, patches and more, reducing their system(s) to “bare metal.” After all, before data can be restored to a system, there must be a system to restore it to.

In this one hour webinar, learn how to enhance your existing backup strategies for better disaster recovery preparedness using Storix System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin), a highly flexible bare-metal recovery solution for UNIX and Linux systems.

Learn More

Sponsored by Storix