Compiz (formerly Beryl and Compiz Fusion) is a free, portable and open source software project that has been designed from the offset to act as a compositing window manager for GNU/Linux operating systems. It is in charge of the astonishing desktop effects (Cube, Expose, etc.) that you probably saw on the Internet.
Features at a glance
Key features include support for the latest OpenGL library for providing users with top-notch desktop effects, a powerful plugin architecture that can be changed at runtime and allow anyone to easily extend the software’s default functionality.
In addition, Compiz is bundled with a wide range of effects that will impress your friends, colleagues and family, offers increased enjoyment and productivity, as well as a growing and friendly community of users.
As a bonus, the software includes a graphical front-end, called CompizConfig Settings Manager (CCSM), which allows you to effortlessly tweak Compiz to act the way you want it to act, as well as to manage, enable and disable effects.
Supported desktop environments/window managers
Compiz is a window manager itself, which means that it runs on top of your GNU/Linux distribution without the need of an additional desktop environment or another window manager. However, is can also be deployed on top of various graphical desktop environments, such as GNOME, KDE, Xfce, LXDE/LXQt, and many others.
Under the hood, supported OSes and availability
The software is written in the C, C++ and Python programming language. It is actively developed and distributed as a universal sources archive, allowing the user to optimize it for a specific hardware architecture (32-bit and 64-bit are supported at this time).
At the moment, Compiz is distributed as pre-built binary packages on the main software repositories of numerous distributions of Linux, including Ubuntu, Debian, Arch Linux, openSUSE, Fedora and Mageia.