I'm using Fedora 15 Gnome 3 spin and I've installed awesome as a window manager. I want to completely remove installed gnome, lxde and xfce but not to damage already installed applications. How can I go about doing this?
Rather than removing packages one by one, use
yum groupremove "GNOME Desktop Environment". You can check available group of software by using
yum grouplist command. Search for groups related to xfce and lxde and apply the same
yum groupremove package_group.
But be careful because
yum groupremove will remove all packages, of any type, in the named group. It will also remove any package that depends on any of these packages. So first you check for the dependencies if you need them.
However, you can instruct yum to remove only those packages which are not required by any other packages or groups by adding the
groupremove_leaf_only=1 directive to the [main] section of the
/etc/yum.conf configuration file. Refer Fedora 15 deployment guide.
You can remove them through YUM. Firstly, find all the packages you want to remove. Something like this should work:
yum list installed | grep -Pi '(gnome|lxde|xfce)'
Then you can go and uninstall them.
yum remove gnome-package-name
Keep in mind that
remove will also remove anything depending on it. So, if you find something at the root of GNOME/KDE/XFCE, you can wipe it all out in one command.
Also keep in mind, and this is VERY important, you could remove software you use often including any settings it saves. Removing these programs is quite risky. It might be worth it to back up your home folder and re-install fresh. It could be the difference between days of hair pulling and having a little time to relax while you re-install.