I\’ve been playing around the Composite extension for X and KDE 3.5.1 today and I found great improvements over the last time I when I touched this issues. Now the transparency is much faster and shadows work very fast. I have made some snapshots to demonstrate the nice look (the images are quite big, around 1MB each):
snapshot1.jpg – inactive window
snapshot2.jpg – inactive and active window
snapshot3.jpg – two inactive windows one overlays the other.
All of these effects are rendered fast (with no lags and almost invisible delays when it comes to transparency) on my hardware:
3.2GHz Intel Pentium with 512RAM and Intel i915 integrated video chipset.