When comparing Synapse vs Rofi, the Slant community recommends Rofi for most people. In the question“What are the best Linux app launchers?” Rofi is ranked 1st while Synapse is ranked 7th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Can run commands just as a terminal would
Users can run commands such as
sudo apt-get update from within Synapse, making for a convenient way to open or run items/commands.
Pro Rock solid
Synapse is pretty rock solid. Works as expected and launches applications fast.
Pro Zeitgeist powered
Synapse searches the Zeitgeist log, which tends to be a pretty quick way to do searches over other app launchers.
Pro Includes a Zeal plugin
Includes a Zeal plugin to make searching faster.
Pro Can run commands
<code>run: st toxic</code> Runs a tox client in the terminal emulator "st".
<code>run: maim ~/Images/screenshots</code> take a screenshot with "maim" and save it to given location.
Pro Minimalist design, yet can use customizable themes
Also it's easy to make use of your own "plugin" (scripts).
Pro Clipboard history extension
Greenclip adds clipboard manager functionality: https://github.com/erebe/greenclip
Pro Great keybindings
They seem to be emacs based.
Pro Case insensitive
Instead of having to worry about case sensitive characters, you can use caps or lowercase wherever you please without causing any issues.
Pro Easily switch windows without mouse
Con Unable to search whole system
Due to Zeitgeist being used the search is not as robust as if it were using Tracker. Of course using Tracker has its own downside like battery drain, so currently there is no "best" solution.
Con Bound to control+space
Due to this it interferes with common IDE layouts for recommendations. Modifying hotkeys file doesn't adjust this.
Con Issues when Caps Lock is active
When typing with Caps Lock activated, it's impossible to use Backspace. Rofi eventually freezes in this scenario.