I just registered in the forum (hello everyone!) to thank you for this post, I had to do something quite similar to this to make GPU and VPU work on my Orange Pi plus.
First of all, I'm sorry, but I'm an Arch linux user. I don't like that much XFCE or desktop managers: maybe I'm old fashioned but I prefer configuring a small window manager (I'm using i3 right now). I'm more interested about what is inside the window than about the background, decoration, panels, etc. And (in my opinion) uninstalling stuff is normally more difficult (why does this depend on that?)
As my (our) device has only 1GB of RAM, I consider "memory frugality" even more important, but I don't want to lose VPU and GPU and i like watching videos.
So... Thank you!!