Toz, thanks for the quick reply. To answer your questions:
This is a fresh xubuntu install. Not xfce on ubuntu.
You noted you don't see the inhibit option. I don't either, and what is interesting is it is clearly shown in the screenshot at xfcedocs: http://docs.xfce.org/xfce/xfce4-powe...etting-started. I've been trying to figure out if they are showing a newer version than what's in the repositories, but I haven't found a developers page yet.
So... Thanks for the instructions on how to acomplish what I want... but, I wasn't clear in my original post . I actually know how to do that, I'd like to figure out a way to do this with one click like the gnome-panel inhibit applet (I was so deep in the problem, I forgot to explain it thoroughly enough... ). To quote one of the many posts I've read on this topic: "I want to do this in one click, not 7 (seriously, I counted)".
I did a
ps -ef | grep power-manager
so, evidently, no power manager is running. I uninstalled xfce4-power-manager and installed gnome-power-manager, but apparently the gnome one doesn't autostart and issuing a
opus 5812 5797 0 09:50 pts/1 00:00:00 grep --color=auto power-manager
gives me a
gnome-power-manager: command not found
Thanks for the input, though! Do you have any other ideas? Me... I'm still looking.