Re: Requiring systemd for the gnome-settings-daemon power plugin


On Mon, Oct 22, 2012 at 1:24 PM, Brian Cameron <brian cameron oracle com> wrote:
> I have heard about this "couple of hours".  Is it even possible to
> build the GNOME stack in 2 hours if you run into no problems?

That's not the point. The point is that adapting GNOME to some OS such
as Solaris, Fedora, Ubuntu, OpenBSD or whatever is likely to take a
lot more effort than a "couple of hours" each release. The point is
that it's not fair to anyone if a *OS vendor* to expect this to be
easy and complain if it's not saying "there's not enough
documentation" or "it doesn't fit in with our schedule".

> I have, over the past years, tried several times to discuss issues
> surrounding portability.  For example, as GDM maintainer I strongly
> recommended against supporting ConsoleKit as a hard dependency in the
> first place.   In hindsight, I think adopting and throwing away
> ConsoleKit was not the best decisions.  In the situations where I did
> voice my concerns during development,

I think we have seen that these two ideas

 1. make GNOME depend on a system daemon and port it everywhere (HAL,
ConsoleKit, for example)
 2. make GNOME depend on a system-bus based D-Bus API and make it work
with several implementations (systemd, upstart, for example)

do not work well in practice. But we didn't know back then, things
like HAl and ConsoleKit all sounded like great ideas!

The thing is that these are the kind of mistakes that we as a project
had to make *ourselves* - it's not something you can just learn. In
that way, failing is *good* - you learn new things from it. As a
project, I think GNOME learnt a bunch from it. FWIW, what seems to
work a lot better is to do the abstraction on the GNOME-side, e.g.
GVolumeMonitor, GNetworkMonitor and so on and then leave it to OSes to
fill that in.

> I did not get the impression
> that my concerns generated much response.

Dude, that happens to all of us at some point.

> I have personally done a fair share of porting work over the years.  I
> do not just send emails.  Have we not met?

We have. But I was making a more broad comment but of course: your
effort is very much appreciated. As is, for example, Antoine's work on
OpenBSD portability. Or the work going into taking advantage of
certain systemd features. Work on GNOME is *always* appreciated and we
don't discriminate based on what OS your are using. But it does
require the work to happen - not so much a long thread about how it's
so much work and how it's hard and so on.

>> But please don't expect others to port GNOME to run on your OS.
> I was never suggesting that any others do any sort of port for anyone.
> I was only highlighting that the lack of documentation makes things
> slow.  I am sure that we can improve the situation with some effort.
> Many mature products provide docuemntation to help developers make a
> transition when there is a new major release.  I think GNOME is weak in
> this area.  The fact that GNOME's developer documentation and GUI
> building tools are weak is not a new topic.  Last year I remember
> people talking about how to catch up with KDE in this regards, for
> example.  Unfortunately, I do not think we have yet even accomplished
> this more modest target.

Nah, I really don't think GNOME should be that complicated - we're a
desktop, we're a user experience - we should be more fluid, more agile
than your grandfather's SDK porting kits with committees (or, worse,
mailing lists) having to approve this or that thing. I mean, it's fine
to have this for GLib and GTK+ (and we do [1]) but I wouldn't want to
see us spend that amount of time on GNOME proper - I'd much much
rather see us spend time on improving GNOME or adding cool features.


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