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GNOME GUI

No GNOME For Solaris 9 481

Posted by Hemos
from the bad-news-for-the-boys-of-gnome dept.
Nailer writes: "Subject says it all really. A (very brief) Linuxgram article claims GNOME 2.0 won't be ready for Solaris 9 and the OS will ship with CDE and Motif as defaults. I'm just waiting for the inevitable announcement the GTK port of OpenOffice has been cancelled."
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No GNOME For Solaris 9

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  • by ll5 (522784)
    I have to wonder if any OS that is primarily used as a server needs something like Gnome. The experience I have had with Solaris has been fine and I have never found myself looking for more eye candy. Maybe it would be nice for those who are using Solaris as a workstation though. So what do the Solaris users out there think? Is this something that anyone is actually going to miss? Or is this more of a situation where Sun would like to have a slick interface too?
    • Solaris isn't just for servers. There's lots of software out there that doesn't exist for Linux / other Unices. The oil industry, for example, is one of the largest users of computing horsepower. For a long time, it used to be the largest, but that may have changed. Lots of geophysical software exists only for Sparc Solaris.

      Anyone who's dealt much with Sun's workstation class machines knows they don't make the best servers in the world, but there's still a huge market for their Ultra 5/10 and Blade 100/1000 machines. CDE is a real obstacle to new users on these machines.

      If I didn't have several days invested in my .fvwm2rc file, I'd go for KDE or Gnome myself.

      BTW- MIT's Athena 9.0 was released recently running Gnome on Solaris Sparc. Sorry, it's MIT specific (lots of site licenses bundled into the release).
      • by Jay Carlson (28733) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @07:46AM (#2435575)
        Don't get excited about the Ultra 5/10 and the Blade 100. They have the heart and soul of a PC---IDE disk, ATI video, PC133 memory, (mostly) standard case and chassis. Unfortunately, they don't have the performance of a PC.

        I ran around running my Linux cross-compile benchmark [mac.com] on a bunch of Sparcs. The 1G RAM, 440MHz Ultra 10 checked in with performance that was strictly worse than the 320M 450MHz iMac DV+. The 500MHz Blade 100 was around 10% better. Now, these figures are probably a tad low; I realized after the fact I was using an SMP-enabled kernel, and that adds overhead even on a single-processor machine. So credit them with another 10% until I get publish-worthy numbers. The Sparcs are still crushed by the 733MHz P3 el-cheapo Dell Optiplex, and the (badly-configured) Athlon 1200 has nothing to fear.

        The Blade 1000 is a different beast. It's a real workstation, with 8M caches---can't get that in the beige box x86 world, and there are a lot of workloads that are just screaming for it. I don't have numbers yet, but I expect they'll be much more competitive. Of course, for $15-20k for a dual processor box, they'd better be.

        So why buy a Blade 100?

        1. Binary compatibility with bigger machines. If you think your app is going to have to scale up to mainframe size, you won't have to recompile your system to take it there.
        2. Commercial software compatibility. No Purify for Linux, for instance. Or maybe you already bought big-ticket software like RealServer, or a GIS.
        3. Compatibility with collaborators. In some communities (especially research), Solaris on SPARC is a very common environment.
        4. 64 bits. The Blade 100 is the cheapest 64-bit PC in the world. Some people need to develop for a 64-bit world. (It's not the cheapest 64-bit Linux hardware; although current kernels don't support it, the Agenda VR3 [agendacomputing.com] hardware is a full 64-bit MIPS implementation.)

        By the way, newer kernels improved the Mac performance substantially, and SMP provided around a 60% speedup on the tests on the dual 533MHz PPC. I think I know where to borrow a dual 800MHz PowerMac, which should finally beat the crap out of the Athlon 1200. Of course, now I'm curious about dual Athlon performance, but I dunno if I really need a new machine just to run some benchmarks...

    • It needs something better than CDE.


      Solaris workstations are still used with a lot of bigbuck capital equipment. A modern desktop would help Sun protect their piece of that market.


      Another thing to consider is thin client computing. An E10k could serve up lots of GNOME or KDE desktops.

    • Just because it's a server doesn't mean that a desktop environment like GNOME wouldn't be used. At both my college and my first job most development workstations were loaded up with Exceed and used any one of a number of boxes as X servers.
    • I have to wonder if any OS that is primarily used as a server needs something like Gnome.
      Yes, conventional wisdom would suggest that servers don't need GUIs. Unfortunately, it's getting to where more and more applications (Oracle for one) are nearly impossible to install from the command line. Although some applications (Sun Cluster) have HTTP interfaces for configuration, others (iPlanet Directory) have Java interfaces. Sometimes it's either to go to the individual machine and do the work from there. Other times, you'll want to send the session back to your local machine.

      If you're sending it back to your local machine, you'd have to ask what's on your desk. Well, if you're monitoring a whole bunch of Solaris boxes, it makes sense to have at least one Solaris machine on your desk, some sort of a windows machine (as it will run the software that people would be using to connect to the systems), and a few have an extra machine [linux, another solaris, or my mac, as I refuse to live without BBEdit])

      Hands down, the Solaris boxes tend to be our primary machines, as you can use them for light development, they handle virtual desktops, etc. Of course, all but one of the nine folks in my office are running CDE. Does that mean that CDE's the best thing to be running? Probably not. I use it because it's here.

      Would I switch to Gnome? Probably not with anything but a cold install, as I'm busy enough during the day to take the time to install without messing up my project schedule, and I'm not familiar with Gnome, so I'd have a learning curve.

      I see this as being most beneficial to the folks that run linux/freebsd/openbsd at home with gnome, and have ultrasparc machines at work, and would prefer to just deal with one GUI. I don't fit into that category, but I know that I would love to get away from CDE, but I can't afford to expend significant time in switching over.
  • They have to ship upgrades to keep the cash coming in. They can't ship Gnome 2.0 because it's not ready.

    No story here.
  • by Lethyos (408045) on Monday October 15, 2001 @10:25PM (#2434536) Journal
    Why does Sun continue to ignore KDE as a viable alternative to GNOME. KDE is very mature and incredibly stable. I don't see why Sun doesn't just go forward with packaging it with Solaris. Do they stick with GNOME because it's built on a 100% free toolkit? What's the driving force? As far as I can see, KDE is a solution to many of the problems Sun's UI trials of GNOME came up with. It just doesn't make sense... for one thing, if they want easy of use, KDE is much nicer than GNOME, IMHO.
    • "QT Developer's License"

      Plus, GTK is more motify.
    • I think geography is more important than people give it credit for, even with the Internet. Sun is an American company, Gnome is an American product. KDE is very Europoean.

      There are lots of other reasons, of course. It isn't patriotism on Sun's part. But there's not a lot of very influential KDE people on this side of the Atlantic. And the influence goes both ways: Sun wants to have influence on how their chosen desktop is developed, and it'll be a lot easier for them to influence Gnome (through hiring, for instance).

      • Sun is an American company, Gnome is an American product.
        Actually, Miguel de Icaza, who is Mexican, is generally credited with starting Gnome. Not that this really matters, though. Both KDE and Gnome have developers from many countries For instance, there are plenty of important Gnome developers from Europe, though a number of them are now living in the US. It's hard to say that either of them is the product of a particular country.
    • by corky6921 (240602) on Monday October 15, 2001 @11:08PM (#2434704) Homepage
      Slashdot did a story on this a while back. Click here [slashdot.org] to see what the Sun GNOME group had to say about KDE vs. Gnome. Essentially, as a highly-moderated post put it, it came down to the fact that GNOME was C-based, and the Sun GNOME team was more familiar with C than with C++.
    • Because KDE is based on a GPLed Qt, whereas GNOME uses only LGPLed libraries. Many vendors of Solaris software will never open their code for various reasons. Sun doesn't want to see them using a GUI library different from the one that Sun makes standard, neither does Sun want to help Trolltech rip Solaris developers.
    • by mj6798 (514047) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @01:38AM (#2435040)
      If Sun shipped KDE, they'd be shipping a desktop based on a toolkit that another company has complete commercial control over. Anybody who wants to write commercial software for Sun and fit in with the "standard" desktop would have to pay thousands of dollars to Troll Tech. And if TrollTech wanted to, they could jack up their commercial license fees for Solaris to whatever limit the market will bear. It just doesn't make sense for Sun to place the keys and toll-gate for commercial desktop application development on their platform in the hands of some company they have no control over.

      Sun would have to get a transferable binary license for Qt on Solaris, but even then, they'd be the only UNIX vendor standardizing on Qt. Or, Sun would have to buy TrollTech outright, likely to be an expensive proposition.

      Sticking with Motif makes sense: it's very widely used commercially (far more than Qt), there are lots of widgets and tools for it, it is a de-facto standard, and Sun already has rights to it. There are also several C++-based APIs for Motif. (Technically, I think Qt and Motif is a toss-up, but that's another matter.)

      • If Sun shipped KDE, they'd be shipping a desktop based on a toolkit that another company has complete commercial control over.
        Hmm. Kind of like shipping CDE which depends on a toolkit (Motif) that another company has complete commercial control over.
  • by jmauro (32523) on Monday October 15, 2001 @10:30PM (#2434567)
    Read Linux gram's article. It says in a feature incomplete pre-beta demo of Solaris 9 there is no GNOME 2.0. There is no GNOME 2.0 ( just an alpha version) for shipping versions of redhat, let alone for pre-beta versons of Solaris. This article is just placed here to pull traffic to LinuxGram and doesn't really add anything.
    • by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @12:52AM (#2434949) Homepage
      Yah, I noticed that the beta Solaris 9 didn't include GNOME *or* OpenWindows. It's nice that OW is finally deprecated, but I expected to see GNOME alongside faithful CDE.

      An aside to you CDE-haters: it's not how pretty the desktop is, it's all about the function. CDE stands for "Common Desktop Interface", and it's true that one can go from a Sun to an HP to an IRIX box, and, using CDE, be productive on each platform. I've been there.

      • one can go from a Sun to an HP to an IRIX box, and, using CDE, be productive on each platform. I've been there


        I, too have been there, and found myself equally unproductive on all of them until I got myself a decent fvwm2 setup configured :-) Note that despite the "common" in the name, there's not a great deal in common between the different CDE versions. Each vendor puts everything on different menus, for a start. Sun's menu layout is probably the worst I've come across, with Tru64 being among the better ones. Sure, you have common keyboard accelerators in all versions of KDE, and because they're all running dtwm, the windows look and behave the same. But the end user experience really isn't that consistent. Which kind of defeats the whole point...

      • An aside to you CDE-haters: it's not how pretty the desktop is, it's all about the function. CDE stands for "Common Desktop Interface", and it's true that one can go from a Sun to an HP to an IRIX box, and, using CDE, be productive on each platform. I've been there.

        Really? Strange...none of my IRIX boxes shipped with CDE on them at all...hmmm...who should I tell? ;-)

        SGI, to my knowledge, doesn't use CDE in IRIX. Sun on Slowlaris, HP on HP-UX, and IBM on AIX...does anyone know any other platforms that ship with CDE by default? I can't think of the other ones right now.. :)

  • But could it be that GNOME is not ready because:
    Gnome's leader Miguel de Icaza is currently having a flirtation with Microsoft's C# technologies and is producing a Linux version of the stuff under an open source initiative called the Mono Project. ?
    Or could this be a hint from Sun, to ignore MS C# (and MONO)or GNOME will wither an die a slow agonising death? After all, doesn't Sun now offer an alternative to Passport, and so .NET?
    Just a thought.
  • Gnome is pretty and nice. i use it, i like it. i also have a sun box and run cde. Solaris runs servers. do we need all that prettyness and niceness eating cpu cycles on a webserver?

    call me a troll, but isint this one of the bigest complaints about win2k, it has a bloated gui that eats resources better left for runing services on a server.

    cde isnt pretty, but it does the job, and doesnt eat alot of resourses.

    yes i know sun is offering a choice of desktops, but gnomes lack of inclusion really doesnt seem like a big loss to me..
    • by corky6921 (240602) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @12:08AM (#2434868) Homepage

      "do we need all that prettyness and niceness eating cpu cycles on a webserver?"

      If Sun ever wants to compete with Microsoft's point-and-click server GUI, the answer is a wholehearted YES. That's the big reason why Sun bought Cobalt [cobalt.com]... they needed a server with a point-and-click interface. Think about it: as a small business owner with 3 employees, none of whom are very technical, which solution would you buy? A solution that requires you to keep a UNIX sysadmin at least part-time, or a system that allows your secretary to set up distribution lists in her spare time by going to a website? The second group is what Microsoft markets to, and Sun needs an offering that can compete. That's why they are simplifying things with web-based tools and now with GNOME.

      • by vrt3 (62368)
        Think about it: as a small business owner with 3 employees, none of whom are very technical, which solution would you buy? A solution that requires you to keep a UNIX sysadmin at least part-time, or a system that allows your secretary to set up distribution lists in her spare time by going to a website?

        You have a very valid point, but at the same time I'm inclined to say that exactly this attitude and this 'ease of administration' was a major cause of the vast proliferation of the recent Nimda, CodeRed et al attacks.
        There is no way that this secretary is also going to keep an eye on the security bulletins and to keep the software up to date, whereas the UNIX sysadmin (if it's a good one) knows his stuff, and always keeps an eye out for security.

      • You don't have to be running X all the time!

        You don't have to be running an X server on the server -- you can manage through a remote X session if you have X-based apps!

        X is so much more flexible than the Windows gui in that regard, I don't see room for adequate comparison.
    • But if you don't invoke GNOME, you don't incur the overhead, so webservers are not effected. Without knowing from direct experience I am sure that headless Solaris boxes can be configured to not invoke any X related code at boot time.

      Hence there is no particular reason why bundling GNOME or any other environment necessarily hogs resources.

  • by AirLace (86148) on Monday October 15, 2001 @10:58PM (#2434669)
    1. Technology: GNOME is based on the GTK+ library, which was fine for its day, but is now decidedly outdated. The basic design, themability and functionality simply haven't changed in years. It doesn't offer exciting components like KParts, KDE's analog to COM. The closes thing to that will be Bonobo, but its development is far behind even GNOME 2's release schedule and won't make it in until at least 2003.
    2. Browsers: The GNOME project depends on Mozilla for its browser component. While Galeon makes the experience quite pleasant, page loads are still slow. In contrast, Konqueror is under heavy development, supporting both Mozilla and KHTML as its viewer component, the latter of which is its greatest strength. The W3C recommends [w3.org] Konqueror for having the most complete CSS2 implementation in the world.
    3. Lack of modern features: XFree86 in itself is not that fast in implementing modern OS facilities. But when the XFree86 team did finally implement XRender (some 10 years after amigaOS could do antialiasing), they did it right. Trolltech team, thanks to the component based design of Qt, were able to implement text antialiasing and alpha channels with just a couple of screens of code. The same implmenentation for GTK+/GNOME, in contrast, is only possible as either a hack (render text large and sale it down) or potentially by major redesign, which will be done with GTK+ 2.
    4. Looks. Although KDE had formerly been the ugly duckling, it really has leapt ahead of GNOME. One need look no further than http://www.kde-look.org/ to see how powerful and customisable KStyle is. As a developer once said, GNOME has themes, but KDE has style! What he meant in fact is that GNOME themes are generally pixmap designs, and when they are done programatically, there is limited scope for customisation.
    5. A previous post aptly pointed out that GNU always wants to re-invent the wheel. Linux is fine, but they still want to work on HURD, because Linux isn't made by GNU. KDE is fine, but they still want to work on Gnome, because KDE isn't made by GNU.
    • Bonobo is very ready (Score:2, Interesting)

      by luge (4808)
      FWIW, I have no idea where your information on Bonobo is from, but Evolution and a number of other current GNOME projects use Bonobo extensively. If Bonobo was as unready as you claimed Evo wouldn't run at all :) [Disclaimer: Ximian employee, not the views of my employer, yada, yada.]
    • (1) When has the basic design of QT changed last? Not recently, and for good reason; no one was to try and code to a rapidly changing library. Both GNOME and KDE run on a system whose basic design was fixed by the early 80's. Does that make Unix bad?

      (2) The browser components are largely a wash.

      (3) GTK+ 2.0 is going to be out with GNOME 2.0, just like antialiasing is out with QT 3.0, about the same time frame.

      (5) RMS doesn't care about HURD. The HURD developers care about the HURD, and that's why the HURD continues to be developed, not for some political point. KDE has reimplemented a ton of stuff, because they liked their way better. That's the choice of a free-software developer.
      • 1). Well, I think that the main thing that's kept GNOME alive is the number of gtk1 apps. This will change with gtk2.

        2). I agree, both mozilla and khtml are very standards compliant.

        3). antialiasing is not out with Qt 3.0. It was first implemented by Keith Packard (the writer of xrender) as a patch for Qt 2.2.2. It was introduced into base qt in 2.3.0. Since then there has been 2.3.1 and 3.0 now. It was first implemented in Qt over a year ago.

        And, GNOME 2.0 and QT 3.0's timetable is NOT the same. GNOME 2.0, according to Sun's website, will comeout MIDDLE of NEXT year. While Qt3 is out NOW and kde3 will be out in a few months (feb 2002).
    • by Xiphoid Process (153566) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @12:04AM (#2434851) Homepage

      1. Bonobo has been out for a while now and used as the core of Evolution, Gide, Dev Help, Nautilus and many others... ever wonder why Open Office is intergrating with Bonobo?

      2. nope, no such recomendation at that link. May I remind you that Galeon just won an award for the best linux browser? [slashdot.org]

      3. Absolute unsubstantiated bullshit.

      4. I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves:

      KDE [kde-look.org]

      GNOME [musichall.cz]

      5. Hurd [gnu.org] was started in 1990, before linux, further more, the GNOME people are not employed by Gnu and are associated only substantially by name.

      G/K are here to stay, deal with it.

      • GNOME is a GNU project, I don't think 'associated only substantially by name' does that relationship justice.

        There's more to HURD than NIH syndrome. It's a microkernel-based system. It's another Free O/S. These are good things. Hurd may currently be less complete than Linux, but development seems to have progressed quite rapidly since Debian got involved; I imagine the looming of a "release" adds impetus to development process.
    • A previous post aptly pointed out that
      GNU always wants to re-invent the wheel. Linux is fine, but they still want to work on HURD, because Linux isn't made by GNU.

      What a foolish statement. Linux is a lovely fairly traditionial unix kernel, HURD has always had far more radical goals.

    • GNOME is based on the GTK+ library, which was fine for its day, but is now decidedly outdated.

      Yes, and you can say roughly the same thing about KDE/Qt. Sun already has better technology than either Gtk+ or Qt. It's called Java. They should use it and deploy it. The reason they don't is the same bogus internal politics that killed Smalltalk, NeWS, and OpenStep on Solaris.

    • Marking "-1": blatant misinformation
      1. Bonobo has been distributed with GNOME since GNOME 1.4. It is a more flexible comprehensive architecture than KParts, and implements a lot more features you'd find in something like COM than KParts. The tradeoff is complexity...Bonobo is based on CORBA which has bright points, but also can make things more difficult for the programmer at times. Bonobo has undergone a lot of revisions for GNOME2 and promises to be even better than before. KParts is not an analogue to COM, it is basically an embedded rendering system with added smarts (which is very useful, but not really like COM). WRT to GTK....this is why we are about to release GTK2, which is a major rewrite. Bot the technical aspects, and user aspects, of the widget system have been redone and improved. Incredible font and internationalization support for "unusual" languages have been added through Pango, and a great accessibility framework have been included, making *nix environments accessible to still more users.
      2. GtkHTML2 should be a major option for the GNOME2 desktop. GtkHTML1 already exists for light rendering. The Mozilla component is still the most comphrensive solution for browsing the web, but KHTML is putting on the heat. Good stuff, glad to see some competition in this arena.
      3. KDEs ability to use XRender had little to nothing to do with "components". It had to do with KDE applications already making use of a font wrapper in QT rather than directly manipulating X fonts (probably a result of TrollTech having markets outside of X and hence needing this sort of system detail wrapped). GNOME anti-aliasing fixes have been very slow in the coming, but they're running just fine on the machine I'm typing on, and will be a part of the default environment in GNOME 2. "rendering large text and scaling it down" is sometimes called ANTI-ALIASING . Anti-aliasing is any sort of filter function that removes or alleviates artifacts caused by by aliasing, including scaling down. Nautilus uses freetype to do its anti-aliasing and it works just fine.
      4. I really think this point is debatable either way. *shrug* I think GNOME is much prettier, but I understand why some people disagree. I suppose it all depends on your taste.
      5. Yeah, that's whats going on. I work on GNOME because I'm trying to further the evil plans of GNU. Most of us have little or no affiliation with the free software foundation or the GNU system other than using the GPL license.

      There are lots of points with great merit comparing and contrasting GNOME and KDE, so you really shouldn't have to resort to this sort of misinformation. I think the biggest thing KDE is doing right that GNOME is sucking at is having quick release cycles. We wait too long to get changes out to users, which tends to make user improvements to the core desktop more sluggish than they should be. We're gunning for a really quick turnaround release for GNOME2 - GNOME2.2 with primarily user improvements (using a lot of the new architecture that has been rewritten and/or added). Also, significant usability assesments and rewriting of problem areas is being done, both for GNOME2 and post GNOME2, which should improve the reach of the desktop to a whole range of new non-technical users in the years to come.

      -Seth (Nautilus hacker, GNOME2 Release comittee, GNOME UI Lead)
  • Very Sloppy (Score:2, Informative)

    by cnladd (97597)
    Very sloppy, Slashdot. You should know better. There's a reason why I don't go to a Linux news site for news on Solaris. The claim that Gnome 2.0 doesn't appear in the Solaris 9 downloadable beta, and then extending that claim to encompass the final version of Solaris 9 is completely ridiculous. Of course, they temper that claim with by saying that Sun labels the beta as "feature complete", which is true. However, I think I'd be hard-pressed to find a final copy of Gnome. The last I saw was a news snippet on Gnome.org, dated October 11, claiming that Gnome 2.0 was "coming up fast".

    Finally, for those of you who have closely followed Sun's plans for Gnome, Sun has never once claimed that Gnome 2.0 would be a part of Solaris 9. Sun's Gnome site [sun.com] provides Gnome 1.4 as a "reference implementation", and says that Gnome will be the foundation of its future desktop. According to the site, "The next major release, GNOME 2.x, is expected in mid-2002".
  • by supabeast! (84658) on Monday October 15, 2001 @11:29PM (#2434761)
    - Disclaimer - This is a pissy rant by someone who at this point has a very hard time using the words "KDE" and "Gnome" without variants of "fuck" involved.

    Gnome is not ready to go into Solaris. Or Red Hat. Or SuSE. In my experience Gnome was a dysfuntional, unstable pig of a desktop, full of garbage apps were a pain to use and rarely worked correctly. I eventually gave up and switched to KDE, which seems to have only two real advantages over Gnome, Konquerer, and a cute error window to let me know about all of the segmentation faults that the newest so called "stable" release of KDE seems to bring up repeatedly when I try to use Konquerer.

    Crap like that might cut it in the world of free software geeks, but it has no place in the world of serious UNIX servers. Sun manages to sell their slow, overpriced hardware because people want stability - not flashy desktops that come with more half finished applications than any Windows install.

    And yet the Open-Source world continues to rally around Gnome and KDE, proclaiming them to be saviors of the Linux desktop, when in truth those same programs are likely to help keep Linux off the desktop of people who want a computer that works - and not just a klude of annoying junk smushed together into a monstrosity that makes me realize why Apple's simple OS X/Aqua desktop has captured my computing soul in a way that nothing has since my father would lug his computer home from work and let me play Pac-Man on it.

    Gnome and KDE, whatever. Just give me a stable enlightenment with a few nice themes, StarOffice 5.2 (Like a rock, baby!), and keep the silly mess that is Gnome/KDE in the gutter with the rest of the trash.
    • Weird, I run KDE 2.2.x on my laptop and desktop and have never seen such problems. If you're not a troll, how about posting some specific steps I can take that will lead to my KDE 2.2.x install showing that cute error window you tout? I've never seen it. I'd love to see it. Help me out by telling me how to pop it up eight times a day, baby!
    • Please don't compare GNOME 2.0 (unstable developers only prerelease) with StarOffice 5.2 (official closed-source release).

      If you want stability, use stable releases. If you want cutting edge features, fix things that don't work for you and contribute fixes back to the developers instead of bashing the project on SlashDot.

  • My top slashbox is Solaris Central. On Friday Solaris Central linked "No Gnome for Solaris 9" also. Under that is freshmeat and funnies. Alot of stuff has been making it was from the slashboxes to the Main slashdot page.

    BTW, skip gnome/kde use icewm [sourceforge.net]
  • CDE (Score:2, Interesting)

    by FireCar (522036)
    Here at university we have 2 labs of Sun machines. One lab is used for by the Engineers for design and the other is used by the systems programming class. I had never used CDE before I walked into the CS lab. CDE does not have all the glitz that KDE or Gnome have but I find it to be pretty sharp. I wanted to download a copy of it for my Linux boxen to test it out on non-Sun hardware but it costs $50 to buy it. Oh, well KDE is good enough for me.
  • by Ishikawa Goemon (21507) on Monday October 15, 2001 @11:48PM (#2434811)

    As I've read some of the mailing lists every day for the past few weeks, there seems to be MAJOR activity by SUN on GNOME. Sander, Billh, Calum, and Stephen (sorry if I missed people!) are very active on the mailing lists. The Accessability Toolkit has been part of their work, but also in drafting some rather encouraging style guides and documentation, along with general hacking on various libraries and applications (including Nautilus, which was pronounced dead after Eazel went boom...). I seriously doubt they plan to drop GNOME, as I seriously doubt Solaris 9 will ship without it, considering the work they are putting into it. The DEVELOPMENT platform should be out by Christmas, with other applications ported soon afterwards.

    And, for a better question, why would Sun want to pay TT for a licence for QT? Redhat? Why would any company want to pay for a widget set to develop (closed-source, mind you) for Linux? If a Symantec, IBM, Intuit, or, GASP, even M$ wanted to write Linux software, my guess is they would use an LGPL library (Gnome) over paying for QT licences. (I could be wrong, as I don't pay much attention to KDE, but their FAQ seem to say I'm not...)

    Which brings me to the main point I'd like to make, IT'S BEEN ALL ABOUT THE INFRASTRUCTURE FOR THE PAST YEAR!!! It takes a lot of behind the scenes work for a program such as Evolution to work, so that's what the Gnomers have been hacking on. The problem is, YOU (the user) won't see it right away!

    The technologies these guys have been busting their arses on will make the applications (like Evolution already proves) kick butt.

    GConf - Consolidated configuration system with multiple backends. XML or BerkleyDB for user now, hopefully ACAP or LDAP for network users soon. Who know's what's next!

    ATK - Accessability Toolkit for screenreaders and such, built-in to the platform. This is important for corporate use with the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) in US, and I'm sure others outside the US.

    Bonobo - Corba based REAL components, not just OLE. Look at the power in Evolution. (I'm a big fan, as if you couldn't tell, but not just for myself, but for my wife and grandmother as well. I don't think mutt would cut it for them... :>)

    Pango - i18n and l10n, Right-to-Left, and such... Don't know much about this being an en-us, but I'm sure it's important!

    Glib/Gtk+ - Very nice improvements, Anti-Aliased text, and so forth.

    Nautilus - Darin and others have been optimizing and working out the bugs in this for a while. It has it's problems on the bleeding edge, but it's comming along! I'm not sure about the extent of his involvment, but tigert has been showing up on the list. If he is working on it, we can expect quite a bit in the way of jaw-dropping eye-candy...

    Glade/libglade/bonoboui(?) - XML UI descriptions at runtime. RAD UI development at it's best... This is very important.

    GStreamer - While not Gnome platform, per se, it has ALOT of infrastructure in place in the A/V dept, and once ported to 2.0, will make for a nice multimedia API/Application Toolkit. (If memory serves correctly, it's been a while since I checked up on this one...)

    And a plethora of other platform tidbits. Sure, YOU (user) won't see any radical differences between 1.4 and 2.0, other than AA text and such, but just wait until 2.0.1, 2.2, or 3.0, and so on. It took YEARS for the infrastrucure of Linux to become what it is. Now, it is proven solid. The infrastructure of Gnome is REALLY fleshing out. And need I remind you of the 1.0 - 1.2 hurdle... I imagine 2.0 will come out with eveyone trashing it, much like 1.0, then 2.2 come along with much the same reception 1.2 had... Sure, not good for PR, but... :>

    NOT that this takes anything away from KDE. Infact, it's what I recommend to my non-developer friends. To my developer and/or sysadmin friends, I show the horsepower under Gnome's hood. So far I've had nothing but ooos and ahhhs from both camps. Later, I'm sure I'll be showing Gnome all-around.

    And finally, CUT THAT "GNOME'S DYING" CRAP OUT! Not only does two projects not hurt, it HELPS! We need all the competition we can get, because that's what causes innovation! We've all seen M$ resting on their laurels, because they've had no competition! WE DON'T WANT THAT! And aside from some notable exceptions, the DEVELOPERS OF BOTH PROJECTS SEEM TO UNDERSTAND THIS!!! Take a look at this happy bday congratz to KDE on Gnome News [gnome.org] and PLEASE, BE THANKFUL TO EVERYONE.

    For my part, thanks Havoc, Owen, Michael, Seth, Darin, Sather, Ian, Jacob, Alex, Maciej, Calum, Bill, George, Chema, and all I've left out for your hard work. Don't let the ignorance of a few make you at all hesitant in your work. It is greatly appreciated!

    Chris

    • It is not true that Sun should pay TrollTech for Qt. Only if you use it for commercial/closed source development:
      You can find QT library under 2 licenses, here is part from theirs FAQ:
      What kind of licenses exist for Qt?
      The Qt toolkit is available under two different licenses: The Professional and Enterprise Editions for commercial use on all platforms, and the Free Edition for developing free/open source software for the X platform.
      KDE is open source project, so noone should pay to TT for usinq QT with KDE.
  • by green pizza (159161) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @12:03AM (#2434848) Homepage
    I'm hard to please, I have major issues with every desktop environment I've used. I don't love CDE, but it's fine with me. I certainly prefer it over the latest GNOME builds from Ximian and Sun.

    I support change, so please bring on GNOME and/or KDE and attempt to make them better. But please keep CDE and Motif for those of us that don't want the 'latest and greatest'. Patch a few of CDE's major memory leaks and I'll be a happy, content user.
  • SunOS 5.5, 5.6, and 5.7 (Solaris 2.5, 2.6 and 7) were Sun's transition to a 64-bit OS. 5.5 added support for the UltraSPARC processor, 5.5.1 added 64-bit register support, 5.6 64-bit files and filesystems, and 5.7 an optimized 64-bit kernel. (Of course, SGI IRIX users will gloat about SGI having done this years earlier with IRIX 6.0, but the point is moot).

    SunOS 5.8 (Solaris 8) brought us... nothing too special. And 5.9 (Solaris 9)? Even less.

    I don't really understand why Sun didn't just make a "Solaris 7.1, Solaris 7.5, and Solaris 7.6" before going to 8. Maybe it's because I've never been much of a numbers game fan.

    If there's a sliver lining in all this, perhaps it's that SunOS 5.8 was the last to support the Sun4m architecture (SPARCstation 10 and SPARCstation 20), no more upgrading for those old machines of mine. Not that I would need to anyway, they're happily running 5.7.
    • SunOS 5.8 (Solaris 8) brought us... nothing too special

      Not too sure about that. Solaris 8 new features are here [sun.com].
    • Well to answer your subject, my answer would be "it depends..." What are you running today that you may need the new features of Solaris 9? If you're getting a Sun Fire 15k (Starcat), then running Solaris 9 would be in your interest. Solaris 9 has better support for the 15k, and other features:
      (taken from http://www.sun.com/software/solaris/programs/solar is9ea/)
      Solaris 9 Early Access features of great interest to our developers:

      * Multiple Page Size Support in the kernel for better memory management
      * Improved threading library for better scaling and performance
      * Linux APIs, commands, and utilties enabling most Linux applications to easily be recompiled and run Solaris 9 Operating Environment
      * Linux compatibility mode which allows Linux Intel applications to run unchanged (no recompilation) on Solaris 9, Intel Platform Edition
      * New Reconfiguration Coordination Manager API allows applications to react to Dynamic Reconfiguration events

      Of course that's not an exhaustive list of what's new in Solaris 9, but it's still in beta, and unlike Microsoft, Sun tends not to preannounce features of their Operating Systems. Also Sun has set a roadmap [sun.com] of future releases of Solaris. Sun doesn't force you to upgrade the version of the OS. I know quite a few who are running 2.6 and some who are still running 2.5.1. Of course quite a few are updating to Solaris 8. Most of the reason people upgrade their OS version is to use new hardware or new app versions that are only supported on a newer release of Solaris.

      I don't really understand why Sun didn't just make a "Solaris 7.1, Solaris 7.5, and Solaris 7.6" before going to 8. Maybe it's because I've never been much of a numbers game fan.

      Well the main reason Sun chose to drop the 2.x in naming of Solaris was for the PHB's benefit. They look at HP/UX that's at 11i now, and Solaris 2.8 doesn't sound as mature to a PHB. Hence Sun just dropped the preceeding 2. Hence Solaris 8, which still equals SunOS 5.8. There is a good discussion of this in the Solaris Internals Book [fatbrain.com], chapter 1, I believe. Also there are sub-releases under each main version. ie Solaris 8 10/00, Solaris 8 01/01, Solaris 8 04/01, Solaris 8 07/01. Each of these are still Solaris 8...the differences is the updates of the supporting software or new features, or new hardware support.
  • Sun should use Java (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mj6798 (514047) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @01:48AM (#2435056)
    Sun already has a mature, powerful toolkit and component architecture in Java. Sun should put their money where their mouth is and sponsor the open source development of a desktop environment based on Java.

    Unfortunately, Sun's OS group seems blissfully disconnected from their Java side; in fact, their OS group seems stuck in the C-mindset of the traditional BSD/UNIX world. And Sun's Java group seems more focussed on Windows than on adding value to Sun's own product line. Sun's lack of coordination and their lack of in-house and open source application development in Java gives people the impression that Java isn't ready. That may have been true two years ago, but today, Java is more than up to the task of building a zippy desktop with a footprint smaller than either Gnome or KDE.

    Of course, Sun can't give up completely on C/C++ toolkits, but they have that pretty well covered with Motif and its C++ wrappers, tools that are still much more widely used among Sun's customers than either Gtk+ or Qt.

    Sun always seemed like Sun's worst enemy. They need a little of that Gates/Ballmer top-down coherent management and energy. McNealy barks a lot, but he doesn't seem to bite much.

    • by bockman (104837)
      To make a Java desktop, Sun should first develop a real compiler for Java, which generates nice old executables and dll (I _do_ hope GCC 3.x improves enough on this to become a standard ).

      I can't see the ten processes or so which composes a desktop each running its own JVM ANd make them threads is not a solution, IMO). When I run more than 2 or three java apps , my Sun WS starts trashing for lack of memory.

    • Of course, Sun can't give up completely on C/C++ toolkits, but they have that pretty well covered with Motif and its C++ wrappers, tools that are still much more widely used among Sun's customers than either Gtk+ or Qt.

      That may be factually true, but have you seen how butt-ugly Motif & CDE are?? They really show their age by now. After seeing a Sun workstation running their (preinstalled) CDE environment, I am surprised Sun that manages to sell more than 2 workstations/year. The hardware is not bad (but nothing really special either) but horribly overpriced and the desktop looks like crap. It may be a standard but it looks slightly neolithic and is IMHO even more unusable than the worst of Gnome and/or KDE (combined).I found myself cursing at that environment all day. For the record, I curse ever once in a while when working on Win2K and almost never curse behind my Linux box (which is currently running KDE).

      Of course, the one the server side (which is Sun's bread and butter) this doesn't count since you don't need a GUI ...
    • Deja vu (Score:3, Funny)

      by garver (30881)

      This post freaked me out. Just replace "Sun" with "IBM" and "Java" with "OS/2" and it sounds like something I heard over and over 6 years ago. Damn if it didn't come true.

      I love Java, much like I loved OS/2. They are/were great technologies; there just wasn't anything else that kept up. In 1995, Windows 95 was on the horizon... and the end of OS/2 was coming.

      So here we are in 2001, talking about how Sun's right hand isn't working with the left hand, much like IBM in 1995... and .NET on the horizon.

      Tell me it'll be all right, mommy.

    • Java is more than up to the task of building a zippy desktop with a footprint smaller than either Gnome or KDE.

      I'll believe it when I see it. JBuilder, with it's partially Swing-based UI, forced a computer upgrade at work. The Java-based Oracle installer needs 256 - 512 MB.

      Java has potential, but the resource requirements are still prohibitive. Besides, I think Sun is quite content with Java's acceptance at the enterprise level by Oracle, Bea, et al. It's not just for applets, anymore.

    • It is suprising that Sun hasn't done more with Java lately. For a while they have been rewriting and adding a lot of things based on Java (their system installer, media player..) A desktop environment would be a great demonstration of the power of Java, but it is easier to just move Gnome forward than start from scratch. Besides, while Java is a great language (particularly Swing), it still seems to me rougher around the edges than C/C++ as far as interaction with the system it runs on. It's possible, certianly, but not nearly as easy to do as C/C++..
    • by pmz (462998)
      Java is more than up to the task of building a zippy desktop with a footprint smaller than either Gnome or KDE.

      I remain skeptical, unless Sun leverages gcj or some in-house equivalent to improve performance. OS-visible memory consumption really needs improvement (40MB of RAM for simple tools, such as a volume control, just doesn't cut it).
  • When we here at the Front de Liberation des Naifs de Jardin heard that GNOME was no longer included in Sun machines, it really made our day.

    We have long espoused freedom for gnomes, especially those which live in gardens, and feel that any act of liberation for them is a good thing.

    While we are aware that GNOME is quite different, and not a GUI in the same way that a Gnome is not a Dwarf, the happy news that someone supports liberation for GNOME is quite marvelous.

    Vive les nains de jardin libre! Et les genies des ordinateurs aussi!

  • by GauteL (29207) on Tuesday October 16, 2001 @04:06AM (#2435256)
    Watch me get modded down to hell for this.

    I've never seen such a huge amount of trolls getting modded up with insightful before. Is this just because the average Slashdot-user is a KDE-fan, or do you seriously think these deserve insightful:

    1. Gnome 2.0 is not ready for much of anything.(Rant) (Score:4, Insightful): (..)"In my experience Gnome was a dysfuntional, unstable pig of a desktop, full of garbage apps were a pain to use and rarely worked correctly"(..)

    Constructive criticism is always good, this is just trashing, which I cannot understand, having tried out CDE.

    2. 5 substantial reasons why GNOME is obsolete (Score:3, Insightful) (..)"GNOME is based on the GTK+ library, which was fine for its day, but is now decidedly outdated. (..)It doesn't offer exciting components like KParts, KDE's analog to COM. The closes thing to that will be Bonobo, but its development is far behind even GNOME 2's release schedule and won't make it in until at least 2003."(..)

    First. GTK+ still works fine, besides there might be a reason why GNOME 2.0 will be using GTK+ 2.0 instead of GTK+ 1.2. Second. Qt doesn't offer KParts, KDE does. GTK+ does not offer Bonobo, Gnome does. Besides Bonobo is already out in stable versions, and has been used extensively by Nautilus, Evolution and Gnumeric.

    3. Sun, why not KDE, for the last time? (Score:4, Insightful): "Why does Sun continue to ignore KDE as a viable alternative to GNOME. KDE is very mature and incredibly stable. I don't see why Sun doesn't just go forward with packaging it with Solaris. Do they stick with GNOME because it's built on a 100% free toolkit? What's the driving force? As far as I can see, KDE is a solution to many of the problems Sun's UI trials of GNOME came up with. It just doesn't make sense... for one thing, if they want easy of use, KDE is much nicer than GNOME, IMHO."

    This is not so much of a troll, as uninformed, and I don't object much to the posting, I object to it being modded up to heaven just because the crowd loves KDE.

    • SUN has already invested lots of money and effort into GNOME
    • SUN employees are much more comfortable with C than C++
    • SUN happen to like Gnome (WHAT???)
    • Gnome is also very stable and quite mature. KDE is not better at all areas

    I realize being objective is hard when you have a situation like this, but please don't just mod up people because you agree. Mod people because they argue well and have thoughtful and well written comments.

  • There "about" field just tell how professional and fact-oriented they are, but their articles look somewhere between MS FUD and /. trolls.

    From the front page:

    - IBM hasn't made any major open source announcements for several months.
    - The Free Lunch crowd is against reasonable and nondiscriminatory licenses.
    - Sun drops Gnome from Solaris 9.

    I'd put a lot more trust in the last rumor, if it wasn't posted together with the first two exacmples of LinuxGram profesionally reported hard facts.

I don't have any use for bodyguards, but I do have a specific use for two highly trained certified public accountants. -- Elvis Presley

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