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GNOME Aiming For Full Wayland Support by Spring 2014 300

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the ten-little-kingdoms dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Canonical's plan to develop the Mir Display Server for Ubuntu rather than going with their original plans to adopt Wayland has been met with criticism from KDE (and other) developers... The GNOME response to Ubuntu's Mir is that they will now be rushing support for the GNOME desktop on Wayland. Over the next two release cycles they plan to iron out the Wayland support for the GNOME Shell, the GTK+ toolkit, and all GNOME packages so that by this time next year you can be running GNOME entirely on Wayland while still having X11 fall-back support."
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GNOME Aiming For Full Wayland Support by Spring 2014

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  • It's ironic... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wertigon (1204486) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @10:15AM (#43159071)

    So, by creating MIR Ubuntu contributed to Wayland by giving the Gnome devs a big kick in the butt?

    Well played, Canonical, well played! :)

    And for the record, as long as both MIR and Wayland are more or less interoperable I don't care what's behind the hood. Both are open source and will be solid by the time they come out, so may the best implementation win. A little competition every now and then is just healthy.

    • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Hatta (162192) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @10:19AM (#43159123) Journal

      For the record, as long as whatever display system we settle on provides network transparency for all applications, I don't care what's behind the hood.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ranulf (182665)
        So, you want X11 then? *sigh*
        • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by caseih (160668) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @11:12AM (#43159693)

          Well, yes X11 does work very well for many of us. I agree with the GP's sentiment. Being able to remote individual applications (a rendering mode without 3d-acceleration) is definitely a must if you want to replace X11. There are many of us who use Linux professionally that use X11-over-ssh to run applications every single day. I don't care so much about the X protocol as I do being able to remote the apps. Remoting an entire desktop isn't that useful to me.

          I still can't remote individual apps on Windows without resorting to hacks with rdp, or buying into Citrix. That seems so strange in a networked world where people remote apps all the time in their browsers, in a manner of speaking.

          • Actually, you can do some opengl too - is kinda fun, although utility hasn't been terribly high for me due to limited subset.
            But, for example, ssh -YC, launch glxgears.

            Hedgewars worked for me too.

        • Re:It's ironic... (Score:4, Informative)

          by DrXym (126579) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @11:16AM (#43159735)
          No. X11 is a bottle neck. It thinks in 2D, it's full of redundant baggage which nobody uses and all those processes introduce latency. Even X11 developers recognize that it's an impediment in a modern desktop which is why some prominent ones have endorsed work on Wayland.
          • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @11:30AM (#43159877)

            And relying on a bloated 3d stack just to draw a damn window isn't a bottleneck?

            Face it, the only people that want to replace X which works JUST FINE are people who want to play with their goddamn wobbly windows. We get enough of that garbage with compositing, thanks.

            • by tlhIngan (30335)

              And relying on a bloated 3d stack just to draw a damn window isn't a bottleneck?

              Face it, the only people that want to replace X which works JUST FINE are people who want to play with their goddamn wobbly windows. We get enough of that garbage with compositing, thanks.

              Thanks to modern hardware, "thinking in 2D" is a bottleneck. It's such a bottleneck that the modern video card is faster doing 2D operations in 3D mode than trying to do it in 2D only. Window management is an example - the traditional 2D method

              • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Insightful)

                by serviscope_minor (664417) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @12:37PM (#43160643) Journal

                Thanks to modern hardware, "thinking in 2D" is a bottleneck.

                Actually, no it's not any more.

                Modern graphics hardware is just a large bunch of stream processors coupled to some hardware perspective correct texture sampling units.

                These days forcing everything in 3D is no particular advantage. Graphics card can whale on 2D problems just as efficiently as 3D ones. It's just a question of writing some different shader programs.

                But you already knew that...

                So I really don't get your point.

                You seem to be saying that there is something fundemantal about X which prevents one from doing everything on the graphics card. There isn't. And there's no need to mess with fiddly window overlap stuff either. The BackingStore flag has been present since 1988, since even then the designers realised that it was worth keeping windows on the graphics card on advanced machines to avoid the irritating fiddling with overlaps and stuff.

                Seriously, it's been there for 25 years. X11 is actually designed to benefit from these kinds of things.

                • Never mind that after transformation and perspective divide, the other 90% of the pipeline is just 2D anyway.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by DrXym (126579)

              And relying on a bloated 3d stack just to draw a damn window isn't a bottleneck?

              No it isn't. Modern PCs with a modern GPU will put the windows contents into a texture. Drawing a window is just a matter of telling the GPU to draw a quad with a texture. Drawing them in 3d is just means passing a model-view-projection matrix into the shader at the same time which is something that would happen anyway. 3d is literally for free. And while 3d might be a gimmick, the matrix could be used to render thumbnails, or a gnome shell view of the desktop or whatever.

              The fact is that even with X11, m

            • by Bengie (1121981)
              I don't know about you, but I like knowing that my $400 videocard with hardware 2D acceleration is actually accelerating my desktop, rather than being a paper-weight.
            • And relying on a bloated 3d stack just to draw a damn window isn't a bottleneck?

              You're referring to OpenGL? I do not think what you know whereof you speak. OpenGL is actually quite tight. Yes, it has some cruft - primitive feedback is quaint and nearly completely useless for example - but such warts are small next to its extremely well designed and orthogonal fast path. Especially now with the clean partition into core and legacy profiles (with the latter well supported in all known OpenGL platforms). The only people who complain about OpenGL not being tight are game weanies who think

          • No.

            Yes!

            X11 is a bottle neck.

            No.

            it's full of redundant baggage which nobody uses

            Oh you mean the old bitmapped drawing code. That is a tiny fraction of the code base and it doesn't clog anything up. Old, maintained debugged stable code in a little used code path is entirely harmless. It's neither a cause of slowdowns nor a significant security risk.

            all those processes introduce latency.

            You're making it sound like the old drawing code has something to do with it.

            As for latency, technically yes, but like so m

          • No. X11 is a bottle neck. It thinks in 2D, it's full of redundant baggage which nobody uses and all those processes introduce latency. Even X11 developers recognize that it's an impediment in a modern desktop which is why some prominent ones have endorsed work on Wayland.

            Might as well augment your random blather with a bit of actual knowledge. [linuxfinances.info]

        • by Hatta (162192)

          I want all the features provided by X11. It doesn't have to be X. Just don't take any features away.

          • by kermidge (2221646)

            From what I read then you're gonna be out of luck - except that both Wayland and Mir will use rootless x-servers for things that need x11. Would that work for you? I don't know.

        • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Informative)

          by squiggleslash (241428) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @11:21AM (#43159785) Homepage Journal

          Can't speak for the GP, but in my case, yes.

          Yes, by all means spam me now with all the arguments that claim that X11 is terrible because it's imperfect. I'm well aware it's imperfect.

          But the fact is it's not imperfect enough to warrant throwing it out and replacing it with something that lacks the more awesome things X11 does. Yes, I know the counter argument here too: "Nobody uses/needs/wants the awesome things!" says Baby Bathwater. But look at what you're proposing: a tiny, inconsequential, performance improvement and possibly cleaner API, in exchange for guaranteed incompatabilities and the removal of functionality.

          So, pretty please, knock it off with the Wayland/Mir shit, at least until you achieve feature parity.

          • Exactly. There is nothing in X that requires a rewrite. Everything that you want in Wayland can be done in X with incremental improvements and refactoring.
          • Yes, by all means spam me now with all the arguments that claim that X11 is terrible because it's imperfect. I'm well aware it's imperfect.

            Easy to say when you're not one of the people whose job it is to implement modern features on an aging display architecture.

            But the fact is it's not imperfect enough to warrant throwing it out and replacing it with something that lacks the more awesome things X11 does

            Network transparency is one of X11's "more awesome things"? Then why is X11 network performance trounc

            • by jandrese (485)
              RDP is faster than X on the same connection? When does this happen? It's always laggy for me.
        • I don't care if it is X11. But display across the network is critical to my needs. Everyone that is trying to replace X, for whatever motiviation, needs to stop being in denial about this issue. Display across the network that is complete transparent to the application and works for all applications is critical for some computing environments.

          • by amorsen (7485)

            What is the use case? When I want remote display, I want something which does not kill all my applications when the network connection drops. That is just not useful behaviour.

          • Is it REMOTELY possible that you arent the target audience of these rewrites, and that X11 will continue to exist after Mir / Wayland come out?

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        For the record, you're insisting that you bring forward obsolete mechanisms that 99.99% of end users will never use. Nobody outside a handful of sysadmins uses X network transparency, and only then I suspect to stroke their own egos.

        Cluestick:
        However inelegant or inefficient framebuffer-forwarding schemes like RDP and VNC may seem, their flexibility and ease of use (and not to mention cross-platform compatibility) makes them the defacto standards that they are.

        • by Hatta (162192)

          For the record, you're insisting that you bring forward obsolete mechanisms that 99.99% of end users will never use. Nobody outside a handful of sysadmins uses X network transparency, and only then I suspect to stroke their own egos.

          You could say the same about Linux itself. Figure out why this statement is wrong when applied to Linux, and you'll understand why it's wrong when applied to network transparency.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by malkavian (9512)

          Why do you think Citrix did so well, and the whole application virtualisation stack? RDP and VNC are ok for some things, but they simply lack the power, elegance and utility of network transparency.

          • You do know that RDP IS Citrix, right? And that TS can do application-level forwarding, if you really need that?

        • I hope that one day you will be all grown up and realize that you are also using advanced tools to do things and that you are the older guy that all the other young ones come to for advice, watching wide eyed while you work on five things at the same time in different countries...

          To guys like me, this is normal. This is what I do. It is much more efficient to use X forwarding than to drive 300 miles or fly half way around the world.

          I hope that one day, you would understand and use these tools yourself

          • by Dog-Cow (21281)

            Anyone who isn't using a command-line over an SSH connection to remotely-administer a Unix machine is a complete and total idiot.

        • by Alioth (221270)

          No, RDP has become the defacto standard under Windows simply because it's really the only way to do it.

          Given that I would imagine Linux desktops are disporportionately used by developers and sysadmins rather than end users (Linux isn't used so much as a desktop for normal users), there's quite a lot of people who do use X forwarding. It *is* easy and has been for a long time, a matter of three additional keypresses when you SSH to the machine you need to work on.

          Unlike things like RDP, with the windows bein

      • A good video card is connected to your CPU via a 32GB/s bus. Either you have a very good network, are wasting your graphics card, or you aren't going to get anything close to network transparency.

        • by ArsonSmith (13997)

          Of course your videocard is then connected to your monitor by an uncompressed 3.4Gb connection.

          • by Dog-Cow (21281)

            That's basically irrelevant and only limits the number of pixels that can be attached and refreshed at a decent rate. In other words, it only limits monitor resolution and refresh rate.

        • by Junta (36770)

          For low demand applications, sure you can. No one expects that X forwarded half life would be really usable. However if I need to open up some stupid GUI only management application forwarded from a linux system that can actually talk to the manged device, it can behave so close as to be quite serviceable.

          Having my local system do the compositing, locally execute GPU intensive programs, *and* accomodate seamless operation of remote applications never developed to directly provide remote access capability

      • Re:It's ironic... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by serviscope_minor (664417) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @10:53AM (#43159479) Journal

        True, though server side decorations are a must, too.

        • Re:It's ironic... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by caseih (160668) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @10:59AM (#43159533)

          Nah that's so boring! What I want is my Linux desktop to act like MS Windows where I cannot move applications if the app is frozen, because the decorations are all client-side. And while we're at it let's emulate the feature of Windows where you can't move a parent window around when a modal dialog box is being displayed!

          Yeah, then we'll finally have the year of the Linux Desktop!

          • How did you know that's exactly what I want?

            Also, another feature that people seem to be missing, if the WM controls the motion, your WM can enforce policies, like snap to edge, snap to window etc universally across all programs.

            Sugh a regression :(

          • by Dog-Cow (21281)

            Can't move a frozen application? Are you one of the poor losers stuck on XP?

      • by ssam (2723487)

        the network transparency in X11 is a bit rubbish. It uses a huge number of round trips and so is painfully slow over a slow network. still I use it at least weekly because it is really easy. I am sat at my laptop, ssh'ed into a big machine (lots of CPUs and RAM) which runs simulations. If I want to look at a plot i can just do 'evince foo.pdf' and its on my screen (or pylab.show() or whatever). It requires no setup beyond passing -X when you start ssh (or adding forwarding to the config file).

        (I also used t

  • Why does this sound like Weyland-Yutani?

    Perhaps the company had humble roots as a Linux graphical toolkit developer instead of heavy industry.

  • Hello, LXDE....

  • One More Reason (Score:2, Interesting)

    by hduff (570443)

    One more reason to abandon GNOME as it moves further from its UNIX roots. It's become a culture based on negativity and we-know-better-than-you.

  • For all the screaming about MIR (from the exact same people who say that we need "competition" for MS/Apple/etc.), I really hope that the competition part of MIR finally gets the Wayland developers to stop screwing around with Wayland like its a toy and get it to the point where it can actually be deployed in real systems. And yes, despite the chagrin of the religious radicals on this site, that means opening up dialogs with AMD and Nvidia to get driver support too.

    If Canonical's move actually spurs Waylan

  • Wayland still alive? (Score:5, Informative)

    by olahaye74 (801533) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @12:32PM (#43160571)

    It looks to me that Wayland developers only have one desktop at home and were Windows users that want gaming on their linux box.

    - What about asynchronous rendering? fast text scrolling in a windows like "find /" or "make -j32" thru a modem connection works in X11, I'd be surprised to see the same on Wayland.
    - What about single GUI App running remotely: ssh to a cluster with no network card and need to start paraview or gnuplot? Should I run a full desktop with useless fancy gadgets just to see a gnuplot window?
    - What about client application that freeze: Can't move the window because the decoration is done by the client?
    - Wy can't I move parent windows when a modal window is open like a file selection dialog box. How do I move the parent app to see my shell window behind. Should I do the same as in windows: close the file selection dialog box move the windows and reopen the file selection dialog box?
    - What about lost event because the client is buzy? I click on the button, but the event is lost because the client is buzy.....

    Wayland is just a LOL in professional environment.

    Thanksfully, I'm running KDE...The original desktop that Gnome tries to imitate since it's creation...I'm curious how it's manage the Wayland migration....

  • Karma be damned [youtube.com]
    Right, then. Carry on with the actual discussion. Sorry for the diversion.
  • bigger picture (Score:3, Interesting)

    by conorpeterson (2718139) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @01:17PM (#43161173)

    Here we have an identity crisis within the linux community, and I find it distressing how few people see the underlying opportunity. The decision between X and wayland/mir depends on what you think linux is. Is it an industrial-strength swiss army OS used by the technically inclined, or is it the platform upon which the tablet renaissance is being built? Of course it's both, so quit with the civil war and pay attention to what's happening in computing.

    If general purpose computing is going to survive Apple, Microsoft and Google, we need a rich, high-performance compositor that can run on embedded devices AND a next generation framework for network transparency in applications, preferably in separate packages. Since I'm being dragged into cloud computing, I want to become my own cloud: I want to blur the line between my laptop, server, desktop, and tablet, but I want to do it in an open-source, platform agnostic way. I want to leave my CAD software running on my desktop and connect to it from my tablet to get dimensions for some part. I want automatic syncing ala dropbox for my LAN. I want to stream audio and video to my stereo without using airplay. I want generic compute jobs to be distributed to idle computers on my personal network. I want to lease an EC2 instance just for the week that I have to do some high-quality rendering and have my desktop parcel the job up and send it out to be executed with a minimum of manual plumbing.

    In other words, I want network abstraction for input and display, a toolkit to aid with responsive UI design, local openGL compositing, a framework for exporting big, blind compute jobs, and some network utilities to help me get my services configured correctly, and I want them to be designed to work well together. Some of this is Hard but all of these technologies already exist in some form, they just haven't been integrated into a single open-source platform. Usable by consumers. Yet.

    The open source community has the opportunity to stake a claim while the world of computing has been turned on its head. Fretting about X11-style network transparency at this point is like sweating over the future of IRC. (Hint: all my chatroom correspondence is now owned by some shitty company overvalued at $27 a share). When all new software is designed to run on top of webkit, will your remote GIMP even matter?

  • by JumboMessiah (316083) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @01:43PM (#43161495)

    For everyone bitching about Wayland vs X11 and network transparency, you need to watch this talk [h-online.com] by Kristian Høgsberg. Keith and the rest of the devs have always said that remoting would eventually come down the pipeline.

    And for everyone else talking about efficiency of sending pixmaps via the network, you should learn how your current stack actually works. It will be much better with Wayland.

    I've used X11 since 1995, I'm very fond of it. But I also realize it needs to go...

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