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Wayland 1.5 Released 179

Posted by Soulskill
from the onward-and-upward dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Wayland 1.5 has been released, along with Weston Compositor 1.5. Wayland/Weston 1.5 carry many new user features, with a new libinput back-end, XWayland support, a full-screen shell, and many other changes. This release is particularly important as Fedora 21 will run on GNOME Wayland and X.Org Server 1.16 will be released this summer with integrated XWayland support."
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Wayland 1.5 Released

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  • by Jorl17 (1716772) on Tuesday May 20, 2014 @11:25PM (#47053561)
    Wayland and its never-ending stream of stories seems to be going the way pulseaudio did. It's heavily criticized, cuts down some features or is somehow buggy, but seems to give many users what they want, or at least that's what all these crazy stories point to.

    As long as I can still run X atop Wayland, I don't really care. I loved pulseaudio when it was being bashed already. Maybe I'll love Wayland too? Has anyone here actually seriously tried this thing before bashing it?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by morgauxo (974071)

      >> As long as I can still run X atop Wayland, I don't really care.

      If I can't get the applications I want as X apps anymore because everything has moved to Wayland but Wayland still doesn't support remote display then I will care deeply.

      • by Microlith (54737) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @12:29AM (#47053777)

        It's highly likely that Wayland's remote display will beat X. Virtually none of the features (remote drawing) that X provided over the network are used today (line/polygon drawing) and tool kits like Qt/GTK+ have you shipping framebuffers across the network, something built around manipulating frame buffers should be able to stream them over the network, individually, to a compositor on your system.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by dbc (135354)

          And Wayland remote display is going to happen when, exactly? Is it on the roadmap? I'm asking seriously -- if there is a roadmap, point me to it, I don't follow Wayland devopment outside of the occasional rant-fests on Slashdot like we are having now.

          There are certain environments where remote display is the *only* display, so if Wayland doesn't have it, Wayland doesn't go into those environments.

          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            This might be useful.

            http://tech.slashdot.org/story/13/04/03/1219239/remote-desktop-backend-merged-into-wayland

          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            not any time soon.
            Problem is not with Wayland.
            Problem is with NVIDIA binary drivers. They simply have no support of it and are rather in very initial stage of Wayland compatibility development. AMD open source drivers also suck at the moment when it comes to many aspects. So there is long road ahead.

          • by Tailhook (98486) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @02:12AM (#47054073)

            RDP protocol support was merged [slashdot.org] into Wayland over a year ago. Wayland's original developer prototyped [youtube.com] a remote display implementation almost two years go, before 1.0 was released. This is in addition to XWayland [freedesktop.org] already providing an X server to host legacy X apps.

            Wayland will have good remote display. The peanut gallery rant-fests around here not withstanding.

            Anyhow. Now you know. If I'm wrong get a refund.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by bluegutang (2814641)

              Anyhow. Now you know. If I'm wrong get a refund.

              While I think Wayland remote display will end up working just fine, "get a refund" is exactly the wrong attitude, and one that is doing a great deal to hold back open source. Don't like your Firefox buttons switching places every two weeks? Get a refund. Unity's window management for retards driving you up a wall? Get a refund. Newest GNOME version missing half the features you depend on? Get a refund. Guess what? Nobody is going to ask for a refund. They are

              • by thegarbz (1787294) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @05:15AM (#47054493)

                No one is asking for feature refunds. They are simply bitching about users who demand every piece of software be 100% feature complete the moment it's first alpha team is announced and then continue to spew crap about it long through the development process.

                Yes Firefox has abandoned geeks in favour of more simple users, well guess what there are many other packages out there that de-crappify the interface. Funnily enough that is EXACTLY the stance Wayland developers have taken from the very start. Design a flexible light weight modern protocol that does away with X's cruft and offloads stuff to the client. The users demand remote. Well if it matters that much to that many then the compositor can be written to support that. That is the flexibility that is missing from X.

                The attitude was fine early on, but seeing every other bloody post on slashdot spewing the same crap, even after the Wayland team have announced remote desktop is possible, and even after the Wayland team have demonstrated code that does that, what do you think the answer is going to be?

                • I'm sorry. I didn't realize that Wayland 1.5 was an alpha release. Presumably it will be complete when it hits 1.0?

              • by Beck_Neard (3612467) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @05:48AM (#47054611)

                I've built a few open source projects and been heavily criticized for my design choices but you know what? I agree with this. A lot of developers are too stubborn to make changes and it drives people away then they wonder why no one is using their project anymore.

                But the flipside is true too. A lot of the time 'flaws' are actually sober and sane design choices which you have to get into the internals of the system to understand. People often don't get this and then bitch and moan about why something hasn't been done the way they like.

                The Wayland devs seem pretty sober and sane so far, and I think they've made a lot of nice design choices. The problem of displaying graphics on a PC is an inherently ugly problem (and X is an ugly piece of software which visibly reflects that). If they can make it just a little bit better, it will be worth the wait, in my opinion.

                • by Kremmy (793693)
                  It's an ugly problem, but it's one that isn't half as ugly as they want to make it.
                  In fact, I would go so far as to say they're actively trying to make it uglier.
                  At the end of the day, we're just drawing colored rectangles on the screen.
                  Is it too much to ask that they not fuck that up?
                  • It's ugly because there are a lot of different ways of rendering those graphics to your screen, and they are highly variable depending on your graphics hardware and what exactly you intend to do. If you're just drawing a bunch of browser windows you can get by with communicating with your graphics hardware on a per-pixel basis. But if you want to get into games and so on you have to provide an interface for your software to communicate with the hardware's OpenGL implementation. And you have to support a sys

            • Can it work without OpenGL or a GPU on the remote computer?

          • by DrXym (126579) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @04:57AM (#47054441)
            There is already a reference RDP implementation in Weston. So to answer your question, it's happened already.
            • Yes, but will anyone ever develop it into a usable product?
              • by DrXym (126579)
                Quite obviously yes.
                • Nothing is obvious in open source. :D

                  2 years later: "Yeah, Wayland has RDP support... But it's kind of broken and buggy. It requires these patches to be applied, manual creation of this 1000-line configuration file, and the sessions have always to be started from command line. Also, you have to use this certain distro. We are waiting it to be fixed, but the component has insufficient manpower and resources for the task to ever be actually completed anyway. Just use VNC, sigh..."

                  • by DrXym (126579)
                    It's a reference implementation, a proof of concept to demonstrate to people complaining that yes wayland can in fact be remoted assuming a compositor provides with the support. It's not wayland's job to do the remoting, it's the compositor's. I see no reason to think that once wayland is switched on by default in a dist or two that compositors will explicitly support remoting, or there will be dedicated compositors for that purpose.
            • There is already a reference RDP implementation in Weston. So to answer your question, it's happened already.

              Is it in Weston or Wayland? If the former, than that's a whole pile of yuck if you can only get remoting if you run the right window manager (or compositor in Wayland-speak).

              • by DrXym (126579)
                Wayland is just the API and protocol for clients and servers to allocate & release buffers and pass input and display events around. It doesn't say how those buffers get shown to the user - that's the compositor's job. Weston provides a a reference implementation of remoting demonstrating it is possible. It doesn't mean it's perfect, or comes with a pile of advanced options.

                I expect it will improve and there will also be dedicated compositors for headless servers and the like.

                • I expect it will improve and there will also be dedicated compositors for headless servers and the like.

                  So... you';d have one compositor (on the headless machine) which does nothing but send the bitmap over the network and a client program on the display server machine which collects that and opens windows in whatever compositor you're running?

                  What I mean by this is I don't understand at all why it would be in Weston: it sounds like one want a couple of utility programs instead to do that job, not a whole c

                  • by DrXym (126579)
                    On Windows I can login into a PC, walk over to another machine and remote login to that same session. For that you probably want the window manager to host the remote session. But if you have headless machine that is only used in a specific way then perhaps something simpler will do. I don't see that either is precluded.
          • by dbIII (701233)
            Apparently something good enough to be a bullet point on that was done last year but the fanboys don't know any details other than an announcement they point to. Maybe a Wayland developer will comment on one of these Wayland stories some day apart from the fanboys and we'll get some real information instead of links to a video of a half finished powerpoint presentation with no Wayland screenshots.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Virtually none of the features (remote drawing) that X provided over the network are used today (line/polygon drawing) and tool kits like Qt/GTK+ have you shipping framebuffers across the network

          I'm using Motif and tcl/tk over tunnelled X every day you insensitive clod.

          And when I do have to use a bling app, 'ssh -CX' generally tames the beast, even web browsers with horribly inefficient and unwanted fade in - fade out effects.

          Check out some supercomputer cluster management software some time. Bling doesn't

        • The cases where people have argued such a thing are the strawman you've taken up on as streaming bitmaps, which is not always (in fact very rarely outside of gnome3) the case. So there's equivalent performance (streaming bitmaps the same speed in both) or better when you have a situation where one can do something other than just stream bitmaps. Of course every time this gets mentioned we get the "only dinosaurs want remote access/shaped windows/whatever feature of X does not apply on phones - then the di
      • by Jorl17 (1716772)
        But that's what I meant. Can't running X inside Wayland still allow us to use it as an X Server to point client apps to, thus only kind of changing X's backend?
      • by GauteL (29207)

        If the app is built on top of GTK+ (I assume Qt is the same?), the app will support both and the backend will be selected at runtime [freedesktop.org].

        I.e. GDK_BACKEND will be wayland by default, but if you log in via ssh and set X forwarding, it can be set to "X11". It should be completely seamless.

        • No GTK2 (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Blaskowicz (634489) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @07:02AM (#47054833)

          That's nice but what you describe is for GTK3, and not GTK2. Seems like the latter is still used a lot, and frankly GTK3 has gone rogue, deleting features, adding ones only Gnome developers will use etc.
          Developers of applications run away from it and migrations from GTK2 to GTK3 seldom made (though there are dual mode GTK2/GTK3 applications where you can select the UI).

          Recently with GTK 3.10 they removed icons in menus and the highlighting of letters to help you with keyboard navigation (e.g. Alt-F opens File menu). It's the Slashdot Beta of the toolkit world.

      • by DrXym (126579)
        It does support remote display (and not just one protocol either) and widget sets will support X backend as long as there are volunteers to maintain it.
      • So use VNC if you need a remote display. This need to keep 30 year old features unchanged has got to stop. 99% of the people using the GUI are running it locally.

      • Remote display on Wayland will be much better and more modular than X11. X11 mandates a chatty, slow, obsolete protocol for remote display and applications MUST be network-aware. With Wayland, you can run a compositor on the remote server that doesn't display its clients on the screen but rather transmits streaming video of the clients back to a Wayland client on your desktop which decodes and displays these streams. And neither your local Wayland compositor nor the remote clients need be network aware.

        X11

    • by Microlith (54737) on Tuesday May 20, 2014 @11:50PM (#47053653)

      Wayland is critically important, which is why (unlike Pulseaudio) it hasn't already been rolled out yet. Qt has integrated it, Gnome has, KDE is porting KWin to implement it. There have been fairly few technical criticisms, the only one I've seen made with any muster has been network transparency - but even that could be solved rather easily given the way Wayland works with framebuffers.

      On the flip side, Xorg has you dragging around unused cruft and the way it interfaces with the kernel forces some possible security holes be left open, holes that Wayland will fix.

    • Maybe I'll love Wayland too? Has anyone here actually seriously tried this thing before bashing it?

      Not many, probably. Currently it's very hard to set up and there's not much you can do with it.

  • by serviscope_minor (664417) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @04:16AM (#47054347) Journal

    Does anyone know if Wayland has the nice dual clipboard system like X? Or are we going to be stuck with something hideously primitive like other well known operaing systems?

    • by dbIII (701233)
      Clipboard? It's a framebuffer with a compositor on top. Clipboards are a client problem (as are many other things).
      Now do you get why the "X sux" stuff from Wayland fanboys is annoying? Wayland is designed to be something different to X with different goals. Those of us that "want to run software from 1996" are made fun of in Wayland presentations, which would be fine if they were not also telling us to stop using X.
      • Re:Clipboards? (Score:5, Informative)

        by serviscope_minor (664417) on Wednesday May 21, 2014 @06:43AM (#47054777) Journal

        Clipboard? It's a framebuffer with a compositor on top. Clipboards are a client problem (as are many other things).

        Well, no, it's not. It's also a keyboard and mouse input system.

        It also deals with copy and paste and drag and drop:

        http://lwn.net/Articles/491509... [lwn.net]

        Because it's a windowing system and it turns out that just a compositor alone isn't enough (who knew, eh?). It's also interesting. Apparently Wayland implements passing of data by just passing a file descriptor, apparently instead of reimplementing 10 pages of ICCCM grot. The thing about the 10 pages of ICCCM grot is it's really REALLY well specified and a random person from the internet can come along, read the ICCCM, grok it (yes, I have actually implemented copy/paste and XDnD from the specs) and get it working. It's not that hard.

        The wayland one seems poorly specified by comparison. For example they don't specify teeny-tiny details liekl whether the FD must be seekable, for example. So, do you have to write a local file, or can you pass a socket? Who knows! It's really easy to have a short, simple spec when it's full of ambiguity and people haven't had 26 years to beat it into a definitive, unambiguous state. Anyway, I digress.

        Now do you get why the "X sux" stuff from Wayland fanboys is annoying?

        Yes, but it's more annoying when it comes from the Wayland author FUDmonsters who understand X11 and yet still make silly claims about it. For example, from the link above, Packard claims:

        X was created before there was MIME or Unicode, so there are many pages expended in the X specifications to do things that are more easily handled with MIME types and UTF-8 these days. For cut-and-paste and drag-and-drop, Wayland uses MIME-labeled UTF-8 encoded objects.

        Well, that sounds all like OMG X sucks we need MIME and UTF-8. Well the thing is, in order to list types from a copy/paste transfer, applications exchange a string (i.e. atom) with the type name(s) available. And guess what? Almost everything these days except for plain text is exchanged using MIME types. If the MIME-type specifies UTF-8, then the data will be in UTF-8 format. So basically, X names types with a string, just like MIME, and MIME works *perfectly* without modifying or respecifying anything.

        You can verify this easily: download and install a copy/paste debugger/sniffer and look at the list of types available that programs offer.

        The ICCCM also specifies a few (non-MIME) types that you might like to support, such as TEXT, which maps perfectly on to text/plain and is all of 1/2 a line to implement (if(typeAtom == TEXT || typeAtom == textPlainAtom)...). And X11 sends arbitrary data (including NULs) because it represents data as data+length not a string, so you can exchange anything, such as UTF8.

        Anyway, KP implies that that doesn't work with X11 copy and paste, whereas in truth it works perfectly and without any faff or hacking.

        Wayland is designed to be something different to X with different goals.

        Not so much. It's designed to replace X wholesale. It does windowing, compositing, input, copy/paste/DnD, and a bit opf inter client communication.

        Those of us that "want to run software from 1996" are made fun of in Wayland presentations,

        Yeah us with our legacy programs. From stroustrup:

        "Legacy code" often differs from its suggested alternative by actually working and scaling.

        Meanwhile, I shall keep using legacy programs productively. XTerm works amazingly well, still. gvim works great---though I find I sometimes have to compile it with GTK disabled and with XAW (seriously WTF??) support because GTK can't seem to get its shit in order with fonts and everytime ubuntu updates itself/reboots, the font size changes. Xfig is old but works really well within its domain for producing simple, effective figures.

        etc etc blah blah.

        I also use some more modern programs too. And they all w

        • by thegarbz (1787294)

          You seem to be all for the X11 side of things. Yes it's well specified and there are many benefits.

          Do you care to put as much detail into the downsides? Such as that it's so well specified that things like the volume keys on the keyboard can't be passed onto a music player because the laptop lid is closed and the lockscreen is fullscreen and the way X works means that any fullscreen program completely monopolises the input system? Yes I'm all for specification, but if network systems were specified the same

          • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

            You seem to be all for the X11 side of things. Yes it's well specified and there are many benefits.

            Yes, but I restricted myself to only talking about the anti-X FUD.

            Such as that it's so well specified that things like the volume keys on the keyboard can't be passed onto a music player because the laptop lid is closed and the lockscreen is fullscreen and the way X works means that any fullscreen program completely monopolises the input system?

            Works for me (TM). It's set up that my WM does stuff when the volu

            • by Bengie (1121981)

              Uh, TCP headers ARE fixed length.

              Actually, they are variable length for TCP, and you must pad the TCP header to a 32bit boundary if you decide to add extra fields.

              Options (Variable 0–320 bits, divisible by 32): The length of this [header] field is determined by the data offset field.

              IPv4 also has a variable header

              The second field (4 bits) is the Internet Header Length (IHL), which is the number of 32-bit words in the header. Since an IPv4 header may contain a variable number of options, this field specifies the size of the header

              IPv6 actually has a fixed header, but it can have a reference to data to extend the header, but that "extended" information is not part of the actual header.

            • by thegarbz (1787294)

              s/TCP Headers/MTU Size. The point I make is the same yet you seem to grasp only the equivalent of spelling mistakes to make your counter argument.

              Over specification is a problem for something as fluid as display technology. I'm not talking on the GUI level but on a system interaction level. Just have a read about the Xinput multitouch extension and the problems in creating it. In the past three years we've gone from mouse to multi-touch inputs as an emerging computer trend. Yet due to over specification X11

              • The point I make is the same yet you seem to grasp only the equivalent of spelling mistakes to make your counter argument.

                No. You were insisting that well specified is the same as inflexible. This is not the case. IP and TCP are extremely well specified, for example and yet have done very well.

                Over specification is a problem for something as fluid as display technology.

                OK, fine. What's overspecified about X11?

                Just have a read about the Xinput multitouch extension and the problems in creating it. In the past

            • by dbIII (701233)

              Well, there's nothing in X that stops one having the WM run the screensaver directly

              For example that's the way E17 does it.

  • The most common use case today is local applications. This must be optimised for. Have a separate server and protocol to network transparency for the classes of applications that network transparency is useful for (simple GUIs, text editors and suchlike, rather than nonlinear video editors and 3D games). Likewise with audio, there is a need for a simple high performance backend for some applications, and network friendliness for others. In both cases there should be two layers, a fast light low level ba

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