[Freewx-maint] wxWidgets 3.x and GTK+ 3

Björn Harrtell bjorn.harrtell at gmail.com
Mon Jul 31 18:05:25 UTC 2017

2017-07-31 7:16 GMT+02:00 Olly Betts <olly at survex.com>:

> On 6 July 2017 at 08:49, Björn Harrtell <bjorn.harrtell at gmail.com> wrote:
> > 2017-07-05 1:38 GMT+02:00 Olly Betts <olly at survex.com>:
> >> Björn Harrtell <bjorn.harrtell at gmail.com> wrote:
> >> > I'm wondering if there are any plans to package wxWidgets 3.0/3.1
> >> > compiled for GTK+ 3?
> >>
> >> It's not feasible to package wxWidgets 3.1, as it doesn't have a stable
> >> ABI - each new upstream version would potentially require a library
> >> transition in Debian.
> >>
> >> I had been hoping to switch to GTK3 with wx 3.2, but currently it looks
> >> unlikely to me that upstream will release 3.2 soon, or at least soon
> >> enough for it to be feasible to switch to for buster (we probably have
> >> about 16 months before the buster freeze.  The 2.8 to 3.0 transition
> >> took around a year, though there were quite a lot of incompatibilities
> >> to deal with - I'd hope 3.0 to 3.2 is smoother, but even so with the
> >> number of reverse dependencies wx has in Debian, a transition will take
> >> time).
> After discussions with wx upstream, they seem keen to try to get 3.2 out
> sooner.
> 3.0 to 3.2 API changes are small, though by default 3.2 drops
> compatibility for the large amount of stuff removed/changed between
> 2.8 and 3.0.  But wx upstream suggested Debian shipping 3.2 with 2.8
> compatibility enabled would be better than shipping 3.0.  If they're
> happy with that, I'm happier shipping such a configuration.
> However, wxPython "classic" seem like it's probably seen its last
> release, and migrating rdeps to wxPython "phoenix" seems like it
> requires quite a lot of code changes, which means more work for a
> transition until enough time has passed for upstreams of projects
> using it to have done the necessary changes.  But wxPython "phoenix"
> has only just made its first beta release, so we can't expect many
> upstreams to have migrated in time for buster.
> I really don't have the time or energy for a wxPython transition which
> is going to require a lot of cajoling of maintainers and upstreams, so
> unless there's someone who does I think we may have to stick with wx
> 3.0 for buster.

> >> The first thing we need to determine is whether the GTK version used
> >> affects the ABI of the built libraries, so that would be useful to
> >> check.
> Actually the gtk2/gtk3 choice is encoded in the library name, so ABI
> compatibility isn't relevant as we really need to handle this as an
> ABI change anyway.
> E.g. here's 3.0 built with GTK2 and 3.1 built with GTK3:
> libwx_gtk2u_core-3.0.so
> libwx_gtk3u_core-3.1.so
> > If 3.2 is way off, perhaps it can still be worth switching to GTK 3 for
> > wxWidgets 3.0.
> I've now uploaded (built with GTK2) which is due to migrate to
> testing in the next day or so, so we're at least up to date with
> upstream releases.
> I'm looking at a build of this using GTK3 to upload to experimental or
> maybe unstable (if it's easy to make the packages parallel install
> cleanly).  That'll at least allow rdeps to easily test compatibility
> with such a build.
> > FWIW my personal interest in this is to extend the life of
> > pgadmin3.
> Does debian's wx packages switching to GTK3 help there?
> https://www.pgadmin.org/download/ says:
> | WARNING: pgAdmin 3 is no longer supported.
> So I'd expect a switch to GTK3 to if anything be bad for Debian's
> pgadmin3 package, as any issues which are actually in the pgadmin3
> code won't get solved by pgadmin upstrream.

I know pgadmin3 is abandoned since quite some time now but some people
including me would like to see it continued as pgadmin4 isn't a good
replacement in our view at this time. I'm trying to find a way to gather
enough interest and people to convince the old maintainer(s) to transfer it
us, but it needs a certain level of seriousness to be sure.

> > However, I'm not confident about the stability of wxWidgets 3.0
> > with GTK 3 at this time
> My own testing of a build with GTK3 uncovered some issues.  It seems
> wx upstream are responsive to GTK3-related bugs, and they've fixed
> those they can reproduce.
> However, at least one problem I found they can't reproduce.

If wx 3.0 and GTK3 is the likely way ahead for buster I'll be glad to
investigate that road for pgadmin3. I already have some WIP patches for
that but the maintenance situation needs resolving for it to have value I

> Cheers,
>     Olly
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