[Pkg-xfce-devel] Discussion of xfce desktop task for d-i

Andrei Popescu andreimpopescu at gmail.com
Sat Apr 4 08:01:15 UTC 2009

On Fri,03.Apr.09, 20:31:45, Daniel Dickinson wrote:
> Hi,
> I was wondering what happened to the discussion of what was going to be
> included in the desktop task for xfce (in d-i tasksel), as I had seen
> that it was supposed to head to this list, but I wasn't on the list at
> the point and I can't seem to find the discussion in the archives.

I promised to send a summary here, but for some "unknown" (PEBKAC) 
reason I only sent it to Yves. Here it is:

On Wed,18.Mar.09, 23:04:25, Yves-Alexis Perez wrote:

> Andrei, could you please post a summary to pkg-xfce mailing list, with
> what you think would be nice to have or nice to not have on the xfce
> task?

Ok, so here is a summary for those not reading debian-boot.

After a recent install with desktop=xfce I found some pieces missing and
others a bit unexpected. Here is my very personal opinion on this.

1. No icon on the desktop for removable drives due to missing 'hal'. I
understand this is pending so probably doesn't need more discussion.

2. GUI package manager: I prefer aptitude for myself, but a GUI one is
definitely necessary and synaptic is the obvious choice (at least until
aptitude-gtk is ready, when the discussion can be reopened)

3. IM client: my first thought was pidgin, but seeing that it wants to
install 20 additional packages I reconsidered. After a quick search I
found ayttm, which at the first glance seems quite usable.

(edit: one quirk about ayttm is that you can't write to people who are 
"offline", even if that person is in fact only "invisible" and just 
wrote you something. I'll file a bug.)

4. Document viewer: epdfview makes a good pdf viewer. OTOH, evince-gtk
supports additional formats (ps, eps, djvu and dvi)...

5. Image viewer: my personal preference is gpicview. Xavier Oswald
suggested mirage which could also be an option. Ristretto is currently 
not very usable, IMHO, but this could change.

6. Image editor: gimp is installed by default, but is seems a bit heavy
to me (well, at least having an image viewer will mean it's not opened
by default if I double-click an image) and would suggest something like

(edit: it seems the default for KDE is kolourpaint, which according to 
the description is (much?) simpler than Gimp)

7. Productivity: openoffice.org is pulled by the generic Desktop task
(AFAICT). For me personally this is a bit heavy an I would rather only
have Abiword+Gnumeric.

and a point raised by Yves-Alexis:

8. www browser:

> One stuff I'll have to think about, too, is the browser. I'd be glad to
> drop iceweasel for midori once webkit is stabilized (especially since
> midori is now officially some kind of an xfce project) but maybe the
> user expects iceweasel to be there on a desktop task. That or we could
> drop it from the desktop task and let every *-task define the preferred
> brother (epiphany/konqueror/midori/=E2=80=A6)

(edit: AFAICT KDE and Gnome are using Konqueror and Epiphany by default, 
even if Iceweasel is present)

I've been experimenting with midori from time to time, but unfortunately
it is very unstable, crashing randomly. I would not miss iceweasel too
much, except for the vimperator extension ;)

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.
(Albert Einstein)
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