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GNOME

GNOME Shell & Mutter 3.32.1 Released With Many Fixes

Filed under
GNOME

While missing the GNOME 3.32.1 point release that shipped last week, GNOME Shell and Mutter today experienced their 3.32.1 updates with a variety of fixes.

GNOME Shell 3.32.1 fixes avatar scaling on the login screen, fixes the Alt+Esc switcher, multiple desktop zoom fixes, supporting stick-to-finger workspace switch overview gestures, and a variety of other fixes and clean-ups.

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Direct:

GStreamer 1.16 Approaching Release

Filed under
Development
GNOME

GNOME Desktop and KDE: ash to Dock Extension on GNOME 3.32, New Review of KDE Neon and Kate History of KDE 4 Porting

Filed under
KDE
GNOME
  • The Beauty of Dash to Dock Extension on GNOME 3.32

    You may find many articles on the net guiding you to install Dash To Dock extension on GNOME. But there are very few ones to speak more about experimenting with it. This article explores the features of this one Extension to show you possibilities it can give to your GNOME 3 desktop environment. You can enable click to raise/minimize window, change the icon size, color the dock or make it transparent, make the dock to mimic Unity Launcher, reposition it to any edge of your screen, etc. You will find my experiments below, like, make everything looks larger to help friends with vision impairments, using GNOME 3.32 desktop on GNU/Linux. Finally, happy tweaking!

  • Review: KDE Neon
  • Kate History - KDE 4 Porting

    During my web site upgrade, I reviewed the old stuff I had hosted on my long gone web sites but still archived here locally. An interesting thing I stumbled on are the KDE 3 -> 4 porting screenshots of Kate I saved in 2005.

    They actually show pretty nicely how far we have gone since 2005 with our development stack.

    The KDE 3 -> 4 transition was a large hassle. It did take weeks of work just to get Kate back into an usable state.

Desktop Environments, KDE and GNOME

Filed under
KDE
GNOME
  • Desktop Workspaces In Linux

    Desktop workspaces on Linux are like having a multi-monitor system on your single computer. Developers, artist, audio engineers, etc. would call this "workstation" because they prefer working on individual task concurrently through two or more display monitors, set up on their system.

    However, desktop workspaces quite vary with the "workstation" bit because all multiple displays are virtual and not physical. The desktops are simulated with software, usually your desktop environment.

    So you must be wondering how they might be beneficial for any ordinary user who is not familiar with it. OK, here's my opinion. Desktop workspaces are useful for multi-tasking purpose. Let me run it down with an example, suppose you are interacting with virtual friends on a social media platform and sometime later you decide to upload an image to update your status. But the image isn't quite right to your taste so you launch multiple image editing software on another workspace. You try them out by efficiently switching between windows while the social application is running on another workspace. Once you are done, you close all those image editing programs and finally upload the image to your social feed.

  • Giving KDE developer docs some TLC

    Last month, I had the privilege of coming on board as a documentation specialist to take a closer look at KDE’s developer documentation and to later come up with strategies to make them better than ever. I have talked with some of the community’s developers to get their feedback on some of the areas that need updating or fixing when it comes to technical documentation. But that’s only one part of the story.

    Our dev docs are also meant for new developers. That applies to both new contributors in the KDE community as well as external developers who want to use our software, particularly our excellent KDE Frameworks. In that regard, we’re also looking for feedback on the areas where interested budding rockstar coders and passionate KDE contributors are having trouble getting into the community.

    Having clear, up-to-date, and relevant documentation goes a long way in encouraging and helping new developers get involved with the community with as little friction as possible. It even helps those already manning the ship become familiar with other parts of our software they may not have used before. I would love to hear some thoughts and suggestions, especially from interested KDE hackers, so let me know in the comments below.

  • [Krita] April Development Update

    It’s April already… We’re long overdue for a development update, especially since we haven’t had a new release for quite some time.

    The reason for both those facts is that our maintainer has had some health issues since December that seriously slowed down not just his part of the development work, but also made it really hard to create new releases — all releases are still prepared by one person, and if that person temporarily loses the use of one arm, things that should happen, don’t happen. The arm is back in action, but that wasn’t the only issue, and things are still a bit slowed down.

    Apart from that, we’re making quite good progress towards our next release, which should happen next month.

    In the first place, we’ve got a new full-time developer! Tiar, who is well known in Krita’s Reddit community, graduated from university just when the increased income from Steam made it possible to hire someone to help out with this year’s big goal: bug fixing! Tiar started March 1st, and has already fixed more than a dozen or so tough bugs. Krita now finally has a real Nearest Neighbour scaling method, for instance.

  • New features in Elisa

    I have been quiet for some months but during those months, Elisa has seen many improvements by existing and new contributors and a new stable version is planned in the coming weeks.

    I will publish some blog posts about the many new features implemented in the master branch.

  • Red Hat Certified Engineer Program Changes, OpenStack v19 Released, XFCE Back in openSUSE Installer, GNOME 3.32.1 Marks First Point Release of 3.32

    Now available, GNOME 3.32.1 marks the first point release of GNOME 3.32. And it boasts four weeks worth of bugs fixes.

GNOME 3.32 "Taipei" Desktop Environment Gets First Point Release, Update Now

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GNOME

Released a month ago on March 13th, GNOME 3.32 brings numerous improvements over previous versions of the open-source desktop environment used by numerous GNU/Linux distributions. Today, the first point release, GNOME 3.32.1, is here to add a stability and reliability layer by fixing bugs and updating translations.

"GNOME 3.32.1 is now available. This is a stable release containing four weeks' worth of bugfixes since the 3.32.0 release. Since it only contains bugfixes, all distributions shipping 3.32.0 should upgrade," said Michael Catanzaro on behalf of the GNOME Release Team.

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Best GNOME Desktops For 2019

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GNOME

Have you stumbled over here looking across the Internet, for the 2019 list of best GNOME desktops? Lucky you then, I'm glad you are at the right place and hopeful that you'll find this article helpful in case you are considering trying out a new Linux distro. Or just reading this article for fun. Alright, below are the list of Linux distros that I think are the best of 2019's GNOME desktops.

[...]

Ubuntu is a Debian-based Linux distro that is very popular among the Linux community. It's the first distro that is usually recommended to newbies wanting to try out Linux. One greatest advantage for using Ubuntu is that soon there'll be professional apps from big companies like Adobe, Microsoft, etc (made possible with snap) So eliminating the divide between FOSS users and prosumers.

​Ubuntu started featuring GNOME desktop last year but with some slight modification from the original one. The customized desktop looks similar to the abandoned Unity desktop to ease the migration for old users. Still, the desktop looks refreshing considering the developers have done a great job with themes and icons.

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GNOME: Rewarding our Friends of GNOME, Updates on GNOME Builder, GStreamer and GNOME’s Tracker

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GNOME
  • Rewarding our Friends of GNOME

    After my somewhat dark post about being a Free Software maintainer, a very significant number of people got in touch and asked how can they help me, and GNOME, more actively than saying “keep up the good work, we love y’all”. And so I thought that maybe we are not advertising well enough the various ways to contribute to GNOME beyond actually getting involved with the daily activities of the project.

    The potentially most effective way to help GNOME is by donating to the GNOME Foundation and spreading the word. GNOME Foundation has two donation programs: one-time donations, and Friend of GNOME.

    Becoming a Friend of GNOME is my favorite. The Friends of GNOME donation program is a monthly subscription where you can select a community member. The selected member will send you a thank you post card. Did you know that I can be adopted as a hacker through Friends of GNOME? Not only me but various other great community members!

    I’m happy to say that many Friends of GNOME adopted me already! Naturally, I’m supposed to send thank you postcards.

  • Podman Support in Builder

    For years now, Builder has had rich abstractions for containers built right into the core of the IDE. Builder even knows the difference between build and runtime containers which naturally maps with Flatpak SDKs like org.gnome.Sdk vs org.gnome.Platform.

    With the advent of operating systems focused on immutability, like Fedora Silverblue, developers are going to be increasingly developing in containers.

    The technology underlying projects like Toolbox is podman. It provides a command-line tool to manage containers without a daemon by using the various container APIs afforded to us in modern Linux.

    Bridging Builder’s container APIs to support podman was pretty painless on my part. A couple hours to choose the right abstractions and implementing them led me to a missing piece in podman; passing FDs to the container.

    The reason that Builder requires this is that we often need to communicate across containers. An easy way to do that is over a pair of pipe() since it is anonymous. By anonymous, I mean we don’t need to share any file-system hierarchy, IPC or network namespaces, or even PTY namespace.

    The most important piece that requires this in Builder is our GDB-based debugger. We use GDB inside the container so it has native access to things like build sources, libraries, symbols, and more. This is all orchestrated using GDB’s mi2 interface over a PTY, with a second PTY for the target process. When GDB lands on a breakpoint, we know how to translate paths between Builder’s container (usually Flatpak) and the target container (in this case, podman). Doing so ensures that we open the right file and line number to the user. Fundamentals, of course.

  • Nirbheek Chauhan: GStreamer and Meson: A New Hope

    Anyone who has written a non-trivial project using Autotools has realized that (and wondered why) it requires you to be aware of 5 different languages. Once you spend enough time with the innards of the system, you begin to realize that it is nothing short of an astonishing feat of engineering. Engineering that belongs in a museum. Not as part of critical infrastructure.

    Autotools was created in the 1980s and caters to the needs of an entirely different world of software from what we have at present. Worse yet, it carries over accumulated cruft from the past 40 years — ostensibly for better “cross-platform support” but that “support” is mostly for extinct platforms that five people in the whole world remember.

    We've learned how to make it work for most cases that concern FOSS developers on Linux, and it can be made to limp along on other platforms that the majority of people use, but it does not inspire confidence or really anything except frustration. People will not like your project or contribute to it if the build system takes 10x longer to compile on their platform of choice, does not integrate with the preferred IDE, and requires knowledge arcane enough to be indistinguishable from cargo-cult programming.

  • Sam Thursfield: The Lesson Planalyzer

    I’ve now been working as a teacher for 8 months. There are a lot of things I like about the job. One thing I like is that every day brings a new deadline. That sounds bad right? It’s not: one day I prepare a class, the next day I deliver the class one or more times and I get instant feedback on it right there and then from the students. I’ve seen enough of the software industry, and the music industry, to know that such a quick feedback loop is a real privilege!

    Creating a lesson plan can be a slow and sometimes frustrating process, but the more plans I write the more I can draw on things I’ve done before. I’ve planned and delivered over 175 different lessons already. It’s sometimes hard to know if I’m repeating myself or not, or if I could be reusing an activity from a past lesson, so I’ve been looking for easy ways to look back at all my old lesson plans.

    Search

    GNOME’s Tracker search engine provides a good starting point for searching a setof lesson plans: I can put the plans in my ~/Documents folder, open the folder in Nautilus, and then I type a term like "present perfect" into the search bar

Rewarding our Friends of GNOME

Filed under
GNOME

After my somewhat dark post about being a Free Software maintainer, a very significant number of people got in touch and asked how can they help me, and GNOME, more actively than saying “keep up the good work, we love y’all”. And so I thought that maybe we are not advertising well enough the various ways to contribute to GNOME beyond actually getting involved with the daily activities of the project.

The potentially most effective way to help GNOME is by donating to the GNOME Foundation and spreading the word. GNOME Foundation has two donation programs: one-time donations, and Friend of GNOME.

Becoming a Friend of GNOME is my favorite. The Friends of GNOME donation program is a monthly subscription where you can select a community member. The selected member will send you a thank you post card. Did you know that I can be adopted as a hacker through Friends of GNOME? Not only me but various other great community members!

Read more

GNOME 3.30: “Almería”: Updates and Improvements You Might Not Know

Filed under
GNOME

On September 5, 2018 GNOME project announced the release of GNOME 3.30.

Version 3.30 contains six months of work by the GNOME community and includes many improvements and new features.

This release features some significant performance improvements. The entire desktop now uses fewer system resources, which means you can run more apps at once.

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GNOME Is Also Getting Fixed Up For Lower CPU Usage With NVIDIA Graphics

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
GNOME

Last week I wrote about NVIDIA contributing a fix to KDE/KWin for avoiding high CPU usage when using the proprietary GeForce graphics driver. That fix ended up being due to the KWin compositor making incorrect assumptions about GLX swap buffers behavior. It turns out GNOME also needs a similar fix.

The news coverage of NVIDIA figuring out the fix for KDE also happened to help GNOME developers in figuring out some long-standing similar troubles on their side. Canonical's prolific GNOME contributor, Daniel Van Vugt, has been looking at the NVIDIA high CPU usage bug and was able to confirm he already ended up having a previous but still open merge request that fixes the issue by accident.

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Graphics: AMDGPU and X.Org Elections

  • amdgpu drm-next-5.2
  • AMDGPU Has Another Round Of Updates Ahead Of Linux 5.2
    Feature work on DRM-Next for the Linux 5.2 kernel cycle is winding down while today AMD has sent in what could be their last round of AMDGPU feature updates for this next kernel release. Building off their earlier Linux 5.2 feature work are more updates. That earlier round brought new SMU11 enablement code for Vega 20, various other Vega 20 features, HMM preparations, and other code changes.
  • 2019 Election Round 2 voting OPEN
    To all X.Org Foundation Members: The round 2 of X.Org Foundation's annual election is now open and will remain open until 23:59 UTC on 2 May 2019. Four of the eight director seats are open during this election, with the four nominees receiving the highest vote totals serving as directors for two year terms. There were six candidates nominated. For a complete list of the candidates and their personal statements, please visit the 2019 X.Org Elections page at https://www.x.org/wiki/BoardOfDirectors/Elections/2019/ The new bylaw changes were approved in the first round of voting. Here are some instructions on how to cast your vote: Login to the membership system at: https://members.x.org/ If you do not remember your password, you can click on the "lost password" button and enter your user name. An e-mail will be sent to you with your password. If you have problems with the membership system, please e-mail membership at x.org. When you login you will see an "Active Ballots" section with the "X.Org 2019 Elections Round 2" ballot. When you click on that you will be presented with a page describing the ballot. At the bottom you will find a number of dropdowns that let you rank your candidates by order of preference. For the election: There is a pull-down selection box for 1st choice, 2nd, choice, and so on. Pick your candidates top to bottom in order of preference, avoiding duplicates. After you have completed your ballot, click the "Cast vote" button. Note that once you click this button, your votes will be cast and you will not be able to make further changes, so please make sure you are satisfied with your votes before clicking the "Cast vote" button. After you click the "Vote" button, the system will verify that you have completed a valid ballot. If your ballot is invalid (e.g., you duplicated a selection or did not answer the By-laws approval question), it will return you to the previous voting page. If your ballot is valid, your votes will be recorded and the system will show you a notice that your votes were cast. Note that the election will close at 23:59 UTC on 2 May 2019. At that time, the election committee will count the votes and present the results to the current board for validation. After the current board validates the results, the election committee will present the results to the Members. Harry, on behalf of the X.Org elections committee
  • It's Time To Re-Vote Following The Botched 2019 X.Org Elections
    While there were the recent X.Org Foundation board elections, a do-over was needed as their new custom-written voting software wasn't properly recording votes... So here's now your reminder to re-vote in these X.Org elections. At least with the initial round of voting they reached a super majority and the ballot question of whether the X.Org Foundation should formally fold FreeDesktop.org into its umbrella worked and that X.Org + FreeDesktop.org hook-up passed so all is well on that front. But for the Board of Directors elections, that's where re-voting is needed with the voting software that now correctly records the votes.

today's howtos

Games: Lutris and More

  • Epic Games Store Now On Linux Thanks To Lutris
    While the Epic Games Store itself is not officially supported by the open source Linux operating system, a third-party gaming client has now made sure that you can access the store and launcher on your own distro. The Epic Games Store is now accessible on Linux via the Lutris Gaming client. The client is available to all Linux users, who in the past has provided the same users a way to play PC games without the need to have Windows installed in their machines. Although Linux is not necessarily the go-to platform when it comes to PC gaming, there is a very niche audience dedicated to making the platform work in favor of open-source and to counteract what could be perceived as a heavily Windows-biased PC gaming community. Linux gaming is somewhat tedious to the relatively casual or normal user, although there are some within the Linux community that advertise and try to foster its growth in terms of gaming, as there are some games that can run better on the operating system. That is to say, if you have a lot of patience to try and make it work.
  • You Died but a Necromancer revived you is good fun in a small package
    Sometimes, simplicity is what makes a game and in the case of You Died BaNRY that's very true. The game has little depth to it but makes up for that in just how frantic and fun it can be. The entire gameplay is just you (or you and friends) attempting to cross a small level filled with platforms, spikes and all sorts of crazy traps. It's ridiculously easy to get into as well, since the controls are so basic all you need to worry about is your movement.
  • Forager is a weirdly addictive casual grinding game that has mined into my heart
    I'm not usually one for games that have you endlessly wander around, collect resources, build a little and repeat but Forager is so ridiculously charming it's lovely.
  • DragonRuby Game Toolkit, a cross-platform way to make games with Ruby
    Now for something a little different! Ryan "Icculus" Gordon, a name known for many Linux ports and SDL2 teamed up with indie developer Amir Rajan to create a new cross-platform toolkit. Why was it created? Well, in a nutshell they both "hate the complexity of today's engines" and this toolkit was actually made to help ship A Dark Room for the Nintendo Switch, which shows how versatile it is.

10+ Open Source Software Writing Tools That Every Writer Should Know

Being a professional writer requires two key things to help ensure success: commitment and support. The former comes from the writer, and the latter comes from the tools he (or she) uses to get the job done. Below is a list of 11 great and lesser-known writing tools or apps, many of which are free and open-source, that can help improve the quality of your writing and make you a more productive and successful writer. Read more