Almost exactly two years after the first release of Xfce4 Notifyd, sorry for missing that, 0.2.0 is out.
Most of the work was done by Brian Tarricone, who allowed me to co-maintain this application due to his very limited free time.
The biggest change must be smart notification placement: when there are several notifications, they are placed in a grid-like way, instead of overlapping as they did with the previous version. This also comes with improved support for multiple monitors setups.
We also now support 'gauge' and 'icon-only' notifications as in Canonical's Notify OSD. Xfce4-volumed already uses this to provide a beautiful notification on volume change.
Finally, we are now compatible with the latest specification (0.9) which should fix a great number of issues which happened when applications expected us to be already doing so.
There will be an Xfce booth at OpenRheinRuhr 2010 on the 13th and 14th of November in Oberhausen, Germany, thanks to Enrico Tröger, Christoph Wickert, Mark Trompell and Christian Dywan.
They will be available for any information request, chit chat, technical or philosophical discussion, installation... You can also get some cool Xfce stickers or see the nice Xfce 4.8pre1 running live!
Thank you all four for this nice initiative and for others, don't hesitate to come and say hello!
Nick Schermer is working on the infrastructure for the new documentation. It will be written in Mallard and translatable using Transifex. There are already a few drafts available: Nick made one for Xfce4 Panel (git branch) and Jim Campbell made one for Xfce4 Screenshooter (Bugzilla entry). Once the infrastructure is ready, contributions will be welcome! I will keep you posted.
This is the second BIG thing currently going on: Jannis is porting Xfdesktop4 to GIO. He expects to have it done by the next weekend, the current work is available in a git branch. This is one of the last remaining by tasks for 4.8, so this is a really good news! <bisounours>Rock on!</bisounours>
Xfce Settings Helper
For those of you who care, I implemented two little features last week. First, Xfce now remembers the state of the Numlock when closing the session and restores it on startup. Gone are the days of numlockx \o/. Moreover, for people using xmodmap, the settings helper automatically processes .Xmodmap on start up and when changing the layout/variant using the Xfce settings dialog.
By the way, since my last post about the keyboard settings improvement, I also reviewed/applied a few patches by Martin Pitt and Lionel Le Folgoc which fix some crashes/bugs in the new code.
I fixed a bunch of easy bugs/enhancement requests for Xfrun. It can now handle URLs, opens files with the default handlers, folders with the default file manager... I also fixed history loading for the "Run in terminal" check box, fixed handling of command line options and added "#" as a shortcut to read man pages. I now plan to work on auto completion for path and command.
I also reworked an old patch by Mike Massonnet to improve the look of the Xfce documentation, it looks really neat now. I will try to see if we can use it with the new documentation.
Florian Rivoal, maintainer of xfce4-cpugraph-plugin, launched a "all your unmaintained goodies are belong to me" operation. Basically he offered to maintain a huge number of unmaintained goodies for which there are a great number of patches waiting for review in the Xfce Bugzilla. You can find more details on this thread. This heroic move should not make you forget that contributors/new maintainers are welcome! Florian will not be able to implement new things (or only a limited number) given the work it represents but only to keep those apps functional which is already awesome!
Jannis Pohlmann announced two days ago on the Xfce mailing lists that he started the paperwork needed to register Xfce as a non-profit organization under the German law which would be nice because, I quote:
The benefits are obvious: Xfce would become a legal entity with an official board of directors and we could raise funds in the form of donations and via supporting members in order to organize hackfests etc.
The current draft is available on gitorious. Expect more news on this in the following days and feel free to comment on our mailing lists.
As promised, here comes the post about recent changes in Xfce4 Display Settings. For those who do not know, Xfce4 Display Settings is the dialog which allows you to set the screen resolution, refresh rate, to activate external monitors, etc.In Xfce 4.6, it only had one problem: it was totally useless and not working.
Then came mr_pouit, who decided it was time to clean that mess! He started to dig in the xrandr code to understand how the kryptic Randr API works and to bring that sweet magic to Xfce. So what do we have at the moment?
The new dialog is at the moment almost similar to the old one, except that every thing should work correctly and that it is rocking simple to use! We also added some goodies such as timed confirmation for critical changes and a simple dialog which can be called with the media keys or with Win + P to quickly configure an external output.
But there is more to come! First, we are still working on fixing bugs, simplifying the code to make it rocking stable and awesome like Barney's suit. Then, we are planning a lot of UI improvements, the biggest one being a graphical way of setting the screens' layout : it will allow the user to set the relative positions of external monitors. We hope to have that done in the next two weeks, but it could take a little more time. And yes, that'll mean that 4.8 TODO list will have lost one item
I've seen a lot of people on IRC lately asking why 4.8 was not released on the 12th of June as scheduled. Well, the schedule could not be respected and we currently have no scheduled release date. There is still a lot of work to do and we lost several key contributors and we obviously did not gain new ones...
So if you want to see Xfce 4.8 out, come and help us! We need help to implement the 4.8 features (have a look at the bottom of schedule page, there are links to the goals of each module) and to fix bugs.
A good way to get started is to choose some bugs on the Xfce bugzilla and to submit patches, come and bug us on #xfce to get your patches reviewed (it may take a while but that's definitely useful!). We need a lot more contributors if we want to get things moving forward!
In a post that will follow shortly, I will discuss a merrier topic: the new awesome work of the mighty mr_pouit (his only vice being that he maintains Xubuntu :D) on the display settings dialog (the dialog to set the screen resolution, frequency...). Stay tuned! (Yes, this means we are still active :D)
Alexander Iliev, the current Xfce4 XKB plugin maintainer, sent a message to the goodies-dev ML telling that he is looking for a new maintainer for xfce4-xkb-plugin. Please get in touch with him if you are interested.
xfce4-xkb-plugin currently has 38 open bugs on the Xfce bugzilla, 4 of them have a patch in bugzilla. This plugin to switch between different keyboard layouts has a lot of users, so you'll make a lot of happy users if you start working on this! Xfce needs you!
This post is the first (well, second if you count the one for Xfce4 Screenshooter) of a series of post offering some ways to get involved in Xfce. We need more people if we want to keep improving Xfce!
We are looking for new persons to help us to take care of the Xfce web site. We need a web developer/designer to handle the technical details and someone to improve/update the contents (can be the same person).
Our web site runs a home made PHP based CMS (with no online interface) which we would like to keep (improvements and bug fixes are welcome of course) for the time being. Though, its contents needs some love: some pages are strongly outdated, the style could be refreshed, some pages still use tables for layout, etc. We also need to find a solution for localization: the current system requires the user to translate raw PHP pages and often leads to errors when going live, up to the point that we are considering dropping translations. This will highly depend on the people who get involved in the web site.
The web developer position requires a good PHP, HTML and CSS knowledge to be able to handle the different aspects of the web site. A good command of English to update/rework the different pages and make the web site easier to use, this also requires to follow the Xfce development to update the web site accordingly. Of course, this work can be done as a team if several persons step in. This is a good opportunity to start contributing to the Xfce project and this work will be appreciated by a lot of Xfce users.
Please contact me if you are interested. Thank you in advance!
I recently released Xfce4 Screenshooter 1.7.9. This is a release candidate for the 1.8 branch. It contains a great number of new improvements and bug fixes, listed below.
I recently started to contribute more to the Xfce core, particularly Xfce4 Session and Xfce4 Settings (I'll try to blog more about that later), which leaves me very little time for Xfce4 Screenshooter. I would like to find someone to take over the maintenance of this projet, if you feel motivated please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org or jeromeg in #xfce on freenode). Obviously, some basic knowledge of English (to communicate with the rest of the Xfce team and to develop the UI) and knowing C is required. If you are not used to the gtk/glib API, I'm ready to do some mentoring during a transitional phase. Anyway, I would be happy to explain the current code organization, the main issues, the weak areas, etc. This is a good opportunity to join a nice community which needs more contributors to keep rocking!
**Edit**: Bruno Ramos kindly volunteered for this! \o/ For other people interested in contributing, I'll post in the next few days on a few Xfce goodies which need a new maintainer. Please also remember that patches for bugs opened in the bugzilla are a great way to start contributing. Do not hesitate to join #xfce on freenode if you have any questions.
The XMLRPC-C dependency has been replaced by libsoup.
Gtk 2.14 is now required to compile.
Switch to a non-recursive Makefile.am. This reduces the build time and centralizes the build information.
Scrolling the panel plugin button changes the area to be captured.
When compositing is on, use a nice partially transparent rubber-banding, still needs some polishing.
F1 opens the help page.
Automatically fill the title and comment fields in the ZimageZ upload information dialog.
Make enter validate the upload in the ZimageZ upload information dialog.
Use the XDG image directory as the default directory for saving screenshots. If it does not exist, fall back to $HOME.
Major interface rethinking. This new interface is based on a suggestion by Yves-Alexis Pérez. The former main dialog is split into two dialogs: one for selecting the region to be captured and the delay, while the second one displays a preview of the screenshot and lists the available actions. The main application shows the first dialog, then the second one. If one of the region CLI options is given, the screenshot is taken accordingly and the second dialog is displayed. The panel plugin uses the first dialog as a configuration dialog. When you click the plugin, the screenshot is taken and the second dialog is shown.
Allow drag and dropping of the preview to other applications in order to paste the screenshot (Mike Massonnet).
UTF-8 characters in user name or password caused a login failure.
Fix all warnings triggered by running autogen.sh.
Fix the ZimageZ upload when behind a proxy.
Fix copying of links in the ZimageZ upload finished dialog.
Fix 100% CPU usage when selecting a region in a non composited environment (spotted by Gauvain Pocentek).
When capturing a window with rounded corners, don't capture the background of the window but make the screenshot transparent instead.
Make sure the save folder in the panel plugin preferences is valid.
Don't show the copy to clipboard option in the application if no clipboard manager is running as the screenshot won't be preserved after closing the application anyway in that case.
Allow xfce4-screenshooter -r to be used as a command for a keybinding.
Allow silent build.
Fix most pre-build warnings.
Escape screenshots path when opening them with an application.
Plug some leaks in the application and in the panel plugin.
Do not accept conflicting CLI options. Warn the user when he uses CLI options which are not coherent.
Correctly save preferences, even if the rc file does not exist (Mike Massonnet).
One second is now the minimal delay when using the interactive mode. This caused the screenshooter dialog to be partially displayed on the screenshot in some cases.
A lot of updated translations for the application, the panel plugin and the documentation. Thanks to the Xfce translation team!