Greybird 3.20.1 released (mostly bugfixes)

Plank theme (by Sean Davis)
theme for Plank (a simple dock) by Sean

So the first bugfix release for Greybird 3.20 is here and while the changelog isn’t an overly exciting read, there are some goodies in this one!

The single new feature in this – otherwise – bugfix release is a Greybirdy theme for Plank (a simple dock), contributed by Sean.

Other than that I have tweaked or fixed the following:

  • less padding on some widgets, e.g. buttons (makes the whole theme feel more like the original and matches Gtk2)
  • less bold input focus line on GtkEntries
  • improved progressbar theming (no more tiny artifacts when the fraction is 0.00), also fixes LP #1617705
  • tweak the look of OSDs
  • mention librsvg build-dependency in the README


Featurette: xfce4-notifyd 0.3.2 released

This release came a bit sooner than expected, but it’s primary goal is to fix a showstopper regression which slipped into 0.3.1 and practically rendered xfce4-notifyd useless on systems with Gtk+3 <=3.18 (i.e. not showing any notifications). Thanks to Olivier for noticing immediately and posting a patch!

the “Retro” and “Bright” themes

But while this had to be a fast release I still managed to put in some feature-goodness. For instance I came through on my promise to add more default themes and in this release I added “Retro” and “Bright“.

(symbolic) audio volume icon recolored ZOMG-PONIES! style

The biggest feature in this release however is the support for symbolic icons. For those of you who haven’t heard of the feature before: it’s basically Gtk+ coloring your icon with the color of the font of that particular context, so the icon will color-wise match the font. This is especially useful for monochrome icons and (usually) prevents white-on-white scenarios. It also gives users and theme-makers more freedom (instead of having a “dark panel” or a separate “dark notifications” variant of an icon-theme). Note that your notification-sending application also has to request a symbolic icon, xfce4-notifyd is not enforcing symbolic icons.

Another notable fix (that I forgot to mention in the release notes) is the fix of styles of the progressbars in notifications. Those were not styled according to the notifyd-theme selected but always used the style of the base (as in: screen-wide) Gtk+ theme.

Finally, a minor improvement is that all themes are now sorted alphabetically in the Settings Dialog.

With this bugfix release out of the way it won’t be long until I merge my feature branch and get more testing for the “Do not disturb” mode.


Bugfixes incoming: xfce4-notifyd 0.3.1 released!


More good news in notification-land: I just released a new version of xfce4-notifyd – aka 0.3.1 – which fixes some nasty issues, amongst others

  • memory leaks (thanks Tony!)
  • an issue which caused build problems on Gtk<=3.18 systems (thanks Michał!)

I also added a Help button which links to the docs I wrote for notifyd a while ago:

I hope this will make 0.3 smoother in everyone’s daily usage and the Gtk+3 port more regression-free.

Read more here:

Upcoming changes

On the plate for the next release are more default themes (hint: “Retro” has already been pushed to git master) and potentially the per-application settings and “Do not disturb” mode which I previously teased. The latter might also warrant a major version number bump so we’ll see whether it’ll really end up in 0.3.2.

Stay tuned!

Preview: Per application settings and Do-not-disturb mode in xfce4-notifyd

Per application settingsAs previously announced I’ve been working on per-application settings and a “Do not disturb” mode for xfce4-notifyd, which is Xfce’s notification daemon.

Finally I’ve come to a point where I’m ok with pointing to the code and encouraging people to try it and spot potential issues with it. As both of these features have been long-time requested I hope it’ll Do not disturb modemake quite a few people happy. I know I’ve been quite happy myself since I can use it 🙂

The way that the “known applications” are handled by xfce4-notifyd is that they are remembered once they have sent a notification. This means that you can only mute applications which have – at some point since you’ve been running the code from the branch – actually sent notifications. I’ve been previously thinking about trying to collect all potential candidates somehow but this turned out too pesky and personally I think most users will want to mute those applications that send notifications often and those will quickly appear in that (alphabetically sorted) list.

Caveats: Some of this isn’t final – I might still be updating the wording on some of the labels or even some of the functionality might be amended a little, but generally I’m quite pleased with how things are working. Furthermore there may be memory leaks, I just haven’t had the time to really get to that (bugreports and patches are warmly welcomed ;)).

If you have feedback or suggestions please feel free to add some comments to this post or contact me on other communication channels.

So here’s the code:

Related bugreports:

Greybird 3.20.0 (to be clear: with support for Gtk+3.20) released

Finally – 5 months after the release of Gtk+3.20 – I’m happy to announce the release of the first version of Greybird supporting it.

Why has it taken so long? – you

The Widget Factory - 3.20
The Widget Factory – 3.20

may ask yourselves – and one reason was certainly me being totally busy with other things, but another one was that Ubuntu didn’t ship it in its 16.04 LTS release (which was a totally sane decision, by the way). Because of the latter it took some time before the issue of having a theme that supports Gtk+3.20 became pressing enough for me to take action.

Anyway, now it is done. (At least mostly.)

While porting the theme (in this case really: porting, not just: adding support for) I also decided to rebase it on Adwaita. Over the last releases so much stuff had piled up, so many quick fixes or patching up visual nuisances to support “the next Gtk+ release” that the theme had become an unmaintainable jungle – I frankly couldn’t have told you which line mattered anymore. While rebasing, I also went from CSS to SASS, which was the only right decision, as I’m sure now after having gone through with it. It made the code so much more maintainable and readable (kind of reminding me of the first Gtk+3 releases, when themes were still a lot leaner in terms of LOC).

So yeah, I’m pretty happy with where this has been going. There are still some rough edges (e.g. progressbars are probably not 100% greybirdy) and things I haven’t added support back for (e.g. elementary’s Granite widgets), but I think what is there now warrants an initial release as things still look consistent between Gtk+2 and Gtk+3 applications.

One final note: Greybird has recently switched to a new versioning scheme, which basically mirrors the Gtk+3 release numbers the theme works best with.


Xfce goings on (Gtk+3 port etc.)

So I’ve been busy lately porting Xfce apps and components to Gtk+3 (you can see on the roadmap page for 4.14 that we’ve come some way already – only the really uncomfortable behemoths are missing 🙂 ) and since I’ve been working on apps which I haven’t touched before (and which haven’t really seen much or any development in a while).

I thought I’d do a quick overview of some of my recent activities so everyone knows Xfce is still alive.

gtk-paste  clipman

I have ported clipman to Gtk+3 mostly as an exercise, to get back to coding and to re-acquaint myself with the “fun” that is porting to Gtk+3 (including the obligatory #ifdefs for different Gtk+3 releases).

I didn’t really have the energy to add any new features there (apart from general Gtk+3 stuff like symbolic icons, which is nice for the panel plugin), but it had the intended effect for me plus Eric and Florian helped out, which made it more fun. In the end we even got Steve to sit down and crank out a very nice fix for an extremely widespread issue in Xfce.

notifyconf  notifyd

Basically Ali did all the hard work of porting notifyd to Gtk+3. I was left with the hard work of polishing the edges and making it release-ready (which ended up being much more work than I anticipated and now that I’m mostly familiar with the codebase I’ve also started to add – for now: small – features). So yeah, 0.3.0 is out! Hooray! 🙂

I also managed to write down some basic docs for notifyd (they’ll be linked to in the 0.3.1 release) which also explains the theming aspect a little bit.

For now I’ve planned some features – we’ll see when and if I get to them, but amongst others:

  • “Do not disturb” mode (still have to figure out where and how to display the “missed” stuff or whether to bother with that at all)
  • More themes by default (currently we only have good ‘ol Smoke and evergreen ZOMG PONIES!)
  • More bugfixing
  • Better docs

preferences-desktop  settings

This is actually Sean’s project and he already ported most of the dialogs (only display missing at the time of writing) and this is really exciting as it is one of the core components. Can’t wait to install this beast on a productive machine to see what will happen 🙂

libxfce4ui  libxfce4ui

I didn’t do much here apart from handling the release and fixing the theming of XfceTitledDialog for Gtk3.20 (and below) in accordance with the Gtk+ Devs (still unreleased, will come with libxfce4ui-4.13.1). Generally speaking now that Glade support is fixed and we have working dialogs I guess there’s not much more to do in that lib (I may be wrong though).

terminal  terminal

This is Igor’s playground now, I merely helped with porting the settings dialog and getting rid of some rough edges there. I’m using the Gtk+3 port of the terminal on a daily basis though and am very happy with it – nice work Igor! 🙂

Xubuntu 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus” Released

Here we are again, folks. After six more months of development (two years since the last LTS), we’ve got another fantastic release — Xubuntu 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus”!  I wanted to find a nice squirrel quote, but it seems most folks have a horrific dislike for the little critters. — Myself, after looking up squirrel … Continue reading Xubuntu 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus” Released

Translation Updates!

Some releases are notable only for their improved translations.  LightDM GTK+ Greeter Settings 1.2.1, MenuLibre 2.1.3, and Xfce Panel Switch 1.0.4 are such releases. Translation Updates LightDM GTK+ Greeter Settings Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Catalan, Chinese (Simplified), Croatian, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Japanese, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Spanish MenuLibre Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese (Simplified), Croatian, Czech, … Continue reading Translation Updates!

Road to Xfce 4.14

The looong road to xfce 4.14. I hope you still want some news about Xfce !
As usual, the xfce development is slow, has some organisation problems (only few members have access to servers, and are often not present), and lack “core” maintainers/mentors. But hey, we do our best :).

The bigger change for 4.14 is the port / upgrade to GTK+ 3.x.
It will be a like-for-like port. New and “big” features are postponed to 4.16.

You can read the thread on the ML about the decision of only port to gtk3 and not introduce any new features for now.

The roadmap is available on the Wiki : The minimum requiered version has been fixed to be GTK+ 3.14.

Roadmap / Planned Features :

  • All components of -core will be ported to Gtk+ 3.
  • Replace dbus-glib with GDbus.
  • Review icon-names in all components and use consistent naming, following the fd.o spec where possible
  • Use symbolic icons for panel plugins and in apps where suitable
  • Replace deprecated widgets.

Here is a quick (and somewhat incomplete) overview of what is already done !

Core components

Work is on progress for core components, with “users” branches availables on (xfce4-panel, libxfce4ui, xfce4-session, panel etc). Nothing really available for daily use though.

Lots of works on xfwm4’ compositor (in master), with implementation of vsync using OpenGL, libepoxy support, adding of DRI3/Present to the compositor, use of GLX for compositing instead of Xrender…

Libxfce4ui 4.12 already compile with gtk2 and gtk3 support, exo git master have a gtk3 preliminary support, garcon is already ported. xfdesktop have a gtk3 branch

The panel support GTK-3 plugins since 4.12, but it core need to be upgraded to use gtk3.


One of the most active project. Version 1.6 (released last month) is a complete port to gtk3 and gdbus, see


A GTK3 branch exist, you can read the thread on the ML : I use it since few months, and it works pretty well :)


xfce4-appfinder progress to gtk3 :
Can you guess which one use GTK3 ? (hint: the left one ;)) xfce4-appfinder gtk3


Some plugins are still active, and are already ported to GTK-3 (xfce4-indicator-plugin, xfce4-pulseaudio-plugin), as xfce4-panel support both gtk2 and gtk3 plugins.

Last months have seen new versions of xfce4-equake-plugin, xfce4-embed-plugin, xfce4-verve-plugin, xfce4-notes-plugin, xfce4-cpufreq-plugin.

One of the more usefull new plugin is the pulseaudio-plugin, a replacement for xfce4-mixer :, I use it and it works well.

xfce4-notifyd gtk3

Stay tuned !

Catfish 1.3.4 Released (New PPA)

With a slew of updates and a new build system, Catfish 1.3.4 is now available! This update fixes a number of bugs, adds initial support for PolicyKit, and introduces a new PPA for Ubuntu users. What’s New? New Features Initial PolicyKit integration for requesting administrative rights to update the search database. Bug Fixes Fixes for … Continue reading Catfish 1.3.4 Released (New PPA)