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Release Digest: GNOME, May 30, 2002

May 31, 2002, 05:00 (0 Talkback[s])



(Note for those that don't want to read further: if you want a stable
 gdm, use the version)

IMPORTANT! people that change their sessions cripts should read the
first point in the NEWS section!

Yes, what you have feared the most has happened.  There is a new development
gdm release waiting for you on the servers so that you may go download it,
compile it and hose your system.  Actually it hasn't done that for weeks now
for me so perhaps it won't behave badly for you as well.  Standard warnings
about unstable software apply, but we are getting close to stability now.

What's new?  Fixes, fixes, and some more fixes, and a few more sanity checks
and the like.  In fact the daemon now has better behaviour on some systems
then 2.2.x ever had.

So this is an UNSTABLE release, using UNSTABLE libraries, and of course
there are no rpms.  Use if you want something that pretends to
be stable.

And now for the standard part of the release announcement:

Ahh, so you have no clue what gdm is?  Well if you've read this far ... let's
not get into that.  Gdm is GNOME Display Manager, the little daemon that lets
you log in to your computer.  It allows xdmcp multiple login displays,
selection of languages, multiple login sessions and generally is much cooler
then any xdm clone out there, mostly cuz it isn't an xdm clone to begin with.
I mean heck, it's even got a graphical configurator, so you don't have to use
the command line to hose your system anymore.


Highlights of "Stop Biting Yourself!!!!" release:

- IMPORTANT: Change the behaviour of session scripts.  Now gdm will
  automatically start writing output to ~/.xsession-errors for EVERY
  session file and not just in the Xsession file.  Well every file
  except the failsafe ones (including sessions named 'Failsafe')

- More error checking.  Check if we messed up writing the auth stuff
  and give an error, also check if the session lasted less then 10
  seconds in which case give a warning rather then silently fail.

- Don't init gnome in the daemon, this should fix a whole bunch
  of random issues and crashes.  Also don't init gnome in the

- Use setresuid to fix setuid problem with the failsafe gtk stuff.

- Browser now gets the pictures through a pipe rather then through
  temporary files.  This is much nicer.

- Fix hostname and interface querying.  Should work better on "broken"
  setups now.

- Fix focus issues on the failsafe stuff

- Fix autologin stuff (should fix #68160)

- Use BSDs setusercontext if found.  This is not fully tested as
  I don't have a BSD box.

- Add greeter/MinimalUID which is the minimal UID to show in the
  browser and in the dropdown lists in gdmsetup

- Don't exclude people from the browser that have '*' in the password
  field as that could be legitimate

- Fix xnest flexi server on nfs mounted home dirs with root squashing.
  This required a protocol change to the socket protocol, but I don't
  think anything outside of gdmflexiserver is using it (and it will
  fail gracefully anyway), fixes #82122

- Some random UI issues fixed (#80038, and others)

- The graphical greeter is now translatable (and thus translated into
  more languages)

- I bet no one reads these long NEWS sections anyway.

- Photosetup now always copies to .gnome/photo, even if the picture
  is in the pixmaps directory

- Few crashes fixed

- Build fixes, among others #79374 (Christophe Merlet, Carlos Perello
  Marin, me)

- Translation updates (Vincent van Adrighem, Duarte Loreto, Kjartan Maraas,
  Stanislav Visnovsky, Christian Rose, Zbigniew Chyla, GNOME PL Team,
  Ole Laursen, Young-Ho Cha, Changwoo Ryu, Abel Cheung, Simos Xenitellis, me)

Note:  Gdm2 was originally written by Martin K. Petersen , and
is now maintained by the Queen of England.  Although when she's not answering
her email I usually cover for her.

Note2:  If installing from the tarball do note that make install overwrites
most of the setup files, all except gdm.conf and gnomerc.  It will however
save backups with the .orig extension first.

Note3:  Distributors, packagers.  Please, PLEASE use the standard Gnome script
when setting things up as gnome, or at least equivalently working scripts.  It
should never be OK to just exec gnome-session, that is considered bad form.
The script needs to read (if available) the ~/.gnomerc and otherwise read
the /gdm/gnomerc file.  This allows users and administrators to
setup custom startup for gnome.

Note4:  Distributors, packagers.  PLEASE DO NOT PACKAGE AND DISTRIBUTE THIS
VERSION AS STABLE SOFTWARE.  It's not stable.  It could be broken.  And it
runs as root.  You get the idea.


Have fun,


PS:  Since last time I picked on the French, I will this time pick on the
English.  I think the English wear silly hats, pronnounce things funny and
drink warm beer.  Next time I think I may pick on the Germans.  Germans could
be cool if they only were not Germans but were Czech.  This is true of a lot
of nations in fact.  Except the English who couldn't be cool even if they were
Czech.  Czechs are the coolest nation on the earth.  I mean it's not because
I'm czech and I want to brag.  It's just a fact.  In fact anytime I say
something good about myself or something I am associated with, it is a fact.
Also anytime someone else says anything good it's bragging, except when they
said something good about me.  By this logic, I'm the most humble person on
earth.  Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah ...

PS2:  If you are wondering about the release name:  I bit myself friday, and
it still hurts.  IT HURTS BAD DAMN IT!

   In the fight between you and the world, back the world.
                       -- Franz Kafka

gswitchit_applet 0.92
libxklavier 0.2

This announce can be interesting to some strange people still using
GNOME 1 with non-default XKB layouts.

After several months of development and discussing, new version 0.92 of
the famous XKB state indicator GSwitchIt is released. Now users have to
install brand new library libxklavier targeted as universal toolkit for
any XKB-oriented software (for KDE/Gkrellm/WindowMaker/CDE/...). 

Also, this release introduces XML-based XKB configuration registry.
Hopefully, this registry will be later incorporated into XFree 4.3.0 -
but for a moment just install it separately.

What's new:
- XKB configuration capplet. Now each user can have its own XKB
configuration without dealing with personal XFree configuration files.
- Separation of the library caused major internal changes. I expect a
lot of bug reports...

As a bonus feature, new capplet offers preview of the configuration
using xkbprint utility and GGV. Actually, any bonobo control for
postscript would be OK but, for a moment, only GGV 1.1.96 is suitable.

Great credits to:
  Ivan Pascal and Andriy Rysin - for hot discussions in
  Jaka Mocnik - for GGV 1.1.96

So, the final thing - where to get it. Since is not updated yet - just go to

Eagerly waiting for bug reports,