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#1 2020-01-17 00:15:24

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Goodbye XFWM4 window borders.
https://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2020/01/xfc … decoration

I love how these article writers try so hard to lead The Reader to the conclusion that they want them to reach.
Essentially, it boils down to "We are going to do what we want, take away what you have and you are going to like it."

Let's read:

But before you cry tears over the loss of traditional app menus I should stress that the plan is to go full CSD, not full GTK header. It’s a subtle sounding difference, but an important one.

Essentially, it is creating the huge GTK header bars, but lacking the features and functionality that they offer. So it's the WORST aspect of the GTK3 headers and CSD. While GTK3 and CSD is more problem than solution, at least Gnome combined the titlebar, headerbar and toolbar into one to offer something for it. I still hate it.
But this? This is just the shell of it without having the bone tossed to us to keep us from growling. It makes no sense. And the author suggests that "before we cry tears?" Perhaps because we should be grabbing our torches and pitchforks, instead.
XFWM4 Is The Reason Many of Us Are HERE.

But on the other hand it could mean the end of xfwm4 themes — which some may miss.

Some may miss? Leading, much? MOST would miss. In fact, it is the very reason so many XFCE users switched away from Gnome and came to XFCE. SOME would miss? Who are they kidding?!
Marco is one of the Strongest Reasons for Mate/Cinammon making Linux Mint such a success is the Window Borders we can control, we can manage, we can decorate.
The article author is trying so hard to convince us to be happy to allow all that to be deprecated in XFWM for XFCE.

The benefits of switching to CSD for dialogs is rather clear: reduces wasted space

This statement is false. It cannot reduce wasted space when it is replacing the small window border with a HUGE FUNCTIONALLY USELESS header bar that is Much larger and does Nothing. At least the terrible Gnome3 Headerbar has buttons on it.

Word that Xfce is making major visual changes may sound scary

Translation: "We know you won't like this stupid change, but shut up and take it."
The author put fingers to keyboard fully aware that they were delivering Bad News and put a great deal of effort into trying to trick the reader into getting something out of it than the obvious "here's your shaft."


It really is bad enough that Mate, based on the continuation of Gnome2 went Full Gnome3 making excuses all the while. Mate, now, is mostly a superfluous desktop environment, bug ridden but at least it offers Marco, a window manager that allows us to kind of work with it. Face it, Marco is the only reason Mate Desktop is still around. It's fake gtk2 on GTK3 is no boon.
But now XFCE is considering becoming as superfluous as Mate but without even offering the Window Manager (taking that away) and without even offering the Full HeaderBar of Gnome (Which while contemptuous, is at least usable.) It offers all the worst of a Desktop Environment and none of the meager benefits that we had left?!
Talk about Bad Decision making. Talk about complete disregard of the User base. Talk about Poor Planning.
It Makes No Sense. "Scary?" No. STUPID.

All the development of XFCE 4.16 says is "XFCE is now a dead end and no longer a viable alternative to the Gnome-Trap. Time to look elsewhere."

We all need to shut up, give up, switch to Microsoft Gnome and learn how to just Take It.

Last edited by Aravisian (2020-01-17 00:25:07)

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#2 2020-01-17 22:17:14

ozjd
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From: Hawkesbury NSW Australia
Registered: 2012-02-05
Posts: 560
Website

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

For the actual plans look at the Xfce wiki rather than a third party report. https://wiki.xfce.org/releng/4.16/roadm … ral_ui/csd

That said I agree it is a poor decision made by one or two developers without input from other especially not the users. I suspect 4.16 will see a lot of people move away from Xfce and the first to go will be those who came here to get away from Gnome. Last thing we need is Xfce to become Gnome Light.

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#3 2020-01-17 22:35:25

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

ozjd wrote:

For the actual plans look at the Xfce wiki rather than a third party report. https://wiki.xfce.org/releng/4.16/roadm … ral_ui/csd

Thanks for the link. Accuracy is much more preferred over guesswork.

ozjd wrote:

That said I agree it is a poor decision made by one or two developers without input from other especially not the users. I suspect 4.16 will see a lot of people move away from Xfce and the first to go will be those who came here to get away from Gnome. Last thing we need is Xfce to become Gnome Light.

Well Said!

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#4 2020-01-29 03:50:59

mauser
Member
Registered: 2019-01-23
Posts: 25

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

That's awful! Why don't the Xfce developers fix instead the windows that won't resize no matter what you do and fix the windows that won't resize when you click on the square in the header boarder? This idea is going to CSD style is going to ruin Xfce.


I am command line illiterate. I use MX Linux 19.

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#5 2020-02-04 16:42:57

sbedi
Member
Registered: 2020-02-04
Posts: 2

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

I am not sure whether I like this change to CSD. I don't care about the looks of little dialog boxes. But when it comes to applications I really like some features of xfwm4 that I found missing in GNOME.

As of my understanding when clients are in charge of the window decoration, then they are also in charge of handling the windows and therefore the features available for users. I am using features like maximizing horizontally and vertically as well as tiling to the corners quite often. I also make heavy use of customizable keyboard bindings (comes handy when I need to conntect to a remote Windows system hmm).

So my question is, will features like those be still available? I haven't found a final answer to that question on the internet (or maybe I'm not good enough at duckduckgoing or googling).

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#6 2020-02-04 17:13:53

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,272

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Hello and welcome to the forums sbedi.

You might want to look at the following links for some more information, but it looks like xfwm will lose functionality as a result of this change.

Also, that other thread has some more discussion about the CSD change.

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#7 2020-02-04 19:19:52

denyer
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From: UK
Registered: 2018-10-20
Posts: 26
Website

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

sbedi wrote:

As of my understanding when clients are in charge of the window decoration, then they are also in charge of handling the windows and therefore the features available for users. I am using features like maximizing horizontally and vertically as well as tiling to the corners quite often. I also make heavy use of customizable keyboard bindings (comes handy when I need to conntect to a remote Windows system hmm).

So my question is, will features like those be still available?

If you use CSD applications in Xfce such as Chrome or Gnome Disks, the vertical maximising already isn't available. Left/right/corner tiling works though -- if it didn't, things like browsers would be very difficult to use.

With Gnome applications it'll take work by the GTK developers (and presumably some by window manager developers as well) to support these kinds of window manager functions. I'm reasonably optimistic it'll happen eventually as more and more people encounter CSD apps and there's more uproar, but that's not much consolation in the interim. Personally for the time being I've switched to another DE (Plasma) for a daily driver PC rather than watching this one break piece by piece -- it won't be as noticeable on a laptop where everything tends to get maximised or tiled.

I think it's very disappointing that the main way a switch to CSD has been pitched is for aesthetics and a  small and arguable amount of screen space.

TL;DR, hopefully that GTK level development will happen at some point to add in functionality but I think it's largely out of the control of Xfce devs.

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#8 2020-02-05 17:16:51

vinox
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Registered: 2020-01-27
Posts: 24

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Oh dear, I just read the linked article and the comments here.

I'm using XFCE on my laptops since 2014 and have now also migrated my workstation from Windows to XFCE, because I'm so happy with it.
I don't know why some developers always need to change things for "progress", when there's actually nothing wrong with the existing design.

KDE/Plasma is not really an option for me, since it feels so bloated and I'm not really into eyecandy, I just want to work. Plus my experience with KDE was/is, that it tends to crash - not as much as years ago, but it still feels like a massive cruiseship with all kinds of bells and whistles I never need compared to the fast, elegant and classic approach that Xfce took.

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#9 2020-02-06 00:02:20

denyer
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From: UK
Registered: 2018-10-20
Posts: 26
Website

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

For what it's worth, I've turned most animations, translucency and other gimmicks off. Memory usage is very light and I'm not noticing a performance difference on an eight-year-old machine (the ThinkCentre M92p was a decent enough workstation at time of release, but not amazing). No need to reinstall or stability issues. The System Settings app packs a lot in but most things aren't going to get changed more than once, and after that the environment stays out of the way as a desktop environment should.

I've been keeping a few notes -- https://virtualdebris.co.uk/blog/0508A1 … -way-round

If devs resisted the urge to put non-wm elements into a wm area (i.e. not use headerbar functionality) users could probably be left with the option of normal Xfwm4 handling even if that code was left less maintained. Not sure why the Settings application needs a search box, for instance.

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#10 2020-02-07 11:26:51

sbedi
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Registered: 2020-02-04
Posts: 2

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Just out of curiosity: Does someone know how tiling window managers handle csd applications? Their whole concept depends on that the wm has complete control over the application window

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#11 2020-02-14 01:09:41

peter.48
Member
Registered: 2017-01-31
Posts: 24

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

It took me many years (8-9) to switch from Win to Linux for the simple reason that when I tried it or just looked at it, it was always GNOME, which was enough to remove my desire to change. The moment I've falled into XFCE and LXDE, it was instantaneous - the same day I downloaded both and in the second pc I started tests to choose one of the two. The balance has been set to xfce, and so it continues to this day. But with 4.14 I've already started having my doubts and right now I see that if 4.16 will adopt CSD, I'm going to switch to Mate, LXDE or Cinnamon (with disgust but yes).
I've always been curious why developers make decisions like this, alone, without asking what those who use their creations want or would want (Firefox is best exemple). Why are the others who know BETTER THAN ME what I like and what is best for me (MS as an absolute record of this knowledge). Are they, by any chance, superior beings in possession of absolute truth? After all, they create it for us, not for an exhibition...
Vinox has written:"I don't know why some developers always need to change things for "progress", when there's actually nothing wrong with the existing design."
The continuous changes have been invented by E.Bernays as a commercial concept precisely to hide the lack of progress and to give the impression that progress is made...
Without any bad thoughts but with a little sarcasm I ask if it wouldn't be better to destine the energy to polish details of already existing things that need it (for example 4 years of development and we have problem with "action buttons" icons, this is ridiculous...).
Another thing: in illustrations presented by devs I see only windows of things that we practically only use after installing new OS, to configure it (Panel Preferences, Appareance, Color Profiles etc.), in everything I use daily I only see thin title bar and even thinner menu bar (which nota bene I consider much more practical and ergonomic than "hamburger").
XFCE is to my thin knowledge more flexible and gives more possibilities of customization than others DE, which is its strength. Why cut the branch on which we sit?

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#12 2020-02-14 01:24:12

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Peter.48, glad to know you found a desktop to replace the Vampire you had before.
I hear your pain because my story is similar. I notice that there are two threads on this forum alone- multiples elsewhere in Reddit, Mint forums etc.
And new posts from others who are not repeatedly posting in the thread pop up and say what you have said.
I have not yet seen one single post that says, "I like CSD! I think these changes are necessary and great! Onward!" Those that express support are often apathetic (they don't care one way or the other) or only mildly supportive, as they would be fine with it if it could be turned off or they guess they could live with it and the developers prerogative wins them over.
For the sake of being fair- I would encourage anyone that has currently witness a strong proclamation of support to post a link to it in these threads.

It makes me wonder... I am confident that the developers are aware of these discussions. Will it reach them or fall on deaf ears?

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#13 2020-02-14 02:17:28

mauser
Member
Registered: 2019-01-23
Posts: 25

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

@peter.48 I agree with you 100%. You said it best and I doubt anyone could say it any better. It's the biggest mistake for the developers to ignore the Xfce users base. It would be wise to at least have an election on it. Only time will tell what the Xfce developers decide to leave it alone and don't break what's not broken? --snip--  If it's the later I see a mass exodus leaving Xfce and going to either Mate or KDE.

Last edited by ToZ (2020-02-14 05:22:00)


I am command line illiterate. I use MX Linux 19.

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#14 2020-02-14 05:21:16

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,272

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

As I've mentioned before, I understand this is going to be a sensitive and heated topic. I think it's important that it is being discussed and that people be allowed to voice their opinions, thoughts and ideas in a constructive and respectful way. I have directed the developers to these threads in hopes that they will read and understand our concerns.

I just don't see how perpetuating memes about the Titanic adds to this dialog. I have snipped this from the previous post and ask that we all focus on the constructive dialog that we have going.

Thank you.

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#15 2020-02-14 05:25:55

mauser
Member
Registered: 2019-01-23
Posts: 25

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

CSD Poll. Please vote to show the Xfce developers what we think of the CSD idea.                            https://linkto.run/p/09R1M1FO                                                                                         https://linkto.run/r/09R1M1FO


I am command line illiterate. I use MX Linux 19.

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#16 2020-02-14 06:25:31

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

ToZ wrote:

I just don't see how perpetuating memes about the Titanic adds to this dialog. I have snipped this from the previous post and ask that we all focus on the constructive dialog that we have going.

Toz, if I may,

I do not see how someone voicing their opinion with an image is a terrible thing. He voiced it in words, too. Mauser clearly stated that he thinks that a change to the way that XFCE works (which is a way that many migrants to XFCE preferred over Gnome) may "sink XFCE."
That is a viable and fair opinion. At this time, we have no measure that opinion lacks merit.
It may not be seen as "constructive" in the sense that it suggests a programming option... But it is constructive in that it represents a warning of what may happen to XFCE if there is a mass leaving.
To put this into perspective- I already have.
I have been using Cinnamon since not too long into this thread. Granted, that started because I was building a Cinnamon D.E. theme... But as this thread progressed and I became more disenchanted with how things were being handled up on high, I just have not felt like logging into the XFCE desktop. I have a couple times, yet it was brief while I created an XFWM4 theme and then I went back to my current D.E.
Now, in fairness, that was the second post depicting XFCE being sunk by an iceberg and the first post, as far as I know, is still there. No one got inflamed then. Perhaps you could argue that two posts of the same image was more than enough as we got it the first time.
Even so, the image posted represented the free expression of a persons thoughts on the matter and if any of us get too carried away with accusing others of being destructive based on that measure alone- it worries me greatly of whether there IS the free exchange of ideas.
This post if intended to be food for thought to be considered toward the future, not intended to say that the overall experience of these discussions has been restrictive-  I do not believe it has been. Until now.

EDIT:
I just noticed the thread that was created solely for a POLL on the topic to gauge how others feel and to separate it out from being deluged with discussion has been locked shut.
I disagree with this action. Strongly.
Allow me to explain how this Appears:
It makes it look like the Poll was silenced before it began in order to prevent there being a One Stop Shop to see a concise representation of user votes.
It makes it easier to suggest that people were too busy to try to wade through lengthy threads of lots of discussion allowing them to say they could not gauge a concise representation of user votes.
I am not suggesting that such was your intention; however that it can easily appear that way. Some may confront that, but the general trend of people is to walk away in silence shaking their head and avoiding confrontation so for every one that confronts it, you can be sure many walked off thinking it that you never confirmed.
I would encourage that Mausers suggestions of a Direct Simple Poll to be Reconsidered.
Heavily. That idea is an excellent one.

Last edited by Aravisian (2020-02-14 06:34:10)

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#17 2020-02-14 06:36:50

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,272

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Aravisian wrote:

Now, in fairness, that was the second post depicting XFCE being sunk by an iceberg and the first post, as far as I know, is still there.

I've just noticed it and removed it as well.

Even so, the image posted represented the free expression of a persons thoughts on the matter and if any of us get too carried away with accusing others of being destructive based on that measure alone- it worries me greatly of whether there IS the free exchange of ideas.
This post if intended to be food for thought to be considered toward the future, not intended to say that the overall experience of these discussions has been restrictive-  I do not believe it has been. Until now.

I'm sorry Aravisian, but I disagree. We can have respectful, constructive discussions without resorting to these types of comments.

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#18 2020-02-14 06:38:50

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,272

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

Aravisian wrote:

EDIT:
I just noticed the thread that was created solely for a POLL on the topic to gauge how others feel and to separate it out from being deluged with discussion has been locked shut.
I disagree with this action. Strongly.
Allow me to explain how this Appears:
It makes it look like the Poll was silenced before it began in order to prevent there being a One Stop Shop to see a concise representation of user votes.
It makes it easier to suggest that people were too busy to try to wade through lengthy threads of lots of discussion allowing them to say they could not gauge a concise representation of user votes.
I am not suggesting that such was your intention; however that it can easily appear that way. Some may confront that, but the general trend of people is to walk away in silence shaking their head and avoiding confrontation so for every one that confronts it, you can be sure many walked off thinking it that you never confirmed.
I would encourage that Mausers suggestions of a Direct Simple Poll to be Reconsidered.
Heavily. That idea is an excellent one.

Just trying to keep things clean. Having multiple CSD threads will only be confusing. If I could have moved the thread and attached it to an existing one, I would of. I asked the poster to do it and he did. The post is still there The post is now in an active thread and everyone is encouraged to participate in the poll.

Last edited by ToZ (2020-02-14 06:41:06)

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#19 2020-02-14 06:48:39

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

ToZ wrote:

I'm sorry Aravisian, but I disagree. We can have respectful, constructive discussions without resorting to these types of comments.

I disagree with you on this, as well. I do not think that his imagery was destructive nor out of line but removing it toes the line. I have already stated my thoughts on this, however and that record stands.

ToZ wrote:

Just trying to keep things clean. Having multiple CSD threads will only be confusing. If I could have moved the thread and attached it to an existing one, I would of. I asked the poster to do it and he did. The post is still there The post is now in an active thread and everyone is encouraged to participate in the poll.

I apologize. I had a misunderstanding of my own- I thought that thread Served the poll. I see Mausers link TO the poll, now. In my defense, in my experience on different forums, a Thread could be started with a Poll Option and I thought that was the case here- I was mistaken.

So the poll Is present and here and I think your action was mostly appropriate- though I must point out that Mausers post linking to the poll may get lost in the shuffle.
Can I suggest that we link to it occasionally as each new page turns to keep it to the top OR that Mauser may be willing to add the link to his sig line?

Last edited by Aravisian (2020-02-14 06:50:32)

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#20 2020-02-14 07:45:02

imschmeg
Member
Registered: 2019-12-04
Posts: 6

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

I use Xfce with a high contrast theme that allows me to easily pick out the window with focus on a screen.  I have tried Gnome and have considerable difficulty there because of the lack of contrast between the window in focus vs. others.  With the few gnome-like applications that I use, I convert them over to normal borders by using the gtk3-nocsd library.  My Xfce theme has a bright blue titlebar and border around the window in focus, and dark gray titlebar and border around unfocused windows, all on a black background (and dark-themed window interior backgrounds with bright foregrounds).

If the issue with server-side decorations is screen room, then why not provide configurable auto-hiding titlebars.  That would be even more space saving than CSD - as the decorations can be completely hidden until the mouse nears the top border.  But at least keep current "normal" titlebars and borders possible, with distinct coloration for in-focus vs. not windows, for those of us who need such contrast hints to navigate a screen.

I also worry about security.  If the client application itself can spoof being in or out-of focus when it is the opposite, then I fear being confused into doing something like type a password into the wrong application.  I feel safer knowing that the in-vs-not-in focus hinting is completely out of the control of the client application.

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#21 2020-02-14 09:28:31

vinox
Member
Registered: 2020-01-27
Posts: 24

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

peter.48 wrote:

Vinox has written:"I don't know why some developers always need to change things for "progress", when there's actually nothing wrong with the existing design."
The continuous changes have been invented by E.Bernays as a commercial concept precisely to hide the lack of progress and to give the impression that progress is made...

That's actually what I don't understand since Xfce isn't a commercial project: there's absolutely no pressure to reinvent the wheel every few years to sell new versions.

As I mentioned as comment in this bug report to make CSD optional:
There are many little bug reports in Bugzilla where Xfce goes 95% of the route and the remaining 5% stay unfinished or inconsistent and disturb the user experience.
Just two prime examples:
https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11808
https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11455

Fixing these would create so much more value than opening new construction areas like CSD.

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#22 2020-02-14 10:16:38

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

vinox wrote:

That's actually what I don't understand since Xfce isn't a commercial project: there's absolutely no pressure to reinvent the wheel every few years to sell new versions.

I think this is a very interesting point. You see, we must hazard guesses as to the developers motives. If the developers could choose to be open about this topic, it is possible that we as users may find a way to help.
One thing they have said is that they feel understaffed.
Switching to CSD may be because the toolkit is already available. It is not necessarily a new construction as much as moving existing completed construction over.

vinox wrote:

As I mentioned as comment in this bug report to make CSD optional:
There are many little bug reports in Bugzilla where Xfce goes 95% of the route and the remaining 5% stay unfinished or inconsistent and disturb the user experience.
Just two prime examples:
https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11808
https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11455

I do not disagree fully, but not agree with you here, either. Please allow me to detail why.
The Resize Problem is misnamed. That it needs fixing is a misnomer.
The resize problem exists primarily in the minds of many users. It is not necessarily a thing that needs to be 'repaired.' You see, using a compositor, you can achieve the same effect as the effect you are seeking that is also present in other desktop environments.
What XFCE desktop is doing that is Different from other desktops is allowing certain Freedoms for the user:
-The ability to toggle the compositor on and off at will and freely. This allows user control and user choice.
-The ability to theme at will and control over the grip size.
Next, we run into what I was describing to Denyer, that the theme can handle that problem without trouble a great deal of the time. XFWM4 is not failing in this regard, it is merely DIFFERENT than Marco or Mutter or Clutter. This difference allows Us more control and flexibility, however to someone migrating in that is used to a different D.E. working differently, it may appear as an inconvenience. And since many themers early on did not realize that they needed to account for Resize Grip Space, they did not- and themed as they would have on a different D.E.
This is not a flaw in XFWM4, but rather, an illusion created by several years of folks not quite understanding what to do differently.
I can make you a theme, right now, for XFWM4 with generous Resize Proportions and still have it LOOK like there is a 1px border. Not because I am special, but because I know what to do. However, this too may be seen as an illusion because while gtk3 margins in CSD will not take up any screen space, the theme used for XFWM4 will. Is that a flaw? Realistically, I must remind users that the Milimeter or two on your screen, really... It Makes No Difference except in your mind.
Just being brutally honest.
On Thunar Custom action: I cannot comment on that, but I will point out that switching to CSD would not change that at all, so...

Now, if we switch to CSD, then the resize grip area is "solved" whether it was truly a problem or not.
At what cost?
Can the resize problem be solved in some manner other than User Control as described above but without taking away the WM or user controls? I beleive so and some of us are working on that... But it may be a moot point. Unless...
-shrug-

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#23 2020-02-14 11:55:46

denyer
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2018-10-20
Posts: 26
Website

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

One of the interesting things about Linux is that reactions are so delayed by distribution processes, and that few projects have any sort of effective feedback mechanism at all. Even completely optional telemetry isn't trusted by a significant percentage of users.

Taking Manjaro download stats as a base, the overall user base for Xfce is probably in the hundreds of thousands? Although Xfce generally serves customisers well and  has some popularity with that demographic, it includes players such as Mint that are install-and-forget, target non-technical users and focus on LTS releases. Those users tend to be older and have been given a setup by family members extending the useful life of older machines. Besides being lightweight, Xfce being a slow-moving project and traditional has been its USP.

LTS and LTS-based distro users aren't going to see 4.16 for a few years. (Plus packaging of software in some distributions can be delayed beyond that -- we've all seen the frustration of developers continuing to receive reports for long-fixed bugs).

Toz wrote:

I just don't see how perpetuating memes about the Titanic adds to this dialog.

The Titanic metaphor seems like a good one insofar as most users won't see it coming and by the time they're aware there's nothing they can do except jump ship, steering of huge ships being a broader metaphor for upstream changes and GTK development, etc.

At the moment any stronger reactions are coming from people who are keyed into software development blogs, forums, community sites, etc. or that specifically visit the website and forum of a desktop environment rather than a distro (a miniscule proportion of users -- there's far more discussion split over various Subreddits or distro forums than here, and looking for it is fascinating because of the way different languages adopt technical terms. In order to get a truer picture of feedback for a low resource DE, it's necessary to think beyond English because a lot of hardware reuse projects are in primarily non-English-speaking countries.)

For all of those reasons I think ad hoc polls are probably of limited use. Because discussion is so spread out and staggered, even though most of it's negative it's also easy to dismiss as not representative.

What KDE is doing now with steps to introduce a mechanism for user surveys and limited, opt-in telemetry is very positive, and as direct a feedback mechanism as there's likely to be for a DE.

imschmeg wrote:

I use Xfce with a high contrast theme that allows me to easily pick out the window with focus on a screen.  I have tried Gnome and have considerable difficulty there because of the lack of contrast between the window in focus vs. others.  With the few gnome-like applications that I use, I convert them over to normal borders by using the gtk3-nocsd library.  My Xfce theme has a bright blue titlebar and border around the window in focus, and dark gray titlebar and border around unfocused windows, all on a black background (and dark-themed window interior backgrounds with bright foregrounds).

If the issue with server-side decorations is screen room, then why not provide configurable auto-hiding titlebars.  That would be even more space saving than CSD - as the decorations can be completely hidden until the mouse nears the top border.  But at least keep current "normal" titlebars and borders possible, with distinct coloration for in-focus vs. not windows, for those of us who need such contrast hints to navigate a screen.

I really do feel for usage cases like this; to date Xfwm4 has provided for visual as well as motor control accessibility needs as a happy by-product of the way its theming works, with scope for large and bright borders and a lot of themes apparently developed with this in mind. Dropping theme support for largely aesthetic reasons is a bit of kick in the teeth for older or otherwise less able users, of which projects like Mint mean there's a lot.

It's a concern with smaller projects that accessibility will tend to be overlooked or addressed (if at all) by people that don't have or work with many people who have those accessibility needs. Or to put it a bit more bluntly: if existing solutions (Xfwm4 themes) are going to be effectively broken by an update, those doing so should feel some responsibility to identify and package solutions (GTK themes) that cover those needs before the breakage happens, and one black/white high contrast theme in a distro, for example, doesn't really cut it since users are being hindered from self-supporting.

A bit easier with themes than eg someone who uses shading/rollups because they use a trackball for accessibility reasons, though.

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#24 2020-02-15 04:33:29

Aravisian
Member
Registered: 2019-08-17
Posts: 374

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

denyer wrote:

For all of those reasons I think ad hoc polls are probably of limited use. Because discussion is so spread out and staggered, even though most of it's negative it's also easy to dismiss as not representative.

I think that such polls would be far more useful than merely asserting what the user base prefers without any evidence at all.
ANY poll can be questioned by the standard you just gave. Simply put- a poll is better than no poll, at all.

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#25 2020-02-16 17:57:55

daniel227
Member
Registered: 2012-03-14
Posts: 34

Re: XFCE4.16 to switch to CSD

I also voted on the poll:
https://linkto.run/p/09R1M1FO

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