Ubuntu 14.10 onwards: Convergence is coming...

Robert Ancell robert.ancell at canonical.com
Tue Apr 15 02:32:14 UTC 2014

With 14.04 wrapping up it's time to start thinking about what we can
do with the desktop post LTS. I think there's one big theme we need to
focus on - Convergence. All the Unity 8 goodness that is going into
the phone / tablet builds is coming our way and we need to be prepared
for that migration.

These are some tasks I think we could achieve between now and convergence:

Task: Deprecate gnome-session
gnome-session used to be the root process for a session. Now we have
upstart/systemd that should be the root process. So no need for

Task: Put screensaver management into the shell.
We currently use gnome-screensaver but upstream has deprecated it. We
replaced the first part of this in 14.04 by using the shell to render
the lock screen. We should be able to get rid of all of
gnome-screensaver now.

Task: Put PolicyKit handling into the shell.
We use policykit-gnome for the dialogs but GNOME uses the shell for
this. We should be doing the same. A nice to have would be to
implement this in both Unity 7 and Unity 8 but as long as it is there
by convergence then we're good to go.

Task: Gut unity-settings-daemon
We forked gnome-settings-daemon so we could stick with the version we
have currently. Now we should start pulling out the plugins and
migrating to the new services (e.g. power). Any remaining services
need to be rehomed / made into standalone services. By convergence
there should not be u-s-d anymore.

Task: Make Ubuntu System Settings [1] desktop capable
ubuntu-system-settings doesn't cover a lot of the use cases that
unity-control-center does. So we should add functionality to
ubuntu-system-settings so that it first a capable alternative to u-c-c
then eventually can completely replace it.

Task: Replace core apps
Help get core apps in a state so that they can replace our current
defaults. Candidates are things like calculator, file manager.

Are there any other good opportunities for us to start tackling?


[1] https://launchpad.net/ubuntu-system-settings

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