Why Nautilus and GNOME applications use URIs?

Aurélien Naldi aurelien.naldi at gmail.com
Thu Jun 3 05:36:46 UTC 2010

On Thu, Jun 3, 2010 at 6:57 AM, Christopher Lees
<christopher_lees at iprimus.com.au> wrote:
> On Wed, 2010-06-02 at 11:07 +0100,
>> The issue is that when I use Ubuntu, I use a lot of SSH, FTP and Samba
>> connections through GVFS. These connections, if I don't mistake, are
>> mounted on the folder "/home/<user>/.gvfs" via FUSE, but in most GNOME
>> desktop applications gain access to these through URIs
>> (sftp://user@server/path) instead of through your local address
>> (/home/user/.gvfs/sftp to user at server/path), the truth is that using
>> URIs instead of the local address is really annoying when working with
>> the system, especially with Nautilus.
>> You see, not all applications support the GVFS URIs, which makes
>> difficult its integration with the GNOME desktop for the user, and
>> difficults to much in the use of the system (at least to me).
>> For instance, the Meld diff viewer, a program is fairly common, but I
>> see that does not support GVFS URIs, this makes me a lot of bad things:
>> I can not drag and drop remote files from Nautilus to Meld, it will not
>> recognize (I don't know because it contradicts the use of "Open With
>> ..." in which local address is sending to Meld); In Open / Save dialogs
>> do not appear Nautilus Bookmarks to remote folders, so I have to look
>> hand (why use Bookmarks so :(?); on the other hand, the Nautilus scripts
>> and extensions do not work on remote folders; I can not copy from the
>> address bar in Nautilus the direction as I would in other programs ...
> Fully agreed. It's a leaky abstraction - you're mounting the remote
> drive as though it was a local disk, but then you can't actually use it
> like a local disk. Dragging and dropping files from Nautilus onto
> Open/Save dialogs brings up the message that you can't do that with
> remote filesystems.
> Ironically, you can drag and drop from Nautilus onto KDE programs with
> no problems.


when using Drag and Drop, nautilus switches from GIO/GVFS URI to local
path, depending on the drop target (i.e. it will paste a local path if
you drop to a gnome-terminal). I guess dropping on a gtk filechooser
assumes that the application is using GIO. It may need some special
casing for this case. On one hand, if an application is gtk-based it
really should use gio, on the other hand  I think at least firefox and
openoffice use gtk file chooser and won't use it.

For GIO-based applications, using the GIO URI is much better, but as
far as I remember, several applications transform local paths into GIO
URIs, so providing a local path should always work.

Best regards.

Aurélien Naldi

More information about the Ubuntu-devel-discuss mailing list