Ubuntu graphic stack roadmap update

Scott Kitterman ubuntu at kitterman.com
Thu Jun 27 18:26:27 UTC 2013

Steve Langasek <steve.langasek at ubuntu.com> wrote:

>On Thu, Jun 27, 2013 at 12:28:40PM -0400, Scott Kitterman wrote:
>> > I think it's a bit premature to ask this question (there is
>validity for
>> > it, just the timing seems off) as things were only announced today
>and the
>> > technology is just becoming available for a technical assessment.
>> > now, only kubuntu has jumped the gun and made a decision against
>Mir, I
>> > hope others are taking the necessary time, will be looking at the
>> > that are and will be provided and make an informed decision based
>on that.
>> I hardly think following the advice of our upstream developers
>> as "jumping the gun".  Nothing is carved in stone for eternity.  I
>> we have taken an informed decision based on the current status.  If
>> change in the future, the decision might be re-evaluated when that
>> happens.
>  "Kubuntu Won't be Switching to Mir or XMir"
>  http://blogs.kde.org/2013/06/26/kubuntu-wont-be-switching-mir-or-xmir
>I think that's rather a bit more than following the advice of your
>developers; it looks to me like Jonathan is staking out a position
>Mir.  Frankly, this doesn't look to me like an informed decision at
>all, it
>looks like a polemic one.  XMir is going to be the X stack that
>receives the
>most attention from Canonical, as well as from other Ubuntu developers
>working on Ubuntu-the-flavor.  Given that the major concern I've seen
>expressed is that the Kubuntu team won't have resources to maintain
>own display stack, I don't see how anyone could have arrived so quickly
>the conclusion that using the XMir stack - the one used by Ubuntu - is
>risky, and using the native X stack - not used by Ubuntu - is safe.
>Compositing may be fragile, but there should be no difference visible
>KWin between XMir and native X with respect to compositing.  And given
>tendency for bugs to arise as a result of mismatches between X+mesa, or
>X+mesa+kernel, I would be much more worried about native X not
>receiving the
>attention it needs to be kept in sync with mesa - a problem that won't
>with XMir, since Mir+mesa are obviously going to be maintained as a
>> Personally, I'm not certain how viable Kubuntu on X/Wayland will be
>in the 
>> long run, but that's at least as true about Kubuntu on Mir.  We'll
>get to the 
>> long run, in the long run, but for right now Mir/XMir offers us
>nothing but 
>> complication.
>So I'm not convinced that XMir actually represents complication for
>rather than beneficial alignment.

As you know, display issues are very hardware specific.  With the current amount of testing of Kubuntu on XMir (AFAIK one developer with one machine) I don't think we know anything about how well it will work for a general purpose  flavor like Kubuntu.

As I said before, I've no idea what will make sense in the long run.  For now, not immediately jumping in the deep end seems entirely logical to me.

Personally, I'm skeptical that there is any long term future for non-Unity flavors in Ubuntu.  I hope I'm wrong. 

Scott K

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