Gnome menu's idiosyncrazy....

Vincent Trouilliez vincent.trouilliez at
Wed Jul 6 00:44:04 UTC 2005

> 1. This issue might be your motherboard/graphics card. 

Yeah, I did think of that, when I tried debugging another similar
problem some time ago. It was with "Gnumeric" : when I created a graph
and tried to move it around with the mouse, it would do like the the
gnome menus : it would be smooth, but every other second, it would
freeze for half a second, like time stopped, then carry on. I started
thinking video card/hardware, when one of the developper of Gnuméric
told me that he had similar machine to mine, but did NOT have this
problem at all.

> Typically, most issues with "rapid display" or "repetitive sequential display" are a
> motherboard/graphics issue 

Yeah, chances are, the problem will go away/cure itself, when I get
round to changing the mother board and video card. Sadly as I said, this
is not going to happen anytime soon...banker said.

> - but it's possible that it's a combination
> of events as well. For example, if you have a motherboard/graphics card
> from company X, *and* you also have settings A, B, & C in your X
> configuration it causes the gnome-panel to interpret the signals in N
> ways and cause the delay.

Yes, this is the joy of debugging programs on consumer computers ! :-/
It's also why it's often difficult to know what package to report a bug
against, in bugzilla. As you said, "A" may seem faulty, but maybe the
fault is a normal reaction due to "B" which is faulty. But you only see
"A"'s reaction so you assume that it's responsible.
Like right now in Breezy, XawTV (TV card viewer) doesn't work quite
right, but I bet it's not XawTV's fault, but rather yet again a kernel
module problem, or some low level/obscure library that you can't even
pronounce the name of... ;o)
And sometimes it's both the fault of "A" AND "B". But how would the user
know ? To him, the system is just one big black box that appears to
malfunction, but he can't break it down.
So, I have the deepest respect for all these highly-skilled linux
programmers around the globe, who manage to fix things and build some
enw, and especially our very own Ubuntu core team, without who I would
still be using Mandrake and KDE (as it makes such a disgusting mess of
poor Gnome) !! Thank you Gnome, thank you Debian, thank you Ubuntu :o)

> 2. This issue can be similar to the issue above, but I may have some
> insights into what's going on. 

Hmmm, you have me intrigued now, keep going ! ;-)

> I'm guessing that you, Magnus, & matthew
> all are using a standardized gtk theme,

"Standardized" ? What does this mean... I just pick one in the theme
manager and off I go ! :-)

> (Clearlooks, gperfection, etc.)

Yes, Clearlooks it is, as is it's now the Ubuntu default, and my
favorite one. but before that, I was using the "Simple" theme, then
"Glider", and I think the problem was showing as well...

> I am not.  I have a very special customization line in my gtk theme:

Ohhhh, this is starting to sound mysterious... but exciting !! 

> Code:
> --------------------
>     gtk-icon-sizes = "panel-menu=36,36:gtk-menu=20,20:panel=24,24"
> --------------------
> This line sets my panel menu to 36x36 pixels - which is larger than the
> standard (20x20, 22x22, or 24x24, depending on your theme.)
> It is *very* possible that this is a rendering issue that you have
> discovered. At larger, "standardized" panel-menu sizes (36x36, 24x24,)
> the issue most likely does not occur. At non-standard image sizes
> (20x20 or 22x22) - it's possible that the menu is being rendered for
> 24x24 and then resized to 20x20 (or whatever the theme dictates,) which
> would cause the "shift" you are seeing.
> You might wish to try adding in the line I use in your gtk theme above
> the 
> Code:
> --------------------
> --------------------
>  declaration and seeing if that makes any difference.
> -- 
> kassetra

Interesting ! Sadly it didn't cure either of my two problems. But
still, I will keep this in mind, that may help with future problems,
who knows.



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