xfce4 svn snapshot

Colin McDermott colmcd at optusnet.com.au
Tue Jan 31 11:07:44 UTC 2006

daniele favara wrote:
> On 1/31/06, Colin McDermott <colmcd at optusnet.com.au> wrote:
>> I have tried both Xffm and Thunar. Thunar really needs a nice set of
>> icons BTW.
>> Why not work with rox-filer. It can mount directories that are mapped in
>> fstab. It can do desktop icons. It can do everything you want except an
>> explorer like tree (imho I think that a file tree confuses people more
>> then it helps them. Namely because you can only write to /home /tmp and
>> /var/tmp or a mounted drive). It is also stable.
> I agree with you here, but you should even think that a new user will
> expect to have it ... as explorer has it
Not necessarily. Firstly Nautilus works similiar to rox-filer. So if 
they are migrating from Ubuntu there should be no problems.

Also most windows Newbies actually do not use an explorer file tree but 
a simple window by itself. Only experinced windoze users hold shift and 
click on my computer to get an explorer tree interface. Most windows 
users know to click and go back.

Lastly in linux most people only write to and use /home or /mnt-media 
they don't and should not go into /etc /boot /root. I don't see the 
point of giving them a tree structure that shows them 12 different 
folders in / that only two or three of them are for normal use. It would 
be far more better to make a link from /home to /media and have the user 
start in /home (where they usually do anyway).
> thunar: just a file manager,
>  - no (p)mount
>  - (p)umount
>  - no desktop icons
>  - no wallpaper
Also not tested. At least the other projects have been put through their 
> xffm: much more then just a file manager, not really easy to use
> (personally i don't like it)
>  - mount , (no pmount)
>  - umount , (no pumount)
>  - desktop icons
>  - no wallpaper
Agreed not the easiest to use.
> rox-filer: file manager, no dir tree
>  - mount , (no pmount)
>  - umount , (no pumount)
>  - desktop icons (if -pin)
>  - wallpaper (if -pin)
> as one of the main app of ubuntu is pmount, i think that should be
> enabled on a file manager, Benedikt told me he will add it, i don't
> think it'll be ready for dapper.
> A solution is to let the volume manager to make this, but there are
> some issues like:
> - the user boot into xubuntu, he opens the fm, he can see there are for ex..
>  /dev/hda1 in /media/hda1 and /dev/hdc in /media/cdrom
> with rox and xffm he can r-click and mount or umount, if i'm not wrong
Yes in xffm from memory it is a right click system. While Rox-filer is 
even better as it will try to mount the directory once it is clicked and 
will give an option to umount when clicked up or closed. Still mount and 
umount are avaliable on right click as well.
> he plugs an usb stick ... the volume manager pmount it (it's a
> removable device), the user knows he can find new devices in /media,
> he r-clicks on it and he can't mount or umount .... that's an issue
> for me.
> solution:
> or use a file manager that doesn't have that problem, or use a file
> manager that doesn't have mount features and let some other app doing
> that. Thunar is fine i think. But i think it's important that the user
> can have an idea of his devices, and where they are ... desktop icons
> are needed.
> the desktop icon app should be able to:
>  - generate icons when it starts (reading from desktop files i think
> it 's the best choice)
>  - add new icons on the fly (for ex when an usbstick has been attached)
>  - remove icons on the fly (for ex when an usbstick has been removed)
>  - pop up a menu with possible actions on r-click
>    * [p]mount
>    * [p]umount
>    *  eject
>    * open fm on mount point
> idesk, can be used for desktop icons and a script in ivman could
> generate the needed file and Kill - Restart idesk in the way the new
> icon can be added.
> That is the approach i used on my project, but there are issues:
> - idesk has a xlib menu
> - it needs to be killed-restarted to show new icons
Also try coding for Idesk. Seriously it is easier to import someone 
elses config file and modify it then to write one from scratch. Idesk is 
pretty legacy. Rox-filer--pinboard is probably better at least then 
users can add their own icons and I think it can show mounted volumes if 
> Redundancies:
> - xfdesktop + rox-files -pin
>  * two apps drawing the wallpaper
> I think this is an important point, it's not just to choose one file
> manager instead of one other, as it will affect the whole xubuntu
> usability.
Which is why I am such an advocate for rox-filer. There seems to be an 
assumption that users want everything to pop up in front of them when it 
is plugged in. Perhaps they do....(though this can create 
confusion)..But I think the main thing that users want is quick ways to 
get around from /home (or their hd/files) to /media (or their cdroms) 
and to look at an uncomplicated interface. Rox-filer does this well. 
Thunar looks intersting but it really needs extra features and polish 
before ill like it.


Colin McDermott
Reboot Computer Reuse centre
Ubuntu Lite

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