Proposal: include gnome in xubuntu

Jani Monoses jani at
Thu Feb 14 07:59:14 UTC 2008

Gauvain, thanks for this thoughtful mail that raises a few good points, 
and lays the basis of a more constructive discussion :)
I'll write up a detailed answer later today


Gauvain Pocentek wrote:
> First of, sorry for the previous email of which I'm not really proud but it
> was a start ;)
> After some more reflection I think I see why I'm not happy with the changes.
> In fact it's not really a matter of gnome or not gnome (not entirely).
> Having the best softwares in a distribution is a good thing, no doubt about
> that. But I feel that the way it's been done since Gutsy (read, add
> applications, no matter where they come from) is probably not what I expect
> from a distribution built by a community. The goal seems now to provide a
> fully featured distribution, in the easiest and fastest way possible for
> devs. This is what Ubuntu wants to provide, and what users expect Ubuntu to
> be, this is the way a distro which aims to be the leader has to proceed (and
> thus use a fully featured DE as base). Is that what we want from Xubuntu as
> developers (and as users too)? I don't want of this, and I find way more
> interesting to spend some time on improving the distribution by other means
> than just using what's been done by the others (yes, that's a dev POV, but
> we are on a devel list, right?).
> I do care about users, even though I've been blamed several times already
> for not taking real care. That's a blame I have to accept I guess... :)
> If building an Open Source distribution is just a matter of collecting
> pieces here and there without doing anything else, well I'll have to find
> other things to do in my spare time, this is not interesting.
> This might sound silly, but why not take more time between the releases? The
> 6 months based schedule is a good point for Ubuntu, is it really useful for
> Xubuntu? Jérôme has done a very good work on the bug triaging, and managed
> to build the best relation I've seen since the birth of Xubuntu with the
> Xfce developers. How could Xubuntu have a good relationship with upstream
> when the only feedback is "This xfce application is not as good as the gnome
> equivalent, we won't use it until it's better" ? Taking the time to test the
> applications, make them crash, report and fix bugs is certainly a better
> way, isn't it? But yes, it takes time. Does Xubuntu have deadlines? Does it
> have something to demonstrate to some customers or investors?
> Maybe I didn't realize what really is Xubuntu after all. Please tell me if
> this is the case.
> Quick note on the technical side, I'm working on a Xubuntu derivative for a
> very low end machine (256 Mo RAM, 700Mhz equivalent processor) since one
> year, adding gnome libs has a real impact on the performances (but no, I
> don't have numbers to show, so it probably means nothing...).
> Gauvain
> Jani Monoses-3 wrote:
>> Gauvain Pocentek wrote:
>>> Oops sorry, it's already happening.
>>> I didn't react until now because I thought the "discussions" were
>>> useless, but I think I care too much to be totally quiet (well, I did
>>> care at some point, not that much now).
>>> I'm sorry to see this distro turning into a Pseudo Ubuntu with bits of
>>> Xfce, after having spend so much time working on it, trying to make it
>>> different and lighter.
>> It is lighter. I am not sure why users would want it different. Xubuntu 
>> was primarily about being a lighter Ubuntu using Xfce. That is still 
>> true today. It is definitely ligher and can be very close featurewise.
>> I am sorry you too mix developer-only PoV into what should be mostly 
>> user oriented. What most users will care about is working apps not 
>> necessarily Xfce labeling, so chosing the latter when it has drawbacks 
>> it is ineffective.
>> I don't see why you think adding apps which do not affect anything 
>> besides neing in the menus are wrong? Xubuntu is supposed to be light 
>> not minimalist. There's a difference.
>> Lightness is resource related and we all experience it so the lighter 
>> the better.
>> Minimalism is more of a philosophy and it is preferred by experienced 
>> users. It has no technical sied to it, it is a matter of prefenece.
>> I think these two are often mixed up in our discussions and bloat as in 
>> resource abuse is mistaken for bloat as in too many installed apps.
>> Newbies will want as many useful apps (one per cantegory) as possible.
>> Experienced users may want minimalism. the latter category can more 
>> easily get what they want than the former so we cater, as Ubuntu, to new 
>> Linux users.
>>> Sorry to not provide constructive ideas or proposals to solve the
>>> problems, but I don't see how I could bring something new or useful when
>>> all the efforts made by Lionel and Jérôme has been treated like crap
>>> (sorry if "crap" is not CoC compliant).
>> I am sorry that you see it this way. It's ok to use 'crap' btw, I do not 
>> mind :)
>> I still do not see how J&L's work is treated like crap. Their work on 
>> packaging and bugs and their idea of what Xubuntu should be are not the 
>> same thing. Otherwise you could say my previous work is treated like crap.
>> We cannot have any change in distro leadership turn into treating users 
>> like crap. So their work is still here, but I wish they hadn't spent too 
>> much time on squeeze and fixing other apps when their time is limited.
>> Jani
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