Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Packaging - kdbus

Last week I found on kde-apps.org a new interesting package: kdbus. It's a KDE application to discover D-BUS services on the system and session bus and call found methodes. This is the same as kdcop for DCOP. I added the package to the SUSE build system and it was approved for production on the next day - really fast, thanks to Andreas Jäger - and is now available on factory and the next release.

By testing the package I could see that currently only D-BUS itself is full supported for introspection via the bus. I'm not sure if the other services are broken or only not support introspection. In case of HAL and also powersave I could not found any introspection code in the source. So I think we should add at least to powersave the related methodes and the needed xml file with the description of the available services, methodes and signals from the powersave daemon.

Btw. the application is very usefull if all services would implement intospection also If the GUI need some fixes and improvements because currently resize the GUI did not work so well.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


Last week I added a new package to the SUSE STABLE/factory tree. The package is called xournal and is an application for notetaking, sketching, keeping a journal using a stylus. Instead of Journal this is not written in Java, it's written in gtk2 and we could ship this package also on the OSS version. This extend the support for Tablet PCs. I think we get this package also in SLES and NLD 10.

Now Jarnal and Yakuake, the package I added the last time, are aproved and now in state production. This mean they should be on the upcomming 10.1. release (Jarnal not at OSS version). I think releaseforge follows in the next days.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

KPowersave 0.5.6 released

Monday I released a new version of KPowersave (v0.5.6). This is the last unstable release. With SUSE 10.1 RC1 we ship a release candidate and with SUSE 10.1 the final version 0.6.0. Currently we only work on bugfixes and translation updates. This detailed dialog contains a new summary bar for multi battery machines to display the complete time and percentage with more than one battery in the system. I hope Seife is now happy ;-).

Thanks again to Michael Biebl for the help with porting KPowersave to Gentoo and Debian/Ubuntu. He catched a bug with autosuspend and the path to pidof, which we fixed now. The package includes translations updates (thanks to Dawei Pang and Dawid Wróbel for translation updates), new handbook versions (cs, pt) and several bugfixes as e.g. reduce excessive CPU usage if detailed dialog was displayed and a fix for Slackware 10.2.

I started last week a help request on opensuse@opensuse.org to find community members which would support translation of KPowersave, because we are late in the translation process and we implemented several new features in the Beta's. We already could (as you see above) integrate some new of the translations back from the community. I hope we could translate with help of community and the SUSE/Novell translation team the most of KPowersave.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

subfs dropped and now?

Since SUSE 10.1 Beta2 subfs is dropped from the kernel and with this also the submount package. Because of this we have no default automatic mount for hotplugable media (as e.g. CD/DVD/USB-Storage) on console/for console users. The user can now only mount this storage devices under KDE/GNOME but not on console or in any other WM (without enter root password/sudo).

I know subfs was really ugly and many people sad: 'Subfs is a piece of shit' but this worked as it was. Yes, there where bugs with subfs (stat and df/du didn't work, and the slow data rates on VFAT -osync mounted volumes wasn't a subfs bug), but they was fixed. But because of changing HAL from netlink-socket to poll /proc/mounts every 2 seconds to detect mount state of volumes there was a race between hal and submountd. With this race submountd was not able to umount the device if it was in use. IMO this was fixable and maybe polling /proc/mount was a bad idea. But the solution was: drop subfs with no replacement for hal-subfs-mount.

As now several bug reports demonstrate: it's a problem for users to have no automount solution on console and IMO the biggest problem: no solution on other WM's. With dropping subfs we lost some features (as e.g. mount CD for a user if he access the mount and umount if not used) we can't replace currently with other working and tested tools. In my opinion we need a well working tool to automount also for non-KDE/GNOME cases ... maybe readd and fix subfs?