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Exploring PackageKit's GNOME Software

Fedora 20 (codename Heisenbug) Beta was released on November 12th 2013. One of the accepted system wide change proposals for this release was to replace the existing gnome-packagekit frontends (gpk-update-viewer and gpk-application) with a new unified and more user-centric application. A quick high-level overview of PackageKit first. It is essentially a framework which consists of frontends such as yum which communicate with backends such as PackageKit-yum via an abstraction layer based on D-Bus. Essentially, it is a set of APIs exported through a D-Bus interface. Glib, qt and python and other language bindings are available. This abstraction layer enables applications

GNOME 3 Is Bad For Your Health As a Developer

With the recent release of GNOME 3.6, once again the GNOME developer cabel have managed to royally upset their third party developer base – in particular those who develop GNOME Shell extensions and themes. This blog post sums up the attitude of the GNOME developers nicely and should be required reading for anybody who thinks of developing an extension, theme, or application for GNOME 3. GTK 3.6 breaks virtually every third party theme out there. GNOME Shell 3.6 breaks a large number of third party extensions. The removal of the ability to display debugging messages in Looking Glass in GNOME

GNOME Shell 3.6 DBus Support

I have written before about the DBus support in GNOME Shell. In GNOME Shell 3.6, there are significant changes to the DBus interface; hence this post. The file that contains the DBus interface definitions is shellDBus.js. It contains the following two DBus interface definitions: <interface name=”org.gnome.Shell”> <method name=”Eval”> <arg type=”s” name=”script” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”b” name=”success” direction=”out”> </arg> <arg type=”s” name=”result” direction=”out”> </arg> </method> <method name=”ScreenshotArea”> <arg type=”i” name=”x” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”i” name=”y” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”i” name=”width” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”i” name=”height” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”b” name=”flash” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”s” name=”filename” direction=”in”> </arg> <arg type=”b” name=”success” direction=”out”>

Change GNOME 3 Lock Screen Background

Once again the GNOME developers have managed to complicate things beyond belief. Why the GNOME UI Nazis decided there should be no simple way to change the background for both the login screen, the desktop backgound and the screen lock background is beyond comprehension! In a previous post I explained how to change the GDM (GNOME Desktop Manager) background image. In this post I explain how to change the Lock Screen background image. Taking Fedora 17 (Beefy Miracle) as an example, as root edit /usr/share/backgrounds/beefy-miracle/default/beefy-miracle.xml. Here are the contents of this file: <background> <starttime> <year>2012</year> <month>01</month> <day>29</day> <hour>00</hour> <minute>00</minute> <second>00</second>

Reigning in the GNOME UI Designers

Hurrah! Finally, somebody has stood up to the recent re-emergence of the arrogant GNOME UI designer (“UI Nazis”) whose world view is “we decide, we know better than you, you simply do as we say.” In an recent email entitled Rules for design in Gnome, Federico Mena Quintero, one of the two original founders of the GNOME project, stated that: The design team IS welcome to: * Produce designs and propose them to Gnome at large and the relevant maintainers. * Produce designs and implement them in experimental branches, which then are subject to maintainers’ approval for merging into the