Friday, 14 June 2013

Re: non-Unity flavours and Mir

On Friday, June 14, 2013 11:15:17 AM Marc Deslauriers wrote:
> On 13-06-14 11:04 AM, Scott Kitterman wrote:
> > On Friday, June 14, 2013 03:54:32 PM Jonathan Riddell wrote:
> >> Here's a discussion I half started as part of vUDS.
> >>
> >> The switch to Mir in Ubuntu seems pretty risky for the existance of
> >> Kubuntu, I wonder if other flavours have the same probable problem.
> >>
> >> KWin dev has opinions on the subject
> >> http://blog.martin-graesslin.com/blog/2013/05/mir-in-kubuntu/ From the
> >>
> >> architecture section on that blog post:
> >> "Mir's architecture is centered around Unity. It is difficult to really
> >> understand the architecture of Mir as the specification is so full of
> >> buzz-words that I don't understand it [5]. From all I can see and
> >> understand Unity Next is a combination of window manager and desktop
> >> shell implemented on top of Mir. How exactly this is going to look
> >> like I do not know. Anyway it does not fit our design of having
> >> desktop shell and window manager separated and we do not know whether
> >> Mir would support that. We also do not know whether Mir would allow
> >> any other desktop shell except Unity Next, given that this is the main
> >> target. Wayland on the other hand is designed to have more than one
> >> compositor implementations. Using KWin as a session compositor is an
> >> example in the spec."
> >>
> >> and on protocol
> >>
> >> "But it gets worse, the protocol between Mir server and Mir clients
> >> is defined as not being stable. In fact it's promised that it will
> >> break. That's a huge problem, I would even call it a showstopper....
> >> Given that the protocol may change any time and given that the whole
> >> thing is developed for the needs of Unity we have to expect that the
> >> server libraries are not binary compatible or that old version of the
> >> server libraries cannot talk with the latest client libraries"
> >>
> >> Canonical was going to port LightDM to Wayland but now does not plan
> >> to so someone else would have to do this. KDE might be interested
> >> but more likely will switch to SDDM.
> >>
> >> For Kubuntu the options are:
> >> - Use Mir - infeasable as upstream can't support it as described above
> >> - Use Wayland with packages from Debian and hope we can make those
> >> packages
> >>
> >> live with Mir as best as possible
> >>
> >> - End of Kubuntu
> >>
> >> The second options is the one I'm expecting. It's completely unknown
> >> how much it means Kubuntu and other flavours will need to maintain X
> >> and Wayland packages, hopefully not much (it's hardly our speciality)
> >> and hopefully Debian and Ubuntu Desktop will support it enough.
> >>
> >> I don't think there's a public timeline for Mir so we don't know when
> >> this will hit us, presumably in the next year.
> >>
> >> Other flavours I think are this:
> >> Mythbuntu: not evaluated, hope to do so once NVideo and AMD provide
> >> drivers
> >> Lubuntu: not evaluated, hope to use X and GTK
> >> ubuntustudio: I've heard both that they use xfce based on xubuntu and
> >> will follow them, and "aiming for users to choose whatever desktop
> >> environment they want"
> >>
> >> Any other flavours got an opinions?
> >>
> >> Are there any misconceptions I have in the above?
> >
> > Given that mesa is going to be heavily patched to support Mir, I question
> > the long term feasibility of supporting Wayland in Ubuntu.
>
> How would adding a new backend to mesa result in it being "heavily
> patched"? Why would adding a new backend to mesa affect the other
> backends, including Wayland?

Upstream kwin tells us they already see bug reports from Kubuntu users due to
mesa changes to support Unity. I don't think it's just a new back end.

Scott K

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