Saturday, 12 November 2011

Fedora 16 XFCE

So, I also updated and here are my impressions :-D XFCE live cd works like a breeze, installation went smooth. I even got wifi (broadcomm) working out of box (suspend works for me too, btw.)! GRUB 2 seems nice, although it associated detected kernels with the newly installed Fedora. Still better than nothing from grub 1 >:-D Now for the system itself. GDM suck. It sucks hard. As soon as I installed some of gnome as deps it started putting gnome instead of xfce to session. It also does not seem to allow for keyboard and language selection. I need to switch to LXDM or try out LightDM soon… XFCE works as expected, after copying old configuration and installing apps I use, almost everything seems to work.


I had to disable starting gnome services to get rid of gnome volume and power manager icons. As a result, probably, my ssh keys passwords aren't remembered anymore, even though gnome-keyring-daemon with SSH agent capability is running. I really hate to type 12+ char. long password zillion times during one package update :(

 I also had troubles setting up iBUS. I prefer it to keyboard selection as I use it not only to use Czech keyboard layout but also to type Japanese (via anthy). Nothing seemed to work. But after finding im-chooser and selecting ibus there it started to work. However, im-chooser does not seem to be anywhere in menus—its desktop file contains NotShowIn=XFCE;. WTF?!

Also ibus keyboard shortcuts seem to misbehave. Switching to next input method does not seem to work (but just a second ago I managed with it to turn it off and make toggle on/off shortcut not work!?) at all—well, to be fair, I just tried to play with it and it seems to do something: cycle through English - Default Layout, nothing, nothing and nothing?! I'll probably have to fill bug later…

 Other than that, I'm fairly satisfied, I even discovered some nifty features in xfce that I hadn't noticed before ;-)

Oh and I forgot to mention—everything GTK3 looks awful. The adwaita theme is awesome at times (check boxes, for example) and so plain/unfinished looking it hurts at others (dark version, buttons, scrollbars, for example). In general it looks like inconsistent half-finished work thrown together just to have a new theme, with some of its components already finished (the parts that look kicking-ass). Luckily XFCE stays at GTK2 still.


Scott Tsai said...

Martin, regarding using ssh-agent, my guess would be that the SSH_AUTH_SOCK environment variable is not set in your XFCE desktop session.

If you have gnome-keyring-daemon running:
netstat -l | grep ssh
should show something like:
unix 2 [ ACC ] STREAM LISTENING 26772 /tmp/keyring-4gVTjR/ssh

and manually doing:
export SSH_AUTH_SOCK=/tmp/keyring-4gVTjR/ssh
should work.

I read on LWN that this is a common problem with XFCE:

The Fedora XFCE users should really get together and make ssh agent work out of the box.

Jens Petersen said...

I think the ibus-1.4.0-10.fc16 bugfix update which is just pushed to stable should improve your ibus experience. I agree im-chooser should appear in the XFCE menu.

Martin said...

@Scott Tsai: I suppose that would fix the issue, but it seems I have more agents running and one of them is set, but apparently not doing anything:

$ netstat -l | grep ssh
unix 2 [ ACC ] STREAM LISTENING 55761 /tmp/keyring-hBwukZ/ssh
unix 2 [ ACC ] STREAM LISTENING 22951 /tmp/ssh-oyBybcqm1339/agent.1339
unix 2 [ ACC ] STREAM LISTENING 23415 /tmp/keyring-4bSIZt/ssh


Martin said...

@Jens Petersen: Awesome, that works exactly as expected (alt-shift cycles through all input methods *and* system keyboard layout) and as a bonus gets rid of the fugly symbolic icon. Nice. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

i am still waiting for your nodoka gtk3 theme ;-)

Christoph said...

I have seen the same behavior of GDM this weekend, so I filed

Inukaze said...

Hi there , someone can tell how i can install Gnome 3

And how to make GDM start Gnome , and not XFCE , plz ???

Anonymous said...


This command will install GNOME on Fedora:

su -c 'yum groupinstall "GNOME Desktop Environment"'

(Why not using the default Fedora Desktop Edition / Live Media which includes GNOME?)

At GDM, click on your account name, then on Gnome to log in to Gnome instead of Xfce.