[RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

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[RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Currently, GNOME 2.14 in etch keeps a major usability regression wrt.
GNOME 2.8 in sarge: it is impossible to save the session, except by
running gnome-session-save on the command line.

As this used to be done in the logout dialog - and it is the right place
for that - I'd like to open the discussion about which logout dialog to
ship for etch.

      * Option 1: revert to the 2.12 logout dialog.
This dialog is known to work, it has a good UI, it is translated, and
the change is easy to implement. The drawback is that we lose the
ability to open a new session in the logout dialog, but the option is
still here in Apps->System.

      * Option 1bis: customise the 2.12 logout dialog.
For example, we could add some icons to make it look fancier, or add the
"switch user" option. Translations should exist, but it is a bit more
work to integrate.

      * Option 2: customize the 2.14 logout dialogs.
We can add the missing features to the current logout dialogs, e.g. by
adding the "save session" checkbox in both of them. I don't like that
much, as it means adding the same thing at two places, which is bad UI
practise.

      * Option 3: add the "save session" ability somewhere else.
A direct option in the "Desktop" menu is probably too much visible.
However we could add a big "save session" button in
gnome-session-properties and fix it so that it doesn't register itself
to the session. A bit more work, though.

      * Option 4: use the Ubuntu logout dialog.
http://www.manucornet.net/ubuntu/JPEG/Logout_dialog.png
It has a poor UI, but with smaller icons and another ordering, we can
make it something good. However the "hibernate" and "power saving mode"
buttons will not be available, because they don't work with Debian's GDM
and we will not be able to fix it without the maintainer's cooperation.
We could then add the "save session" checkbox" on it without having it
looking too prominent.

I'd like to hear the opinion of as many people as possible. If you like
one of these options, say it. If you *don't* like one of these options,
flame it. If you have another idea, express it. We have to agree on a
solution that suits as many people as possible.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Gustavo Noronha Silva
Em Wed, 04 Oct 2006 12:11:51 +0200
Josselin Mouette <[hidden email]> escreveu:

>       * Option 2: customize the 2.14 logout dialogs.
> We can add the missing features to the current logout dialogs, e.g. by
> adding the "save session" checkbox in both of them. I don't like that
> much, as it means adding the same thing at two places, which is bad UI
> practise.

I'd go with this one. I don't think this is really bad UI practice,
and it fixes the problem without being too intrusive.

See you,

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
 Problems with all options featuring new UI: translations.

 Problems with using the UI of 2.12: upstream changed the UI for 2.14
 and kept the changes for 2.16, we would be diverging.

 In general, I would prefer it if we could fix the UI upstream so that
 we get the translations for free, but of course this is a solution for
 long term only.


 My preference goes to keeping the 2.14 dialog, but we could perhaps
 make this dependent of a GConf key to toggle between 2.12's and 2.14's
 version; at least if we don't get consensus in the user base, there
 will be a solution for end-users to choose what they prefer.

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 13:58 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :
>  Problems with all options featuring new UI: translations.

This is why I focused on solutions for which translations already exist.
I'm against using any option which isn't translated.

>  Problems with using the UI of 2.12: upstream changed the UI for 2.14
>  and kept the changes for 2.16, we would be diverging.
>
>  In general, I would prefer it if we could fix the UI upstream so that
>  we get the translations for free, but of course this is a solution for
>  long term only.

Sure, the plan is to push this change upstream.

>  My preference goes to keeping the 2.14 dialog, but we could perhaps
>  make this dependent of a GConf key to toggle between 2.12's and 2.14's
>  version; at least if we don't get consensus in the user base, there
>  will be a solution for end-users to choose what they prefer.

Having to fiddle with gconf for a feature as simple as session saving
seems too much a hassle.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Tim Dijkstra
In reply to this post by Loïc Minier
On Wed, 4 Oct 2006 13:58:01 +0200
Loïc Minier <[hidden email]> wrote:

>  Problems with all options featuring new UI: translations.

Not really; these translations where included in the 2.12 release, they must still
be around somewhere.

grts Tim


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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Frederic Peters-2
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
Josselin Mouette wrote:

> >  In general, I would prefer it if we could fix the UI upstream so that
> >  we get the translations for free, but of course this is a solution for
> >  long term only.
>
> Sure, the plan is to push this change upstream.

Maybe it would be useful to talk with Vincent Untz from the beginning
and see if this is an amenable goal; otherwise I do believe there is
little point to do it, diverging on that dialog until the time it is
too much work to once again port the patch to a newer GNOME version.

Also note that is not only translations but also documentation and
this is much more difficult to port.


Regards,
        Frederic


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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Josselin Mouette wrote:
> >  Problems with using the UI of 2.12: upstream changed the UI for 2.14
> >  and kept the changes for 2.16, we would be diverging.
> >
> >  In general, I would prefer it if we could fix the UI upstream so that
> >  we get the translations for free, but of course this is a solution for
> >  long term only.
> Sure, the plan is to push this change upstream.

 Hmm, I wonder what new arguments we have to *revert* this old decision
 which they kept between 2.14 and 2.16.

> >  My preference goes to keeping the 2.14 dialog, but we could perhaps
> >  make this dependent of a GConf key to toggle between 2.12's and 2.14's
> >  version; at least if we don't get consensus in the user base, there
> >  will be a solution for end-users to choose what they prefer.
> Having to fiddle with gconf for a feature as simple as session saving
> seems too much a hassle.

 Do you have another idea to conceal the fact I want to stick to
 upstream and you want the 2.12 version?
   The idea of making it a GConf value is that a one-liner can help
 switching from one to the other and be documented in the README.Debian
 files.

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
In reply to this post by Tim Dijkstra
On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Tim Dijkstra wrote:
> >  Problems with all options featuring new UI: translations.
> Not really; these translations where included in the 2.12 release, they must still
> be around somewhere.

 *featuring new UI*.  Yes, the 2.12 session management is still intact
 in gnome-session, presumably with translations and all.

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
In reply to this post by Loïc Minier
Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 16:17 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :
>  Do you have another idea to conceal the fact I want to stick to
>  upstream and you want the 2.12 version?

I don't matter sticking to upstream *if* upstream doesn't remove
features that make the whole point of gnome-session (like, the ability
to handle sessions).

Also, the "2.12 version" is still present in gnome 2.16, it is only
hidden.

>    The idea of making it a GConf value is that a one-liner can help
>  switching from one to the other and be documented in the README.Debian
>  files.

Again, this is too much complicated for just saving a session.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Josselin Mouette wrote:
> Also, the "2.12 version" is still present in gnome 2.16, it is only
> hidden.

 Yeah, we both know the code is around, but not used anymore.  You just
 can't say they want this version of the code to be the default.  I'm
 just stating the obvious: we're diverging from upstream for a problem
 which is not Debian specific.

> >    The idea of making it a GConf value is that a one-liner can help
> >  switching from one to the other and be documented in the README.Debian
> >  files.
> Again, this is too much complicated for just saving a session.

 First, I didn't understand your critic, and I immediately wanted to
 clarify that this gconf setting would be to always save the session or
 never save the session.... but I realized this already exists!  IIUC,
 the session preferences permit one to chose to always save session on
 exit.

 Why would one *not* want to always save sessions when one wants to save
 his session?  I personally would like to never save session, which is
 the current default, and I'm happy about.

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 17:44 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :
>  Yeah, we both know the code is around, but not used anymore.  You just
>  can't say they want this version of the code to be the default.  I'm
>  just stating the obvious: we're diverging from upstream for a problem
>  which is not Debian specific.

Should we also remove all our bugfix patches?

> > Again, this is too much complicated for just saving a session.
>
>  First, I didn't understand your critic, and I immediately wanted to
>  clarify that this gconf setting would be to always save the session or
>  never save the session.... but I realized this already exists!  IIUC,
>  the session preferences permit one to chose to always save session on
>  exit.

And this option isn't used. The session is never saved on exit, even if
this setting is activated.

>  Why would one *not* want to always save sessions when one wants to save
>  his session?  I personally would like to never save session, which is
>  the current default, and I'm happy about.

Because one would want to customize his *default* session.

This is why I proposed option 3. For this use case, exiting the session
just to save it is even awkward.

(In this case the bug I quoted would also have to be fixed.)
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 17:52 +0200, Josselin Mouette a écrit :
> >  First, I didn't understand your critic, and I immediately wanted to
> >  clarify that this gconf setting would be to always save the session or
> >  never save the session.... but I realized this already exists!  IIUC,
> >  the session preferences permit one to chose to always save session on
> >  exit.
>
> And this option isn't used. The session is never saved on exit, even if
> this setting is activated.

Looks like this isn't the case anymore, it must have been fixed since I
last encountered that.

This only leaves the explicit session saving not functional.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Tim Dijkstra
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
On Wed, 04 Oct 2006 17:52:02 +0200
Josselin Mouette <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 17:44 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :
> >  Yeah, we both know the code is around, but not used anymore.  You just
> >  can't say they want this version of the code to be the default.  I'm
> >  just stating the obvious: we're diverging from upstream for a problem
> >  which is not Debian specific.
>
> Should we also remove all our bugfix patches?
>
> > > Again, this is too much complicated for just saving a session.
> >
> >  First, I didn't understand your critic, and I immediately wanted to
> >  clarify that this gconf setting would be to always save the session or
> >  never save the session.... but I realized this already exists!  IIUC,
> >  the session preferences permit one to chose to always save session on
> >  exit.
>
> And this option isn't used. The session is never saved on exit, even if
> this setting is activated.

Not true, I use it all the time.

grts Tim


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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
 (as clarified on IRC already, but for lists readers)

On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Josselin Mouette wrote:
> >  Yeah, we both know the code is around, but not used anymore.  You just
> >  can't say they want this version of the code to be the default.  I'm
> >  just stating the obvious: we're diverging from upstream for a problem
> >  which is not Debian specific.
> Should we also remove all our bugfix patches?

 "You just can't say they want this version of the code to be the
 default."  IOW, you would be willingly doing something that upstream
 doesn't like.  You can't compare that with bugfixes.

> >  Why would one *not* want to always save sessions when one wants to save
> >  his session?  I personally would like to never save session, which is
> >  the current default, and I'm happy about.
> Because one would want to customize his *default* session.

 Ok, this wasn't listed in one of the use cases, and it's actually the
 main use case you were concerned about: editing the default session is
 the easiest when you can simply run the programs and decide to save it.

> This is why I proposed option 3. For this use case, exiting the session
> just to save it is even awkward.

 Hmm, I understood option 3 as a new button to save session and logout,
 as an alternative to the logout option; now that the use case is
 clearer to me, and that I re-read your option, I understand that it was
 about adding a button to only save the current set of applications as
 the default session.

 The conclusion we reached on IRC is that revamping the logout window
 (for example to support hibernation) is a separate problem than
 customization of the default session.

 This option 3 sounds as a very good plan, and I agree with you that the
 best place is in gnome-session-properties.  This will however bring the
 translations problem.

   Bye,
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Le mercredi 04 octobre 2006 à 18:40 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :

>  Hmm, I understood option 3 as a new button to save session and logout,
>  as an alternative to the logout option; now that the use case is
>  clearer to me, and that I re-read your option, I understand that it was
>  about adding a button to only save the current set of applications as
>  the default session.
>
>  The conclusion we reached on IRC is that revamping the logout window
>  (for example to support hibernation) is a separate problem than
>  customization of the default session.
>
>  This option 3 sounds as a very good plan, and I agree with you that the
>  best place is in gnome-session-properties.  This will however bring the
>  translations problem.
I have uploaded a new gnome-session package (2.14.3-2) which implements
option 3. Thanks to a very similar existing string in gnome-session-save
2.16, I was able to build it with 36 translations.

I have also removed the "save session on logout" checkbox, as this
option is unused. Plus, the annoying "your session was saved" dialog was
replaced by a text appearing under the button.

Comments welcome.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Loïc Minier
On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Josselin Mouette wrote:
> I have also removed the "save session on logout" checkbox, as this
> option is unused.

 I think someone in this thread said it was still working, so I suppose
 this same person is using the option.  Personally, I don't, but we
 don't gain much by removing it IMO.

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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Josselin Mouette
Le jeudi 05 octobre 2006 à 00:05 +0200, Loïc Minier a écrit :
> On Wed, Oct 04, 2006, Josselin Mouette wrote:
> > I have also removed the "save session on logout" checkbox, as this
> > option is unused.
>
>  I think someone in this thread said it was still working, so I suppose
>  this same person is using the option.  Personally, I don't, but we
>  don't gain much by removing it IMO.

Sorry, I meant the "ask on logout" checkbox, which is only displayed by
gnome-session's logout box, not by gnome-panel's.
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Re: [RFC] session saving and the logout dialog

Jean-Christophe Dubacq
In reply to this post by Josselin Mouette
On Wed, Oct 04, 2006 at 12:11:51PM +0200, Josselin Mouette wrote:
>       * Option 3: add the "save session" ability somewhere else.
> A direct option in the "Desktop" menu is probably too much visible.
> However we could add a big "save session" button in
> gnome-session-properties and fix it so that it doesn't register itself
> to the session. A bit more work, though.

This has my favour. I would not be bothered by one more thing in the
Desktop menu, which is quite short. Especially if it comes between
"Shutdown" (is it Power Down in English ?) and "Close session".

In fact, editable preferences to show items in this menu would be great.
I know I cannot disable Shutdown (in 2.14 at least).

While you are on the subject of what is too big in the "Desktop" menu,
I think "Shutdown" should not be there. So maybe there could be a
submenu "Sessions" -> "Log off"
                      "Lock screen"
                      "Save"
                      ========
                      "Shutdown"


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