reopening the session management discussion...

Brian J. Tarricone bjt23 at
Tue Sep 2 00:16:05 CEST 2008

On Mon, 1 Sep 2008 22:11:31 +0100 Olivier Fourdan wrote:

> On Wed, Aug 27, 2008 at 12:27 PM, Brian J. Tarricone
> <bjt23 at> wrote:
> > Hey guys,
> >
> > A while ago, I suggested that perhaps xfwm4, xfdesktop, xfce4-panel,
> > etc. shouldn't use X11 session management to ensure startup, but
> > just use the fd.o autostart mechanism instead.  I believe I was
> > shot down at the time -- I think Olivier was opposed to the idea
> > for some reason that I can't remember.
> >
> > However, I still see this as a good idea:
> >
> > Pros:
> >
> > * App can never "accidentally" fall out of the session due to a
> > crash (I guess I'm the biggest offender here). App will always be
> > started when the DE starts unless the user disables it.
> Inmplementing SmRestartImmediately in xfce4-session would solve the
> problem without loosing the flexibility of session management.

Well, who wants to do that?  Benny doesn't seem to be around, and I
feel like there must have been a reason why he didn't implement it in
the first place.

And note that implementing this will break your second issue below
without even more work -- if we implement SmRestartImmediately, or even
SmRestartAlways, we need to also implement new UI to let the user
remove things from the session, since otherwise there's no way to
kill/replace components without editing the session file manually.

> In other words, I do not think that using a separate mechanism to
> start some of the components is the good solution, unless we have some
> sort of standard (ie, ppl can replace xfwm4 with compiz, xfdesktop
> with nautilus, etc. in a way that is not xfce specific)

Well we currently don't have a great way of letting people do this
anyway -- at least not a way that doesn't require a 'magic' sequence of
steps that you have to know to get it to work (e.g., killall xfdesktop,
run nautilus, make sure apps that you want in your session are running,
then log out and save your session).  At least using the autostart
method is fairly straightforward (open autostart editor, de-select or
remove the app you don't want, and add the app you do want), and I
would imagine people might be able to figure it out for themselves even.

The session manager approach also makes it very hard for us to change
the default session if the user has changed a custom session.  We
couldn't use SM support for xfce4-settings-helper because there's no
way for a 4.4 user with a custom session to upgrade to 4.6 and
magically get xfce4-settings-helper in their session (so we used
autostart instead).

I still just don't see how SM is better for us than autostart right
now, especially given xfce4-session's limitations.


More information about the Xfce4-dev mailing list