Clock and Datetime plugin merge

André Miranda andreldm1989 at
Tue Mar 10 05:37:29 CET 2015

Wow, that was a lot of feedback, I'll answer like in a talk, so notice 
that I changed my mind during the answers :)

On 03/09/2015 04:43 AM, Alex wrote:
> I dont know much about these plugins, however I wonder how the package 
> "orage" fits in here, which I currently use on xfce ? Does it have any 
> features which are not available in "daytime" and "clock" ?
I'm aware of Orage's plugin, but I guess we should address it later.

On 03/09/2015 05:05 AM, Nick Schermer wrote:
> I know the color only works with the digital+span format, but are we
> not over engineering [bloat] something stupid as a clock?
Maybe, the users should decide if this is useful or not(just like the 
So the coloring feature can be postponed for after the merge.

> Bug 9785 is the wrong approach. For some time we tried to fix unneeded
> wake-up events and now we're undoing that? Auke will be pissed ;)
Another point we should handle after the merge.

On 03/09/2015 05:37 AM, Steve Dodier-Lazaro wrote:
> To me the whole "set your font / font colour" approach seems like "we 
> don't read your GTK+ theme properly". I can't think of a time when I 
> needed to change my clock font (albeit I'll admit to it being more 
> useful for datetime).
Some users are requesting this, but at least in my case is for the sake 
of customization(which is a strength of Xfce).
I'm using a transparent panel about 30% visible, and depending of the 
wallpaper the clock/datetime is barely readable while everything else is 
ok. I know, I can handle that by tweaking the theme files, but that's 
somewhat laborious and the majority of the users can't do that.

> André, try and get in touch with the Design SIG people for the 
> settings UI. I can't work on any FOSS until the 15th but Simon might 
> be able to help?
Ok, I'll try to hang around the IRC during the week.

> Nick, I agree my approach to fixing this bug is quite ugly... The 
> patch is available for those who're bothered, though.
> XFPM maintainers, can XFPM reliably (e.g. also on *BSD) inform 
> processes that the computer has been resumed? That'd allow getting the 
> information through without causing 59 interrupts like my solution?
Currently is there anything being broadcast by DBus when the system resumes?

On 03/09/2015 05:38 AM, Simon Steinbeiß wrote:
> WRT color I agree with Nick, that's over the top and sucks for themers. For the heavy-duty customizers doing that in the theme is good enough. Same goes for the font to some extent. We can even put instructions on how to achieve that in the wiki.
> With Gtk3 this will be even easier, just put a block like this in your gtk-widgets.css (or even your ~/.config/gtk-3.0/gtk.css)
> #xfce4-clock {
>     background-color: #foo;
>     color: #foo;
> }
You've made your point, but I'm not convinced *yet* that we should drop 
this feature that is easy to use and IMHO doesn't add all that 
complexity to the code.

On 03/09/2015 06:11 AM, Andrzej wrote:
> If you want to reduce maintenance burden, drop binary, fuzzy and LCD. 
> They are all there only mostly "because we can" and IMHO are just bloat.
I could, but I wouldn't. I'm just planning to bring to clock what 
datetime does that clock doesn't, so we can ditch datetime.

> Try the following custom formats:
> %a, %d/%m%n<b>%H:%M</b>
> <small>DE: %H:%M (%a)</small>
> More details about formatting commands:
> Some features (e.g. font_face) don't seem to work here but overall the 
> capabilities are pretty good. 
This is very interesting. Now we have something that is easy enough for 
users and brings to table what only datetime does for free. Font family 
is actually working here.

On 03/09/2015 06:39 AM, Harald Judt wrote:
> Using custom time/date configurations is where the datetime plugin 
> shines, and having a simple calendar is very convenient too. These 
> features are the main reasons I prefer this plugin to the built-in 
> panel clock module. 
Using the tip provided by Andrzej you can archive the same 
configurations as you do in datetime. Even if the date is presented 
first and then time or vice verse by using '%n'. It's a bit more hacky, 
but far from hard, I'd say that users that might bother to tweak the 
clock would end up enjoying this "programming" :)
What do you mean by a simple calendar? Clock has exactly the same 
calendar of datetime, I guess it's been a while since you used clock.

On 03/09/2015 08:08 AM, Liquider wrote:
>  A simple means to spawn a preferred calendar application when 
> double-clicking on a calendar day.
Filling a bug requesting that for clock would be wise :)

Phew, that was long. Now I'll try to summarize my current point of view:
As I was convinced before, clock has more features than datetime and the 
"unique" features of datetime can be accomplished with clock using the 
Pango Markup. Basically almost no change is required to clock in order 
to users migrate from datetime, just a small hack *if* they are using a 
custom format/font. So I guess this is what needs to be done:
1. We should come up with a way to let users aware of this Markup in 
clock. Maybe using presets and/or a link to the wiki. The SIG could help 
us here.
2. Do a last(final) release of datetime and move it to archives(git and 
3. Move the non-duplicate and validbugs/feature requests from datetime 
to clock.
4. Announce that to users and downstream.
5. Am I missing anything?

Few more considerations(bear me, I'm almost at the end of this email):
- The only missing thing I noticed is that clock's tooltip is not being 
displayed here, could you please check if this is a bug?
- Some guys were requesting a way to change the text orientation, useful 
for vertical or deskbar mode. The gravity attribute could solve this, 
but it's not working here too.

As it seems no coding is going to be needed for now, if you guys agree 
with my aforementioned "kill the datetime plot", I'd like to know I can 
help somehow.
That's all guys, forgive me for this lengthy email and for bothering you 
with such a small matter, although this situation of duplicate plugins 
and effort to maintain them has annoyed me for a while.

André Miranda
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