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Re: Whither X? James Mansion Mon May 18 01:00:32 2009

Robert Noland wrote:
Xorg in general, while some are porting issues.  Since I don't see
patches attached, I have to assume that you are ok with that.  On the
I thought in general people had grown out of 'send me the patches' but clearly not. Is it
not OK to be just a user, and to complain when the system regresses?

Some of the POLA issues that you raise have been discussed on Xorg lists
and have valid reasons for the changes, for at least some value of
valid.  The change to libpciaccess is what broke multi-card setups, but
would you argue that the xserver should be doing os specific frobbing of
the pci bus?  While this particular issue is being worked on again
lately, the overall number of users that it effects is relatively small.

From the point of view of a dispassionate observer, it does seem that X.org has moved slowly but significantly from an attempt to keep all its user communities happy to focussing greatly on Linux and caring little if *BSD and *Solaris lack the resources to keep up trying to emulate design decisions that are Linux-centric, then that's just tough. Or so it seems.

I don't think anyone can blame you for being a bit defensive Robert. The problem is with X.org. Upstream need to be honest with everyone about how much they care about
some of their users.

Maybe we will all come to regret that no-one seemed interested in taking the old Scitech
SNAP product further when they gave up on it.

(http://www.scitechsoft.com/news/press/sale_of_snap.html)


Perhaps the answer is to step back and consider whether something akin to the emulation that allows Windows NDIS drivers to run could be fashioned to allow Windows graphics drivers to run - perhaps using recent virtualisation advances to limit the damage they can do. While politically painful on some levels, it does provide for a functional binary compatibility abstraction. Pretty soon most of us will have desktop devices that handle the new x86 virtualization features and it becomes increasingly pointless to hang onto old
X terms when you can get hardware like an Aspire Revo for peanuts.

I've not looked at building X recently, but if the new build system is so bad, then why not replace it? waf seems handy to me. Its a lot faster than scons, handy to script in
Python, and can handle configuration tasks etc.

James

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