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timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the how-long-until-etc dept.

X 243

Daniel Stone writes "A short time ago, xlibs 1.0 was released. Simply put, this is the collection of libX11, libXext, and other little-used libraries that kind of power your whole desktop. The xlibs team at fd.o are now maintaining all these libraries, and more, and we're going to be making releases as part of the fd.o platform, which is far more wide-ranging, but it still forms an important part of the platform. Share and enjoy!"

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How do I shot web? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082150)

I want 2 b spoder man:(

MODS: EXPLAIN (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082204)

Why is this a "troll"? Offtopic, perhaps marginally - but a troll? Please, don't be silly.

Re:MODS: EXPLAIN (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082501)

Does it really matter? It was always going to get downmodded anyway.

You think it was only marginally offtopic? I think troll is the best fit for this utterly meritless posting, lacking a 'crap' option as we do.

I wasn't the moderator though.

Communism: (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082151)

It's fun! Please try it.

Great news (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082154)

freedesktop, xfree86, and the MIT X Consortium have pooled their resources and released software that THREE TIMES AS MANY PEOPLE don't care about!

Who uses Xlib (-1, Funny)

j_sp_r (656354) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082156)

Who uses Xlib nowdays? I'm not sure GTK/QT depends on Xlib. Correct me if I'm wrong. O'course many of us will like a faster version of X, because X is slow sometimes, and crashes to often at my site (twice a week)

Re:Who uses Xlib (5, Informative)

IversenX (713302) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082171)

What is your definition of "Doesn't depend on"?

They both use xlib exclusively for drawing!

QT (and possibly GTK) exists in a version for embedding/framebuffer devices, but that's not the version you see in everyday KDE/Gnome.

Re:Who uses Xlib (2, Informative)

Curtman (556920) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082422)

GTK on the framebuffer [] is quite nice. Aside from the nice transparency effects in the screenshots, it's really quick. Hopefully we'll see a LiveCD come along soon with GTK on DirectFB so people can evaluate it without jumping through a great many hurdles. I bet a great many GNU/Linux/BSD users don't need or even know about the many features of X11 like network transparency, let alone use them.

I like to think DirectFB is to X11 as Hurd is to Linux. ( in design - not availability :) I could be wrong about that, but it seems to be more modular, and lightweight.

With that said, congrats to They are becoming more and more valuable to our little community every day it seems.

Some of us (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082173)

still use non-bloated window managers like WindowMaker, Blackbox, IceWM, and Enlightenment that don't use the GTK/QT libraries.

Re:Some of us (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082546)

The most interesting statement in that comment is Enlightenment is non-bloated. Back when E was used by almost everyone, it was ridiculed for being bloated and slow. Anybody see a parallel to today's XFree86?

Re:Some of us (3, Insightful)

psavo (162634) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082555)

Yeah, and what kind of non-bloated non-gtk/qt applications do you run in your non-bloated window manager?

psavo, a wmaker user himself

Xlib is trash. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082186)

No one uses Xlib, thats the problem with the X development team. They waste time reinventing the wheel over and over. We don't need cairo. we don't need Xlib, we don't need to switch to this stupid open GL interface bloated crap.

Re:Xlib is trash. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082193)

Yes you sure DO, for the desktop market you are so fond of spouting over

Re:Xlib is trash. (2, Insightful)

serial frame (236591) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082223)


I triple dog dare you (not necessarily the parent troll, but the general audience) to find a binary or library capable of displaying on an X11 display that's not linked, statically or dynamically, to libX11 and friends; of course, barring the things written by masochists that implement the X Window protocol themselves over a TCP or Unix socket.

Re:Xlib is trash. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082468)

Is XCB [] what you're looking for? I don't think it was written by masochists.

Re:Xlib is trash. (1)

ickpoo (454860) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082345)

Qt, GTK, ... all of them use Xlib. If it runs under X and draws on the screen it is using XLib.

Re:Xlib is trash. (2, Informative)

Curtman (556920) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082454)

The GTK FAQ [] has this to say about it:

  • What is GDK?

    GDK is basically a wrapper around the standard Xlib function calls. If you are at all familiar with Xlib, a lot of the functions in GDK will require little or no getting used to. All functions are written to provide an way to access Xlib functions in an easier and slightly more intuitive manner. In addition, since GDK uses GLib (see below), it will be more portable and safer to use on multiple platforms.

Re:Who uses Xlib (5, Insightful)

CoolVibe (11466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082196)

Raw Xlib? Almost nobody. And yes, GTK and QT on X11 do depend on it. The fd.o stuff looks really promising, since the stuff from is starting to show it's age.

And X is NOT slow. For what it does, it does it quite efficiently, and it even has network transparancy thrown in for "free", because of the way it works. Just because the code base of XFree86 is a bit aged and has accumulated a lot of cruft over the years, doesn't mean the initial design is flawed. It was ahead of it's time, and it's still relevant.

Oh, and X works pretty good for me. Haven't seen a crash because of X in years. Maybe it's something else (buggy driver? broken hardware?) that's plagueing you. It's not X, in any case.

Re:Who uses Xlib (5, Insightful)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082357)

And X is NOT slow.

He is right about X not being slow. The problem is the perception thats X is slow. X is what is visual to the user, users either blame KDE/Gnome or X.

Take a pre-emptive low latency linux kernel and run X on it, its like night and day, its smooth, fast, which proves its not X but the kernel.

Windows cheats and loads the gui extremely fast, but if you watch your hardrive light, and tool tray, you will noticed things are still being loaded in the background. The system is busy for a few more seconds. You can load an application, and it waits till after the services start.

So, X seems slow compared to other OS's.
1. Long delays to get into KDE/Gnome, and actually use the system.
2. Slow response on user input.
3. Multitasking, switching apps pause the system.
4. Loading directories in ICON/Image view takes longer than windows.
5. Lindows has everything running as Root for a speed boost.

I predict we will see pre-emptive, low lantency kernels as standard on Mandrake and Suse. Preemptive kernels are now standard on 2.6.x (well, if you check the box). And even more pre-linking to help boot time.

BSD has the same issues. Apple's X server does seem faster than both Linux & BSD. I'm only running window maker on it, so its not an exact match, but task switching and running gimp does seem more reponsive.

Could the answer be the mach kernel osx uses? Maybe we need a new suite of benchmarks for user interaction. (os+X+wm/etc).
I code in my SecondLife []

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

13Echo (209846) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082409)

Alternately, many people are using crappy video drivers which make things slow (like vesa or fbdev). On my ATI Radeon, with proper drivers, X (with Gnome 2) is as fast as Win 2k ever was.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1) (450073) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082606)

Alternately, many people are using crappy video drivers which make things slow

Thanx for bringing this up. I was about to say this exact thing (until I scrolled further and saw your post...).

Throwing a crappy 5 year old PCI vidcard in a box to "try out" "Linux"* will indeed give a person a rather negative opinion of X. Personally, I had a nVidia TNT-2 in this machine and X ran far better than Windows ever dreamed of running on the exact same hardware (dual boot just for testing Windows). Got a lot better frame rates in q3a and RTCW as well. Now I have a gf4-ti4600 in this machine. I honestly have no idea how much Windows likes it, and personally don't care enough to find out, but this machine is really damn fast with teh card in. Had I shoved my old PCI VooDoo 3 card in here (where ever the hell it is), even with this being a PIV-2.4Ghz machine, X would be noticably slower.

* I say "Linux", I'm really meaning anything other than Windows.

Re:Who uses Xlib (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082610)

the worse impression is given by opaque window resizing because there is not synchronization between the window manager and the application.

So it works like this:

(a) Xserver send resize command to WM

(b) WM wakes up

(c1) WM draws new windows border and send redraw event to the APP.

(c2) During (c1), the mouse moved again so the Xserver send a new resize event to the WM.

(d) There are now waiting events for the WM and the APP. The system is 'clever' and, most of the time select, the last active process which is the WM. Go to (b) and repeat ...

So basically, during an opaque resize, the borders are redrawn 50 times per seconds while the count is redraw maybe 2 3 times par second.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

sloanster (213766) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082205)

You say X crashes twice a week? How bizzarre - perhaps you have hardware problems. I use X all day every day and I can't remember it ever crashing.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

Curtman (556920) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082595)

Alas some of the world still doesn't see the benefit of free software. Apparently some people actually use the binary only video drivers from ATI and nVidia. If you do, you'll be crashing a lot more.

Re:Who uses Xlib (4, Funny)

bad_sheep (186776) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082210)

Don't forget to remove the line containing "killall X" in your crontab !

Re:Who uses Xlib (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082582)

That ought to make all the "X: no process killed" messages in your logs go away. kill needs a signal to send. ;)

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

chromis (738106) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082242)

as far as i know and have experienced... GDK, the lower API part of GTK+ is a thin wrapper for XLib. It provides you with basic drawing primitives also more or less available in Xlib but with less code. It also makes things easier.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

evvk (247017) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082337)

Gdk easy versus Xlib? In your dreams. Have you ever tried raw Xlib? Gdk? Anything that uses gobject and the typical G-overengineering approach is awful.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

noselasd (594905) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082263)

They use the xlibs to communicate with the X server. In simple terms, they provide a C interface to the X (and lots of releated X mechanisms) protocols.
I see very little of the slowness everyone trolls about, though if you want to improve it, one should implement some better redrawing algorithms in the toolkits. And write some better gfx card drivers. Though that is hard, graphics is hard. And vendors do seldom hand out hardware specs to everyone.

Re:Who uses Xlib (0)

Deraj DeZine (726641) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082264)

I believe BlackBox and FluxBox are both written on top of Xlib. I've hacked around with the source code a bit and Xlib looks pretty unwieldy. Good thing there's Gtk for all my application needs [] =)

Re:Who uses Xlib (4, Informative)

iabervon (1971) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082302)

Every single X program uses xlib directly or indirectly. So GTK always uses it, and QT uses it except when using a framebuffer directly or using some other underlying mechanism (like non-X11 Mac, IIRC).

Chances are that X isn't what's crashing for you, but rather some program running under X (unless you have hardware problems, a bad driver, a corrupted X server, or something like that). X is also generally quite fast, but most programs (such as any that use GTK or QT, except for really recent ones) use it extremely badly.

Actually, what is generally slow about X is that is doesn't have the drawing primitives that modern interfaces want to use, so they have to implement them inefficiently with the available primitives. Present development is helping to rectify this situation, however.

Re:Who uses Xlib (2, Informative)

sfraggle (212671) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082370)

I'm not sure GTK/QT depends on Xlib. Correct me if I'm wrong.
You are wrong.

fraggle@yaffle:~$ ldd /usr/lib/
... => /usr/X11R6/lib/ (0x402e8000)

fraggle@yaffle:~$ ldd /usr/lib/
... => /usr/X11R6/lib/ (0x4081f000)

Re:Who uses Xlib (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082400)

Remember the ldd command:

$ ldd /usr/local/kde/lib/
$ ldd /usr/lib/

The output will show you all the libs these depend on. libX11 is included.

Re:Who uses Xlib (2, Informative)

be-fan (61476) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082483)

Everyone. Right now, there are two ways to communicate with X-server.

XCB - A new, low-level binding designed for big toolkits like Qt/GTK+ that can handle their own caching, buffering, etc.

XLib - An older, higher-level binding originally released with X.

Currently, almost all apps still use Xlib, as do all toolkits.

Re:Who uses Xlib (0, Troll)

Temporal (96070) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082531)

X is slow sometimes, and crashes to often at my site (twice a week)

Impossible! Nothing unix-based ever crashes! You must be thinking of Windows.

Re:Who uses Xlib (1)

sloanster (213766) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082609)

never? um no - that's not quite right - Unixy OSes can crash in certain circumstances, including faulty hardware. In general though, Unixy OSes crash far less often than microsoft OSes.

A typical unix/linux system running on sound hardware will simply run nonstop, as long as you want - for instance our linux mail/dns servers ran for about 2 1/2 years without a reboot, while the windows servers around them were not only rebooted scores of times, but had the OS reinstalled a few times as well.

Just a data point for your consideration

blah1 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082163)


How long until we have 3d user interface? (-1, Troll)

Adolph_Hitler (713286) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082164)

When will we have a full 3d polygonal interface? I'm betting Sun with their JAVA3d based interface will do it before Keith Packard and Freedesktop people.

Linux users just arent ready for it. (-1, Troll)

slashcop (711438) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082178)

We simply are not ready for a next generation 3d interface. If you want that just buy Apple OSX. Right now we need to match Windows on the 2d interface. The hardware isnt ready for 3d, the software developers arent ready for 3d, and you arent ready for 3d.

Mod parent down please. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082199)

Parent is an arrogant prick/developer dictating what users want.

w00tzor! (-1, Troll)

Big Blingin (744015) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082168)

Quasi-f1r5t p0zt!! long live teh big pimpin!

Little used ? (3, Informative)

noselasd (594905) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082194)

Virtually every toolkit out there uses xlib. It really isn't
"little used", but rather key part of the whole *nix desktop.

Re:Little used ? (1)

Vanieter (613996) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082233)

Uh, didn't you think it could have been sarcasm ?

Re:Little used ? (1)

Simon Kongshoj (581494) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082290)


Re:Little used ? (2, Funny)

Simon Kongshoj (581494) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082306)

#include <irony.h>
Sorry 'bout that.

Re:Little used ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082603)

Thank you, Captain Obvious.

Re:Little used ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082674)

What a waste of perfectly good sarcasm on you.

Not that X is slow ... (2, Insightful)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082195)

... but having one group looking after all these libs would seem to offer some scope for optimisation and consolidation. Sounds like a good thing...

What's the DBUS ? (Desktop bus ?)


Re:Not that X is slow ... (1, Flamebait)

CoolVibe (11466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082208)

DBUS is something the GNOME people thought up when they saw KDE's DCOP.

Not to badmouth it (well, I am biased), but I've heard that the KDE people plan to integrate DBUS into KDE to make GNOME apps integrate better. I'm all for it.

Re:Nethack X is slow ... (1, Informative)

Deraj DeZine (726641) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082236)

It's a message queue for programs to take advantage of. Just a simple way to communicate between desktop applications. I think they're planning on using it in the Dashboard project.

Re:Nethack X is slow ... (1)

CoolVibe (11466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082250)

Which is exactly what DCOP is. And guess what, it's not even tied to KDE and Qt. It's just bundled with KDE, and KDE depends on it. You could build dcop and use it in your apps without the need for KDE and Qt.

Re:Nethack X is slow ... (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082364)

From The DCOP site [] :

DCOP is built on top of the Inter Client Exchange (ICE) protocol, which comes standard as a part of X11R6 and later. It also depends on Qt, but beyond that it does not require any other libraries.

So DCOP does depend on Qt. Also, it is written in C++, whereas the GNOME libraries are almost always written in C (I'm not saying this is better, this is just how it's been done). Until DCOP doesn't depend on Qt and gets a binding to C, I see no reason why the GNOME project shouldn't pursue DBUS. (Had to post as AC because I have bad karma...)

Re:Not that X is slow ... (3, Informative)

be-fan (61476) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082461)

D-BUS wasn't something the GNOME people thought up. The people modeled it after DCOP, but made it independent of KDE's framework so the GNOME people could use it. The plans for D-BUS in KDE seem uncertain. Some developers want to just ditch D-COP entirely and use D-BUS, since D-BUS is similar. Others want to bridge D-COP and D-BUS, and retain D-COP for intra-KDE communication, and use D-BUS for inter-desktop communication.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (4, Funny)

AllUsernamesAreGone (688381) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082214)

What's the DBUS ?

It's dthing you get on to go to work in when you don't want to get dcar out of dgarage mon.

Or, put another way, I don't have a fscking clue so, in the greatest tradition of /., I said something silly instead.

Actually,.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082332)

Actually, dBus is a very small bus. It get a full sized bus, you need to integrated it with Linux.

(Ya, Ya, I've got way too much calculus on my mind these days....)

Re:Not that X is slow ... (1)

aTMsA (188604) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082246)

Well, I'd say that X is lean and fast enough, though some drivers could use some work, maybe from the video card manufacturers(SiS this goes for you).

The good thing about this consolidation is that finally xlibs is mantained with people close(and interested) in the workings of the main toolkits, Qt and GTK+; In the past the X dev team has shown a bit of disdain towards the toolkits and their developers. Now, thanks to Keith Packard and many other volunteers this is starting to change, i hope this leads to xlib and Qt/GTK+ working together in a better way, and, now that they can add things to X directly, to a more standard desktop!

Kudos do Keith Packard and the fd.o team for this!

Re:Not that X is slow ... (5, Informative)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082248)

D-BUS is the replacement for DCOP. "Agnostically" written in C this time to help GNOME developers swallow (not so agnostically though since Glib kept sneaking in, but fortunately got replaced in the end).

It does have a few neat features that DCOP doesnt. Like being system-wide, and thus support signals from the kernel (implemented by HAL) and signals from other non-desktop application like Apache.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (3, Funny)

jackbird (721605) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082371) you could say that, um, DBUS ran over DCOP? Tragic.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (3, Interesting)

ajs (35943) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082437)

IMHO, every major C project should use glib. It is fairly lightweight and provides a lot of the features that C programmers end up carrying around anyway. It's certainly not a Gnome thing in the strictest sense. You could ship glib with KDE and have no dependence on Gnome, GTK+ or anything else like that.

Glib 2.0 also includes GObject, the core object system on which Gtk+ and Gnome are based, though again, you could write grep using these objects, they're not graphics-specific.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (4, Insightful)

caseih (160668) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082476)

I can't agree more. I recently wrote a fairly complicated proxy server and using glib (combined with the gnet libraries) has completely saved me. The glib routines for building quick hashtables, lists, and dynamic strings (all in C) make so many aspects of my life easier. By using a glib dynamic string as my input buffer, I can easily grow it to accomodate the incoming data rather than having to do all the realloc stuff myself.

I think glib (at least the routines for data types -- lists, hash tables, strings, etc) should be in the C standard library. The gobject stuff, while useful, should always be in a separate library.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (1)

cubic6 (650758) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082616)

I haven't used glib, but from your and grandparent's description, it sounds like a GNU/Copy of the C++ Standard Template Library for C. Cool.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (1)

be-fan (61476) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082544)

KDE already ships with a glib dependency. aRts used it...

Re:Not that X is slow ... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082655)

> IMHO, every major C project should use glib

glib is incredibly convenient to program in because it has no error handling. Your app just goes boom if something unexpected happens, like a memory allocation failing. You can kind of prevent your program for totally blowing up, but you don't have the ability to correctly handle errors (at least in glib 1.2, don't know if 2.0 fixed this - we're talking about a nontrivial change here).

Great for building toy programs, but absolutely terrible for building a production quality system. It saddens me that so much otherwise great work (for example from the GNOME folks) is a castle built on a swamp. And it saddens me much more that people who don't understand this problem would say things like you just said, encouraging others who might not yet know better to build more software on a poor foundation.

Re:Not that X is slow ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082318)

X is slow. They need to have a couple of programmers recode it in assembly. Two weeks max the job would be done and X would be much faster.

Not that you didn't search ... (1)

_iris (92554) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082385)

... but this page [] was the third result in a search [] for "D-BUS Linux."

3d interfaces are a joke. (-1, Flamebait)

slashcop (711438) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082198)

FreeDesktop needs to spend more time on SVG widgets, and animated widgets, better quality 2d instead of wasting their time with OPENGL and on this 3d crap.

Re:3d interfaces are a joke. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082311)

the truth has no place on slashdot ! begone !

Re:3d interfaces are a joke. (3, Informative)

temojen (678985) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082377)

Now, I know I'm responding to an Offtopic troll, but...

OpenGL is an API for talking to a Vector and/or Raster drawing subsystem. It works for 3d and 2d drawing. Where hardware acceleration for vector drawing exists (ie most modern desktops) OpenGL can send the drawing commands direct to the Video Card, without rasterizing the result first. This means that vector applications (such as SVG rendering) can operate a whole lot faster, and are simpler to code.

Where the application is not running on the same machine as the display, sending GLX vector commands rather than rasterized images can be much faster. Also, it does not load the machine significantly more than having application-side rasterization where acceleration hardware doesn't exist.

So by working on OpenGL (which is mostly a server issue, not an XLib issue), developers are working on SVG, Animated Everything, and faster 2d.

Erm... (1, Redundant)

Bohemoth2 (179802) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082200)

Ok how can they be litle used and yet power my whole desktop? I'm confused.

Re:Erm... (1)

JohnFluxx (413620) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082262)

It was badly done sarcasm.

I missed it too at first.

Re:Erm... (1)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082288)

Libraries are "used" by developers. Practically no one uses Xlib nowadays, the uses widgets toolkits that depends on Xlib (and was written by a few people using Xlib) instead.

So it powers your whole desktop, and your whole desktop depends on it. But still it is very little used.

XFree86 Has Not Merged With X.Org ?? (4, Informative)

cyber_rigger (527103) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082201)

XFree86 Has Not Merged With X.Org (see News)

[23 January 2004] []

So have they merged or not merged?

Re:XFree86 Has Not Merged With X.Org ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082268)

This is all political bollocks from Havoc. What do you expect?

Any idea on the total size of the libaries? (2, Interesting)

saskboy (600063) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082209)

Is there any chance of this desktop being used on a distribution small enough for a credit card sized CD? 50MB.

From the site:

This table represents the state of libs from XFree86 that should be brought into the Freedesktop cvs as autofooed projects. Please update these if you have any further information.

Library current status
GL needs to be done
GLU FreeGlu? may be better? (don't think so, and Mesa should have the same libGLU available --EricAnholt)
XThrStub? would be part of libX11, but may be better not as a separate library
Xft1 Maybe do not need this
Xinerama Multiscreen unified display
Xp X print
Xss X screen saver A newer smarter version of this may be nice
Xxf86dga Probably does not need to be done.
Xxf86misc getting and setting of input device attributes possible ideas for better device handling
Xxf86vm VidMode? extension that allows modifying video attributes on the fly
dps There may be a GNU package for this, but it may be old.
dpstk See dps
expat Should be depended upon
freetype2 Should be depended upon
libxml2 Should be depended upon
psres See dps
zlib Should be depended upon

X is too bloated! (-1, Troll)

slashcop (711438) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082216)

Its going to be even more bloated now that I hear they want to piggyback open GL on top of freedesktop. Why cant they make X smaller, more efficient and get rid of all the bloat? Make it modular.

Re:X is too bloated! (1)

Narchie Troll (581273) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082307)

It IS modular, you idiot.

Re:Any idea on the total size of the libaries? (4, Informative)

caseih (160668) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082542)

The fd.o xserver is about 1 mb, and the X11 libraries to drive your apps weigh in at around 1 mb or so stripped, I think. At least on my fd.o installation they do. Also kdrive + libs + gtk2 + apps runs comfortably on a device like the Zaurus. Of course that's with no openGL stuff, or xinerama or xprint. But it does include freetype, xft, xrender, xdamage, composite, etc. The basic libraries are quite compact. If you really look at it, 1mb for kdrive, 1mb for libraries, plus maybe 5 mb for gtk2, an X11-based enbedded environment (supporting just one kind of display hardware) is very light and competitive with the Qtopia framebuffer system. Given that, I can't see any reason do use qt-embedded or gtk-fb for most things.

Some of those things in your list are not really libraries providing an api, but rather utilities, many of which on an embedded environment aren't needed.

Xlib... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082213)

Xlib, what's it all about? Is it good, or is it whack?

Re:Xlib... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082316)

it is good.

Re:Xlib... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082324)

one might even say "on teh spoke".

Re:Xlib... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082521)

Hahahahhahah :D rocks (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082226)

Now that's putting your work where your mouth is. If only those assholes would follow and stopped [] flaming [] Matt Dillon [] .

Brett Glass

vs XFree86 ? (4, Interesting)

noselasd (594905) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082227)

One more question. Whats the diffrence between the freedesktop xlibs, and the xlibs in XFree86 ? I understand they forked from XFree at one point. What did they change/improve ?

Re:vs XFree86 ? (2, Informative)

CoolVibe (11466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082276)

They got rewritten from scratch. :)

Re:vs XFree86 ? (3, Informative)

be-fan (61476) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082572)

The XServer got rewritten from scratch*. The xlibs are an evolution of the code.

*> Well, not really. The FD.O X server is based on Keith Packard's KDrive (AKA TinyX) server, which is a vastly restructured and rewritten XFree86.

Re:vs XFree86 ? (2, Informative)

dossen (306388) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082591)

If I read it correctly, they are replacing the Imake buildsystem with GNU autoconf/automake - a good thing I think. Other than that I don't know what the differences are (going to be), but they will probably try to integrate some of the other parts of the freedesktop platform.

Too many damn x's! (3, Interesting)

joelgrimes (130046) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082265)

I've used linux for years, but still get confused when people bring up this subject. I can't make heads or tails of all the different X's being bandied about. Half the time I can't tell if it's a group of people or a program.

X11,, xfree86, X Consortium, X Window(s?), not to mention which is commonly mentioned in the same breath - i'm sure i'm missing some.

I'm sure there's others that would appreciate an unscrambling of the relationships between the x's

Re:Too many damn x's! (1)

twoslice (457793) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082323)

I'm sure there's others that would appreciate an unscrambling of the relationships between the x's

I dunno about other people but the relationship between my eX girlfriend will only be rekindled when scientists figure out how to get brimstone to freeze ...

Re:Too many damn x's! (1)

Lozzer (141543) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082635)

Eh? Brimstone is a solid at room temperature. Do I win a Nobel prize? :-)

Re:Too many damn x's! (5, Informative)

Narchie Troll (581273) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082330) == X Consortium
X11 == X Window System 11
X Window System == A windowing system, consisting of a client and a server that communicate via an open protocol. Many different vendors distribute X clients and servers, commercial and free.

The X Consortium manages the X protocol and distributes a reference implementation of clients and servers. XFree86 is a fork of the X Consortium implementation that was originally intended to run on x86-class machines -- thus the name. is a loose coalition attempting to corral all the competing *nix desktop software into a cohesive whole by setting up standards. They also provide support for a project that is working on an improved client and server for X11.

Re:Too many damn x's! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082535)

Nice, now the difficult part :-)

Re:Too many damn x's! (3, Informative)

allanc (25681) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082355)

X11 and The X Window System (not, they stress "X Windows" because that sounds too much like MS Windows) are the same thing. Just different names for it. It's the base window system.

The group that releases the standard X code distribution, specifications for new versions of X, etc is the X Consortium, X11 is, more fully, X11R6--X Window System version 11 release 6. If X11R7 happens, it'll come from the X Consortium. Their web site is

XFree86 is the group that does the free version of the X Window System, originally for Intel x86 systems (hence the name) but nowadays for pretty much every system that'll run a free OS. works on higher level standards, like drag and drop and such. Stuff that lets the various apps running under X11 to interact but not low enough to be under the jurisdiction of the X Consortium.


Re:Too many damn x's! (4, Informative)

be-fan (61476) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082602)

X11 - The protocol spoken by modern X servers. - Formerly the X Consortium, an organization of X-using businesses, like the OpenGL ARB. They are responsible for changes to the spec.

X Windows - Shorthand for X Window System --- refers to the whole thing, servers, libs etc. - A new organization dedicated to making standards for the *NIX desktop. For example, they have specified a common MIME framework, common menu format, common window manager specification, etc. Many of these, (ex. the window manager specification) have already been adopted. They are also an umbrella project for other projects for improving the X desktop. For example, D-BUS which is the new messaging system developed for KDE and GNOME, is a project. Keith Packard and others are also developing a new X server under the umbrella. This new X server already supports complete-back buffering of windows (each window gets its own buffer, like OS X, to make moving windows smooth and free of redraw) and window compositing (for transparency, shadows, other effects). They are also restructuring the driver API to support OpenGL independent of X, so the X server can sit on top of OpenGL and use it to accelerate drawing. At the same time, they are also introducing new extensions (Xfixes, XDamage, etc) to allow applications to access the extended features for the new server, as well as working on existing extensions (XRender) to improve their implementation (add acceleration via OpenGL, for example).

yuo sunk my battleship! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082368)

weird naming (3, Funny)

abe ferlman (205607) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082575)

Nothing happens when I issue the following command

mount /dev/fd.o /mnt/floppy

Am I using this wrong?

Re:weird naming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8082660)

Completely OT, but I'll answer anyway.

It's: mount /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy

Re:weird naming (1)

rmsousa (614388) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082661)

fd.o is not the device. fd.o is the kernel module. The correct command would be:

modprobe fd.o

mount /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy

Xlibs depends on fd.o because of the FXS (Floppy X Server), which uses an array of floppy disk LEDS for display.

BTW, if you are using 2.6, the name is fd.ko. Gnome people still rename it to fd.go though...

Share and WHAT?! (1)

Feztaa (633745) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082617)

Share and enjoy!

Are you Sirius?

How does this relate to XFree86 (Is it a fork?) (3, Interesting)

rmsousa (614388) | more than 10 years ago | (#8082637)

Are the people at XFree86 maintaining xlibs also? Will this be imported back at XFree86? The release email says xlibs is actively maintained by fd.o (does this mean it is not actively maintained by, but does this mean fd.o will become the official version (i.e., the version bundled in the mainstream distros)? Or will they be two competing implementations?

IIRC, Debian already uses libXft from fd.o (which is a bit obvious, as Keith Packard is in fd.o).
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