Friday 21 December 2012

Settings news

GNOME 3.7.3 just got released earlier today, and includes some great new work. I won't be posting screenshots, because some of the UIs aren't final, and we'll be iterating until 3.8 is released (and it's my birthday ;).

Cleaning up

We've cleaned up gnome-settings-daemon plug-ins, and gnome-control-center panels, as well as removing the support code for GNOME Fallback, saving us around 10k lines of code.

gnome-control-center (now "Settings" in the UI) is faster to start, and gnome-settings-daemon require less code to write additional plug-ins.

New panels

3 new panels got added:

  • Search panel, to control the search output in gnome-shell, as well as control which directories and file types Tracker should index.
  • Notifications, to manage the notifications that will show up on your desktop. The filtering is done in gnome-shell itself, and would allow you to only show specific notifications in the lock screen for example. See Giovanni's post if your application uses notifications.
  • Privacy, which still requires quite a bit of work, would be the go-to place to ensure your identity isn't leaked on the network, or visible on your system. You can see how some of the features in the two aforementioned panels will also affect your privacy.
With the above panels merged, we're left with the re-design of the Power panel, which should mean the end of the "Screen & Brightness" panel (half of the settings went to the Privacy panel, the other half will go to the Power panel).

New backend features

First, users of Wacom tablets, you'll be happy to know there's now a button you can press to see, in an OSD, the current configuration of your tablet buttons. This feature has been long in the making, but the results are great. There's coverage for every tablet known to libwacom, and support for touchrings, touchstrips and modeswitch buttons. Select the button you want to use for the help in the Settings panel.

Secondly, we now support the draft "Idle Inhibition" specification from

We also have some unfinished features.

The remote-display plugin will disable animations in the desktop when using the desktop over VNC or Spice.

And the cursor plugin will hide the mouse cursor until first used, or when using a touchscreen, similarly to what Windows 8 supports (it's the only system other than ours that supports both cursor pointers and touchscreens).

Those 2 plugins should hopefully be working by the time of the GNOME 3.8 release.

Until next time.