I am thinking about ways to measure the startup time for various desktop
applications. Obviously, a common one used is how soon after a menu item
is selected can I do something in the application. However, this does
not lend itself to being automated.
I assume that most of the applications can be launched from a command
line. Are there applications or applets that are started from the menu
and do not have corresponding command line invocations?
How similar are the gnome applications in startup? Do they use the same
set of libraries? Would it be possible to have instrument a function in
a common shared library that generally indicates that the application
has initialized everything and is just waiting for the user to do
something? If there is a common function could do something like:
command-line invocation of application
<bunch of application initialization>
<call library function that indicates application is running>
<key function notes time, shutdown profiling>
Arjan asks that we move everything to use libasound rather than esound
or OSS. Because ALSA lets multiple apps output sound at once, esound
isn't really needed; the only functionality we lose is that remote apps
can't play sound on the local system, but that functionality was pretty
hosed with esound anyway.
I don't have a sense of how many things are accessing OSS/esound
directly, or how much work is involved here.
I have just loaded Fedora onto one of my systems and have tried to load
Applix. The install process kept falling over but I managed to force
each individual rpm onto the system.
However when I try to load I get this message:
[ian@sskatings2 ian]$ /opt/applix/axdata/axmain: relocation error:
/usr/lib/libgdk-1.2.so.0: undefined symbol: XShmQueryVersion
axnet error, axmain already started.
/opt/applix/axdata/axmain: relocation error: /usr/lib/libgdk-1.2.so.0:
undefined symbol: XShmQueryVersion
Ayone any suggestions please as i do like this software and hope to run
it for some time yet
Tel +44 (0)1224 624811
Tel/Fax +44 (0)1224 781326
In an effort to create a set of benchmarks for gauging desktop
performance I have written up a procedure for gnome-terminal to test the
speed that text is sent to the terminal window and written a script to
perform the test. I have attached the writeup for the procedure
(bench_terminal.txt) and the script to run the test (cattest) to this email.
I am interested in hearing people's comments on this test. I know this
is only one test and doesn't address desktop issues like program startup
time, but we have to start somewhere.
We can start to assemble the benchmarks and put them in
Benchmark text output performance of gnome-terminal
Frequently output is sent to a terminal window. In Gnome the program
gnome-terminal handles the display of text on a terminal window. The,
one simple benchmark is to determine the amount of time required to
output a large text file to a gnome-terminal window.
gnome-terminal is a little tricky to benchmark because has a
server. When you start gnome-terminal it connects to the server rather
than starting a new child process. Thus, timing the gnome-terminal
command will count the time required to communicate information to the
gnome-terminal server rather than the time required to actually
perform the task. To work around this problem a script is executed
within the new gnome-terminal window and the information is saved to a
0) Get system configuration information hardware and software:
CPU: cat /proc/cpuinfo
Memory: cat /proc/meminfo
Kernel: uname -a
gnome-terminal: rpm -qa gnome-terminal
xserver: rpm -qa xorg-x11
1) Get the test file, the jargon file from Project Gutenberg:
2) Verify that the file is the same with md5sum
$ md5sum jarg422.txt
3) Place the cattest script in the same directory as jarg422.txt and
make it executable.
4) Run the test on the console of the machine with the command
below. The script will generate a file "cattime in the directory
with the amount of time required to cat the file to the terminal
gnome-terminal -e "./cattest"
4a) If the system is set up to run oprofile and you have root access,
you can run the same script as root with command below to get some
additional profiling information in the cattime file:
gnome-terminal -e "./cattest --profile"
Additional analysis on the oprofile data can be performed after
the benchmark completes.
# Simple test to gather data on where gnome-terminal spends
# time This is compilicated by the terminal server model of
# gnome-terminal. Time taken for benchmark written to cattime.
# When optional --profile on commandline, oprofile used to get an
# overall view of what is happening on the system. PROFILING is only
# going to work with kernel that have oprofile support (Red Hat SMP
# Will Cohen
if test "$1" = "--profile"; then
# Setup default oprofile.
if test "$PROFILING" = "yes"; then
# FIXME Command below may use previous event settings for oprofile.
$OPCONTROL --setup --no-vmlinux --separate=library
# Run the actual experiment
$RM -rf $RESULTS_FILE
echo "Benchmark: " $BENCHMARK " Version: " $VERSION >> $RESULTS_FILE
date >> $RESULTS_FILE
# The actual benchmark being timed is below.
/usr/bin/time /bin/cat `pwd`/jarg422.txt 2>> $RESULTS_FILE
# Shutdown oprofile.
if test "$PROFILING" = "yes"; then
# If PROFILING, need to do analysis with oprerport after running the test.
# May need more details than what is provided by command below.
$OPREPORT --threshold 2 --long-filenames >> $RESULTS_FILE
Why doesn't someone add a "Make this my default" checkbox to the GDM session
This would mean we could change our default desktop from the login screen
and get rid of the Switchdesk utility altogether.
And add this to KDM as well, of course.
Express yourself with cool new emoticons http://www.msn.co.uk/specials/myemo
Hi, I installed Fedora Core 2 on an Athlon 750 with 512MB ram with an
Nvidia Vanta II pci video card.
After a fresh boot, I timed the following
a) startup of Mozilla from the panel till Release notes was rendered
b) startup of gnome-terminal from Fedora Menu->System Tools->Terminal
till bash prompt
The timings for a) and b) on 'cold-start' were 10 and 13 seconds
respectively. On a 'warm cache' (ie) start Mozilla/shutdown/start again
the timings were 3 and 11 seconds respectively.
My expecation is that gnome-terminal is simpler/smaller than Mozilla and
as such should startup much faster
I was wondering if others saw similar ratio or is there something I
might have missed
A collection of smaller features that have a relatively high
* A post it note feature that allows Abby to drop notes on her desktop,
but also drag them to a panel edge where they stick on top (allowing
notes to be irritating is key to standard use of notes as reminders).
* Show file attachments (but not little attachments like keys?) as first
class objects. File attachments are usually more important to Abby than
their containing messages
* Let Abby mark e-mail messages as tasks, and have due dates set on
them. E-mail is the most common place for people to store todo items.
Support this existing behavior better.
* OO.o help by example: given any OO.o object in the paste buffer let
people "Recreate by example", which steps through how to create that
item. Most people learn best by example, and it also allows people to
build on "things they've seen". With traditional help systems you have
to figure out what things are called, and hope that there's specific
documentation on an item. This way Abby can use existing documents and
things she's seen (people have pretty good "wasn't there something...."
memories) to do new things in her own documents.
* Files and folders can be moved seemlessly between the panel and
nautilus. The same items apply in both. In the distant future, allow
snippets of text, images, and other document contents to be directly
dragged in. Allows drag-and-drop to have the deferred property of cut
and paste, but retains the nice physical aspect. Also allows for
multiple items to be naturally in the "clipboard".
* Integrate music player seamlessly with the desktop. Use the desktop
interface as the primary piece of the music player, not an "extra". In
other words, the play list itself lives on the panel. Allow the music
browser to be a floating window. Flips the dominance between the window
presence and the panel presence.
* Mark relevant items as "sysadmin" in the .desktop files and provide a
marker on the account that shows them or hides them. Cleans out the
menus a lot for Abby. Also adds the possibility for Horatio to browse
through a smaller admin-only tool set.
* Provide the ability to turn menu items from a non-base set "on", using
a checklist. This is *not* full menu editing, but should easily fill
Abby's demand for menu editing. More importantly, it reduces pressure
for constantly increasing menu sizes over time. On the backend, Horatio
can define two application sets: default applications, and applications
which are "allowed" but not default.
* Collapse volume control to a single slider.
* Preferences cleanup, focused around Abby
* An improved calculator designed around quick, small "back of napkin"
sort of calculations. Not modeled after the deficiencies of physical
calculators. Abby will typically be working in another context, so a
good calculator needs to be designed for running in small time windows,
and make it very easy to get results into other apps.
Seth Nickell :: Interaction Designer, Red Hat :: <snickell(a)redhat.com>
I installed FC2 on my old samsung VM7000 (equipped with a pcmcia network
after reboot the interface eth0 doesn't start because the pcmcia statrs
after the network !
I handled it by setting the pcmcia service to start (S09pcmcia) before
Now, Each time I install FC2 I need to do that. would you please, who's
maintaing that, fix it ?
I was asked by someone about accessibility support in GDM and although
I knew GDM had some sort of accessibility support I didn't know what it
was or how it worked. I've had a poke and here's what I can tell:
* GDM now comes with a set of accessibility modules that can be used
to detect certain events happening on the login screen
* The two modules shipped with GDM by default are the
"DwellMouseEvents" and the "KeyMouseEvents" modules. Both of them
allow you to activate the onscreen keyboard from the login screen
in different ways. The first by moving the mouse around in a
predefined order and the second by clicking the mouse or pressing
keys in a predefined way. Take a look at the configuration files in
/etc/X11/gdm/modules on FC2.
* If you set AddGtkModules=true and uncomment the GtkModulesList line
from gdm.conf, you should be able to try this out. You'll also need
to install the latest "gok" package from rawhide. I'd recommend
setting Greeter=/usr/bin/gdmlogin in gdm.conf also because that
seems to be the only way of testing the dwell listener.
* So, to activate gok you should now be able to either hold Ctrl-k
down for a second and leave go or move the mouse over the login
window from top to bottom and then left to right.
* gok then comes up, but I haven't figured out how to do anything with
it. Its either that gok is broken or I'm missing something obvious.
I'm guessing its the form - accessibility stuff is in the habit of
being terribly broken :/
So, that's all I have time for now, but if someone had the time to do
more on this I'd recommend for a start:
- Figure out how to actually use gok once its activated
- Get the gok in rawhide pushed to FC2-updates
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