Cleaning up "Preferred Applications" & Desktop Consistency

Jonathan Blandford jrb at
Wed Dec 31 07:01:26 UTC 2003

Havoc Pennington <hp at> writes:

> Hi,
> Couple high level points:
>  - consider posting this sort of thing to fedora-desktop-list in future
>  - jrb is currently redoing the MIME UI using a 
> backend; don't know if this also covers 
>    "preferred applications" but it probably should

We've gone back and forth on this on the GNOME/freedesktop lists, and
the consensus is that things like preferred applications really isn't
part of the MIME system.

> On Wed, 2003-12-24 at 07:21, Warren Togami wrote:
> > This means that choosing Links in the chooser as a default browser is 
> > currently broken due to setting the wrong key name.  However I have yet 
> > to find a program that actually honors the need-terminal key...
> need_terminal is kind of a relic from the days when something like links
> would appear in the desktop menus....

We should still support it.

> > I propose that we use desktop-agnostic-easy-install definitions for 
> > Preferred Applications.  We should standardize on a directory named 
> > something like /etc/sysconfig/preferred/browser.d within which each 
> > package can easily drop definition files. 
> Rather than this, we might find some way to simply use the .desktop
> files the apps already install; I don't know if the mime spec
> does this or not. Though I do have some misgivings about overloading
> .desktop files for more than just menu entries.

.desktop files are very overloaded anyway.  What's another use or two.
But generating the list of terminals/web browsers/mail clients by
querying the desktop files makes some sense to me.
> If we need command line access to preferred apps, something more general
> like "preferred-open html arg1 arg2 arg3" perhaps. In fact there may
> already be a gnome-vfs-open.

gnome-vfs-open is a little bit different -- it won't work for
terminals/mail clients.  A preferred-open app makes a little more sense.
> > Windows-like behavior, and there is the option to change all keybindings 
> > to be Unix-like globally (where is this setting?). 
> In .gtkrc-2.0 do gtk-key-theme = emacs.

Actually, it's cleaner to change your "Text editting shortcuts" in the
Keyboard Shortcuts dialog.  This is GTK+ specific, though.


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