Friday, 9 February 2007

Awn Updates

I've been working hard to make the general usage of Awn a bit better, so here's the newest stuff:

1. Awn itself now has a popup menu, access able from the left or right edge. It has two options for now, Preferences (which I totally missed for some reason, until it was pointed out to me!), and Close, which will close Awn properly, and not kill your tasks that you have launched with the launchers ;).

2. You can D&D to the bar as well now, so basically the two edges are D&D hot spots for launchers.

3. Due to popular demand, the launchers and tasks are now separate. Therefore even if you D&D a application, it will popup on the launchers side, rather than at the end of the bar.

4. Continuing from 3, you can have a visible separator between the two. avant-preferences has been updated to reflect this. You can also choose the colour of the separator. Its only a 1px line for now, but I will make it look better soon. *UPDATE* Not any more, now its much sexier, take a look at the second screenshot!

Also, Awn now has a wiki, which was kindly put together by MikeJones3. So it should be easier for you to discuss ideas and such.

I would also like to say a big thanks to everyone who has commented on my ideas over the past two days! I got Dugg again, I've been twice on Planet GNOME (Jeff Waugh linked to my blog, and just now, Ross Burton has linked to Awn!). Its really cool to be able to read everyones thoughts and see everyones reaction! I promise to make this stuff a reality as soon as I can!

P.S: Maybe its time to put some resize code into Awn:


Patrick said...

Once again, excellent dock. Great work!

I honestly believe your work is as good/useful or better than what the Beryl people are putting out right now.

How is the 'auto-hide' option coming? Nudge, nudge, wink, wink?

Neil J. Patel said...

Hi there, ATM I am working on Dual screen support and auto hide, expect some updates soon!

Federico Pelloni said...

First of all, great work!!

A tiny request: would it be possible to draw arrows only on lanched launchers (I'm sorry...)?
Maybe as an option..

I tried to modify the behaviour on a svn revision (not the latest, I admit), but whatever I did I got segfaults... I'm not a good C programmer :D

Thank you very much.

laurent_aouate said...


i've just installed the last svn and don't have the new 'avant-preferences" panel with separator option.
where can i find this version please ?


laurent_aouate said...


i redownloaded ans reinstall and it"s ok now

great work


Neil J. Patel said...

Hi federico,

I am going to add an option so you can have a choice between Awn-type arrows or the "dock" type arrows! I'll blog it once its done.

Patrick said...

Hey neil,

I got the latest svn (Revision 111) and used gconf-editor to find /apps/avant-window-navigator/app/. I looked for 'fade_effect' to no avail. I even added it as a boolean value, set to true, but I still don't get the new effect.

Is it something I am doing wrong?

Xenogis said...

Update your svn again and see if it works, I had to.

Patrick said...


Thanks, worked great. It's neat. A little buggy, but neat. I'd like to see the Mac Dock 'icon zoom' feature, but I really am loving this dock. best one that currently exists, hands down.

Anonymous said...

Are all those options really necessary? They kind of remind me of GNOME 1.0.

Piotr said...

A paypal link is what you need now :) Youre apps are getting better by the day.

Nicola said...

Is there a place where I can give you some suggestion/whishlist??

Neil J. Patel said...

@piotr: A new monitor would be useful, but I don't want to put it and get no response ;)!

@nicola: If you have a account you can use the 'issues' page on the Awn googlecode page, or you can use the wiki:

Britt said...

One idea. I heavily use the "hover over for app info", since I normally have many gvim instances open.

Currently you can bold this and change the color, but that will never cover all bases (you have a blank terminal at the bottom, sometimes you have a while firefox page at the bottom, sometimes just your background).

What about encapsulating these within their own background bubble so they are always readable?

jbus said...

Great update!

I also wanted to say that the problem I was having with AWN refusing to unmaximize windows must have been caused by XGL. I recently switched to AIGLX and I haven't have any more trouble with AWN.

By the way, for any ubuntu edgy ATI users that are having trouble getting AIGLX to work with the ATI open source drivers, I posted how I did it on the Beryl forums. I put the link as my homepage.

Piotr said...

jbus : sadly some of us have a X1xxx series :( njpatel : as soon as paypal allows payments without usage of credit cards in my country i will donate (unless you come up with alternative means). Also, i'm waiting on autohide, and a new stable version. I'm having problems packaging you cvs (it's a _very_ moving target). Any timeframe when you'll put up a new version?

Neil J. Patel said...

@britt: this option has been added in my copy, I am just fine tuning the drawing and I'll commit it soon.

@jbus: glad to hear it!

@piotr: Auto-hide is being worked on, I need to tweak it slightly, expect an update soon! Regarding 0.2, I am hoping for next weekend, as Dual screen support works, launchers work, however, I need to tidy some things up. I may push some of the more extravagent features to 0.3. I'll blog about it later.

michele said...

Hi, what is the font you use as applications font?

K said...

Something that seemed to coincide with the installation of AWN... no more desktop icons! No right-click! Is it ticking some option i'm not seeing or am I barking up the wrong tree here? (ubuntu edgy/gnome/beryl) I love the program! Please keep up the excellent work!

Britt said...

Neil: Awesome! Please post an update when this feature goes in!

Anonymous said...

great work

i was wondering about the theme you mentioned, so are you planning to create just a theme using an existing engine or create a new gtk theme engine altogether?

If so are you planning to use openGL/cairo? What kind of things can we expect?


Peter said...

Great work. I follow all new dock like apps and write about their pluses and minuses in my blog and I have to tell you yours the best I have ever used.
I have a small request, if possible to work on it in later releases. I see that the space between the icons in the dock is really large. Left/right borders (empty spaces) between icons take so much space I am unable to arrange all my launchers and opened apps. If it is possible please make this twaeakble (something like launchers distance).


Peter said...

Oh sorry I forgot about something, the small triangle under the launchers, it's colour is not configurable in the preferencies panel and when I make the dock very light (like the OSX dock for example) I dont really see the triangles as they are light too. Can I change this?


Neil J. Patel said...

@michele : lucida sans

@k : I am not sure why this is happening, I will need some more info.

@anon: I am going to use Clearlooks/Murrine engine as the default, so it is usable from day one. Regarding Open/GL, I am not sure at this moment, I need to do some testing (hopefully sometime this week).

@ peter : Thanks! Regarding the spacing, its on my TODO! Regarding the arrows, they will be configurable in about 5 hours ;)

K said...

wrt the icons disappearing... Appears to be some interaction with beryl/emerald.. after a WM reload/theme change, the desktop icons reappeared. Unfortunately, i can't repeat the icons disappearing. So for the time being, I guess we'll chock this up to Gremlins...


Guillermo said...

Hi, i know that this doesn't appear to be the place where i can ask for that, but i can't found a forum or something like that. It's possible to install awn on Debian testing? I installed all the packages that are required, but i had errors in the time. I use the SVN version. Where i could find help?

Thanks, is a really need it app for gnome.

Neil J. Patel said...

@Guillermo : I know of this problem, and I am trying to find out why only Debian testing has a problem. I'll post an update if I get anywhere with this.

Guillermo said...

Thanks, Neil. I will waiting for it :D

Guillermo said...

@neil, this is the error i got:

checking for AWN... configure: error: Package requirements ( glib-2.0 gobject-2.0 gtk+-2.0 gdk-2.0 libwnck-1.0 gnome-desktop-2.0 libgnome-2.0 gnome-vfs-2.0 gconf-2.0 x11 xproto) were not met:

No package 'gnome-desktop-2.0' found
No package 'libgnome-2.0' found
No package 'gnome-vfs-2.0' found

But i'm using gnome. Maybe something with 2.14 debian packages.


caudata said...

This looks great and I would love to use it with Kubuntu, but for the life of me I just can't seem to get it to work on my KDE desktop. Where can I find a list of the prerequisites to compile Awn? As far as I know I have all of them. I can get it to half work. The Awn dock at least shows up behind my KDE taskbar, but preferences etc never works. I think I still have some problems during configuration. FYI- I would consider myself novice to moderately competent with Linux. Thanks for any suggestions you can provide, and great work!