Monday, 10 March 2008

We don't discriminate baby

The awn-core team released Awn & Awn-Extras 0.2.6 couple of weeks ago!

These releases bring with them more stability, a lots of bugfixes, and some interesting new features which include Vala bindings, an updated UI for Awn Manager, new applets, more documentation and support for non-gnome desktop environments.

Desktop Agnostic

Mark Lees (malept) long-standing desktop-agnostic branch was finally merged into trunk. What it does is separate three 'desktop-specific' parts of Awn and provides multiple implementations of them, suiting your current desktop set-up:
  • Configuration: Either a GConf (default) or GKeyFile settings backend.
  • VFS: Three VFS backends, GnomeVFS (currently-default), ThunarVFS and GIO.
  • Desktop File Reading: Either libgnome-desktop (default) or EggDesktop.
As you can see, by default Awn uses Gnome libs, however, it's now possible to compile it specifically for Xfce4 or just Glib/GIO.

This abstraction also spreads to the applets in Awn-extras, and most of them have been ported to the new style, with the goal of porting all of them by the next release.


Speaking of the next release, there have been some changes to the Awn versioning system & the roadmap. The new roadmap looks like this:
  • 0.4 - Non-composited WM support; Better handling of multi-monitor setups; GtkTheme support; Awn-curves;
  • 0.6 - Rewrite the launcher/task-manager, adding support for window grouping, window sorting, window-thumbnails-as-icons, easier plugin writing, and a more extensive DBus backend.
  • 0.8 - Allow Awn to reside on any edge of the screen; TBD
  • 1.0 - Multiple Awn panels; TBD
More details available here.

As you can see, the 'major-rewrite' of Awn has been split-up into sizeable chucks, which allows for more releases and allows us to introduce the new code a bit at a time.


If you need help installing Awn, are having problems, or just want to chat about development & features, please check out the forums, wiki or stop by #awn on, where there's always someone willing to help!

I'd also like to welcome Julien Lavergne, Mark Lee and Rodney Cryderman to the core team. They have done a lot (most) of the work for this release, and have kept the Awn boat floating.

Finally, once you've installed the Awn and feel like trying out something new, set /apps/avant-window-navigator/bar/bar_angle t0 -1, and see what happens (this is courtesy of ;-).