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The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 18, 2010 15:41 UTC (Thu) by foom (subscriber, #14868)
In reply to: The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X by rwmj
Parent article: The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

There's no reason why that has to be required. You could very well do VNC-style compressed-bitmap transmission of a single (or group of) windows.

For a real example, Windows RDP supports single app remoteing...and they sure don't use X11. It works damn well -- better than X11 forwarding.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753844(WS.10).aspx


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The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 18, 2010 16:38 UTC (Thu) by rwmj (subscriber, #5474) [Link]

Unfortunately this simplistic approach does not work.

Pixels are not the same shape on every display. Colours aren't balanced the same way.

The application really needs to talk to the display to find out these things, which is exactly how X works, and how the other technologies you mentioned do not. (I should also mention that actual rootless VNC/whatever that *I can use today* does not exist).

Rich.

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 18, 2010 17:42 UTC (Thu) by foom (subscriber, #14868) [Link]

Well, I dunno, perhaps RDP does get those wrong, I wouldn't ever have noticed. There's no reason it *has to* get it wrong, though -- the RDP client could quite feasibly send that data to the server so that when the application asks the server (that is: the RDP server, running on the same host as the app), it gets the right answer.

But RDP gets a lot of other things right, which Unix/X11 forwarding doesn't: sound devices, filesystem, and printers are all shared from the desktop client to the server.

Yes, sure, those are all "simple" additions on top of X11 (or perhaps beside it). Just like color calibration and pixel shape are to RDP.

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 18, 2010 23:52 UTC (Thu) by intgr (subscriber, #39733) [Link]

> But RDP gets a lot of other things right,
> which Unix/X11 forwarding doesn't

You forgot performance. I've tried using X11 forwarding over SSH on a 100Mbit LAN. Maybe I'm doing somethng wrong, but I always found the performance to be abysmal. They say it's GTK's fault, but what's the point of a feature if major toolkits can't find developers to work on properly supporting it? As it stands, I couldn't care less about X11's network transparency.

RDP, on the other hand, flies even over a regular DSL connection. That's more important than getting color profiles right.

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 21, 2010 17:36 UTC (Sun) by nix (subscriber, #2304) [Link]

You're definitely doing something wrong. I've run my whole desktop over ssh over a 100Mbit LAN in the past, and while it's not instantaneous it's very fast. The only thing that shows slowdowns is stuff like video playback which is limited by raw bandwidth.

X is really rather good over LANs. It's latency that kills it.

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 19, 2010 2:21 UTC (Fri) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

filesystems and printers are already easily shared (and shared through a number of different mechanisms), why would your display protocol need to handle them?

sound is an issue in some cases.

The way to Wayland: Preparing for life After X

Posted Nov 23, 2010 5:06 UTC (Tue) by foom (subscriber, #14868) [Link]

> filesystems and printers are already easily shared (and shared through a number of different mechanisms), why would your display protocol need to handle them?

Filesystems (and printers) aren't otherwise *easily* shared from client to server, in a way such that the app running on the central server can access your client's filesystems and printers.

Of course you can turn on NFS on your client, set things up so that it's securely and encrypted, become root on the server, mount your client's file share...then undo all that again when you stop using the remote app. But that's anything but easy. MS Remote Desktop makes it *easy*. (I suspect that functionality is not actually part of the display protocol, but rather just using a tunnel through the same encrypted connection, but still it's very nice for the client to handle all of that)


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