Report: KDE 3.1.x/Woody Screensaver Situation
Re: my previous reports to this list (Jan.2003 & Feb.2004) about how on
my Woody system with KDE 3.1.x, (a) the OpenGL screensavers were very
slow (unaccelerated), and (b) most of the ~160 screensavers listed in
Kcontrol don't work at all :
I've been experimenting, and have made two improvements in the situation
1) I now have beautiful glorious fully accelerated GL screensavers (the
KDE ones anyway); I fixed the problem by installing a package I hadn't
previously realised I needed : libglide3, "Graphics library for 3Dfx
Voodoo based cards"; I suppose users of other brand graphics cards
don't need any such "helper" library (or do they ?).
2) I managed to remove the entries for approx 145 screensavers which
don't work from the list offered by the screensaver applet of Kcontrol
(leaving 29 working native KDE screensavers). The screensavers listed
by Kcontrol are those for which a ".desktop" file exists in
/usr/share/applnk/System/ScreenSavers, so I just moved the "broken"
ones out of the way.
I tried to find out why exactly the broken screensavers are broken, and
noted that the first few lines of a working screensaver .desktop file
are like this :
/usr/share/applnk/System/ScreenSavers$ more KPyro.desktop
and the "Exec" line names an executable file to be run :
/usr/share/applnk/System/ScreenSavers$ which kpyro.kss
but for a "broken" screensaver (e.g. "Zoom"), the named executable :
/usr/share/applnk/System/ScreenSavers$ more duff/zoom.desktop
doesn't exist in any directory on the path on my system :
/usr/share/applnk/System/ScreenSavers$ which zoom
I did a search of the system, and discovered that the zoom screensaver
module *is* on my system, in a place which isn't on the path, so it
doesn't work :
Thus enlightened, I tried editing the zoom.desktop file to add the full
path for the screensaver module to each "Exec" line (there are 4 such
lines). This fixed the basic brokenness of the Zoom saver, such that
it will now actually work if selected in Kcontrol - *but* didn't fix
the Kcontrol screensaver preview pane (which stays dark), or the "Test"
button (which does nothing at all)... and the "Setup" button just says
"No configuration available for Zoom". This situation seems to be the
same for each of the xscreensaver modules - all the .desktop files are
broken in the same way, and all can be "fixed" by adding the full path
to the executable module.
So where does "zoom.desktop" come from ?
glimmer:~# dpkg -S zoom.desktop
glimmer:~# apt-cache policy kscreensaver
*** 4:3.1.4-0woody1 0
500 http://download.kde.org stable/main Packages
Okay .... it's a fault in the kscreensaver package at download.kde.org.
Should I bug this ? Ralf ?
End of report.
(1) Should I fix all 145 broken xscreensaver .desktop files - or just
move the xscreensaver modules to a directory on the path ?
That would allow them to be selected directly from Kcontrol.
(2) After that, is there any further need for the "XScreenSaver.desktop"
file ? Its only purpose seems to be to allow Kcontrol to run
"xscreensaver -setup" to give the horrible Motif-y xscreensaver
configuration dialog ... which I suppose *does* provide the ability to
have a subset of the modules selected, but that in turn only works if
we have the xscreensaver daemon running ... which is equally horrible
(ok - I mean "un-KDE-ish").
(3) How come some people find all 160 screensavers work from Kcontrol
without the problem I found ? (I'm thinking perhaps there are
different .desktop files in other packagers' KDE debs ...)