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Metacity has two compositing related branches. One is luminacity which is a testbed for all kind of OpenGL effects and the other is spiffifity, which is about improving the built in compositing manager. It will be available once it's ready and everything is stable.
Luminocity and spiffifity, or as I call them "the toy and the thing that fights xcompmgr when I want some effects." As it is, spiffifity simply doesn't work (it would have been better to fork xcompmgr like KDE and start with at least SOMETHING) and that was the reason it was left out of Breezy. Luminocity is its own project in which parts of it will be merged back into Metacity (before I die I hope). Problem is, Luminocity eats a LOT of resources when it is not hardware accerated and its very far from being usable.
Its obvious. The Gnome people want to wait for the Open Source Drivers (maybe just for the ATI 9200) to get up to speed before they include such things. I say this is stupid, because some of us Nvidia owners are willing to be early test subjects to help build the structure so that at the exact time when the drivers are ready the acceration will be ready. This is how KDE and XFCE are treating the subject of hardware acceration.
Instead, Gnome will wait and it will be up to six months behind in the Eye Candy department when KDE 4.0 comes out. I really like Gnome and gnome apps (more the QT stuff) but I think Gnome is making a mistake here. Getting it to first work on the best drivers availible (the closed Nvidia ones) will NOT make the whole thing dependent on closed drivers. It will just hammer everything out for when the Open Source world is ready.
If you are looking for experimental eye candy, your best choice probably would be E17 anyway.
I don't care about the Eye Candy as much as the acceration. E17 lacks hardware acceration and is unexceptable to me at this point. It makes a big difference- its not all about Eye Candy.
Without xcompmgr turned on in Gnome, when my CPU is being maxed out and I move windows they leave behind a very ugly trail. When I minimize apps under the same condition, Metacity leaves blackness on my desktop for a second or two. With xcompmgr turned on, both of those problems go away.
I would just leave xcompmgr on but even in Breezy it fights with Gnome some (less than before though). Plus its a dead project- no new release since 2004. Too bad, the effects of it are awesome. Its like night and day....it would make Gnome a lot faster on old computers with Nvidia cards.
But it doesn't matter. Gnome has made its choice. One again it will put principal before anything, even common sense. I will switch to KDE for 3.5 and leave unaccerated Gnome in my past.