Linked by Oscar Boykin on Wed 25th Feb 2004 08:59 UTC
X11, Window Managers For the past year, there has been a slow and steady stream of news events regarding XFree86, X11, or new X server implementations. To those not paying close attention (and even those who are), the meaning of some of these events may not be clear. In this brief article, I attempt to share my impression on what the changes mean for users of free software on the desktop. It appears that XFree86 is in some turmoil, and it may leave some to infer that free desktop systems will suffer.
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A few comments...
by bytes256 on Wed 25th Feb 2004 09:35 UTC

Excellent article overall...I have a few comments...

First of all I never realized that XFree86 maintained all of their dependencies internally! No wonder it takes so long to compile. (I usually just start it and walk away whenever I have to compile it.)

such as converting the build system from imake to autotools

imake is definitely aweful, but I don't think autotools is really the best solution either. I would rather see them using something like scons - http://www.scons.org/ it is a far more productive build system and makes porting very easy. A project as large and complicated as XFree86 would be very difficult to switch over to autotools. Certainly not impossible, but difficult. Anyway, why not use the best technology available if you are going to go through the effort of something as significant as rewriting the build system from scratch.

I also agree that XFree86 needs to be a lot more modular. Most importantly, for god sakes open up the development process more, it shouldn't be harder to add code to XFree86 than it is to add code to Mac OS X! (I'm referring to Darwin.)