The XFree86 Fork() Saga Continues; Keith Packard Replies

Now, that was an interesting reading in the XFree86 forum mailing list. We get individuals, companies like Sun, SciTechSoft, Red Hat etc. ‘fighting’ for issues varying from what XFree86 really needs, down to replacing fontconfig with Sun’s stsf, XFree86 co-founder David Wexelblat saying that XFree is today obsolete and that needs to be replaced with a direct-rendered model (by retaining backwards compatibility), Keith Packard replying as to why a new organization to handle X is needed, and more. Our Take: One thing is clear after reading all these messages: a lot of people are not happy with what’s happening with the development of XFree86. It is obvious that more discussion is needed to decide what’s going to be implemented and what not, and from these emails there, it seems that there was no real/common direction discussed between the interested parties until yesterday. No real communication seemed to exist!

Let’s hope that this open forum list will show what people want and need and will ‘open’ the XFree86 organization in a way that will allow more CVS commits, as the project seems kind of stagnant and doesn’t move as fast as it should have, as some Red Hat employees also noted (for example, direct changing of resolution was introduced just a few months ago with RandR extension, while Windows 95 could do that in 1995).

The XFree86 project always looked a bit conservative to me while more development and openess is needed. There is no need for a “new XFree”, but there is a need for more development and ‘fixing’ on the existing codebase.


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