Today I tried out Nautilus with dual-head, i.e. two monitors that share a large virtual screen using XRandr. It was a desaster! Not XRandr – I love it! But it turns out that Nautilus miserably fails to be useful in a dual-head layout.
I already fixed Nautilus 2.24 to never move any icons outside the (virtual) screen area some time ago, but for dual-head we have horrible issues:
* Dead space is not detected, icons are put happily there
* The icons are not laid out per physical monitor, but per virtual screen. You can easily have icons that are “shared” between two monitors. While the actual icon layout is a bit tricky in the case of overlapping monitor regions, in the non-overlapping case we should perfectly be able to do nice per-monitor icon layouts.
* When there is a loading error for a file launched from the desktop, it is displayed in the middle of the (virtual) screen, and not in the middle of the monitor you used to open the location.
* The first navigation window is always opened on the monitor where the last navigation window was closed, even when you open it through the panel on a different monitor (patch pending release team approval).
* We don’t begin the icon layout on the monitor that you right-click to select “clean up by name”
* No background image awareness, i.e. the background image is just centered across monitors, even if it fits on the first monitor. Ideally, we’d have per-monitor backgrounds, of course.
* … any more issues you report, assuming you actually use GNOME in a dual monitor setup …
Now, a serious question: Is our user base so small, that we just receive bug reports evry once in a while, and not constantly? Are our users masochistic or unprofessional enough to tolerate this in a desktop environment that is supposed to be used in business environments?
While I frequently use beamers in combination with my laptop, I miserably failed to use them with Linux and used Windows for my (university) beamer needs from day two on. An educated guess is that almost every GNOME user out there does the same and uses Linux for non-serious business only. This is somewhat frustrating, as we are still trying to deliver a robust and business grade desktop environment – aren’t we? Note that this is NOT a rant about XRandr, which is really, really neat. It’s just we who suck!
Some comments suggest that some of our users feel insulted, and rectify themselves that they actually filed bugs, gave up on us or something along those lines. It is interesting how some people describe their use-cases, griefs and work-arounds. I love how everybody cares about quality, files bug reports and kicks us in the arse when things are broken. I certainly did not write this to insult anybody. You have to understand that I somehow feel like an innkeeper who thinks that he has some good wine in his cellar, realizing that half his wine from a certain country is decomposed.