Archive for November, 2011

GNOME Shell, GSettings and keybindings

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

Some of you may already know: it has been roughly a week since metacity/mutter switched to GSettings. The fallout has been quite small, so this seems like a good time to sum up the changes which may be of wider interest:

  • no more hidden binding_name_list settings – while the System Settings panel still only allows to assign a single keybinding to each action, keybindings are always stored as lists, so it is possible to have multiple bindings per action
  • no more custom keybindings in Metacity/Mutter – the Custom Shortcuts section in the Settings panel uses gnome-settings-daemon, there’s no point in having an additional hidden mechanism for the same functionality
  • the keybindings to take screenshots have been moved to gnome-settings-daemon – those actions are not window manager related at all, they were provided by Metacity purely due to historic reasons; it is worth mentioning though, as the move breaks the shortcuts in the overview for the time being
  • the keybinding to launch a terminal has been removed – I know some people will be pissed off by this, but well … you can define arbitrary keybindings in System Settings, there’s really no point in having a pre-defined (unset-by-default) shortcut for terminals (note how all other pre-defined launchers default to hardware keys found on some keyboards)
  • GNOME Shell no longer overrides the theme preference – Metacity has defaulted to ‘Adwaita’ for quite some time, so there’s no good reason to keep a different preference for GNOME Shell; as a consequence, if you changed /desktop/shell/windows/theme, the change will not be migrated automatically – you’ll have to set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences theme manually (or just go with the great default theme!)
  • the way Mutter handles keybindings has been mostly rewritten – the interesting part of this is that extensions may now use meta_display_add_keybinding() to define their own keybindings

So that’s it for today – if you encounter any issues not mentioned above, feel free to file bugs.

(Hopefully my next blog post will be a bit more interesting …)