How to install Xorg without Wayland in FreeBSD?

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Spartrekus

Spartrekus

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And some still use telnet today, on environments where the added security features of ssh would not make any difference.

Telnet is still being used today, largely less than SSH, but still exists.
 

olli@

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And some still use telnet today, on environments where the added security features of ssh would not make any difference.
Well, FreeBSD's telnet also has security features (it supports Kerberos authentication and encryption). On the other hand, ssh provides many more features. For example, automated authentication, port forwarding, tunneling, connection sharing, working through proxies and so on. I haven't used telnet in this century. Even the typical use of telnet to check ports and debug protocols (e.g. telnet to port 25 for SMTP) works better with tools like netcat instead of telnet.
 
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Spartrekus

Spartrekus

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It took about 10 years of experience for X to start to work. More or less, but at least it works on all kind of platforms. At early begin of X, it was really long to get it work (Settings/config, drivers,...). I remember this time. Once X starts to work, sufficiently to display or just a bit, the opensource community will replace X with something else. A new system again and we all know what it means.
 

olli@

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It took about 10 years of experience for X to start to work.
Please excuse me, but that's nonsense. In 1990, I started using X11 on various UNIX platforms (Sun, DEC, IBM), and it worked perfectly well. At that time, X was already 6 years old.

By the way: Wayland is 10 years old.

Today, X is 35 years old, and some of the old cruft is starting to become a pain, especially for developers, but also for users who try to have a secure environment. Security is much more a concern today than it was 35 years ago – X wasn't designed with security in mind.
 
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Spartrekus

Spartrekus

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Old should not be a concern.

I had fun with XFree86 and second slackware once, I remember.
X11 is also about 10 years. Depends which X.
vi or vim is very old. You don't use that probably, right?
 

rvgeerligs

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No, the old X protocol is going to die, sooner or later (hopefully sooner). It is 35 years old and was designed at a time when people didn't think much about security issues. Wayland fixes that and a bunch of other problems.

And please stop abusing this thread for your “BSD vs Linux” mission. As already stated, Wayland is an OS-independent display protocol.
nicely said, but it does not work on the latest
 

free-and-bsd

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I hope, at least, that my favourite FVWM will somehow be ported. I've found a 2014 dated article about porting Motif to Wayland, but no traces of it dated by any later date... Anyway.
 

kpedersen

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I hope, at least, that my favourite FVWM will somehow be ported. I've found a 2014 dated article about porting Motif to Wayland, but no traces of it dated by any later date... Anyway.
I am fairly surprised to not see a libX11 "wrapper library" around Wayland.
But then since Wayland does not have a united approach (it is really just a scatty band of separate non-standard compositor projects), it doesn't have a single underlying library. The closest is maybe wlroots but again, that is fairly non-standard.

Once Wayland gets serious and matures (or dies) and a library such as this appears, I am fairly sure we will see Motif, Gtk2 come fairly quick. Fvwm will also be great to see but since they have to develop an entire compositor (a window manager + 1/4 of Xorg), it might be a complex project.

Either way, most of the FOSS world is in limbo over waiting for Wayland. Innovation has completely stagnated whilst less than 7% actually use Wayland (Gnome/Sway) vs Xorg.
 

free-and-bsd

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I am fairly surprised to not see a libX11 "wrapper library" around Wayland.
But then since Wayland does not have a united approach (it is really just a scatty band of separate non-standard compositor projects), it doesn't have a single underlying library. The closest is maybe wlroots but again, that is fairly non-standard.

Once Wayland gets serious and matures (or dies) and a library such as this appears, I am fairly sure we will see Motif, Gtk2 come fairly quick. Fvwm will also be great to see but since they have to develop an entire compositor (a window manager + 1/4 of Xorg), it might be a complex project.

Either way, most of the FOSS world is in limbo over waiting for Wayland. Innovation has completely stagnated whilst less than 7% actually use Wayland (Gnome/Sway) vs Xorg.
I'm sure there WAS (and probably still IS) such "layer". I used Ubuntu recently, up to 16.04, and it had this Wayland compatibility layer allowing to run X11-linked apps. But I must check with my Ubuntu installation that was upgraded recently.
 

olli@

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I'm sure there WAS (and probably still IS) such "layer". I used Ubuntu recently, up to 16.04, and it had this Wayland compatibility layer allowing to run X11-linked apps. But I must check with my Ubuntu installation that was upgraded recently.
There is “XWayland” which acts as an X11 server that uses a Wayland compositor as its display backend. It allows traditional X11 clients to be displayed on a Wayland compositor. You can think of it as some kind of an X11-to-Wayland proxy.
 

kpedersen

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Yep, XWayland is kind of like XCocoa or Xming in that you can connect UIs using X11 to it. If you think about it, this functionality is very unique.

However I do believe a translation library would be a nicer approach. The Wayland guys don't seem to like booting up XWayland and this gets round it. I am also fairly sure the Wayland developers can't wait to disable the XWayland module in the majority of compositors and declare (quite falsely) that X11 is dead. Leaving their users with crappy setups for years to come.
 

free-and-bsd

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So then, Xwayland is the way to go for X11 apps? It depends on libepoxy, which is in the ports. Will see if XWayland builds, then.
 

kpedersen

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So then, Xwayland is the way to go for X11 apps?
In the same way that Xming is the way to go for X11 apps. If you have the choice, you should use the superior native technology. That is Xorg on FreeBSD.

That is, unless of course you plan to run Wayland apps? Which ones are you interested in particular? I don't believe there are any.
 

free-and-bsd

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In the same way that Xming is the way to go for X11 apps. If you have the choice, you should use the superior native technology. That is Xorg on FreeBSD.

That is, unless of course you plan to run Wayland apps? Which ones are you interested in particular? I don't believe there are any.
😁 No no, I'm talking about the hypothetical future where Xorg has been dropped and things not ported to Wayland.
 

6502

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I still don't know what is Wayland in details and have one main question: Is it possible to run remote GUI applications with Wayland in the same way like Xorg? I.e. app running on server and open windows on X client with network transfer of GUI commands like "draw line" or "fill area". Not like TeamViewer or other tools for Windows where a whole screen/window is transmitted as bitmap.
 

kpedersen

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I still don't know what is Wayland in details and have one main question: Is it possible to run remote GUI applications with Wayland in the same way like Xorg? I.e. app running on server and open windows on X client with network transfer of GUI commands like "draw line" or "fill area". Not like TeamViewer or other tools for Windows where a whole screen/window is transmitted as bitmap.
The short answer is no. Wayland is limited in scope and individual compositors are very rough anyway.

The longer answer is that GUI toolkits are so crap and inefficient these days that a network transparent GUI system is less useful than it could be anyway. I.e compared to Microsoft's RDP (hybrid approach) where the developers had a little more sense and restraint.

Basically nothing today will really beat X11 using a light toolkit like Xaw or Motif. In my experiments, even though X11 is relatively chatty, it still uses vastly less bandwidth than the raster solutions. The future was yesterday ;)

I think NoMachine's NX improves upon X11 so is slightly faster but there are clearly portability issues because very few repos seem to contain the open-source server.
 

6502

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This means (for me at least) that X11 still have future. It will be good if Wayland and X11/Xorg can be integrated and be able to work together on the same system without side effects. Or maybe a new X12+ can be developed.
 

Snurg

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Step by step collecting all knobs and switches one needs to know. Thanks 👍

In the 'latest' repository, the wayland option has been enabled by default since November. It will be the default in the upcoming quarterly update. It's only a 1Mb package, so not a big deal.
It is basically libinput what trickles in first, causing a lot of people having frustration with input devices fun.
So I think it should not be frowned upon, but instead be accepted if some old grunts like me don't want this kind of "fun".

By the way, even if you unset the WAYLAND option when building ports, you will still get libinput because it is the default input driver for X.org on FreeBSD >= 12. Only on FreeBSD <= 11 the old legacy drivers are used (xf86-input-keyboard and xf86-input-mouse).
This also needs to be investigated.
Are the original drivers still available (maybe as ports?) or does one need to "insert them back" in some unofficial way?

My aim is to find out all steps necessary to build FreeBSD without wayland, e.g. without libinput.
Then I will integrate these steps into my postinstaller, to have all this automated.
Final aim is to include installation of a local poudriere server that serves as kind of "pkg proxy server" which filters out wayland stuff and certain other things that creep in slowly.
Doing such manually would be an immense, repetitive effort for each desktop installation.
So I am working on the postinstaller basis, and hope to make it so good that it attracts people and becomes a community project.
If this is well-maintained, it might provide an easy way to stay wayland-free by updating the postinstaller every time one more drop of wayland seeps in.
 

olli@

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I still don't know what is Wayland in details and have one main question: Is it possible to run remote GUI applications with Wayland in the same way like Xorg? I.e. app running on server and open windows on X client with network transfer of GUI commands like "draw line" or "fill area". Not like TeamViewer or other tools for Windows where a whole screen/window is transmitted as bitmap.
Actually, most of today’s X11 applications don’t use X11 protocol commands like “draw line” or “fill area” anymore. For example, when a web browser renders a <HR> tag (for a horizontal rule on a web page), it draws that line itself and transfers the page as an image to the server.
 

6502

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I guess this is specific for web browser. It cannot predict how complex is a web page and prefer to render it locally and send it as image.
 

olli@

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I guess this is specific for web browser. It cannot predict how complex is a web page and prefer to render it locally and send it as image.
It’s not specific for web browsers. Almost all X11 applications that I use do it exactly like that (various browsers, GIMP, InkScape, Scribus, mplayer, and others). The “old” X11 protocol commands are mostly not used anymore today; basically they only still exist so the X server passes the conformance test suite.

See this paper (2002) by James Gosling, for example. Very interesting read. Quote: “It’s been interesting to watch the evolution in the way applications use X11. It has become standard to sidestep the server’s rendering and use the direct screen access extensions and libraries like libart.”

Or, as Kristian Høgsberg puts it: “[An X server has] a tremendous amount of functionality that you must support to claim to speak the X protocol, yet nobody will ever use this. ... This includes the entire core rendering API that lets you draw stippled lines, polygons, wide arcs and many more state-of-the-1980s style graphics primitives.”
 

kpedersen

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The ideal solution would be X12 and a new GUI toolkit from scratch to take full advantage of it. But I suppose we now need to wait for Wayland to faff about and waste our time for a while first now before we can actually do something useful.

I am beginning to suspect that it is actually lack of corporate interest as to why we don't have a decent remote desktop solution. Whilst that surprises me in the "day of the cloud", I guess the concept of DaaS (Desktop as a Service) is not really that popular. Perhaps things will change and then UNIX can catch up to Windows in this regard.
 

free-and-bsd

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Well then. After all this reading, it seems to me this new, amazing & cool Wayland does little more than being amazing (after 10 years of development). And it's going to be more amazing since many devs are actively working on it. But what's in there for us desktop apps users, I wonder?

Xorg, on the other hand, works well with the apps and does its job for us users. I have a funny feeling that Wayland may (or may not?) end up no better than the great and amazing next-level stuff BTRFS. When it became a reality and gave a measure of satisfaction that YES, such swiss-army-knife of a filesystem CAN be designed, it also became clear (or so it would seem) that it wasn't worth further effort... Or maybe Wayland will find its niche somewhere (with Gnome 3), but X will keep its positions.

I don't know, really, as a FVWM user (well, I do :)). The next thing I want to try is Trinity DE. I remember KDE 3.5 was amazing and cool. Then came KDE4, then I stopped using KDE. And anyway, even if Xorg is as bad as they put it, I never ever had any problems with it.
 
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