Design/F18 Launcher Purge

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Fedora includes an extremely large number of application launchers by default. Many of these are confusing, unnecessary and irrelevant to the majority of users. Problems caused by these issues:

  • A high number of launchers makes launching applications inefficient and difficult - it takes a long time to find the launcher you are looking for, and is an unpleasant experience.
  • Creates work for users. Every time they want to launch an application, they have to process a large number of launchers, many of which are uninteresting to them.
  • Prevents personalisation. Installing apps is an important way in which people can change their system to make it suit them. If installed applications are lost within a sea of preinstalled launchers, the OS will never feel like it belongs to the user.
  • Makes people feel like the OS isn't designed for them. 'If it contains lots of launchers which I don't understand or don't care about, it obviously isn't for me.'

This page tracks the progress of an initiative to tackle these problems by reducing the number of application launchers included in a new Fedora install. It requires making improvements to upstream software as well as fixing distribution-specific issues.

Status

Some applications need to be removed from the default install, others just need to have their launchers hidden.

Name Command (package, if different) Bugs Action Notes Status
Authentication system-config-authentication (authconfig-gtk) Don't depend on it, then don't install by default Required by firstboot, but then first boot should be going away for F18. In progress
Desktop Sharing Preferences vino-preferences (vino) GNOME Bug 681150 Needs to be integrated into System Settings or spun out into a separate app Incomplete (needs design)
Firewall system-config-firewall Don't install? TBD
IBus Hangul Preferences ibus-setup-hangul GNOME Bug 662489 Integrate into System Settings, then hide launcher In progress
Input Method Selector ibus-setup GNOME Bug 662489 Integrate into System Settings In progress
Messaging and VoIP Accounts empathy-accounts (empathy) GNOME Bug 662489 Remove the desktop file Fixed
Network Connections nm-connection-editor Hide launcher GNOME Control Center currently uses nm-connection-editor for settings dialogs Incomplete
Power Statistics gnome-power-statistics (gnome-power-manager) Fedora Bug 846287 Don't install Part of gnome-power-manager - this can be dropped from the desktop spin (nothing else depends on it right now) In progress
Printing system-config-printer Fedora Bug 846290 Don't install Incomplete
Release Notes xdg-open file:///usr/share/doc/HTML/fedora-release-notes/index.html Fedora Bug 846316 Remove the launcher This is already added as a Firefox bookmark. It can potentially be linked to from other webpages, also. Incomplete
Search for Files... gnome-search-tool Fedora Bug 846278 Don't install Might need some improvements to searching in Nautilus Incomplete
SELinux Troubleshooter sealert Nothing for now Provides access to logs, which means that we can't hide the launcher; in the long run this needs replacing by a generic desktop logging/error reporting app On ice
Software Settings gpk-prefs (gnome-packagekit) GNOME Bug 676445 Hide launcher (can be accessed via Add/Remove Software (which needs a better name)) Incomplete
Software Updates gpk-update-viewer (gnome-packagekit) GNOME Bug 676445 Hide launcher (needs to be accessible via Add/Remove Software (which needs a better name)) Incomplete
System-Config-Date system-config-date Fedora Bug 803833 Don't depend on it, then don't install by default Required by anaconda, firstboot and system-config-kickstart. Incomplete
Users and Groups system-config-users Don't depend on it, then don't install by default Required by firstboot, but then first boot should be going away for F18. In progress
Games
AisleRiot Solitaire sol --freecell (aisleriot) Remove the desktop file This is a second launcher for Aisleriot. This is broken - the launcher is labelled 'Freecell Solitaire', but the app menu reads 'Aisleriot Solitaire'. Also, you can't run Aisleriot Solitare and Freecell Solitaire at the same time. Incomplete
Freecell Solitaire sol (aisleriot) Don't install? A card game makes sense as a default app, but the quality is very low. A game that provides a million different card games isn't a good default. TBD
Iagno iagno (gnome-games) Could be a nice game, though it needs some polish No action required
Mines gnomine (gnome-games) Don't install? Feels very Windows 95; might be better not to include TBD
Sudoku gnome-sudoku (gnome-games) A good game to have in a default install No action required
Swell Foop swell-foop (gnome-games) Don't install? This is probably the best quality GNOME game right now, but it has an arcade style which makes it feel unsuitable as a default app TBD
It should be possible to individually add and remove games Fedora Bug 846274 Split games to subpackages In progress

Tetravex could make a good addition as a default game.

Additional Notes

Designs for a GNOME 'Usage' application would combine Disk Usage Analyzer, Power Statistics and System Monitor into a single launcher.