Talk:Desktop/Whiteboards/GenericCommandsToDefaultApps

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What do you think? Please let me know your thoughts on this topic.

-- Darren





In general, on the desktop we try to avoid making people type a command into a terminal to do something - precisely because of the problem you mention: what is the name of the command, and what are the options, etc. Clicking on a file will open it in the preferred application for that purpose.

If you absolutely insist on having those 'generic wrappers', you'll find that the xdg scripts (xdg-open, xdg-email, etc) come pretty close to what you describe.





    ...we try to avoid making people type a command into a terminal to do something...

I agree that we shouldn't make anyone type a command. I'm allowing for a more convenient way to for those users who do.

    ...you'll find that the xdg scripts (xdg-open, xdg-email, etc) come pretty close to what you describe.

The Xdg-utils are great, but they aren't intended for end users to use to launch common applications. The Xdg-utils are meant to, in part, help applications open other applications. Since users don't ordinarily run the Xdg-util commands directly, it is okay that they are named xdg-whatever, instead of something more meaningful or intuitive. xdg-open "http://example.com/" is less intuitive than web-browser.

-- Darren





You'll find that there is a strong resistance in Fedora (as well as in other distros) to allowing binaries with overly generic names like 'text-editor' or 'web-browser'. If anything, you'll have to use alternatives or some other crude mechanism to make this configurable.

Also, a program name like 'text-editor' is really only intuitive for the minority of English-speaking users.





    there is a strong resistance in Fedora (as well as in other distros) to allowing binaries with overly generic names like 'text-editor' 

These aren't binaries. These are links. Different rules apply.

    ...you'll have to use alternatives or some other crude mechanism...

Alternatives is what I proposed and probably the best way to do it. A regular user can configure his alternatives using --admindir and --altdir, assuming the links are placed in a directory in the user's PATH that he or she can write files. Here is an example:

alternatives --install $HOME/bin/email-client email-client /usr/bin/xdg-email 100 --admindir $HOME/.alternatives/ --altdir $HOME/.alternatives/

    a program name like 'text-editor' is really only intuitive for the minority of English-speaking users.

That is correct. Other languages can be supported. Thank you for your input!

-- Darren