More about clipboard and selection in wayland

Yichao Yu yyc1992 at
Thu Apr 4 06:12:42 PDT 2013

Anyone know about clipboard?

On Sat, Mar 30, 2013 at 11:39 PM, Yichao Yu <yyc1992 at> wrote:

> Hi,
> I have already sent a email about the clipboard and selection in
> wayland a few weeks ago[1] (mainly about middle button paste). After
> reading more about clipboard and selection protocol in wayland, I have
> more questions about the limitation of the protocol.
> 1, as mentioned in my previous email[1], there is no support for
> middle button paste right now. This is totally different from either
> normal clipboard or dnd. (p.s. If this is added in the future, what
> should be the name of it since the clipboard right now is taking the
> name "selection").
> 2, about clipboard manager (or the similar function provided by
> clipboard manager in X11). The bear protocol doesn't seems to support
> selection access after a program quit (not to mention other advanced
> features provided by clipboard manager like clipboard history). Krh
> mentioned in a bug report[2] that there is a more advanced
> implementation in weston now, but the only thing I have found that may
> be related is the src/clipboard.c file in weston, which at least
> doesn't work out-of-box for weston-terminal. Is that a simple
> implementation of clipboard manager in the compositor? Any
> documentation how it should work? Haven't found any documentation
> about what the application should do (e.g. info the clipboard manager
> or at least the compositor about going to exit) in order to support
> it. IMHO, it is still a good idea to make it possible for having a
> standalone clipboard manager to provide some advanced feature.
> 3, about clipboard access and monitoring. According to the protocol,
> the client will only receive wl_data_device::data_offer event and the
> wl_data_offer object will only be valid when the client has a input
> focus. Why is this constraint added, This means 1) It is impossible to
> monitor the clipboard (since the client will not always have a focus)
> 2) it is impossible for a cli clipboard access, both of which are
> useful features that are possible (and easy) to implement in X. Having
> to provide a serial and having ::accept and ::recieve as separate
> request/event make this even harder. Is there any reason this is
> designed in such a way?
> [1]
> [2]
> Yichao Yu
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