[Xcb] progress report

Jim Gettys Jim.Gettys at hp.com
Fri Aug 13 06:53:48 PDT 2004

Thanks for the status update.

It sounds like we aren't too far from the point where adventurers
not working on Xcb should start taking it for a spin as a
replacement for the current Xlib implementation.

Let us know when that is...  A lot of us will have more
cycles after X11R6.8 is out...
                          - Jim

On Fri, 2004-08-13 at 02:48, Jamey Sharp wrote:
> Hey, all! I've done a bunch of stuff in the last several months, but
> have done a terrible job of telling people what I'm doing. Here's an
> attempt to fix that.
> In recent news, Bart and I have started documenting the API that XCB
> *should* have. [1] The full API is specified, but many things have no
> description yet. Quite a bit of the documentation applies to the code
> currently in CVS, but little of the important stuff does. I'll be
> changing the code to match what's documented in the near future. There's
> still some room for feedback, but after some help from Keith and one or
> two others, we believe that this is the API we want. I hope other people
> will agree.
> I've also been working on making my patches to Xlib pass the, erm,
> venerable X Test Suite. [2] 16 of the testsets still report some FAILs;
> a bunch of things die and spin, which should all be instances of a
> single bug; and all of the XPROTO tests should be modified to use
> LockDisplay and UnlockDisplay like everything else, at which point I
> expect they'll pass. If the whole test suite passes, that's partial
> evidence of XCB's correctness too, although Xlib and the X test suite
> don't exercise all of XCB.
> On a related note, I've started playing with unit testing for XCB. I'm
> trying a tool called "check", which is basically a port of JUnit to pure
> C. It also integrates happily with autoconf and automake, which is good,
> I guess. Anyway, I found a couple of bugs using the first test cases I
> wrote, which I suppose makes the experiment a success.
> For the last month or so, if I wasn't working on API design and
> documentation, I was probably squashing bugs instead. I'm trying to get
> XCB into a 1.0-releasable state soon, with my Xlib/XCB patches to follow
> soon after, I hope. My current goal is to have this work ready for
> integration into the X.org tree by the release after this one.
> XCB is about three years old now [3] and outside contributions are
> beginning to come in, which is where the rest of my XCB development time
> has gone. Mikko's extension contributions are a matter of public record,
> as is David's rendertest application with an XCB backend. I hope we'll
> be hearing soon from one of Bart's other students about some significant
> work he's been doing for the last eight weeks. I've also been having
> interesting conversations about window managers with someone who found
> the http://usingxcb.freedesktop.org/ page I wrote while at USENIX, and I
> hope that'll lead to cool stuff built on top of XCB.
> So that's what's going on. Thanks for reading. :-)
> [1] http://freedesktop.org/Software/XcbApi
> The XCBDevelopmentPlan says that the API will be frozen almost a month
> ago. Turns out that API design is a lot harder than I thought. *sigh*
> [2] Today Keith helped me track down another problem: the test suite
> doesn't #define XTHREADS. Grr.
> [3] The oldest RCS checkins I can find are from September 3rd, 2001.
> Interestingly, I made checkins on Sept. 10th, 2001, and then again on
> Oct. 7th, but I don't see any in between. Hmm. I remember that flying to
> and from the Annual Linux Showcase and XFree86 Technical Conference that
> November, to present this code, was a bit of an adventure.

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