Proposal for a MIME mapping spec

Alexander Larsson alexl at
Thu Jul 8 09:18:51 EEST 2004

On Wed, 2004-07-07 at 23:37, Keith Packard wrote:
> Around 17 o'clock on Jul 7, Jonathan Blandford wrote:
> > Applications that can handle multiple MIME Types would list all of the
> > ones it can handle in a ';' separated list.  It is expected that for
> > some applications this list could get longish.
> What convention will mitigate this effect?  Backslash at the end of line?  
> Or whitespace on the subsequent lines?

Does it matter? Do we cater to broken implementations with a max line

> > To make parsing of all the desktop files less costly, we will provide an
> > 'update-desktop-database' program that will regenerate a database file.
> > ...
> > It will need to be run after every desktop file is installed.
> This is a user trap.  Install new desktop files and nothing happens until 
> you run the 'magic' program.

The idea is that make install (when building from source) or the package
postinstall script runs this. Just like we currently do when installing
new mimetypes or gconf schemas. The user never sees this.

> fontconfig stat's directories looking for changes and automatically 
> regenerates a per-user cache.  If this is possible, it will eliminate a 
> lot of errors.

Its sort of slow to wait for an app to read through all the desktop
files to index them, plus it adds this complexity to all the
implementors of the spec (and each one is gonna do it slightly
differently). And anyway, storing caches for system settings in your
homedir strikes me as wrong. The list of desktop files can easily be
different on different machines, while the homedir is shared between all

> Duplication of data should be under system control, not user control.

What does this mean? update-desktop-database can be considered part of
the system.

 Alexander Larsson                                            Red Hat, Inc 
                   alexl at    alla at 
He's a witless Amish inventor on his last day in the job. She's a virginal 
wisecracking former first lady with only herself to blame. They fight crime! 

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