Identifying applications from windows to .desktop files

Vincent Untz vuntz at
Sun Feb 22 06:50:32 PST 2009

Le dimanche 22 février 2009, à 15:20 +0100, Milan Bouchet-Valat a écrit :
> Le dimanche 22 février 2009 à 15:12 +0100, Vincent Untz a écrit :
> > Le dimanche 22 février 2009, à 12:41 +0100, Milan Bouchet-Valat a écrit :
> > > To sum up, I can see two ways of solving the issue:
> > > 1) Enforce what is already the custom: no big modifications except for a
> > > handful of "non-standard" apps (requires only a new paragraph in the
> > > Desktop spec)
> > > 2) Add the concept of app identifier in a different way, which implies
> > >      - a new field in the Desktop spec
> > >      - possibly a new WM property for all windows
> > 
> > Isn't it simpler to add a _NET_WM_DESKTOP_ENTRY_NAME property that
> > should contain the name of the relevant desktop file?
> Yes. That would be a variant of 2)b. But it still shares the drawbacks
> of this solution, namely that we need to update all apps one by one.

I don't see this as a huge blocker. We could something like "if
_NET_WM_DESKTOP_ENTRY_NAME is set, use this, else try to guess the
desktop file name like we already do".

> Another problem is that while this property would have to be set from
> the source code, .desktop file names are set by distributions. So at the
> end your proposal would force distributions to use the filename
> specified by upstream or to patch the source. To avoid the burden of
> such useless patches, they would adapt their filenames. And we would end
> with solution 1), with the complexity of a new property to get passed in
> non-standard apps (think of making this enter OO.o), and without the
> advantage of a simple standard.

Well, I'd argue that distros shouldn't rename desktop files ;-) This
will already be an issue in GNOME, since the new gnome-session and
eggsmclient use the desktop file name. For example, look for
egg_set_desktop_file() in



Les gens heureux ne sont pas pressés.

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