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Re: User directories integration - request for help

On Mon, 2007-03-19 at 13:09 +0100, Nicolas Mailhot wrote:
> Le Lun 19 mars 2007 12:01, Alexander Larsson a écrit :
> > test -f ${XDG_CONFIG_HOME:-~/.config}/user-dirs.dirs && source
> > ${XDG_CONFIG_HOME:-~/.config}/user-dirs.dirs
> > tar czvf /tmp/music.tar.gz ${XDG_MUSIC_DIR}
> Add looping to handle multi-user setups, and you get the magnitude of
> problems to replicate a simple ls /home/*/.config/xdg-dir/music/

I don't see that sort of operation as being very common though. The
special directories are not some set-in-stones kind of LSB filesystem
hierarchy. Its just a helping system that gets you some nice defaults
for applications so that things can start up in a slightly nicer way
than everything in ~/. You can't assume that a users files are in the
xdg-user-dirs MUSIC directory any more than you can assume a hardcoded

> > Thats a sort of weird backup script to have though. Backup scripts are
> > typically personalized for your homedir, and can hardcode whatever
> > structure you use.
> Just like GUI apps are typically personalized for your homedir, and can
> hardcode whatever structure you use...

Eh? GUI apps are not designed for any specific users homedir layout.

> Wait, wasn't the whole point making accesses to common stuff standardised?

Not exactly, the point was to make applications default to be slightly
smarter about where files are normally stored, and to help new users get
some form of simple structure to their homedirectory.

> You're stopping midways there. Why do you assume only single-user GUI
> stuff needs streamlined access to your directories?

I don't. xdg-user-dirs is a console-only application and gets run from
the login scripts. Not by the desktop. Any app can use it, console or

> > But, this is not my main disagreement. My main disagreement is on the
> > idea that it is more important that you need two lines less code in some
> > script than that the users personal files should be in a language they
> > can understand.
> You can have it both ways with english symlinks to localised "real"
> directories.
> > And translation of the filenames in the UI will *never* be complete.
> More reason *not* to pre-create directories with faulty names, and ask
> users on creation what they would like to call their directories.

How is this different from not creating the folders at all. When your
file selector defaults in $HOME you can just create your Music directory
and select it. The idea is that a lot of people don't even know that you
can/should do this and do something better by default.

> > There will always be 3rd party applications that don't translate the
> > names,
> And apps that won't parse your config file but can be pointed at a default
> symlink

There are many implementations that all work. Symlinks are one, config
files are another. I've considered both and made the choice I believe is
best. A choice must be made, and someone has to do the work. If I had
picked symlinks someone else would complain.

 Alexander Larsson                                            Red Hat, Inc 
                   alexl redhat com    alla lysator liu se 
He's a lonely amnesiac cowboy whom everyone believes is mad. She's an artistic 
Buddhist opera singer operating on the wrong side of the law. They fight 

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