2.27 release notes items

Major changes in GNOME 2.27, to be mentioned in the release notes. Please make a list here when we reach feature freeze.

See the advice about the schedule and translation.

Please note that this does not need to be pretty. It's just a list that will be used to make the actual release notes. In fact, if it's too pretty, people will link to it and complain that it's not perfect.

See also the advice about the schedule and translation.

/!\ Attention: Press/reviewers: This is a work in progress. Items aren't checked for correctness. Statements may be completely wrong. Very large changes could be forgotten. Please wait until the final release notes are done. This page will not contain everything that will be in the final release notes.


Major changes are those that:

  • Affect lots of people (users, administrators, or developers.)
  • Are something people have been hoping for or discussing widely.
  • Feature, usability, performance, internationalization or accessibility improvements.

{i} Provide this information:

  • What the module (application) is.
  • What the change is.
    • Why it is important.
    • How it can be accessed.

Be as descriptive as you like.

What's new for users

  • Project Hamster (time tracking applet)
  • General
    • Menus and buttons don't show icons anymore by default.
  • gnome-bluetooth (new module)
  • GTK+:
    • The file and lpr print backends support printing multiple pages per sheet
    • The file chooser has better ellipsization in the path bar, it remembers sorting state and has better defaults (backup files are hidden by default, the size column is shown by default)
  • cheese:
  • Evince:
    • Annotations support: At the moment only text annotations (those that are just an icon with a popup window associated) can be edited and saved. It's not possible to add new annotation yet.
    • win32 port
    • Session recovering when running evince after a crash
  • GNOME Power Manager
    • Laptops with more than one battery now do the right thing
    • Preferences dialog made simpler according to HIG review
    • Use a composited OSD for brightness notification
    • Add disk spindown functionality using DeviceKit-disks

  • gnome-media
    • gnome-volume-control
      • Add subwoofer and fade support for speaker sets that support it
      • Add profile and connector selection
      • Instant-apply default output selection
  • GNOME System Tools
    • New option allowing an user to log in without entering his password.
    • Many long due bug fixes!
  • Totem
    • Add frame-by-frame stepping (press "." to activate)
    • Faster YouTube plugin

    • DVD navigation support (new to GStreamer backend)
    • Optionally resume playback from the last played position
  • Empathy
    • Improved Contact List window
      • New presence chooser widget: enter text directly or select from previously set statuses.
      • You can now start audio only or audio/video calls directly
      • Drag and drop of contacts in the Contact List is now a move action (as opposed to copy)
      • Now has a View menu with quick access to sorting, offline contacts and contact list's size preferences
      • New Debug option under Help where you can access Empathy and Telepathy's debugging messages.
    • Improved Conversation dialog
      • More message styles with the support for Adium message styles. See http://live.gnome.org/Empathy/Themes for tested themes.

      • You can now hide the user list in chat rooms. It can be set as a default in the preferences too.
      • The users in the user list now have a tooltip.
      • If your name is mentioned in a chat room, the tab's text will become red.
      • Contact menu is no more under the Conversation menu
    • Improved Join chat room dialog
      • Now displays if rooms are password protected or invite only
      • Allows sorting
      • Now has error reporting
    • Improved Audio/Video Chat dialog
      • Can now be made fullscreen
      • When no video available, the contact's avatar is displayed
      • There is now a redial option
    • Share your desktop with your contacts using Vinagre in 2 clicks from the Contact List
    • Geolocation (see updated FAQ )

      • Publish your location to your XMPP contacts using Geoclue. Supports a reduced accuracy mode for privacy.
      • View your contact's location in their tool-tip, the Information dialog or on the Map View. When libchamplain 0.4 is available, the location is displayed on an interactive map.
    • Notification when contacts become online and offline
  • Orca
    • Many bug fixes and performance improvements across the board (over 140 bugs)

    • Work on being able to select text from the braille display. KEY_CMD_CUTBEGIN (Dot 1 + cursor routing key on the display) will specify the start of a selection. KEY_CMD_CUTLINE (Dot 4 + cursor routing key on the display) will specify the end of a selection and the selected text is automatically copied to the system clipboard.
    • Structural navigation work for OpenOffice.

    • Huge refactor of the speech and braille generators. Speech and braille are now generated based upon user-modifiable tables. The speech support also includes the ability to play sounds.
    • Presentation of misspelled words when editing text.
    • Ability to move the mouse without performing a click.
    • Support for mouse overs. See the following message for a complete description: http://mail.gnome.org/archives/orca-list/2009-July/msg00186.html.

    • Automatic position index spoken request. Orca now has a "Speak child position" on the "Speech" tab in the preferences UI. When selected, Orca will speak the child position (e.g., 'item 6 of 7') of various objects.
    • Better support for non-spacing diacritical keys. Orca now has two new checkboxes on the "Key Echo" tab of the preferences UI. The first, "Enable non-spacing diacritical keys", specifies whether dead keys are echoed or not. The second, "Enable echo by character", specifies if the exact character typed in an editable text area is to be spoken. This differs from the "Enable alphanumeric and punctuation keys" setting in that it echos the characters that are typed vs. the keys that were pressed. If both are enabled, preference is given to character echo where it applies.
    • Locking modifier key state is now flashed on the braille display. Caps Lock modifier state changes are flashed if the "Enable locking keys" checkbox is checked on the "Key Echo" tab in the Orca preferences UI. The flash time is settable via the 'brailleFlashTime' setting which represents the number of milliseconds to flash a message.
    • New support for different progress bar "verbosity levels" to allow you to control whether progress bar updates should be spoken even if the progress bar is not in the active window.
    • Removal of Orca's 'brl' module for BrlTTY/BrlAPI. Orca now uses the Python bindings from BrlTTY/BrlAPI. BrlTTY 4.0 or better is recommended.
    • Removal of Orca's 'louis' module for liblouis. Orca now uses liblouis' Python bindings. liblouis 1.6.2 or better is recommended.
    • Automatic detection of when BrlTTY has been stopped or restarted.
    • Some work with Compiz, though we still recommend using Metacity instead of Compiz due to the other accessibility problems in Compiz.
    • Known Problems:
      • See the open bugs in the Orca bug database. We not only track Orca bugs in the Orca bug database, we also track bugs in other components that affect Orca's ability to provide good access to them.

    • Plans for GNOME 3.0:
      • Work to integrate with AT-SPI/D-Bus
      • Work to integrate with magnifier work being done in GNOME Shell
      • Work to integrate with Speech Dispatcher work being done by Luke Yelavich
      • Some possible refactors we've been meaning to do
      • Possibly work on a pseudo-offscreen model
  • Epiphany
    • First official release of the WebKit port, which should be considered Beta quality (honest-to-god Beta, not google-like Beta)

    • Some long-standing bugs of the Gecko port have been finally fixed. Among others:
      • Option to open all new windows in tabs automatically (in gconf: /apps/epiphany/general/open_new_windows_in_tab)
      • Store all authentication data in GNOME Keyring
    • Of course all the benefits of WebKitGTK+: extremely fast JS, small footprint, embedding-friendly design, GObject API for all functionality, built-in web inspector, etc
    • We also have new support for Seed (JavaScript) extensions. The Python support has been removed in its favour.

    • We also use libsoup for HTTP now, and the library has seen considerable progress thanks to its awesome maintainer and the push coming from the WebKit needs

    • Known problems: unfortunately there are some visible regressions since 2.26. The most visible ones are probably:
      • Login/passwords used in forms are not remembered.
      • The context menu in the web view is not customized for epiphany yet (ie, we use the default one in webkit, which is different from the one in epiphany/gecko)
      • Some missing features in libsoup: HTTP cache, content-encoding.
      • a11y support has still some way to go
    • Plans for 3.0:
      • Fix as many regressions as possible
      • GObject DOM bindings for WebKitGTK+
      • Optional integration with GNOME Shell
  • Pango:
    • New OpenType engine. Two major benefits: 1) Less memory used, 2) More robust against broken fonts.

  • Vte:
    • New buffer implementation: Much less memory used with long scrollback history.
  • gedit:
    • OS X port
  • Brasero:
    • Use Brasero as a single instance application using libunique
    • Data spanning
    • New graphical media data display
  • Ekiga
    • This new release is a major bugfix release which contains tons of improvements in the SIP stack, but also in the hardware handling device
    • Moreover, it is the first release to come with a deemed stable WIN32 release.

What's new for administrators

  • Totem
    • The Totem xine-lib backend was removed

What's new for developers

  • Hamster Applet
    • All functions are now available via DBUS API and introspectable via d-feet and friends.
  • gnome-bluetooth:
    • Plugin support during device setup, to setup devices for use with your application
    • Modern Bluetooth device selection widgets (button and chooser)
  • GLib:
    • GNIO has been merged into GIO. There are apis for dealing with IPv4 and IPv6 addresses, resolving hostnames, reverse lookup of IP addresses and resolving SRV records, low-level socket I/O, network connections and services.
    • GArray, GMappedFile and GTree are refcounted now
    • The mainloop supports per-thread default contexts
    • Support for read-write access with GIOStream and its subclasses
    • Support for per-file metadata
  • GTK+:
  • Seed:
    • New JavaScript bindings (utilizing WebKit and GObject-Introspection) to a good portion of the GNOME stack

  • Totem playlist parser:
    • Add asynchronous parsing API
  • Vinagre
    • New plugin system. Support a new protocol is just a matter of writing a plugin. Currently we have VNC and a very basic SSH.
  • Brasero:
    • Split burning backend into a new library called libbrasero-burn
    • Split some utilities into a new library called libbrasero-utils

What's new for mobile developers

  • Totem playlist parser:
    • Depends on GMime instead of evolution-data-server (smaller footprint)


  • <Module name>: <The changes>.

Plans for the next release

  • <Module name>: <The changes>.

TwoPointTwentyseven/ReleaseNotes (last edited 2010-03-29 20:41:41 by TobiasMueller)