Re: A sincere goodbye to AfterStep (for the nth time)

Guylhem Aznar (
Tue, 4 Aug 1998 13:35:30 +0200

On Tue, Aug 04, 1998 at 01:33:19AM -0400, Ewan Dunbar wrote:
> A message to the developers:
> It's silly. It doesn't make configuration easier. You're always saying,
> "Which file is that?", or "Where is that file?".

If I get rid of that feature, you can also say good bye at least to :
 * look & feels (they depend on that)
 * start menu tree
 * beginners

Yes, beginners tend to like many small file instead of a big one and adding
options to menu very simply, i.e. they like the 2 most criticized features.

You can use afterstep -f steprc if you like huge config files, or compile
time options for start menu.

> THE INTERFACE. The great thing about AfterStep's visual interface is that
> it can be anything you want. But the fact that the real interface, the
> config files, is a mess, is a detractor.

What would you suggest ?

When I arrived last year, I thought 1.0 steprc was awful.
Little by little it has been improved, a new "philosophy" appeared.

I fight with other people for compatibility (many many times I've been told
to remove that stupid steprc compatibility, etc).

The fact is : you can still do whatever you want with afterstep !

Here's my suggestion : you write a "perfect" steprc, including every
feature you like, and I include it with 1.5.0, explaining in readme you can
either use ~/G/L/A or steprc

> My second problem with AS, which I already touched on, is the fact that,
> unlike FVWM, it is not as polished. It has a bunch of frustrating little
> quirks that change from release to release. "Well, that's not possible in

Don't worry, it will not go on.

1.5.0 will certainly be my latest release.

I'm sick and tired, I need some new fresh air.

Someone (Mickael or Ethan) will hopefully go on, but I'm really fed up with
flames, etc.

I've no new ideas too, and 1.5.0 I'm pre-pre-testing now does everything I
ever wanted it to do !

It only eats 1.0 Mo for my notebook (window maker : 2 Mo, enl or KDE : by
far too much) is more configurable than fvwm or twm (smaller), runs fine
with 8bpp (try WM with 8bpp :-), etc.

> Then, make it KISS-conformant. Then, TELL THE WORLD. Say, "THIS IS THE
> REALLY, REALLY GOOD SOFTWARE!" And say it in all caps.

1.5.0 will hopefully be what you was waiting for, except for
configurability which needs new ascp or asconf (in afscript)

There's a code freeze now, bug hunting/reporting/fixing, etc., and 1.5.0
will only be release after all this has been fixed, hopefully by september.

1 weeks after last bug report, 1.5 will appear.

> I don't know if you'll listen to this. I'll stay on the list for a while,
> to see your complaints about this document. As for me, I'm saving it to a

As for me : I'll release 1.5.0, and wait a bit to see what people think of

If they still don't like what we tryied to do (for free of course, as a
parse time activity) I'll go away and write more HOWTOs instead.

> Well, thank you anyway, for your time.
> Thank you for providing a good-looking, customizable window manager.
> Writing this saddens me very, very deeply.
> Thank you all.

Thank you also, you message is halas very right.

But I'm stuck here, no possibility to change something without making many
people complain.

A vote for "contested" features could be an idea.
> ___________________________________________________________________________
> Of course... 5 years from now everyone will be running free GNU on their 
> 200 MIPS, 64M SPARCstation-5.
> 		--Andrew Tannenbaum, Jan. 30 1992 in comp.os.minix
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ln -s Ewan\ Dunbar
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

 "Always pass on good advice. It is never any use to oneself"   -- Oscar Wilde
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      Salut / Best regards, Guylhem AZNAR <>