Desktop Team Updates - Monday 31st August 2020

Hi everyone, below you will find the updates from the Desktop team from the last week. If you’re interested in discussing a topic please start a thread in the Desktop area of Discourse.

We also have our weekly meeting on IRC. We meet on Tuesday at 13:30 UTC in #ubuntu-desktop on Freenode. There will be an “Any Other Business” section at the end where you are welcome to raise topics. These topics might be discussed during the meeting, or afterwards depending on the time, depth of conversation, topic and so on.

Last week’s notes are here: Desktop Team Updates - Monday 24th August 2020

  • Snaps

    • Thunderbird

      • TMPDIR fix to improve handling of attachments downloaded to be opened
      • Updated to use gnome-3-34 extension which trims down the size considerably
      • Enabled portal use, greatly improving the attachment handling experience.
        • This requires snapd 2.46 to see the full benefit
    • video-downloader

      • Debugged an issue with a pygtk app using gnome-3-34 extension that was reported via the forum
      • Figured it out, submitted a PR working around the issue and filed a bug report against snapcraft to fix it properly in the extension
    • gnome-3-38-2004-sdk

      • beginnings of the new SDK snap as well as gnome-3-38-2004 content snap
      • Based on core20

:desktop_computer: Gnome Shell and friends:

:speaker: Audio:

:chart_with_downwards_trend: Bug tracking:


firefox24 firefox

  • 80.0+build2 update published to all stable releases
  • While testing the release candidate, I found a regression with loading the Flash plugin in the xenial builds for which I filed a bug and submitted a fix which was merged upstream. The security team considered that security fixes in 80.0 outweighed the functional regression, so the update was published to xenial-security while I was working on the fix, and another update with the fix is now pending publication.
  • nodejs 12.18.2 finally migrated to the groovy release pocket, which unblocks firefox (and thunderbird) :tada:

thunderbird24 thunderbird

chromium22 chromium

  • prepared, uploaded and verified SRU to bump epoch in focal
  • updating stable to 85.0.4183.83
  • added missing EGL libs to the snap
  • started work on enabling policies in the snap, but the first round of testing doesn’t yield the expected results, this needs more work
  • updated dev to 86.0.4240.8

Active Directory support:

  • Work with jibel on ubiquity integration (UI and backend)
  • Read documentation and fight some reverse DNS issue on out of the box support for realmd (Still ongoing)
  • Seed realmd/adcli/sssd on ubuntu desktop minimal (recommends).

Followup on MIRs (see previous week)

  • One day off
  • Continued on GNOME 3.37 updates
  • synced and merged some other updates from Debian

Continued work on AD integration.

  • UI is done
  • Backend in progress:
    • Reverse name lookup issue with systemd-resolved,
    • FQDN issue when joining a domain from inside a chroot.


  • 6.4.6 built, tested, and uploaded for focal. thanks @marcustomlinson for sponsoring this upload
  • snap uploaded
  • Worked on 7.0 armhf build failure on local pi

Everything Else

  • Looked into glimpse 0.2.0 release. local builds pass but fails on LP. needs investigation
  • nm-snap netplan testing on pi
  • LAS: reaching out to potential female keynote speakers
  • cups-filters: Added filter chaining filter function which calls filter functions in a chain, to allow format conversions not covered by single filter functions.
  • cups-filters: On of our GSoC students ported the pdftopdf filter into a filter function.
  • cups-filters: Did some optimizations on the new driverless utility with IPP Fax Out support, asked our LFMP student for speed optimization by parallelizing tasks, and got a first approach. Gave her hints to improve more.
  • cups-filters: We have now filter functions for pstops, pdftops, pclmtoraster, rastertopdf, rastertopclm, rastertops, and pdftopdf.
  • cups-filters: Released version 1.28.0 upstream (making use of the new 1.x branch) to cover IPP Fax Out support and all the bug fixes of the last two months (did not release because I was busy with 2.x work) and shortly after 1.28.1 with a lot of fixes and optimizations on the fax support. 1.28.1 is currently in Groovy, more bug fix releases will most probably follow.
  • cups: Several Ubuntu-only package releases to get in important stuff before Feature Freeze for Groovy: Patch to let the CUPS daemon check whether clients are Snaps and then allow administrative requests only if they plug “cups-control” (see also here), handling fax numbers supplied via GTK print dialog correctly, let faxes not choke on an off-by-one rounding error of a filter, let local-service URIs be resolved correctly, make lpoptions also work if CUPS runs on alternative port.
  • cups: Struggled with the autopkgtests. @hellsworth gave me the clue to solve the problem on a video call. Thanks again.
  • Driverless IPP Fax Out in Groovy: With all the above we have support for sending faxes from IPP multi-function devices in Groovy now. Works on most (all but the very first ones) devices which also do AirPrint. One can create a special print queue in the CUPS web interface selecting a fax “driver”. To send a fax one simply prints into such a queue and in the print dialog (GTK and LibreOffice dialogs work) one enters the fax number under “Advance Options”.
  • ipp-usb, sane-airscan: For the MIR uploaded a version of ipp-usb completely clean of dependencies on packages in Universe (version 0.9.12-1ubuntu1). Waiting for the review of the security team, as well as waiting for the security team for sane-airscan.
  • Google Summer of Code 2020: The coding period has ended and the students had to write their final reports. Now the mentors have one week to do their final evaluations.
  • Linux Foundation Mentorship Program: The first approach of IPP Fax Out support landed in Groovy. The student continues now optimizing the performance of the driverless utility. The other student is now working on a Printer Application for PostScript printers. We have also selected the students for the IPP Scan project starting on Sep 1st now.
  • Linux Plumber’s Conference 2020 (Virtual): We have held our OpenPrinting microconference on Friday, Aug 28 and it was a success. Speakers were Michael Sweet (author of CUPS and PAPPL), Alexander Pevzner (author of ipp-usb and sane-airscan), Ira McDonald (Printing Working Group), Aveek Basu (OpenPrinting Program/Community Manager), and me. In addition to the topics of the published agenda I also gave a short talk about my 20 years of working for Printing with free software. There is also a recording on YouTube now.
  • Bugs.

GNOME 3.37 packaging

  • Followed up on mozjs78 packaging
    • Got git-buildpackage author to review and merge (after adding few more tests) my pull request to support post-unpack hook for re-package orig.tar.gz (thanks to the hack days during last sprint!)
    • As per the point above, re-imported the latest upstream versions and explained in a README.sources
    • Merged @xnox MR’s to disable CET (and uploaded mozjs68 with it)
    • Proposed an upstream fix for fixing syntax on generated .pc file (causing lintian error)
    • Fixed various lintian issues, overriding few false-postives
    • Add back some rust flags that were removed with rust removal on mozjs68
    • Got sponsored upload from Simon (waiting in debian’s NEW, but we can sync it now)
  • Gjs
    • Prepared new packaging for 1.65.91, including the upstream fixes prepared last week
    • Given that gnome-shell depends only on 1.65.1 that is not blocked by mozjs78 NEW, I’ve uploaded 1.65.4 to debian, and synced to ubuntu.
    • Packages cleanups as per debhelper 13
  • gsettings-desktop-schemas
    • Package cleanups
    • Uploaded to debian and ubuntu the new upstream version (required by mutter)
  • mutter
    • Prepared debian packaging for 3.37.91
    • Reduce list of flaky tests that we ignore and never ignore tests in amd64
    • Lots of package cleanups as per debhelper 13
    • Rebased the xrandr-scaling patch as per the consistent upstream changes
    • Uploaded to debian (in NEW) and ubuntu
  • gnome-shell
    • Prepared debian packaging for 3.37.91
    • Various packages cleanups and fixes
    • Uploaded to experimental and ubuntu
  • gnome-shell-extensions
    • Prepared debian packaging for 3.37.91
    • Packaging cleanups (i.e. removed useles dependency on clutter + dh13)
    • Uploaded to experimental, and fake-synced to ubuntu
  • gnome-shell-extension-appindicator
    • Updated breaks and dependencies on current gnome
    • Uploaded to debian and fake-synced to ubuntu
  • gnome-settings-daemon
    • Sponsored laney’s (woot!) debian packaging to experimental
    • Merged with ubuntu and uploaded to groovy
  • gdm
  • gnome-session
  • gnome-terminal
    • Fixes to the gnome-terminal.wrapper script to always wait
  • Some packages are available in this PPA.
  • Lot of rebuilds and testings


  • Proposed a change in debhelper to expose a function to perform variable substitution in dh scripts
  • Proposed a gnome-pkg-tools change to dh_gnome to allow variable substitution when generating debian/control
  • Cleanups to the mutter MR fixing crashes on input devices removal under x11 [MR, merged]
  • dbus.dart
    • Fix multiple simultaneous requests failing.
    • Implement org.freedesktop.ObjectManager support.
  • networkmanager.dart
    • Implemented Network Manager D-Bus API, in particular to enable connectivity checking.
    • Asked existing owner of network_manager package in if they would let us use the name… (no reply yet).