Desktop Team Updates - Monday 8th November 2021

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 .

Last week’s notes are here: Desktop Team Updates - Monday 1st November 2021

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  • Multiple fixes to OOBE.
  • Seeded wsl_setup.
  • Creation of the testing environment in Azure.
  • Testing systemd in WSL.


  • Continued with reviews of candidates
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Desktop Installer

Firmware updater


Subiquity client


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  • Multiple fixes to OOBE
  • Seeded wsl_setup and some fixes
  • Merge reviews on subiquity and ubuntu-desktop-installer
  • Creation of the testing environment in Azure
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firefox24 firefox

thunderbird24 thunderbird

chromium22 chromium

  • updating beta to 96.0.4664.35
  • updating dev to 97.0.4688.2

flutter24 Ubuntu Desktop Installer

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  • Finishing the locale setup feature in Subiquity
  • Code review of the WSL component of ubuntu-desktop-installer
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  • updated poppler to the new 21.11.0 release
  • rebuilds and fixes for the new poppler soname
  • resolved issues with the ubuntu-desktop-installer weblate integration
  • reviewed the langpack cron job update for J
  • updated thunderbird snaps, stable to 91.3.0 and beta to 95.0b1
  • staged libpci in thunderbird to silent gfx warnings
  • updated power-profiles-daemon and fixed the build with old polkit versions
  • version
    • included a new script to check for snaps that need a rebuild for CVE fixes in staged packages
    • updated some snaps references
    • include gtk-common-themes in the report
  • added jammy to the language packs builder map table
  • removed our hack to disable RDP clipboard in gnome-remote-desktop since fuse3 is going to be promoted
  • got the new installer translations workflow sorted out and announced it to the translators
  • spent some time reviewing applications for the open desktop position


  • Cleanups and fixes to the dash to dock, getting ready for 41 [Commits]
  • Some gjs upstream reviews


  • CUPS Snap: Waiting for @ijohnson’s pull request on snapd for the cups printing interface to get merged by the snapd team (ETA: October). I have done a second real-life test of the interface with all the recent changes now. All is working as designed!
  • cups-filters: Added the universal filter function/CUPS filter to cups-filters. This GSoC-2021 project from Pranshu Kharkwal is a single CUPS filter to which converts any supported input data format into any supported output data format, calling one or more filter functions of libcupsfilters. This way we save the overhead of CUPS having to call several external executables in order to process a single print job (Pull request, commit). Also did the build system integration for the new filter to easily choose between the universal filter executable or individual filter executables, dropped support for CUPS < 2.2.2 and QPDF < 10.3.2 (cups-filters 2.x only), removed obsolete urftopdf CUPS filter, removed “series” from printer model names when normalizing them to make it easier to search for support for a given printer.
  • pappl-retrofit: Several bug fixes during testing of the capability to find the correct support for a given printer and to list all supported printers. Especially fixed a crasher, making the Printer Applications crash on shutdown or queue removal when a wrong resolution was set in the state file, and minor bugs in the model/driver list generation.
  • Retro-fitting Printer Applications/OpenPrinting: Further testing, optimizing, and debugging on listing the supported printers and finding the best support for a given printer, both whether a Printer Application supports the printer at all and if so, which driver is the best. Listing and checking is fast and reliable now and it should be possible to do it on the web server.
  • Google Summer of Code 2021: Participated in the (virtual) Mentor Summit. GSoC 2022 will be more flexible: Also non-students can code, 2 project sizes to choose from, flexibility in coding time period.
  • Bugs.
  • Focused mostly on upcoming documentation efforts and brainstorming on the future of various ubuntu docs.
  • giving interviews for meet and greet
  • updated gnome-hitori snap to core20 and gnome-3-38

snapd PRs:

  • Updated snapd PR #10219 (allow snapped services to use polkit auth) to merge in the contents of snapd PR #9986 (validation for polkit policy files), so it is feature complete and ready for security review.

Snap incompatibilities on Nvidia / Ubuntu 21.10 systems:

  • I did some further investigation into the incompatibilities between the Nvidia drivers from the host system on Ubuntu 21.10 and the snap sandbox environment.
  • While it appears that individual snaps can avoid the bug by changing how they construct LD_LIBRARY_PATH and other environment variables, I’ve been working to see if a snapd side change is possible that can solve the problem without requiring app developers to rebuild their snaps.
  • This resulted in snapd PR #11023, which stops sharing a number of host system driver files to the sandbox. This seems to have worked quite well for core18 and core20 snaps, but is causing a few problems for old core16 snaps. I have some plans for addressing this (provide the old behaviour when setting up the mount namesapce for core16 snaps), and am confident that we’ll have something ready to merge soon.
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