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Chrome OS Is Working To Remove The Last Of Its X11 Dependencies

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  • Chrome OS Is Working To Remove The Last Of Its X11 Dependencies

    Phoronix: Chrome OS Is Working To Remove The Last Of Its X11 Dependencies

    Chrome OS has not been using the X.Org Server but there have been some X11/X.Org dependencies still around, which looks like they will be removed soon...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...me-OS-X11-Free

  • #2
    This makes me wonder: What did Google do differently with SurfaceFlinger back in 2009, compared to the devs behind Wayland and Mir, to complete what the others so far have failed to do. Ie replace the X11 display server.

    Is it X11 compatibility that's so complex and allowed Google to fasttrack the development by throwing it overboard??

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Beherit View Post
      This makes me wonder: What did Google do differently with SurfaceFlinger back in 2009, compared to the devs behind Wayland and Mir, to complete what the others so far have failed to do. Ie replace the X11 display server.

      Is it X11 compatibility that's so complex and allowed Google to fasttrack the development by throwing it overboard??
      I suspect that having to support only ONE application (Chrome/ium) they fully control is playing some role in it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Beherit View Post
        This makes me wonder: What did Google do differently with SurfaceFlinger back in 2009, compared to the devs behind Wayland and Mir, to complete what the others so far have failed to do. Ie replace the X11 display server.

        Is it X11 compatibility that's so complex and allowed Google to fasttrack the development by throwing it overboard??
        The only thing that comes in my mind right now is a new strategy Google has started applying. We know that in the recent past some serious vulnerabilities were found in X11 and Xorg in general and they are after to get rid of anything that has nothing to do with them developing it, either that is the kernel, the user interface, the backend services, even the darn programming languages they use.

        Let's observe a couple of things that can raise some hypothetical curiosity flags:
        • They designed Go language so they can handle more traffic using less resources, thus taking advantage of all their data centers doing more work with less hardware.
        • Recently they have implemented a tool that let them migrate large projects from Python 2.7 to Go with the excuse of gaining performance improvements, even though they could easily use Cython combined with Python 3.5 that such combination could perform nearly the same as C and C++; it needs a bit of discipline to accomplish this, but it's not impossible.
        • They have designed their own operating system, codenamed Fuchsia, with its own UI as we have seen a couple of days ago with the only logical explanation to
          • get rid of Java and JVM in the long term, so they can have full control of the code and raise the middle finger to Oracle
          • relicense it to manufacturers that are going to sell IoT and smart phone devices
          • take advantage of actual hardware by reaching the actual low-level interface via their new kernel and perform more while maintaining more or less the same resources they originally asked for from Android devices; JVM platform is a beast comparing it with Fuchsia OS.

        I could point at a few more things, but I leave that to you as a food for thought.

        So, to conclude, what can it be their excuse behind this radical set of decision changing? Control, both physical and intellectual.

        That is my own opinion though and I could be wrong.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Beherit View Post
          This makes me wonder: What did Google do differently with SurfaceFlinger back in 2009, compared to the devs behind Wayland and Mir, to complete what the others so far have failed to do. Ie replace the X11 display server.

          Is it X11 compatibility that's so complex and allowed Google to fasttrack the development by throwing it overboard??
          ChromeOS doesn't use SurfaceFlinger. SurfaceFlinger has more limited features (deliberately) than a desktop-class wayland installation. SurfaceFlinger is more comparable to the embedded Wayland stacks that have been shipping in cars and kiosks for the last few years: largely one major surface on screen at a time, sync refreshes, and do little else. Ozone is separate, it uses some of the infrastructure that came out of the Wayland effort (libinput) but is otherwise its own thing. They basically took the chromium compositor that they use to composite chrome windows on every platform, and hooked it directly up to the driver interfaces (KMS/DRM/EGL) instead of going through a windowing system. ChromeOS took more than a year before it got windowing, so it was basically fullscreen chrome until then. The windowing was basically just layered on top. They never used X11 as an actual windowing system, just piggybacked on it to get something on the screen, and interface with input devices.
          Last edited by microcode; 05-20-2017, 08:17 AM.

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          • #6
            Now Microsoft's and Google's OSes are X11-Free, what sort of news is this? They are so large, rich and could develop whatever and name it whatever

            He, he, even if they develop some shit people will use it regardless
            Last edited by dungeon; 05-20-2017, 08:26 AM.

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            • #7
              I would like to read how this affects CROUTON, distros supported will have to use only Wayland? or will the user be able to install their own Xorg if he or she wants to?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by stephen82 View Post
                [*]They have designed their own operating system, codenamed Fuchsia, with its own UI as we have seen a couple of days ago with the only logical explanation to
                ...
                relicense it to manufacturers that are going to sell IoT and smart phone devices
                ...
                Unless I'm mistaken, it has permissive opensource license (BSD/Apache/whatever), does it make sense to license it?

                Although it makes sense, Fuchsia seems to be designed for allowing usage in the embedded device environment where most stuff is a blob that will never receive updates (it is a microkernel), so if they plan to use the same model of ChromeOS, this would allow them to control more or less the whole stack and send updates to anything at will as they do with ChromeOS devices.

                I always pray the blinking-led-equipped gods of computing that they can pull this off, I'm fucking sick of Android's pitfalls.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
                  I suspect that having to support only ONE application (Chrome/ium) they fully control is playing some role in it.
                  Ack, I owe an apology for going off-topic in the first post. I was referring to Android and not ChromeOS. Somehow I missed that the news article was about that and not Android in general.

                  Googling it revealed some interesting info:

                  A Mir developer is quoted giving reasons why SurfaceFlinger is impossible to adapt for Linux usage: https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comme...t_go_with_the/

                  But just a month earlier, it was revealed that Ubuntu Touch IS indeed using SurfaceFlinger: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...tem&px=MTMwODg

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Beherit View Post
                    Ack, I owe an apology for going off-topic in the first post. I was referring to Android and not ChromeOS. Somehow I missed that the news article was about that and not Android in general.

                    Googling it revealed some interesting info:

                    A Mir developer is quoted giving reasons why SurfaceFlinger is impossible to adapt for Linux usage: https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comme...t_go_with_the/

                    But just a month earlier, it was revealed that Ubuntu Touch IS indeed using SurfaceFlinger: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...tem&px=MTMwODg
                    AFAIK microcode user above posted the main reason. SurfaceFlinger is a solution that cuts too much corners to be good for Linux Desktop.

                    Ubuntu Touch is a mobile device interface so they must have started with what there was already, but AFAIK they switched Ubuntu Touch to Mir long ago as they wanted convergence, not just a mobile interface. See this https://askubuntu.com/questions/3603...surfaceflinger

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