Kill KIO (was: Repositioning the KDE brand)

Jos Poortvliet jospoortvliet at
Mon Jul 13 09:59:17 BST 2009

On Sun, Jul 12, 2009 at 10:43 PM, nf2< at> wrote:
> On Fri, Jul 10, 2009 at 4:31 PM, Thiago Macieira<thiago at> wrote:
>> nf2 wrote:
>>>It's a "proprietary" system just for a minority of applications. It's
>>>an obstackle for getting third party applications like,
>>>mozilla or Qt-only to use full fledged network transparent
>>>file-management. It's an obstackle for running KDE applications on
>>>Gnome or Gnome applications on KDE. It's not that exciting from design
>>>and capabilites anymore (compared to other options). It's a dead dog.
>> I also dispute the "minority of applications". If it's a minority, it's
>> still the largest minority group, with no other solution having a greater
>> stake.
> Of course, but it's still a minority.

Sure, compared to Windows and Mac. On the Free Desktop it is a majority however.

>> KIO has existed for 9 years, its protocol has been stable. It's possible
>> to integrate with it using D-Bus. If other applications don't integrate
>> with it, it's because they don't want to.
> I guess they would love to provide full featured file-management. It's
> just too hard at the moment. Therefore if an application is not
> targeting a particular DE, it will choose "local filesystem only".
> Which is sad.

Well, there clearly doesn't seem to be any demand for a cross-desktop
VFS system - as Thiago said, there has been a proven, stable, powerful
de-facto standard out there for 9 years. Yet the GVFS/GIO developers
chose to ignore that and in true NIH fashion develop something
completely new and incompattible (and it's not the first time such a
thing has happened).  So tell me why all KDE developers now should go
completely out of their way to throw away KIO in the spirit of
cross-desktop collaboration?

>> Besides, there is no other solution. GIO/GVFS brings its own set of
>> dependencies and protocol. Between converting the KDE apps to use that, or
>> converting the other apps to use KIO, the amount of work is more or less
>> the same. So let them convert.
> I do understand that GIO/GVFS would be hard to swallow for KDE.
> Just like the opposite. Any common solution trying to fix the problem
> will bring in additional dependencies.

>From what I understand from this discussion, they could implement KIO
in GTK, and they should have done that instead of writing something

> I'm not sure whether converting KDE apps would be that hard. Because
> KIO as an abstraction layer has been so successful within the KDE
> world (I said I love it - and I mean it), there would be no necessity to
> migrate everything at once as long as the API stays intact.
> "Let them convert": I also understand KDEs reluctance to adopt
> something different. But that kind of depends on the perspective you
> look
> at it: GIO/GVFS could be seen as a competing technology (some people
> even call it a "clone") - but also as a
> next generation KIO.
> However, the whole issue is not really a technical one: It's about
> independence. Does KDE need to fully control and "own" the VFS
> technology it's using? I understand that for someone who has put a lot
> of energy into KIO recently, the answer certainly is *yes*. I guess -
> for a lot of other people within the KDE community as well. Beeing "on
> par" with Gnome in every layer of the platform, having own
> implementations in the first place, resolving interoperability
> problems by defining common standards, that's the traditional concept
> of thinking how DEs are supposed to cooperate: Assuring a high level
> of independence. Unfortionately a rather complex thing like
> filemanagement can't be fixed without giving up lots of independence.
>> We were here first.
> True, but does it solve the problem?

I'm not at home in the technical department, but I haven't seen any
strong technical arguments. Is the GIO/GVFS system clearly superior to
KIO, does it offer all the functionality and more with better
performance and stability? If that's the case I would guess there
wouldn't be so much resistance. If it sucks compared to KIO, what the
heck were you thinking even proposing it?

> Regards,
> Norbert

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