Cross-Desktop Collaboration During FreeDesktop Summit 2014
Written by Michael Larabel in Desktop on 21 April 2014 at 09:40 AM EDT. 12 Comments
Taking place earlier this month in N├╝rnberg at the SUSE office was the 2014 FreeDesktop Summit where members of GNOME, KDE, Unity, and LXDE-Qt desktops collaborated over joint topics important to the success of the Linux desktop in a cross-desktop world.

This is the second time there's been a small, cross-desktop gathering at the SUSE offices to discuss cross-desktop matters; reportedly there's also plans for this to become an annual event with the meeting expected to happen again in 2015. At is a write-up about what the small group of GNOME/KDE/Unity/LXDE-Qt developers discussed while out in Bavaria.

Among the results from this few-day event were:

- Standardization around the XDG_CURRENT_DESKTOP environment variable for informing applications what desktop environment they are using.

- The first formal specification for how applications should be associated with given MIME types and URI schemes.

- The inhibit specification is still in its early atages for letting applications prevent the locking of the screen, etc, in a cross-desktop manner.

- When it comes to Wayland talk, the desktops agreed to a D-Bus signals based protocol for startup notifications, in place of X client messages as used today.

- The Implements= key within .desktop files was finalized.

- Significant clean-ups to the XDG specifications.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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