libX11-XCB [Was: X drivers depend on Gnome?]

Alex Goncharov alex-goncharov at
Sat Feb 7 15:01:01 PST 2009

,--- I/Alex (Wed, 04 Feb 2009 10:22:27 -0500) ----*
| ,--- I/Alex (Wed, 04 Feb 2009 08:55:28 -0500) ----*
| | ,--- You/Florent (Wed, 4 Feb 2009 13:21:15 +0000) ----*
| | | Please send patches. Kthxbye.
| | 
| | Does this mean that you agree with me in principle and if I send you
| | patches, there is a high probability they will he accepted (provided
| | they work, of course)?
| ,--- You/Florent (Wed, 4 Feb 2009 14:00:25 +0000) ----*
| | In principle yes.
| Good, thank you.
| | Now you do have to understand that this is a lot of boring work and
| | you'll need approval from portmgr@, not just me.
| I understand both and it remains to be seen if I handle the task (not
| in the next three weeks, at least, I think).  But I don't want to go
| for a lot of boring work without knowing that the change would be
| welcome in principle, at least by some of the involved people.

I spent some time playing with this.

Yes, that's a lot of work -- and a potential build destabilization.

This said, I created a without GNOME dependencies, and
modified a few lower level X components make files accordingly.

The work is not done yet but I am able to build some protocols and
libraries now and am usefully improving my understanding of both the
ports build system and the modern X structure.

I don't think I am going to submit my patches, even when I am done,
because I see the far-reaching scope of the changes and an extra
destabilization of current X in ports would not be a good idea.

But I am thinking of building an X build structure for my own
consumption.  Essentially, I want a minimalist X build/install -- I
run not that many X applications.

E.g. I haven't seen any benefit of using HAL yet -- so I am happily
running HAL-less and intend to continue to do so.

Now another new (about two-years-old, I think) addition to X caught my
attention -- XCB.  I've done some reading and didn't see any argument
for using it by a non-X-developer (while the architectural argument
sounds good, no doubt.)

This is good recent post expressing one view on XCB usefulness --

   Re: Why disabling XCB in x11/lix11 ?

   So far nothing really needed it which made attacking the issues a
   less interesting way to proceed.

And I also see plenty of XCB-enable/disable clauses in ports.


    graphics/libGL/ defined(WITHOUT_XCB)

[ Three (grumbling) side observations here:

   1. Why does live in graphics/libGL, rather than in
      the standard Mk?

   2. Why are there two different switches for the same purpose:

   3. Why neither of the switches is documented (as far as the search
      in Mk shows)? ]

So, I built my libX11 without XCB and will try to build other
components without it.

My question to X experts is: will I lose anything without using XCB?
(Again, not caring about X application development.)

-- Alex -- alex-goncharov at --

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