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Old 02-23-2009, 11:01 AM
Colin Watson
 
Default update-manager behaviour

On Fri, Feb 20, 2009 at 05:57:19PM +0000, Matthew Paul Thomas wrote:
> Mario Limonciello wrote on 20/02/09 17:09:
> > I can think of cases when this behavior can be really disruptive too.
> >
> > Think about how annoying it would be if update manager was launching
> > while:
> >
> > * Watching a movie
> > * Playing a full screen game
> > * Any time spent in MythTV or boxee
> >...
>
> Whenever Update Manager opens automatically, it should open in the
> background. Please report bugs about specific cases where this doesn't
> happen, including what window manager you're using.

This question assumes that opening unfocused in the background is
sufficient to cause it not to interfere with running applications. This
is not an obviously correct assumption. A 100MB footprint with
non-trivial extra I/O out of the blue (not in response to an explicit
user action) is more than enough to interfere with other things you're
doing regardless of focus, particularly the performance-critical things
given as examples above.

It would be lovely if we could accurately annotate processes with tools
like nice and ionice such that this wasn't a problem, but IME this is
not a terribly exact science as yet, particularly not when you push a
memory-limited system into swap thrashing. Desktop UI design cannot
exist in an idealised vacuum; it needs to consider factors such as this.

--
Colin Watson [cjwatson@ubuntu.com]

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Old 02-23-2009, 12:27 PM
Matthew Paul Thomas
 
Default update-manager behaviour

-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1

Michael Vogt wrote on 23/02/09 10:22:
>...
> We start update-manager with "focus_on_map" set to false. I ran some
> tests to see if it behaves as expected:
>
> metacity:
> - totem, gnome-terminal,firefox fullscreen:
> + opens behind the fullscreen app
> - totem, gnome-terminal,firefox maximized:
> + opens behind the maximized app
>
> compiz:
> - totem, gnome-terminal,firefox fullscreen:
> + opens behind the fullscreen app (without priority hint in windowlist)
> - totem, gnome-terminal,firefox maximized:
> + opens *not* behind the maximized app
>
> So it looks like we need to make compiz behaviour better for maximized
> apps to behave more like metacity.
>...

Reported. <http://launchpad.net/bugs/333284>

Thanks
- --
Matthew Paul Thomas
http://mpt.net.nz/
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Old 02-24-2009, 12:19 AM
Pablo Quirós
 
Default update-manager behaviour

>Proposal:

*>* Pop up update-manager automatically for security updates, and make
* it more obvious how to install them automatically.

> * Do not pop up u-m for non-security updates, and if possible, do not
* even show an indicator for it (a notification bubble would make me
* happy, though). Showing an indicator or not is certainly fodder for
* a long subjective bikeshedding discussion, I figure. :-)

>If I want to install bug fix updates, I can easily go to System ->
Admin -> Update Manager at a time which is convenient to me.


As a happy ubuntu user who is a bit concerned about this, I'd want to
share my thoughts on this matter.

First, I think opening a window automatically is *really* annoying,
and much more disturbing than the current bubble. The idea of the new
notification system is to avoid disturbing the user, and with that
decision things will get worse.

Most computer users don't care at all about updates. They just want a
system that works and stays out of their way. I am one of this users,
and I would happily accept security updates to be installed
automatically by default. If there is some action needed from me (eg:
restart firefox), I will do it, but I want to make actions *only* when
it is absolutely necessary, and it is not for installing updates.
Experienced users who are not happy with this can always change it to
only install updates when they decide to.

This would need a bit of extra work: maybe not installing them when a
laptop is running on batteries, or when the cpu usage is too high.

If automatic updates by default is unacceptable, I suggest the following:
I'd show a message to the users first time they see update-manager,
explaining them the purpose of the
program, and giving them a choice of what the default behavior should
be, for example:

-Pop up the program every time there are security updates
-Install them automatically
-Show an icon indicator when there are updates

There should be a suggested option for the users who don't know what
is best for them.

Inside update-manager, there should be an easy and clear way to change
the chosen behavior in the future.

That way, anyone can choose what is best for them, and the program is
introduced to the users first time they see it, so that they know it's
purpose and why "it appeared magically".

Regards,

Pablo

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Old 02-24-2009, 01:55 AM
Aigars Mahinovs
 
Default update-manager behaviour

2009/2/23 Colin Watson <cjwatson@ubuntu.com>:
> This question assumes that opening unfocused in the background is
> sufficient to cause it not to interfere with running applications. This
> is not an obviously correct assumption. A 100MB footprint with
> non-trivial extra I/O out of the blue (not in response to an explicit
> user action) is more than enough to interfere with other things you're
> doing regardless of focus, particularly the performance-critical things
> given as examples above.

This should be an important concern. It should be simple to write a
very small C program that would start up, look at the system load
running applications and available RAM and then only start a secondary
application (such as an automatic update) when some conditions are
met, for example system load <0.5 over last 15 minutes, 200Mb of free
RAM (including cache RAM at 2:1 ratio). Then automatic security
updates could be done in the background (if user so chooses) and also
a button could be added to the update-manager to "Upgrade when idle".

It would also be perfectly fine for the update system to periodically
notify the user that "23 updates are available" and escalate the
notification to a persistent one for "3 security updates and 24 other
updates are available" asking the user to launch the Update Manager.

However, the system should _never_ open windows without user action.
Linux is about user being in control. Viruses on Windows take away
control from users by creating new pop-up (and pop-under) windows. Any
new Ubuntu user coming from virus infected waters will automatically
associate a window that magically appears on his desktop as a virus,
many veteran Linux user will see that as a violation of user trust in
the system. The system can poke user via notification or maybe even
icons in really important cases, but window control is user's domain
and the system has no business messing with that.

--
Best regards,
Aigars Mahinovs mailto:aigarius@debian.org
#--------------------------------------------------------------#
| .'`. Debian GNU/Linux (http://www.debian.org) |
| : :' : Latvian Open Source Assoc. (http://www.laka.lv) |
| `. `' Linux Administration and Free Software Consulting |
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Old 02-24-2009, 03:42 AM
Jacob Rau
 
Default update-manager behaviour

Pablo Quirós wrote:
> First, I think opening a window automatically is *really* annoying,
> and much more disturbing than the current bubble. The idea of the new
> notification system is to avoid disturbing the user, and with that
> decision things will get worse.
Opening a window automatically will be extremely annoying, and probably
won't work. The experienced user knows where to look for updates, and
the inexperienced user will not notice it until he goes to turn the
computer off, at which point he will close the window. Don't open the
notification window.
> Most computer users don't care at all about updates. They just want a
> system that works and stays out of their way. I am one of this users,
> and I would happily accept security updates to be installed
> automatically by default. If there is some action needed from me (eg:
> restart firefox), I will do it, but I want to make actions *only* when
> it is absolutely necessary, and it is not for installing updates.
> Experienced users who are not happy with this can always change it to
> only install updates when they decide to.
This method would personally irk me. If I'm working on a project that
uses Apache, I would expect Apache to stay available, but all of a
sudden, my project stops working...and my hard drive starts
cranking...and then I realize that update-manager has stopped my Apache
process so that it can replace it with a newer version. Not. Cool.

This may not seem like a problem for "normal" users, but what would you
do if you tried to open OpenOffice or Firefox and got a strange cryptic
error instead of the program you want? With no indication whatsoever as
to why...
> If automatic updates by default is unacceptable,
I would say it is.
> I suggest the following:
> I'd show a message to the users first time they see update-manager,
> explaining them the purpose of the
> program, and giving them a choice of what the default behavior should
> be <SNIP>
> That way, anyone can choose what is best for them, and the program is
> introduced to the users first time they see it, so that they know it's
> purpose and why "it appeared magically".
That's probably the best of the ideas I've seen so far. Educating the
user is a good idea, and really the only feasible choice I can see in
this case.

Jacob

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Old 02-24-2009, 01:18 PM
Stephen Ryan
 
Default update-manager behaviour

On 2/23/09, Aigars Mahinovs <aigarius@gmail.com> wrote:
> 2009/2/23 Colin Watson <cjwatson@ubuntu.com>:
>
> > This question assumes that opening unfocused in the background is
> > sufficient to cause it not to interfere with running applications. This
> > is not an obviously correct assumption. A 100MB footprint with
> > non-trivial extra I/O out of the blue (not in response to an explicit
> > user action) is more than enough to interfere with other things you're
> > doing regardless of focus, particularly the performance-critical things
> > given as examples above.
>
>
> This should be an important concern. It should be simple to write a
> very small C program that would start up, look at the system load
> running applications and available RAM and then only start a secondary
> application (such as an automatic update) when some conditions are
> met, for example system load <0.5 over last 15 minutes, 200Mb of free
> RAM (including cache RAM at 2:1 ratio). Then automatic security
> updates could be done in the background (if user so chooses) and also
> a button could be added to the update-manager to "Upgrade when idle".


Actually, what this little app needs to do is to *predict* when the
system will be appropriately idle for long enough to install however
many updates there are. Do let me know when you've got that crystal
ball working, I've got some lottery tickets to buy.

The key difference between me and an application is that I have some
knowledge of my intentions, and I can use that knowledge to reduce or
eliminate any inconvenience. No application can possibly do that.

...

> However, the system should _never_ open windows without user action.
> Linux is about user being in control. Viruses on Windows take away
> control from users by creating new pop-up (and pop-under) windows. Any
> new Ubuntu user coming from virus infected waters will automatically
> associate a window that magically appears on his desktop as a virus,
> many veteran Linux user will see that as a violation of user trust in
> the system. The system can poke user via notification or maybe even
> icons in really important cases, but window control is user's domain
> and the system has no business messing with that.

Hear, hear! Well said, indeed. It would be a bad precedent to
deliberately design into an important part of the OS something that
violates such an important convention.

*Please* redesign this, and consider the importance of user control
this time. The whole system loses credibility when I lose control of
a part of it. Don't go there!

--
Stephen Ryan
Dartware, LLC

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V=EDctor A. Trejo Pe=F1a:

> Hi. I just downloaded and recorderd Ubuntu. I tried to install it into a
> Pentium 4, 1.7 GHz, with 128 MB RAM.

Looking at the system requirements, I read here
http://www.ubuntu.com/products/WhatIsUbuntu/desktopedition
| At least 256 MB of RAM is required to run the alternate install CD (384MB=
of
| RAM is required to use the live CD based installer). Install requires at
| least 4 GB of disk space.
and here
http://www.xubuntu.org/get
| You need 128 MB RAM to run the Live CD or 192 MB RAM to install. The
| Alternate Install CD only requires you to have 64 MB RAM at install time.
| To install Xubuntu, you need 1.5 GB of free space on your hard disk. Once
| installed, Xubuntu can run with 192 MB RAM, but it is strongly recommended
| to have at least 256 MB RAM.

So it seems that you're simply out of luck if you want to run a desktop Ubu=
ntu =

on a machine with 128 MB RAM.
If upgrading the machine's RAM is not an option, you could give the Xubuntu =

alternate CD a try and after installation setup an even more lightweight X =

environment.

Regards
mks


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Old 02-25-2009, 09:01 AM
Mark Shuttleworth
 
Default update-manager behaviour

Aigars Mahinovs wrote:

2009/2/23 Colin Watson <cjwatson@ubuntu.com>:


This question assumes that opening unfocused in the background is
sufficient to cause it not to interfere with running applications. This
is not an obviously correct assumption. A 100MB footprint with
non-trivial extra I/O out of the blue (not in response to an explicit
user action) is more than enough to interfere with other things you're
doing regardless of focus, particularly the performance-critical things
given as examples above.



This should be an important concern. It should be simple to write a
very small C program that would start up, look at the system load
running applications and available RAM and then only start a secondary
application (such as an automatic update) when some conditions are
met, for example system load <0.5 over last 15 minutes, 200Mb of free
RAM (including cache RAM at 2:1 ratio). Then automatic security
updates could be done in the background (if user so chooses) and also
a button could be added to the update-manager to "Upgrade when idle".




Yes, this is an approach we can pursue. Michael Vogt and MPT are
looking at low-hanging fruit in this regard for 9.04, and we can make a
bigger push to improve it in 9.10.



Mark



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