X11 Application Launch Feedback
(or: "Something to look at while Netscape is loading")
Xalf is a small utility to provide feedback when starting X11
applications. Feedback can be given via four different indicators:
An invisible window
(to be used in conjunction with a task pager like
an generic splashscreen,
an hourglass attached to the mouse cursor or an
Old pages with background & developer information is here
GNOME 2.X does not contain Xalf hooks, like GNOME 1.X did. Instead,
GNOME2 includes support for the
startup-notification protocol instead. This is a robust and
future-safe solution to the problem Xalf was originally designed to
solve. I'm pleased to see that support for launch feedback finally is
gaining widespread support. The Xalf project has succeeded!
Xalf 0.12 is ready.
Xalf 0.11 released.
I've been working on making Xalf more stable and fixing the known
bugs. This has lead to lots of internal changes. Therefore, I've
releasing a test-version. If it works good, it will become version
0.11. Please let me know if there are problems. I'd also like to hear
from you if it works good, especially if you are running on a
non-Intel and/or non-RedHat system.
Version 0.10 released. Only bugfixes.
Version 0.9 released. Node understands "/bin/sh -c <command>". This
makes Xalf work much better with GNOME when command is setuid/setgid
or non-existent. Some portability changes have also been done. Works
with GTK+ 1.2.9.
Xalf 0.8 released. Changes: Removed -Wall, so Xalf can be compiled
with other compilers than gcc. Better strings in capplet and moved
capplet to Desktop.
Xalf is now included with GNOME and has a Bugzilla module on
Xalf 0.7 released. Changes: Fixes problems related to glibc and setuid
applications. Thanks to Frederic Crozat <email@example.com> for
providing a patch.
Xalf 0.6 released. Changes: Some sanity checks, better handling for
non-X11 applications and more.
Xalf 0.5 is available. The only change is a fixed bug in the Control
I am planning for a Next Generation Xalf software. It will probably
use an CORBA server.
Some new screenshots and an updated gnome-libs-RPM.
Linux magazine has an article about Xalf in the current issue.
(Sorry, Japanese language only.)
Xalf 0.4 is available. New features: GNOME Control Center capplet and
a new animated indicator.
Old releases are also available.
Xalf is in
in module "xalf".
Recent gnome-libs have builtin-support for Xalf. All you have to do is
to install Xalf and enable it in Control Center. Some notes:
- Xalf is controlled via the file ~/.gnome/xalf. This file can be
controlled via GNOME Control Centera.
- You can prepend NO_XALF to desktop entries commandlines, to disable
Xalf for a specific application.
- Use Control Center to enable Xalf indicators.
- In /usr/share/gnome/apps/Gmc.desktop, change Exec=gmc to
Exec=NO_XALF gmc. (The easiest way to do this is to use gmenu). Gmc
doesn't launch new processes, and this makes it work better with Xalf.
- You can use splashscreen for some applications. For example, in
/usr/share/gnome/apps/System/gnorpm.desktop, change Exec=gnorpm to
Exec=NO_XALF xalf --splash gnorpm.
GNOME Control Center capplet
"invisiblewindow" indicator (default)
"animated star" indicator