The new version of Solus OS will come with a lot of changes. one of those changes being the Consort Desktop Environment. To find out more informations about the development I’ve talked to Ikey Doherty.Below you can read a short interview.
1) Lately I’ve been following your Google Plus profile and I saw you are working hard on Solus OS 2.Is the development going the way you’ve planned?
Exactly how I wanted. Sometimes I wish things could go a bit faster, but you can only go at one pace I guess.
2) There are a lot of desktop environments out there, but you’ve decided to develop a new one.What were the reasons that made you take this decision?
GNOME 3 itself does not meet our requirements. SolusOS has always promised to follow the traditional desktop metaphor. In fact when we released SolusOS 1, GNOME 2 had already been issued its fate. I promised our users back then that we’d come up with a solution that would act and look identically to GNOME 2, and improve on it, no matter what it took.
The other options, though appealing, still didn’t fit our spec sheet. The best options were MATE and Cinnamon. Unfortunately, MATE is based on GTK2 and is a complete fork of GNOME. We still want GNOME compatibility and GTK3. We didn’t want a complete fork. Cinnamon, being a fork of GNOME Shell, requires hardware acceleration to function which is completely unacceptable for SolusOS (which runs on new and old). Even though Cinnamon and GNOME Shell can run via llvmpipe, this is an absurd option for users with older machines, who will always have a slow experience.
There was nothing else to do, but cook up our own solution. We’d been patching various components for the last year, and finally it was time to admit the work was essentially a fork. Time to rename it.
3) Although Consort is in early development, you’ve made big progress.A windows and files managers, the consort-panel, the consort session.Can you tell me more informations about those and about the new items that will be included in Cosort?
Yeah no problem. Consortium is our window manager, forked from Metacity. We’ve already added ‘side by side tiling’, and resolved the compositing issues whereby shadows weren’t cleared and DnD icons left trails across the desktop.
Consort Panel is our fork of GNOME Panel, and it’s already becoming quite awesome. We’ve restored completely traditional interaction so you can use it exactly as you would in GNOME 2. Currently a project is underway to bring a Python compatibility layer in, which will allow GNOME 2 applets to run on the panel.
Some things are still ‘super secret’, only because we want to give people pleasant surprises. Most things are well know, such as Athena, the fork of Nautilus. Nautilus was one obscene looking creature when 3.4 arrived, and had to be dealt with. Athena aims to restore traditional features, and maintain a more classic look. New features are being added in time…
4) In the future are you planning to work with other GNU/Linux developers to port Consort on their distributions?
Sure! The aim with Consort is to be a distro-agnostic desktop. That means we want it to be available to as many distros as possible. This will mean talking directly with a lot of packaging teams. However most of our time will be spent on developing Consort and SolusOS, so it’s best for these teams to contact me.
5) What was the feedback from the community regarding Consort?
In a word? Fantastic. We have daily testing going on and incredible reports coming back. We want to get Consort up to speed as soon as possible so that everyone can enjoy it.
6) You’ve decided to use PiSi in Solus OS 2.In your opinion what are the advantages of using PiSi?
Stable control of upstream by becoming upstream. Delta updates, a well established configuration system, easier maintanence of packages, etc. What’s not to like? We want a more modern package format.
7) PiSi, Consort Desktop Environment, what’s next for Solus OS 2?
Who knows? A new driver system is planned, as well as a better formed control center. Integration with things like Steam and NetFlix, to name a few. SolusOS 2 has a little way to go before I’ll even consider calling it beta. Add to that we’re working with Reglue to bring a specialised version of SolusOS to underprivileged children, you got a big checklist.
8) When do you estimate Solus OS 2, the stable version, will be ready?
Hate to say it, but when its ready. SolusOS doesn’t keep to the whole release date system. It limits you far too much. When we’re all completely happy with the quality, we’ll put it back through testing again. Then release it.
Thank you Ikey for your time.Looking forward to new improvements in Solus.
Solus OS official website : www.solusos.com
UPDATE : Solus OS alpha 7 was released ~ click HERE to read about it.