Friday, November 22, 2019

More changes to hosted MyWorkspace

With the precious help by Nicola Scendoni, we are trying to enhance the integration between AROS and Linux when running Icaros Desktop in hosted mode. Many things are changing, with one of them being how current MyWorkspace subdirectories and their ASSIGNs will be handled. Back in 2009, when I decided to add the 'MyWorkspace' drawer to Icaros environment, I wanted to mimic how Linux "/home" and Windows "\users" directories behave, placing also some nice subdirectories inside, for Documents, Pictures, Videos, Music and Downloaded files (let's call them 'user projects'). More recently, with the addition of Magellan, also a Desktop directory was made, to let people store their files (and not only aliases) on the workbench. This makes sense on a native installation, because these folders do not exist on AROS. But on hosted installations, where user project folders already exist, there is no need to create them again.

There wouldn't even be the need for MyWorkspace at all, since we have Home: for the same purpose. And, inside Home:, all Ubuntu-derived distributions already place the same subdirectories for user projects, so there is really no need to recreate them. So, starting with Icaros 2.3.0, hosted installations will use these folders instead. Unluckily, changing some ASSIGNs is not enough, because Linux and Windows behave differently and, worst of all, directory names change when setting a different locale. So, for instance, your $HOME/Pictures directory becomes $HOME/Immagini when switching to italian language. This means that if you change language in Linux, your Icaros installation has to reflect your change immediately or, at least, at the very next session. 

This is, exactly, what I am working on these days and, after a lot of scripting, it's what I'm getting right now on my development machine. I still have to decide if this will lead to some new ability also for native users: after all, once the gears are there for a more dyamic management of MyWorkspace on hosted, it shouldn't be difficult to give native users - at least - the chance to modify names for the same directories. 

By the way, our integration effort goes far beyond this. I can not officially announce or anticipate anything at the moment, but if you follow our facebook channel, you may see some very exciting screenshots released from time to time... Like these ones: