[forum] Re: A Gov Application Developer's Perspective - X Windows future? - typo correction

Nicholas Wourms forum@XFree86.Org
Mon, 24 Mar 2003 08:03:07 -0500

Jim Schatzman wrote:
> Sorry about that - I meant to say that the Cygwin port of "XFree86" is incredibly slow.
> XWin32 is a commercial X server for Windows that in our tests is one of the fastest.

There are many reasons for this, I'll try to go into a few:

1) There are maybe 2-3 primary developers for the 
Cygwin/XFree86 port who are doing this on their spare time. 
  These people are amoung the brightest out there, but they 
have to work for a living, too.  They have absolutely no 
sponsership whatsoever.  Thus, development has been slow. 
DirectX/GDI functionality already exists, but it isn't 
finished yet.

2) Cygwin still lacks a complete IPC implimentation which is 
also optimized.  Again, no one has stepped up to solve this 
problem.  Also, threading is ok, but could be further 
optimized.  Frankly, vfork is in dire need of a complete 
overhaul, but that's just my opinion.  There are only 3 
part-time developers who work on this aspect, w/o sponsership.

3) Cygwin could probably do with a revamp of its mm system, 
to increase the speed.

As a tax paying citizen of the U.S., I don't see why the 
Feds can't divert a miniscule amount of that obscenely huge 
defense budget they just passed to sponsoring (full time) 
3-4 of the Cygwin & Cygwin/XFree86 developers to solve this 
issue.  Even if you'd only sponser 2, certainly that'd be a 
fraction of the cost compared to how much it costs to 
site-license and maintain Starnet X-Win.  I don't know how 
much they charge the Government, but $225/seat is highway 

Redhat is still contracting for Cygwin development & Harold 
Hunt would be the one you'd want to talk to about the 
XFree86 port.  I'm sure you are aware of the websites for 
these projects (www.cygwin.com), so you know where to go for 
more info.

Again, I stress the fact that unless someone steps up and 
puts their money where their mouth is, these projects will 
continue at the current pace.  The nice thing about 
sponsership is that YOU decide what features and 
functionality YOU want to see.

At the very least, as a developer, you could contribute to 
making the project better.  Perhaps you could introduce it 
as an official project for you to work on for your company?

Also, starting work on a completely windows native XFree86 
from scratch would be highly inefficient as it is a partial 
duplication of the current work being done for 
Cygwin/XFree86.  I really doubt that anyone out there would 
want to tackle this as Cygwin/XFree86 is pretty close to 
having a fully implimented rootless mode (which makes the 
other port irrelevant).

I've made some assumptions and a few generalizations, but 
this is my perspective as someone who is involved in the 
Cygwin community.

> {SNIP]
> Thanks for reading my comments-
> Jim Schatzman
> Northrop Grumman Mission Systems


P.S. - All my comments were meant to be neutral and as such 
do not reflect my political views.