Stuff that sucks
See the philosophy page about what applies to this page.
These libraries are broken/considered harmful and should not be used if it’s possible to avoid them. If you use them, consider looking for alternatives.
glib - implements C++ STL on top of C (because C++ sucks so much, let’s reinvent it!), adding lots of useless data types for “portability” and “readability” reasons. even worse, it is not possible to write robust applications using glib, since it aborts in out-of-memory situations. glib usage is required to write gtk+ and gnome applications, but is also used when common functionality is needed (e.g. hashlists, base64 decoder, etc). it is not suited at all for static linking due to its huge size.
cmake - cmake is written in C++ but often used to compile C programs. that means (on a self-bootstrapping system) that one needs to compile a C++ compiler and cmake just in order to be able to build some C code. it is so huge and bloated that compilation takes more time than compilation of GCC (!). it’s not even possible to use it to create freestanding Makefiles, since the generated Makefiles call back into the cmake binary itself.
Alternatives: gnu make
waf and scons - waf/scons are both written in python but often used to compile C programs. that means (on a self-bootstrapping system) that one needs to compile python in order to be able to build some C code. waf code is dropped into the compilee’s build tree, so it does not benefit from updated versions and bugfixes.
Alternatives: gnu make
There are many broken X programs. Go bug the developers of these broken programs to fix them. Here are some of the main causes of this brokenness:
- The program assumes a specific window management model, i.e. assumes you are using a WIMP-window manager like those found in KDE or Gnome. This assumption breaks the ICCCM conventions.
- The application uses a fixed size - this limitation does not fit into the world of tiling window managers very well, and can also be seen as breaking the ICCCM conventions, because a fixed sized window assumes a specific window management model as well (though the ICCCM does not forbid fixed-size windows). In any case, the ICCCM requests that clients accept any size the window manager proposes to them.
- The program is based on strange non-standard window manager hints that only work properly with a window manager supporting these extensions - this simply breaks the ICCCM as well. E.g. trash icon programs.
- The program does not conform to ICCCM due to some missing or improperly set hints.
If you still need some program which expects a floating WM, use it in floating mode.
The following programs are broken (see rocking stuff for saner alternatives):
- XMMS (assumes fixed size, doesn’t set transient_for hint properly)
- Firefox (doesn’t set the TRANSIENT_FOR hint correctly on its download dialog)
- mplayer with GUI (assumes special window management model. It works without the GUI)
- xine (same as xmms)
- aterm (doesn’t like being resized by the WM), See aterm-ml-post
Alternatives: (u)xterm, urxvt, st, uuterm