Re: fast user switching

On Sun, 2003-11-30 at 21:31, Rodrigo Moya wrote:
> Hi
> The other day, when giving a tutorial on GTK, I started a fast user
> switching applet. I didn't come too far away, except for adding the 'New
> login' menu item to the applet's menu.
> Today, talking on IRC with Mark, he suggested having it in
> Actions->Switch user, and have that run gdmflexiserver. I did that (was
> really easy), but the problem is that this only works for opening new
> sessions, but not for switching to an existing session.
> So, how could this be implemented? I guess the Actions menu is the right
> place for it, but instead of opening a new gdm login, it should probably
> display a dialog that allows the user to either switch to an existing
> login, or create a new session (in which case, the normal gdmflexiserver
> will be run).

I'm against both the idea of an applet, and the idea of a dialog.
Because both of these can only be run from within an existing session. I
think that it is very important to be able to leave you session running
in the background, but secured so that only you can get back into it. If
fast user switching is done from within a session then you have to watch
over the new user's shoulder to make sure that they actually leave your

The way I envisioned this working is that there is an "Actions -> Switch
User" somewhat like
This would run gdmflexiserver and the idea would be that it lets you log
out while leaving your session running.

So once you've clicked "Actions -> Switch User" you see something like . You can see who is
logged in and for how long. Then you or anyone with an account at that
computer can sit down and log in. If that user wants to do a leave their
session running then they can click "Actions -> Switch User" and gdm
will show that User as being logged in too etc...

> That's how I see it right now, that gdmflexiserver, who knows, AFAIK,
> which users are logged in, can have a --show-chooser (or whatever)
> command line argument that would make it display that dialog.

Well what I detail would still be possible without the face chooser but
not would not be as friendly. I think that in the long run the default
gdm should come with the greeter running with the face browser enabled.
That would make both gdm in general and fast user switching more usable.
Unfortunately atm the greeter's face browser is quite buggy[1].

> Mark has other ideas, so please Mark, tell us :-)

I believe I just did ;) Hope I made sense..

[1] eg.

Mark Finlay 
Computer Science Student

E-Mail:	sisob_AT_tuxfamily_DOT_org
Jabber:	sisob_AT_jabber_DOT_org

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