Re: Network Monitor applet

Hi Mark,

On Wed, 2003-06-11 at 12:18, Mark Finlay wrote:
> On Tue, 2003-06-10 at 14:40, Mark McLoughlin wrote:
> > Hey,
> > 	I've just imported a Network Monitor applet thingy into CVS and
> > Its the gnome-netstatus module and the tarballs is at:
> > 
> >
> > 
> > 	Its basically just an applet which is similar to the network status
> > icon in the WinXP notification area. It was originally written as a
> > status icon for GNOME's notification area, but I never got around to
> > making these kind of status icons reasonable to use with the
> > notification area.
> Do you still plan on making it usable with the notification area? What
> were the problems you encountered?

	Yeah, I would still like to do this in the future. The problems I ran
into were:

	1) Even after much discussion we weren't even remotely near coming to a
consensus (even just withing GNOME) on exactly what types of things
should go into the notification area. Nevermind how they should be

	2) No standard mechanism for adding icons to the notification area. I'd
prefer a dialog with the notification area where you could
enable/disable all available icons - others seem to prefer the "show
status in notification area" checkbox in random preferences/settings
dialog. The former option is quite a bit of work in any case.

	3) There are some other less fundamental type issues: keynav doesn't
work, we don't have a standard widget for status icons, not being able
re-arrange the icons, difficulties in making icons expand to the panel
width ...

	I started work on all these issues, but ran out of time and had to make
the thing some way usable ... so I made it an applet. In saying that,
I'd like to get back to those issues sometime soon ...

> This a really great applet, but in my mind for it to "Just WorkTM" it
> would need to use the notification area and be started automatically if
> there is a network connection in use. We shouldn't require users to
> browse through the applets menu to gain access to "core functionality".
> Ideally eventually you would log into gnome for the first time, if you
> have a network connection set up it will be displayed in the
> notification area. 


> If you don't like it there you can disable it
> throught it's own context menu, as well as being able to enable/disable
> it with the gnome-system-tools network capplet.

	Well, there's a couple of issues with that, IMHO. As we noted g-s-t
aren't widely shipped by vendors ... so downstream vendors would have to
have their own mechanisms. 

	And secondly, I don't find that non-obvious. You right click on the
thing and go "remove icon" to get rid of it ... but to add it you find
yourself rooting around in every preferences/settings dialog that
remotely sound like they have something to do with "network" or
"internet". For users who don't immediately see the difference between
their browser, network card and proxies or the difference between
settings and preferences ... I think that would lead to some serious

	For example, when I went to see how the WinXP network icon behaves, it
actually took me a long time to figure out how to enable it ... and this
is someone who knows its going to be in a dialog somewhere and actually
has some sort of an understanding of networking ...

Good Luck,

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