Re: Default browser.

On Fri, 2004-02-06 at 19:36, Nat Friedman wrote:
> Hi guys,
> What is the canonical way of discovering and setting the user's default
> web browser?
> Currently I see that gnome-vfs installs schemas for:
>         /desktop/gnome/url-handlers/http/*

This is about the task, not the application.  Older apps may look here,
to choose a browser or mail client, but it is not safe.  Url handlers is
for document/file oriented operations such as clicking a desktop file in
Nautilus.  I've experienced problems (transitioning to GNOME 2) where
dead apps were listed with the URL handlers, so I had to manually sync
my apps to my handlers.

> And the gnome-default-applications-properties capplet dutifully uses
> these keys: good so far.  
> However, there's also a schema installed by libgnome for:
> 	/desktop/gnome/applications/browser

This is the right way (GNOME 2) to choose an application.  When one app
wants to start another app for a user, this is the place to look.  I the
case of the GNOME aware Web browsers, this key is the master.

> Then, looking through applications, I see various other bits of
> grossness.  Some applications store this preference themselves, some
> look at $BROWSER, etc.

Some apps haven't gotten the message, or in many cases like Gaim, the
message was received, understood, and ignored.,

> I need to figure this out for dashboard, so I know which bookmark
> repository is current.  Dashboard can read Epiphany, Galeon, Mozilla and
> FireBird bookmarks, and I need to know which ones to pay attention to. 
> So gnome_url_show, while helpful, doesn't solve the problem for me.  I'm
> sure there are other examples where applications need to know the user's
> preferred browser when you don't actually want to load a page.

You do want to use /desktop/gnome/applications/browser, but
gnome_url_show is as document handler and we have no way of guaranteeing
that it is correct.  In the case Firebird, it isn't gnome-aware.  You
must manually set it up as the default app.  There are instructions
about how to do it on so it's a common problem.  There was
also a big discussion about setting the default on the evolution-list
last summer.

> So, can someone tell me definitively what to look at, and then we'll
> have it permanently archived in the mailing list archive so we can point
> people at it forever more?

The bottom line is that the right place to look is not guaranteed to be
accurate because neither the app or the user knows how to set it.  The
URL-handler is less likely to be right, and we need a means to keep it
synced to the default app.

__C U R T I S  C.  H O V E Y____________________
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Guilty of stealing everything I am.

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