GNOME - The GNU Network Object Model Environment
The gnome-session program launches and initializes the GNOME desktop environment. This program is usually executed from your X initialization file. If your system is configured to use gdm (the GNOME display and login manager) you can start your GNOME session by selecting the Gnome login profile.
If the special WINDOW_MANAGER environment variable is set, the gnome-session system will use that as the session window manager. Otherwise it will default to your system's configured window manager.
GNOME is a collection of libraries and applications. A collection of these form the GNOME Desktop: an easy to use, yet powerful desktop environment for Unix systems. You can find up to date information about GNOME in http://www.gnome.org. You can find more information about the GNU project in http://www.gnu.org.
From a user's point of view, the GNOME desktop consists of a desktop metaphor, a file manager and an easy way to launch applications installed on the system. Various desktop tools are provided with the GNOME desktop to take advantage of a computer system.
GNOME's desktop metaphor allows the desktop to be used as a place to temporarily storing files, shortcuts to programs and documents. Drag and drop is an important part of the system; we have tried to make the system as intuitive as possible.
The session management in GNOME will automatically restore all of the applications you were running when you log in into the system again. With session managed applications, the user can turn off or logout from the system and when he logs in again, he will see the same desktop he had before.
GNOME supports themes that allow users to change the skin of an application: the look of applications in the GNOME desktop can be configured to look in the way that more pleases the user: it is just a few mouse-clicks away. You can choose from a wide range of GTK themes. A web site has been devoted to this: http://gtk.themes.org
More information can be found at http://www.helixcode.com/tech/bonobo.php3
GNOME is window manager independant. This means that the GNOME desktop and the GNOME tools will work with any window manager. Window manager can optionally provide a number of features that will make the user's desktop a more pleasant experience. The GNOME window manager hint spec is available at: http://www.gnome.org/devel/gnomewm/book1.html
Enter KDE, a project that wanted to make Unix usable as a desktop machine. Sadly they chose the proprietary and non-free toolkit Qt as the foundation for their work. It was a giant step backwards in terms of software freedom.
In response, the GNOME project was started later to create a completely free desktop environment, and various early ideas were reused.
Early talks about the creation of GNOME involved some recognized free software leaders: Erik Troan and Mark Ewing of Red Hat software, Richard Stallman of the Free Software Foundation, and Peter Mattis and Spencer Kimball of the GIMP project. We launched the project after considering the various alternatives that could be tried.
The original call for developers, which included the team of programmers working on the GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP [GIMP]), the Guile mailing list and the free software mailing lists. This is important because the mix of people that were part of the original GNOME team had a good background on free software issues, graphics and language design.
Red Hat created the Advanced Development Laboratories division on January 1998 (http://www.labs.redhat.com). RHAD labs was initially created to help out in the development of the GNOME project.
We made releases of the GNOME source base since the beginning of the project. During the development of GNOME, the group has produced a number of libraries and components that are useful to provide integration, and consistency troughout the system.
GNOME 1.0 was released after eighteen months of development in March 1999. Updates and fixes are continously released; At the time of this writing, the GNOME 1.0 series is at version 1.0.5.
GNOME 1.0 marks the contract between GNOME developers and the user base to provide a stable API on top of which new applications can be developed. Software developers will be able to take advantage of all the functions available in the library, and they can be sure that their applications will continue to work in the future.
In May, 1999, International GNOME support was launched: a company that offers contractual support for the GNOME system founded by Nat Friedman and Miguel de Icaza.
In October, 1999 an updated version of GNOME codenamed "October GNOME" was released with many bug fixes and improvements. This new version of GNOME also included Glade and libGlade as part of the platform
In October 1999, GNOME Support became Helix Code, Inc. (http://www.helixcode.com) and started work on Evolution (an integrated groupware solution) and Helix GNOME (a continous updated distribution of GNOME for various operating systems).
In November 1999, Eazel was introduced to the GNOME community (http://www.eazel.com) founded by Andy Hertzfeld, Bart Decrem and Mike Boich to provide a new desktop for GNOME: the Nautilus project.
Also in November, the Bonobo component system started to become used in the GNOME project, and it became the foundation for various of the most advanced GNOME projects.
In March 2000, Mathieu Lacage organized the "GNOME Users and Developers European Conference" (http://www.guadec.enst.fr) in the Telecom, Paris school in Paris, France. More than a hundred GNOME hackers got together to discuss the state of GNOME and its future.
In March 2000, The GNOME Steering Committee was created to overwsee the development and deployment of GNOME 2.0
In May 2000, GNOME 1.2 codenamed "Bongo GNOME" was released to the public.
There are many other lists that discuss specific parts of the project, for a complete list, check http://www.gnome.org/mailing-lists
To report bugs or suggestions you would like to see in the GNOME system, please use the command gnome-bug to send us information about the problem you are experimenting, or go directly to our bug tracking system on the Web at http://bugs.gnome.org
GNOME has been developed by a large number of free software programmers, users and enthusiasts on the Internet. The guname program lists some of the contributors to the system.
This manual page has been written by Miguel de Icaza (email@example.com)
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Created 1996-2023 by Maxim Chirkov
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