[scribus] the Ubuntu conundrum

Christoph Schäfer christoph-schaefer at gmx.de
Fri Oct 23 05:26:38 CEST 2009

Am Donnerstag, 22. Oktober 2009 11:15:14 schrieb Patrick Wallace:
> Christoph Sch?fer <christoph-schaefer at gmx.de> wrote:
> >This has been disussed with Ubuntu devs in the past. There are bug reports
> > in launchpad and one or more discusion threads on the Ubuntu ML.
> I just went to Launchpad. There are a grand total of 32 bugs mentioning
> Scribus. Just ONE is marked "high importance" and "confirmed" and it's old
> as dirt (April 2006) and was actually filed against SCIM-Qtimm.
> It claimed that when entering numbers into real number fields, the
> number was always reset to 0 with both scribus dfsg-1ubuntu4
> package from ubuntu main and a self-built scribus 1.3.3 from the scribus
> development branch. It says, "Possibly a problem with qt."
> Now, note that the claim was "possibly" a problem with QT...except that
> Scribus 1.3.5 -- using the
> exact same QT package -- doesn't have the bug. So, the bug, if it ever
> existed (I'm pretty sure I had
> 1.3.3 on my box at some point as I update automatically and I don't
> recall seeing it), seems to have flown off
> into the night with a revision to Scribus, not QT.

The bug exists at least for Ubuntu's Qt3 versions, but only for users who 
don't use an en_US locale. To be sure, there was a Qt3 version in an older 
SUSE version that had the same issue, but it has been fixed quickly. That's 
why I said Ubuntu doesn't have a monopoly on breaking Qt.

As Alessandro already wrote, 1.3.5 uses a completely different Qt -- Qt4.

> Looking through all other bugs for Scribus on Ubuntu, no others mention
> QT.  There are a few of
> those lovely crashes we used to enjoy, even one filed this week
> (although that user upgraded to
> 9.10 and clearly had something go wrong in the process. Now, he's
> blaming Scribus.
> Anyway, Craig, it might be time to revisit your fixed conviction that
> there is a so-called "QT problem" on Ubuntu.
> It doesn't seem to be well supported by facts.

I think we can break down Scribus-related issues to categories:

1) Scribus bugs. We can fix those, and there are still too many of them, no 

2) Windows issues. Almost always related to users not reading the 
Windows-specific information (e.g. choosing the wrong gs executable, using a 
3rd party desktop theme or trying to install Scribus on Win 98/ME). There 
were also some issues on Vista that may have been the result of MS bugs. 
After some updates/service packs from MS, we haven't heard of these issues 

3) Mac OS X issues. These were mostly due to insufficient support for OS X in 
Qt3. This has changed with Qt4, though, and we have more developers with Macs 
to test and fix these days.

4) *buntu issues. Lots of oddities as documented on this mailing list and the 
IRC logs. The good news is that the number of reported issues has declined 
since Scribus switched to Qt4, so there's hope for the future.

5) Others. Random issues on various, mostly "exotic" Linux platforms, other 
Unixes (*BSD, Solaris; mostly build issues) or OS/2.

Note that 5) is rather statistical noise, 4) is real noise, so I reject the 
notion of a "fixed conviction." 


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