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Help wanted: Testing programs that use the notification area

Tags: Design

This article is more than 13 years old.


Two months ago I wrote about how Ubuntu is phasing out the notification area.

An important part of this work is surveying Ubuntu applications that use the notification area, working out what they should do instead, and fixing them.

Ubuntu’s own Kees Cook recently ran a couple of massive searches through the source code of the Ubuntu archive, finding the telltale code where a program adds a notification area item. (That’s one of the benefits of most of Ubuntu’s software being open source.)

The next step is where we’d like your help. We now have a list of dozens of programs that use the notification area. What we need now is a description of how each of them use it. What does the notification area item do when you click it, if anything? If the item has a menu, what does the menu contain? Are there any Preferences items, menu bar items, or other places referring to the “Notification area” or the “tray”? If so, where are they? Once we know these things, we can make proposals on how to fix them.

So if you have a few spare minutes, please choose one of the programs on the list, install it from Ubuntu Software Center, study how it uses and mentions the notification area, and add your notes to the wiki page.

If you know of programs that use the notification area in Ubuntu but aren’t listed, please add them to the page too. Maybe they use a toolkit other than GTK or Qt (so Kees’s searches didn’t find them), or maybe they’re proprietary applications, or maybe they’re just not in the Ubuntu repositories. Either way, we’ll do what we can to get them fixed.

Thanks for your help!

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