Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 85942
up2date clist has fixed-width columns
Last modified: 2007-11-30 17:10:31 EST
For a long time now I've noticed the up2date GUI has a few issues which
make it a bit user unfriendly as the UI widgets give you some false
impressions. I must admit I should have possibly filed this report a
long time ago when I first noticed the problem, however I figured it
was something that everyone would notice and that perhaps someone would
have filed a report on it already. (Also, I must admit that I have not
queried bugzilla first to see if someone has filed a similar report, as
I'm not completely sure what search criterion I'd use to find similar
Here is the problem: On any of the screens which come up, in which the
user is presented a multi-columned list of packages to choose from, the
column names at the top are cut off. This is on a default OS install,
with nothing modified, font sizes are unchanged, etc. All defaults.
The column headers look like this:
|Package Name |Versio|Releas|Arch|Size
I'll attach a screenshot to illustrate better, then continue my
Created attachment 90548 [details]
Window screenshot showing cut off text in column headers
The cut off text is just a bad default setting for column width, and is
likely easily cured by making the default widths wider, or by autosizing
each column to be as big or bigger than the column header text. That
would IMHO present a nicer more professional default look.
The bigger problem however, is that my first thought as a user when seeing
this, was to move the mouse over to the horizontal bar separators between
column header fields, in an attempt to resize them. When you do this, the
mouse cursor properly changes to the expected "horizontal column resizer"
cursor, thus giving the user the visual cue "You may now click the mouse
and drag this bar to resize the column". However when you try to do that,
2 bugs are triggered:
1) The column does not resize. I tried left click and drag, right click
and drag, middle click and drag, and none of them do anything.
2) If you click *any* mouse button while the mouse is in on the resizer
bar in the column header, it actually selects or deselects a package
in the underlying list of packages! Totally unexpected and wrong
As a result of these bugs, the user is unable to resize the columns, either
to have the column headers simply display their complete text, or more
importantly, to resize the columns to see the potentially much wider
package names, architecture names, version, release...
For example, while using up2date, many times I've wanted to drag resize
the "Package Name" column to the right in order to see the full name, since
part of the name was hidden, however the displayed portion was not
unambiguous. Also, the architecture names get cut off. If you look at
up2date running on x86_64, what you see in the GUI is "x86_6" and a cut
in half "4" as my attached screenshot shows.
The Version and Release fields also suffer from this problem in that they
assume that all packages Version and Release text content will be 6 or so
characters or less. XFree86 126.96.36.1992 gets cut off in the Version field
to "4.2.99", and there's also no indication that the field continues on
with hidden text (such as "4.2.99...". The Release field is truncated
from 20030213.2 to "2003021" with the remainder not visible and no way
of resizing the columns to be visible. This makes it appear that you're
downloading the same version over and over again every time you update,
at least until the visible digits change (like with 4.3.0 now).
Since I wanted to see the full name, version, release, arch, etc. I thought
perhaps if I "maximize" the window, it would show me wider columns. Instead
though what happens is that the window maximizes ok, but most of the screen
real estate remains unused, and you're unable to resize the fields to
make the available screen resources used.
In summary, I think that the column widths should not be hard coded with
fixed sizes, and that they should be user resizeable, and that the default
column widths presented to a user should be at least wide enough to contain
the full column header text for each column. The "Arch" field should IMHO
should default to be as large as the arch and subarches of the running machine
(so that x86_64 shows up by default rather than being cut off), since there
is ample screen real estate.
These changes are likely trivial, but IMHO will help to give the user a
better first impression, and make the tool more friendly.
simplest fix is probably to go to treeview.
there's a larger-scope ui spec for up2date/r-c-packages in the works though
so it may not be worth fooling with it for now.
*** Bug 106828 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 121579 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Created attachment 102060 [details]
Replace checklist.CheckList by GtkTreeView-based code
The attached patch
* replaces checklist.py by the corresponding file from Anaconda
* modifies it to be as compatible to the original up2date version as possible
* updates gui.py for cases where complete compatiblity was not easily doable
* allows column resizing for all CheckList columns by default
It is still possible to play with this problem more (reconsidering/removing
minimal column widths set in gui.py), but that seems low-priority to me.
Too late for such a change now, but it shouldn't be ignored for FC5.
I switched from using up2date to using yum about a year or so ago and haven't
really used up2date since then, so not really tracking this one anymore.
Only *.redhat.com on the CC list so far, and a quick bugzilla scan seems to
indicate no customers or FC user interest in seeing this flaw fixed, so it's
probably ultra-low priority on the grand scheme of things. Most FC users
use yum, so wouldn't be affected anyway per se.
Feel free to close this bug if you like.
Nah, I think this is worth doing eventually, and mitr even went through the
effort of writing a patch.
*** Bug 111892 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 120249 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Removing from FC5Blocker because up2date is no longer in FC5.
Wow, I didn't realize this bug was still open... Closing bug now as up2date
is obsolete, and I'm no longer interested in tracking the bug.
I use yum exclusively from the commandline nowadays.