Today, Fedora 15 was released, so naturally I installed it right away. Despite a couple small bugs, it's working pretty well so far. However, I have yet another small rant to make about GNOME.
I've been very sceptical about GNOME 3 and gnome-shell (as I've talked about here, here and here). So, I had jumped ship to XFCE a couple years ago and will not be a GNOME user in the foreseeable future.
Now that Fedora is finally shipping GNOME 3, though, the GNOME dev team has again impacted me in ways I wish they wouldn't.
The first impact of GNOME on the rest of the software ecosystem is that they moved to GTK+ 3.0 and everybody else is still catching up. How this affects XFCE?
Setting any custom theme in XFCE makes all GNOME apps look ugly because there is no matching GTK 3 theme. Oh well, you think, just don't run GNOME desktop apps in XFCE?
The problem is that Red Hat and Fedora drink so much of the GNOME kool-aid, that all their other apps that aren't GNOME specific are also using GTK 3. This includes: the Network Manager (seen in the screenshot), and all the PackageKit GUIs (for graphically installing updates). There are probably other things too. This means that, to use XFCE or basically anything besides GNOME, you have to deal with ugly themes on a lot of "core" Fedora GUIs.
This problem should hopefully go away in the next release or two of Fedora, as XFCE and other apps are updated to GTK 3. I just hope Firefox doesn't decide to make the switch too early, though... that would drive me nuts if Firefox started looking this ugly.
My temporary hack of a workaround is that I made a symlink for gtk-3.0 for my current theme that points to the default theme's gtk-3.0, so at least GTK 3 apps don't look ugly... but they still don't "fit in" with my GTK 2 apps.
This is all gone now.
Why? Oh, because GNOME Shell has its own volume control icon built right into the desktop GUI directly, and it therefore has no need for a Notification Area based applet anymore. Never mind that other desktop environments like XFCE would find such a thing useful. Now I'm forced to go back to the old school "Mixer" applet in XFCE, which is nowhere near as elegant as the GNOME volume control applet used to be.
I'm tired of this "the whole universe revolves around GNOME" mentality that the GNOME developers exhibit. Most other desktop environments play nice with each other, most try to follow Freedesktop.org standards, but GNOME... GNOME wants to be your desktop environment; it wants to be your entire operating system.
gnome-sound-applet, provided by the package
gnome-media. Right-clicking the icon to go to the Sound Preferences brings up a GTK-3 GUI that includes a volume slider that goes to 150%.
So all hope is not lost, yet.