Bug#720115: gnome-core: gnome broken (both functionality and bluescreen) since switching to metacity

Christoph Anton Mitterer calestyo at scientia.net
Sun Aug 18 20:06:56 UTC 2013

Package: gnome-core
Version: 1:3.8+2
Severity: critical
Justification: breaks the whole system


Yeah... first sorry for reproting against gnome-core,... but I have hell no idea which component
actually does the mess.

Unfortunately compiz was removed from Debian (for whatever reason) and professional user
seems to be forced now to use the grandma click&go style metacity, which is in basically every
respect not usable as a poweruser... nevertheless.

So I switched to metacity and first two major functionalities got lost:

1) one cannot configure "Switch to workspace" keybindings for workspaces > 4 anymore
2) Major functionality... well at least for powerusers, which GNOME doesn't really seem to
   support anymore,...
   One cannot bind the Super key anymore... e.g. every poweruser will probably open
   the Terminal most... so it's the most reasonable thing in the world to bind that to a
   single key which is close to the hand (i.e. not to some "media" key that some keyboards
   The same functionality was already lost with GNOME 3.0 for the Menu key

So a) please bring back both functionalities... people have more than 4 workspaces any
may want to switch to these via the keyboard,... and people also want to assign the 
Super_L and Menu keys.

So much for the major functionality part...

... now on to the bluescreen (this is sooo disturbing)

Well I then tried to "convince" GNOME of using the Super_L key for my Terminal custom shortcut.
So I got into dconf (knowing that GNOME is targeted for stupid users and hides at least some
functionality that would make it usable in there) and manually set "Super_L" as shortcut key.
Nothing happened...

Then I saw that GNOME uses Super_L in some places and just <Super> in the others... so I set this.
Then I felt like being on windows... GNOME immediately crashed but gave me some kinda bluescreen,
telling "Ooops something went wrong"...

This happens always again now when I try to login.
So I tried for recovery...
dconf cli seems to be useless... regardless of what I tried it neither prints out anything nor
does it set anything.

Then I wanted to remove the custom binding:
org.gnome.settings-daemon.plugins.media-keys custom-keybindings ['/org/gnome/settings-daemon/plugins/media-keys/custom-keybindings/custom0/']

But guess what:
~$ gsettings reset org.gnome.settings-daemon.plugins.media-keys custom-keybindings

(process:12814): dconf-WARNING **: failed to commit changes to dconf: Error spawning command line `dbus-launch --autolaunch=ac4a96dafad33ca4628823d94862cdf5 --binary-syntax --close-stderr': Child process exited with code 1

It fails obviously... since dconf is some Windowsish registry binary blob (what is it that these guys are somking?)
I have no further idea on how to get back a working system.

Well... I guess there goes a lot wrong here with GNOME... any help in fixing the above
and making the whole thing at least a bit usable again would be highly appreciated.
Oh and I guess my comment about being a power user already implies that this is not about GNOME-sheel ;)


-- System Information:
Debian Release: jessie/sid
  APT prefers unstable
  APT policy: (500, 'unstable')
Architecture: amd64 (x86_64)

Kernel: Linux 3.10-2-amd64 (SMP w/8 CPU cores)
Locale: LANG=en_DE.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=en_DE.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/dash

Versions of packages gnome-core depends on:
ii  at-spi2-core               2.9.5-1
ii  baobab                     3.8.2-1
ii  brasero                    3.8.0-2
ii  caribou                    0.4.4-1
ii  caribou-antler             0.4.4-1
ii  dconf-gsettings-backend    0.16.1-1
ii  dconf-tools                0.16.1-1
ii  empathy          
ii  eog                        3.8.2-1
ii  evince                     3.4.0-3.1+b1
ii  evolution-data-server      3.4.4-4
ii  fonts-cantarell            0.0.13-1
ii  gconf2                     3.2.6-1
ii  gdm3                       3.4.1-9
ii  gkbd-capplet               3.6.0-1
ii  glib-networking            2.36.1-2
ii  gnome-backgrounds          3.8.1-1
ii  gnome-bluetooth            3.8.1-2
ii  gnome-calculator           3.8.2-1
ii  gnome-contacts             3.4.1-2
ii  gnome-control-center       1:
ii  gnome-dictionary           3.6.0-1
ii  gnome-disk-utility         3.0.2-3
ii  gnome-font-viewer          3.8.0-1
ii  gnome-icon-theme           3.8.2-2
ii  gnome-icon-theme-extras    3.6.2-2
ii  gnome-icon-theme-symbolic
ii  gnome-keyring              3.8.2-2
ii  gnome-menus                3.8.0-2
ii  gnome-online-accounts      100
ii  gnome-packagekit           100
ii  gnome-panel      
ii  gnome-power-manager        3.8.2-1
ii  gnome-screensaver          3.4.1-1+b1
ii  gnome-screenshot           3.8.2-1
ii  gnome-search-tool          3.6.0-1
ii  gnome-session    
ii  gnome-session-fallback
ii  gnome-settings-daemon      3.4.2+git20121218.7c1322-6+b2
ii  gnome-shell                3.4.2-12
ii  gnome-sushi                0.4.1-5+b1
ii  gnome-system-log           3.8.1-1
ii  gnome-system-monitor
ii  gnome-terminal             3.8.3-1
ii  gnome-themes-standard      3.8.3-1
ii  gnome-user-guide           3.8.2-1
ii  gnome-user-share           100
ii  gsettings-desktop-schemas  3.4.2-3
ii  gstreamer1.0-plugins-base  1.0.9-1
ii  gstreamer1.0-plugins-good  1.0.9-1
ii  gstreamer1.0-pulseaudio    1.0.9-1
ii  gtk2-engines               1:2.20.2-2
ii  gucharmap                  1:3.8.2-2
ii  gvfs-backends              1.16.3-1
ii  gvfs-bin                   1.16.3-1
ii  iceweasel                  23.0-2
ii  libatk-adaptor             2.9.5-1
ii  libcanberra-pulse          0.30-2
ii  libcaribou-gtk-module      0.4.4-1
ii  libcaribou-gtk3-module     0.4.4-1
ii  libgtk-3-common            3.8.2-3
ii  libpam-gnome-keyring       3.8.2-2
ii  metacity                   1:2.34.13-1
ii  mousetweaks                3.8.0-1
ii  nautilus                   3.4.2-2
ii  notification-daemon        0.7.6-1
ii  policykit-1-gnome          0.105-2
ii  pulseaudio                 4.0-6
ii  sound-theme-freedesktop    0.8-1
ii  vino                       3.8.1-1
ii  yelp                       3.8.1-2
ii  zenity                     3.8.0-1

Versions of packages gnome-core recommends:
ii  network-manager-gnome

Versions of packages gnome-core suggests:
pn  gnome  <none>

-- no debconf information

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