Poll: Removing Pidgin and Hexchat from default install

For 16.10, @Wimpy is considering removing a couple of the default pre-installed applications: Pidgin and Hexchat. What’s your thoughts?

  • I agree, remove Pidgin and Hexchat.
  • I disagree, I think one or both should stay.

0 voters

(Also asked on this Google+ post)


I agree with removal as they very often no longer work with facebook and the like.

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I don’t see them as essential. I tend to use skype and find Pidgen in recent years seems to be getting more hit or miss (through no fault of their own, its the service providers such as facebook and such that keep changing things to break it)

I think it’s nice to have programs for these tasks by default, although without the plugin for pidgin that enables facebook chat it becomes almost useless to me. Pidgin can handle irc too but IMHO not nearly as well as hexchat does.

I’ve neither used the one or the other.

Interaction with the “big” social media chanels is not important for me. Part of my work is as a data-security officer; I simply don’t have social media accounts (except for this forum). Anyone who asks my advice on the subject I point in the direction of “Diaspora”, if they feel they “must” have a tool of this kind.

In these days of Skype-linux-other OS “difficulties” I’m glad that mumble and a mumble server have been included in the Software Boutique. :slight_smile: I’m looking foreward to trying them out. Jitsi is also quite interesting, although I’ve not got to the stage of trying it out yet.


ehm, please keep in mind there’s a “chatroom” button in Welcome.
I know IRC is not sexy, but please don’t remove hexchat.
Pidgin though, I couldn’t care less.

I voted against both but I do not really care because both apps can be quite useful for some people. Though I like it nimble and clean, if I need something I add it myself.

I use both frequently. Pidgin I use every day, all day, to keep in touch with two good friends living far away. I run a private jabber server on my raspberry pi and use pidgin for chatting with them on it.

I could always install them myself I guess, but from my perspective it seems weird to yank them out. What is the reasoning?

To reduce the size of the image by only shipping one version of the GTK toolkit -- GTK 3.

While Pidgin and Hexchat are small applications, they are based on GTK 2 depending on the GTK 2 library. From what I know, @Wimpy hopes to only ship one version of toolkit, like GTK, Qt and Python. :thumbsup:

:computer: :clear:


Ah, makes perfect sense then to remove them. I see the Pidgin devs are planning GTK3 for
pidgin v3.0 anyway. Eventually all this GTK stuff will get ironed out :slight_smile:

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Take out VLC while you’re at it. But in the welcome app, please include applications from the previous version now being removed for more recent users on 15.10 and 16.04 to reinstall them.

We already had a community dicussion some while back, if i remember correctly, about VLC and the overwhelming view was that it should be included by default.

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But it’s still absolute bullocks to make it essential to a metapackage. What if somebody else wants clementine, amarok or mpv? What if they don’t want VLC?

I want VLC. I love VLC. I think it’s the best media player in the whole wide world for what I want to do with it. But including it and making it essential? That’s just like saying Everybody uses this, shame you don’t. It’s a crap opinion to have in the open software userland.

I can understand what you are saying. But, what you are saying seems to be more about an issue you have with the idea of meta-packages in general. The issue you have with VLC being merely one particular vehicle for expression of that larger issue. Which is fair enough in itself. But which is a slightly different thing, I would argue.

While the broader meta-package issue pertains, my preferred solution to dealing with the kind of thing you mention is to simply hide the menu entry for meta-packaged apps I don’t use.

Yeah, actually. It’s not just VLC that annoys me. It’s Plank being counted as essential because of mate-tweak and the Mutiny profile. It’s Hexchat being counted as essential because it’s part of the desktop package. It’s things becoming broken because I don’t get to maintain what I think is essential and installing some things on my own.

It’s neat that they’re there by default, but I would rather that people were allowed to choose the software they want, and moreso, choose the software they want to remove without risking issues with other software. It harkens back to my desire to have a bare-bones MATE metapackage that lets me choose what I want, using the simplicity of Ubuntu MATE as a base to build my own functioning “Remix” of the MATE desktop.

I’m kind of there right now, with the notification daemon from Ubuntu, FM from Cinnamon, theme from Linux Mint because I like it, backported compiz, and I know that all of this is going to break because I’ll need to remove my backported compiz and reinstall all the metapackages which will undo all this work I did.

If i had a metapackage that just concentrated on the MATE, Debian and Linux essentials, and the welcome program, I wouldn’t have to worry about that. (and as I had alluded too previously, I don’t see the file manager as “Essential”, neither the terminal emulator because I can always replace it.)

Considering the above, is Ubuntu MATE for me, still?

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I don’t use either package so don’t care, can we have a button for that too @lah7? ; pretty please!. :thumbsup:

@tiox, why don’t you ask the devs for a minimal version of Ubuntu Mate for people like you who like to install only what they want rather than find arguement as to what is already installed?. :smiley:


Don’t use 'em. Don’t need 'em.

A few points I’d like to address:

Metapackages are being addressed in 16.10 by making pre-installed applications “Recommended”. This’ll make them safer to remove without taking out ubuntu-mate-core and ubuntu-mate-desktop with them.

I’ve removed pre-installed applications many times in 16.04 without any issues, I’m not sure why some users start having problems doing so.

You still can, there’s got to be some defaults, otherwise I’d say a distro isn’t that functional “out of the box”.

Of course, that’s the plan. :slight_smile: :bulb:

It will also feature the pre-installed applications, so users can install/remove these default applications easily.

It’s possible to put together one yourself, grab a mini.iso and install ubuntu-mate-core. :wink:


Yeah. overall, I am personally happy with a meta-packaged desktop. Firstly, because it makes it a very rounded and fully functional desktop from the off for new users. Secondly, for a more experienced user like me, it is of no consequence to simply hide the apps I don’t use from the meta-package in the main menu and then simply forget about them. Finally, for power-users who want their desktop vanilla-style that they can then build entirely to their own liking, there is, as lah7 has indicated, the mini iso + Mate route.

All things to all people. What’s not to like?

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