Announcing Aurorae Designer

I’m proud to announce the initial release of AuroraeDesigner, a small application to design Aurorae themes. At the current state of development it is possible to open an existing theme and get an interactive preview of the theme and change all configuration details. The changed configuration can be saved, but I’d recommend to backup the original file before starting to play with the designer 😉 Packages are available for openSUSE through the openSUSE build service. As it depends on 4.4, I was unable to build packages for other distributions.

Aurorae Designer
Aurorae Designer

For this designer I basically rewrote Aurorae upon the graphics view framework. As soon as it has reached feature parity (currently 90 %) it will become the base for the KWin decoration engine which will require a switch from KCommonDecoration to KDecoration, so I will be able to add features not possible with KCommonDecoration (e.g. decoration on the left side of the window).

If you are a designer of a theme: don’t worry. The new implementation is completely backward compatible, so your theme will look the same in 4.5 as it does in 4.4. Nevertheless there will be some new features added before 4.5 (e.g. window tabbing) so you should update your themes. In future releases of AuroraeDesigner I want to add a check method, so that you can easily verify that the theme contains all required elements.

As the screenshot illustrates the new Aurorae framework will also solve the question about buttons on left or on right: just show the elements on both sides 😀 But as it will not be possible to configure that in KWin I’d recommend to not use this "feature" 😉

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8 Replies to “Announcing Aurorae Designer”

  1. April fools was four days ago… 😛
    is what I want to say. This is awesome!

    I’ll try this as soon I go back home.

    Are there not performance regressions with the switch to Graphics View?

    1. I have not yet tried any themes with blur, but the themes will most likely have to be changed to support blur as we don’t want to blur the shadows, so blurring everything is not an option.

      1. Ok,

        Shadows should not be hardcoded in the theme.
        Kwin shadow plugin should be improved and used by Aurorae.

        1. We tried that (4.2) was a bad idea. The shadow plugin cannot know how the decoration looks like. The decoration knows it so it should paint the shadow. Works fine and reliable. So yes that is the right approach.

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