13 Mar 2005 pcolijn   » (Journeyer)

Evince

So, it looks like some good folks have finally taken it upon themselves to fix the deplorable state of PDF viewers on Linux.

This thing hasn't been around all that long, and already it's better than xpdf, gpdf, ggv, and kghostview in that you can search PDFs. Yay! Finally, a way to search PDFs on Linux that isn't Adobe's incredibly awful and rediculously ancient acroread.

When matches are displayed from the search, the text is selected, too. Maybe they'll do text selection and X-style copy and paste, like Apple's preview does. That'd be schweet.

So, a hand to the Evince folks for rolling up their sleeves and, in a relatively short period of time, making a PDF viewer that sucks less than all the others.

You knew there was a catch

So after mag, drheld and I oohed and ahhed about the search capabilities this morning, we looked for a way to set Evince as the default PDF viewer. What a nightmare.

Between the three of us, all either CS or Soft Eng majors, and all currently employed doing software development, we couldn't figure out how to do this, other than hacking the defaults.list file. Now even if you assume that all three of us are complete and utter idiots, there were still three of us and we couldn't figure it out. I think most users, on their own, are going to be in trouble here.

But I don't want to sound like a certain other person who spoke about development decisions in GNOME recently. If the GNOME people want it to be (almost) necessary to hack defaults.list to set this kind of thing, fine. Who am I to tell them what to do? I doubt that's what anybody actually wants, however.

Can somebody point me to some bugids, and tell me what the "approved" way to do this is?

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