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Quality of Bricscad desktop integration

What is you overall experience with BricsCAD under Gnome (Ubuntu 18.04 in my case)? I have just filled a very angry support request about V20, because that "glitch", reported there was just enough. So I want to ask here, if I'am the only person having problems with BricsCAD integration into Gnome desktop? If I compare it with Blender, which is a free software, for example, it is very unflattering ...

Comments

  • First,
    Gnome and KDE are the 2 only Desktop Environments officially supported.
    So Bricscad should run well with Gnome.
    If you find a bug it is totally ok to file a SR and they will fix it.

    It is no secret that you will get the most flawless Bricscad experience on
    Windows only.
    Bricscad's macOS and Linux versions are noticeable behind so far.
    But Bricsys wants to support macOS and Linux although it is a smaller
    user base. So as more people test or use it and file bug reports,
    the better it will get over time.

    The other thing is to see if such problems have really anything to do
    with the Desktop Environment at all.
    My experience is that about 80% of issues in Linux happen on macOS
    as well.

    Beside,
    I think the most Bricscad Linux testing happens on standard Ubuntu/Gnome
    which most Linux users may use. So you are already on the less problematic
    side with your choice.

  • @Vaclav Cermak said:
    What is you overall experience with BricsCAD under Gnome (Ubuntu 18.04 in my case)? I have just filled a very angry support request about V20, because that "glitch", reported there was just enough. So I want to ask here, if I'am the only person having problems with BricsCAD integration into Gnome desktop? If I compare it with Blender, which is a free software, for example, it is very unflattering ...

    I meet some segment fault when I use Bricscad V20 in ubuntu 18.04.3 Gnome environment, the v19 version is much stable. I guess the problems come from the new wxgtk3 and the new dark theme, it may need some time to overcome these bugs.

  • I agree with @Michael Mayer :
    It seems to me that the cross platform GUI libraries used for BricsCAD (wxwidgets?) have migrated from depending on GTK2 to GTK3 (a natural development) starting with V20 and it has introduced some new bugs and glitches in the GUI. Let's help out and file reproducible support requests for the issues found asap (I filed a bunch of them today) and hopefully we can get most of them fixed in a point-release without much delay.

    During initial testing of v20 at our office; we noticed that the GUI flickers considerably with v20 (compared to earlier versions of BricsCAD) when panels and toolbars are rebuilding during startup, or when shifting workspace. This flickering can leave traces and produce some tearing of static GUI elements on the screen unless VSync is taken care of by the configuration of your compositor.
    We don't use Gnome or KDE/Plasma (yet.. but most likely Plasma in a couple of years) on our workstations. We are using compton as our compositor and the following compton settings work well for our AMD GPUs using the open source driver:
    $ compton -CcG -o 0.1 --backend xr_glx_hybrid --vsync opengl-swc --vsync-use-glfinish &

    (Yes I know VSync, and if Linux and xorg use true vsync or not, can become an endless discussion: But unless you are playing games on your computer and the only thing you care about is frame rates, then making sure frame updates on your screen is vertically synchronized will most likely produce the best results, even if frame rates can be somewhat lower.)

  • Let's help out and file reproducible support requests for the issues found asap (I filed a bunch of them today) and hopefully we can get most of them fixed in a point-release without much delay.

    Thanks for supporting.

    AFAIK I had that flickering and tripple times GUI rebuilding for any
    Bricscad Versions (V18-V20?) on Linux and macOS.
    Especially after customizing UI and closing the dialog.
    In V20 just a few more issues related to dark mode or HiDPI screen.

  • I did not notice real progress on the GUI related problems, from the first V20 beta until the recently released V20.3.
    But I am quite far on the unsupported side (running debian 10 with LXDE desktop on an aging macbook 6.1 with the nouveau driver), and cannot really bother support with this - so I am wondering and asking here:
    Would I be better off on ubuntu / gnome / proprietary drivers, or are the following glitches plaguing all Linux users:

    • wrong floating toolbar sizes
    • wrong command completion pop-up size
    • truncated helpstrings in the commandline
    • menus not scrollable
    • panels not horizontally scrollable
    • 100% CPU load while displaying the GUI-menu (right-clicking on the menubar / the panelbar)
    • floating toolbars / panels not dockable via dragging
    • doctabs showing even if SHOWDOCTABS = 0
    • RGB-color-chooser not accepting numeric input
    • gtk-theme settings overridden, sometimes resulting in unreadable text

    See attached screenshots.

    helpstrings.png
    1280 x 800 - 146K
    toolbars_panels_autocomplete.png
    1280 x 780 - 70K
    notification.png
    462 x 150 - 16K
  • Here things like :

    • Start Screen (showing Panels ON)
      Showing 2D Drafting Layout which I never used instead of current BIM Layout.
      Linux and Mac.

    • Numbers shifted horizontally inside DYNDIMS so they are hard to recognize.
      Linux (at least with HiDPI scaling on 4K Monitor)

    • Custom added Panels and/or Access(3D) Panels disappearing from Workspace
      every once in a while.
      Mac.

    • Unexpected Crashing or Freezing in any kind of situations.
      (V20.2.03-1 is really a crash Monster for me)
      At least on macOS Mojave.
      (While Windows version works like a charm)

    • Structure Tree in crowded Files :

    • Select + SHIFT Select impossible, does another click on last selected which
      destroys you selection.
    • Collapse Tree when unselect ON : does not resize Scrollbars and Window Space,
      You have to Scoll Up back manually to find your collspased Tree on top.
    • Also it does not switch back horizontally after it opened many branches in depth
      even those were already closed. Needs manual back movement to the left.
      (At least on Mac)
    • Structure Tree, Expand on Selection Settings Deactivated - Ignored
      (All OS)

    I think the likeliness to have less flaws when using a standard Ubuntu/Gnome
    is larger opposed to more exotic Distros/DEs, but Bricscad on Windows is still
    a completely different and better experience, even with roughest Betas.

    Officially supported are Ubuntu and Open Suse (including Tumbleweed)
    and Gnome and KDE Desktops.
    So it is pretty useless to bother Support with my (beloved) Manjaro (Arch/KDE)
    problems. But everything Ubuntu/Suse/Gnome/KDE stuf will be worked on.

    If thee Problems would only be reproducible by myself or Support.
    There are only few situations where I could provide an SR with more than
    just a Crash Log from macOS.

  • edited March 22

    My experience with Linux Distributions.
    Beside some little Problems, that were all solvable for me,
    me as a Linux Newbie, managed to still keep running my Rolling Releases :
    mainly Manjaro and Open SUSE Tumbleweed,
    since 1 ½ years.

    While I lost all non-rolling Releases, like ElementaryOS, MX LInux and
    Ubuntu, while trying to do a version Upgrade sooner or later for some reasons.
    Beside that I am excited about newest Software and Kernels new features
    in general, when I started with current PC hardware at that time there
    wasn't even an option to run it stable with old LTS stuff.

    The second try with my ElementaryOS
    (OK, has its exotic Pantheon Desktop, Gnome derivate)
    is still ok for now and I enjoy the Ubuntu-ness behind it, for better
    proprietary Software's support like Bricscad.
    I think Bricscad's Ubuntu DEBs are still easier and more reliable for
    installation than RPMs on Suse overall.
    But if I am forced to Ubuntu and could live ancient LTS Kernels, I think
    I would go with Kubuntu or Plasma.

    BTW,
    All 3D Apps I know, like Modo, only officially support CentOS/RHEL,
    which seems to be a common standard in 3D Studios.
    (While Modo somehow runs equally well on any Distribution and
    Desktop Environment for whatever reason)

  • Hello Michael,
    do I understand correctly that you did not experience the glitches that I described with the distros that you use?

    As to the problems that you mentioned:

    • I also see the GUI opening with some standard toolbars, and then rebuilding without them (I don't use any toolbars). The cui command sometimes triggers even wilder iterative repainting of the GUI, I do not really understand what is happening here.

    • Dynamic dimension display seems to be affected by the gtk settings used, perhaps it makes sense to try several themes (you can put several startup scripts with different settings in $home/.local/share/applications, e.g. with lines like Exec=env GTK_THEME=Numix:dark bricscadv20 %F . I also made an attempt to tweak settings by looking at the interface elements with gtk-inspector, but I could not find any class names or id that would have allowed me to use css formatting.

    • The GUI configuration is as fragile as it was on V19, I try to avoid touching it whenever I can.

    • Stability of V20 is not so bad on my box.

    • I cannot comment on the structure browser, I have hardly used it so far.

  • Honestly you mentioned a lot of things I normally don't use,
    (floating toolbars, commandline, ...) or just did not try yet.
    Well, trying the color chooser would be interesting for me too.
    (EDIT : numeric input works for me on Mac.
    Although an ENTER directly closing the Dialog is a bit unexpected for me in Bricscad)

    a)
    AFAIK Windows will show your current(*) GUI in Start Screen
    (or most parts of it, at least it looks familiar)

    (* Or the one you choose before in welcome screen)

    b)
    DYNDIM,
    yes, bei GTK overlay and or HiDPI scaling or whatever.

    c)
    Me too.
    It is so scary. I think last time I tried its started blinking again also
    I canceled customize UI dialog again.

    d)/e) ...

    I have my 2 activations on my old nMac Pro and on the Windows Machine.
    So when trials end I use/test Bricscad on Linux only in free Shape Mode.
    As I am still not that confident that I could not likely lose one of my Linux
    installations, as a Linux newbie.
    I want to avoid the license issues. I already lost one activation when I lost
    my Windows in the past.

    But my Experience is that Bricscad Windows works great and reliable as
    you would expect from a proprietary App.
    For Mac and Linux I think they have basically the same or similar amount
    of GUI flaws and unexpected crashes, while Linux for me feels a bit more stable.
    So I mostly play with Bricscad non-Windows on Mac only,
    but I always see both Linux and Mac Version as the same or pretty similar.

  • Yes, user experience on windows is so much better.
    I fully understand that the amount of developer hours that can be put into the Mac and Linux versions is limited, but it still gets frustrating sometimes...

  • I think it is both,
    the amount of meaningful investement according user base and
    the smaller user base amount and quality of feedback and reports.

    But I see the latest work they do and really appreciate things like
    - nearly feature parity between operation systems
    - synchronized release of OS versions at the same time

    Often frustrating and pity, yes,
    but somehow I am confident that it gets better over time and not worse.

  • Regardless of which operating system is being used, is anyone receiving any feedback when they report an incident and the initial analysis confirms a need for development to correct a problem?

  • Everytime I report an incident I get a response from the technical team. The correction of the problem is usually implemented in the following update. I once even got some help in the development of a VBA program to generate beam reinforcement from an Excel spreadsheet.
    Great customer service and tech support.

  • I get an initial response and if what I reported is an actual bug the last thing I get is a message that it's been sent to development. Nothing after that.

    I don't see a lot of incentive to spend my time testing, reporting, developing videos of a session that clearly demonstrates a failure, more testing as requested by support, more reporting and to simply have the whole thing drop with no progress report or a statement that the bug is fixed in such and such release.

    From my perspective support looks like a black hole where things go in and nothing comes out. The fact that something gets fixed is fine, but the lack of communications is an issue.

  • What you describe is exactly what I had in mind when I talked about my occasional frustration.
    I guess it remains to be seen if Bricsys can uphold its commitment to Linux after the acquisition by Hexagon.

  • I'am experiencing similar problems with Ubuntu 18.04. I have filled SRs about various glitches, got a quick replay from support team for every single one. Although I filled them one regular and one beta release ago, none of them is fixed yet :-/. I decided to wait for Ubuntu 20.04, because some of problems may be fixed by Gnome update (I hope).

  • @Mikael Nordvall said:

    It seems to me that the cross platform GUI libraries used for BricsCAD (wxwidgets?) have migrated from depending on GTK2 to GTK3 (a natural development) starting with V20 and it has introduced some new bugs and glitches in the GUI.

    Agree.
    When I start Bricscad from Terminal on Tumbleweed,
    the Terminal Window fills with lots of GTK Warnings.

    FreeCAD is interesting and promising, but like many other essential
    open source Software like GIMP, far from the Software state and
    Development situation of a shiny Blender beacon.
    Bricscad on the other hand, so far, is still the only professional CAD solution
    on Linux. If there is any small CAD market on Linux, Bricscad has that whole
    market.

  • V20.02.xy actually works for me now under plain vanilla Ubuntu (v20.01.xy were not). I am quite happy with it as CAD was one of the main reasons locking our consultancy office into Windows-world, migrating to linux got one step closer again.

    Personally my main annoyance with BricsCAD is how it (mis)handles focus: if one tries to edit text (especially in a table) the focus is on the foating window on the text style tab by default, so one has to press tab twice to be able to enter text. It is incredibly annoying filling in a massive table with lots of data (copy-pasting is not working... incredibly annoying again).
    Does any of you has this same problem? Even better maybe a solution for it?

    Cheers.

  • edited March 30

    Yes, focus is another big problem in Bricscad. Often I can't even write a command, because focus changes while typing and I see some characters written last sitting at the beginning in command bar. I must type it very slowly :(.

    Personally, I'am waiting for Ubuntu 20.04, with a new Gnome, it may improve a lot (I hope). Then I'll fill support requests for such things, if they persist.

  • I gave it another try.
    Now latest V20.2.4 on a 24" 4K screen with 1.75 scaling.
    (BTW I am back to Bright Mode again, on all operating systems)

    On Manjaro I could start my proprietary Apps from sudo Terminal only,
    (Since they changed that behavior and as I don't know the way to proper
    install such things, if there is any)
    which I reject as a true GUI and Mac user.

    On latest Elementary (Ubuntu based, 5.3 kernel) Bricscad ran fine in the
    past. But today it will disappear from screen as soon as I choose my
    Workspace on Start Up dialog.

    On Tumbleweed KDE Bricscad will run even from start menu.
    GUI : Again a nightmare.
    Dark Mode does not work at all. There are so many UI Elements
    non-visible, like the expansion arrows in structure panel.
    But in Bright Mode you can't read the "OK" button in file open dialog
    either.
    Still something with access rights in Open Suse isn't right.
    It can't save my recent files history.
    Also I initially missed my Ribbon Bar, Access3d, .... in BIM Workspace,
    but for now it seems Bricscad does remember my Panels and positions.
    Beside the "Zoom" Panel which looks corrupt with wrong palette estate
    and I can't dock it. Other Palettes seem to work fine.

    But the problems with HiDPI monitors and scaling makes it unusable.
    Basically that is true for any operating system but Windows (and Mac ?)
    do somehow work mostly.
    In Tumbleweed my UI Texts are mostly non scaled and much too small
    overall.

    But one thing I really like at Bricscad on Linux.
    For me it looks as stable as on Windows so far. Maybe even a bit snappier.

    I don't see that constant freezing or crashing every 20 minutes, like I have
    on Mac for no reason. (Trash Can 2013 Mac Pro, still on Mojave)
    Non-reproducible. Sometimes when opening a File - Crash, manipulating
    a Detail Section (Clip Box) - Freeze. When I start again and try to reproduce
    again - nothing.

    Very likely related to my setting customization, as always.
    But basically I use exactly the same Settings, including MT Flags on all
    operating systems.

  • On Manjaro I could start my proprietary Apps from sudo Terminal only,
    (Since they changed that behavior and as I don't know the way to proper
    install such things, if there is any)

    I never used Manjaro, but it would be very surprising if they deviated from freedesktop.org standards.
    Unless $XDG_DATA_HOME is set to something else, you should find an "applications" directory under $HOME/.local/share.
    This can be used to place custom .desktop entries, that should then get picked up by the desktop environment - usually in a desktop-menu, and also as an option when you open .dwg files from you DE's file manager.

    GUI : Again a nightmare.
    Dark Mode does not work at all. There are so many UI Elements
    non-visible, like the expansion arrows in structure panel.
    But in Bright Mode you can't read the "OK" button in file open dialog
    either.

    Ideally, no such thing as "dark mode" should be necessary on Linux - all applications should simply adhere to standards, so that all interface elements inherit their settings from the theme in use. Unfortunately, in BricsCAD, you have a mix of interface elements that react to your theme (gtk-) settings, and of others that have hard-coded settings that are governed by BricsCAD itself. This may indeed lead to black on black or white on white...
    In order to get a reasonably coherent GUI, you need to start BricsCAD with a dark gtk-theme if you want to use it in dark mode, and you might additionally want to tweak some interface color settings to make the graphics area look more in line with the rest - the same for bright mode, of course.

    Attached is an archive with the settings I use on debian: you would have to put the .desktop, .svg and .sh files in $HOME/.local/share/applications, and adjust the paths in the .desktop files as needed (only absolute paths are allowed). The two .lsp files (containing color settings that you might want to adjust) have to go in a directory in BricsCAD's support file search path (SRCHPATH) in order to be found. This should give you two additional desktop entries - "BricsCAD V20 (dark)" and "BricsCAD V20 (light)".

    A prerequisite for this is the standard gnome theme (Adwaita) to be installed on your machine - this might not necessarily be the case on KDE-based desktops (personally, I prefer the "Numix" theme, but I think you'll be better off with the defaults for a start). You could change the theme to use in the .sh scripts.

    zip
    zip
    bricscad-startup-scripts.zip
    5K
  • I don't want to say that it does not work on Manjaro ....
    I just say that I am not able to make it work.

    I am just a standard GUI user and even Mac User - for that reason.

    Like on Mac, in a rare case something went severely wrong,
    I can and am willing to search the internet and copy/paste a few
    Lines into Terminal on Linux.

    But I am not willing to do so for installing Apps.
    No matter which Distro, if I want to install e.g. Krita, I select it in
    repository and choose install. Now I can use it.

    Or on Mac, throw the App into App Folder and open the App.
    It will then automatically save extra stuff in /Library and user Settings
    in user/Library. If there are are needed more complex stuff like
    license protection at deeper locations, there is used an installer
    package.

    And Bricscad can do this too, on Windows, Mac and Ubuntu/Gnome.
    OK, there is no support for Arch Linux and so Manjaro.
    But it doesn't install 100% on Open Suse Tumbleweed KDE either,
    which is supported.

  • The Problem with Manjaro (also ElementaryOS) is that,
    while in the past you could just extract all your Bricscad,
    Modo and Blender Tar Balls in your home directory to
    avoid any access right issues and run it from there.

    I could also create start menu entries for these Apps with
    the help of a tool.

    But with later kernels, at some point, especially Manjaro refused
    to launch Apps from home directory for security reasons in general.

    I think meanwhile Elementary went back from forbidden to a
    warning message only.
    And on Tumbleweed and Elementary I was able to make these Apps
    in home running again by giving App's folders and files explicitly full
    access rights.
    But not on Manjaro.
    I will not say it is impossible in general but for me.

    If I would spend some hours for a research and find a way for a proper
    installation, I would forget it 3 days later and would have the problem
    again next time.
    I really think that is not something a User should have to care about.

    If such an installation on Linux stays so complex and has to be
    done manually,
    I think it would be ok for me if Bricscad offers a Installation how-to
    step by step instruction where I can extract and paste all Terminal hacks
    to make sure each part sits in its correct location and folder, has suitable
    access rights and is properly registered in the system.

  • Hmmh,
    the latest update on Tumbleweed cleaned up my whole /opt/ Folder ....
    Including my Bricscads.
    For which I transferred my License over just 2 days ago.

    Could install it again by YAST and it ran well again.
    But that short Bricscad on Linux trip was to risky for me and I gave
    my license free again :)

  • v20 is running much better than previous versions on Pop_OS (basically Ubuntu) I am having a lot of the minor bugs that others mention:

    -Copy/paste is broken
    -dynamic dims usually unreadable
    -Some tools like BIM schedules seems to be missing

    But generally I am not losing hours of work a day due to crash/redraw/bugfix cycles. I'm so happy to be able to use linux in a work flow. I am rendering with blender now, so I am really glad to be here.

  • I have upgraded to Ubuntu 20.04 with Gnome 3.36 and Bricscad behaves much better with this environment.

  • BTW

    On latest Elementary (Ubuntu based, 5.3 kernel) Bricscad ran fine in the
    past. But today it will disappear from screen as soon as I choose my
    Workspace on Start Up dialog.

    Bricscad works again on Elementary.
    Either because V20.2.06 or one of Elementary's later updates.

    There are flaws on Linux (even more on macOS ?) of course,
    but V 20.2.06 seems to work reasonable on Linux now for me.

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