Help Fedora test Wayland!

The Workstation Working Group has announced a bold plan: make GNOME on Wayland our default in Fedora 24 Workstation. It’s already become the default option in Rawhide — the rolling development version of Fedora. But the plan’s not carved in stone. Fedora is leading edge, not bleeding edge, so we’re cautious about default options. To become default in Fedora 24 Workstation, Wayland needs wide testing and user feedback in Fedora 23. And that’s where you can help us.

Using Wayland

You’re probably already using Wayland although you may not even know about it. The login screen has been using it by default since Fedora 22. To run it in the session, after you select the login user, click the gear icon. Then choose GNOME on Wayland. When you login, the session runs on Wayland.


This doesn’t mean all applications run on Wayland natively. All core GNOME apps are Wayland-enabled. All other applications still require the legacy X11 stack, and thus run on XWayland. Ideally, the user shouldn’t recognize a difference, so testing apps running on XWayland is equally important.

Note that proprietary drivers like nVidia and AMD Catalyst currently don’t support Wayland. You’ll need to use open source graphics drivers to test successfully.

What to test

Before GNOME on Wayland becomes default in Fedora, we need to ensure the transition is smooth and the user won’t recognize a difference.  So we need reports on deficiencies that occur on Wayland but not X11. Kamil Páral of the Fedora QA team has written a comprehensive guide how to debug Wayland-related problems. If you want to provide developers with useful reports, please read it carefully. It has useful information such as how to find out whether a particular app is running on Wayland or on XWayland, and what to include in bug reports.

Where to file bugs

Kamil has created two trackers for Wayland-related issues. One is in GNOME Bugzillathe other in Red Hat Bugzilla. Here are guidelines for which bugs to file in each:

  • File bugs in the compositor, GTK+ toolkit, and GNOME app in the GNOME Bugzilla.
  • File bugs in other components in the Red Hat Bugzilla.

To add your bug to the trackers, insert the tracker name WaylandRelated in the Blocks field as shown below and click Save Changes. Remember to use the right tracker for the Bugzilla in which you’re filing. These trackers should only include bugs that occur on Wayland, but not on X11.

Why Wayland?

Wayland is a display technology that should replace the aging X11. It’s easier to maintain, more secure, and easier to adapt to modern graphics technologies such as Optimus and HiDPI. Fedora Workstation can significantly benefit from that.

Since we want to make Wayland testing easier for users, we’ve decided to backport the latest improvements to Fedora 23. This means you won’t have to run Rawhide to help with testing. When using or filing bugs against Wayland, use Fedora 23 or later. Older releases don’t receive important fixes, and might show issues that are already resolved in Fedora 23 and later. Now we hope you’ll get involved and help move open source forward!

Fedora Contributor Community Using Software


  1. Kamil Páral

    We have an alias for both the tracker bugs. Just fill in “Blocks: WaylandRelated” rather than “Blocks: some number”. Works both in Red Hat and GNOME Bugzilla.

  2. Sylvia Sánchez

    I’d like to file a couple of bugs about Wayland, but I’m unable to login into Red Hat Bugzilla.
    Any ideas? Thanks!

  3. Leslie Satenstein

    I use a modified set of keyboard definitions.

    For example, for the USA (default keyboard), I have “€” permenantly set to the level 3 of the E key and
    “¥” for level three of the “y” key.

         file "us" within     /usr/share/X11/xkb/symbols
         file "ca" within     /usr/share/X11/xkb/symbols

    Will a similar facility be available within Wayland when x11 is evaporated?

    key { [ e, E,EuroSign ] };

    • Leslie Satenstein

      key { [ y, Y,yen ] };

      Accidental commit . This line belongs to my previous posting.

  4. Krystian

    Well – it’s a bold plan. I’m not sure about it. Sessions on Wayland works, but on low performance – even mouse pointer have lags. Plus – Fedora never care much about working proprietary drivers, so many users will be disappointed with Wayland as default (lack of drivers).

    For me – it’s OK, but the first thing will be switching to xorg again. I’m using Wayland (even now), but it’s too early to make it as default session (games have low performance and glitches, GNOME and apps low performance).

    I’m not fully convinced 🙁

  5. Paolo

    I use gnome on wayland on and off right now in Fedora 23. There’s one thing I miss very much. Middle mouse button for pasting text vs ^C ^V or Menu Copy and Paste. Am I alone in still using it?

  6. dns

    Well, this is all nice, but what annoys me beyond my will to submit bug reports is the fact that i need to open a bugzilla account for a lot of stuff that has bugs. I have one open for redhat, but i also have a bug to report about libreoffice where i don’t have an account and i don’t plan to open it. Now i learned that gnome has its own bugzilla… what about KDE? Where does it end?

    Is it possible for OSS organizations / communities to work together and use one common location for all bugs Linux related? Maybe a common tool that average Joe could use?
    How do you motivate other users, meaning just a user and not an Linux enthusiast, to submit bugs?

    From my perspective consolidation of this would make a lot of sense.

    • Sylvia

      Yeah, that’s true. And many times things are even more messed because you have a Bugzilla for Red Hat and another for KDE or Gnome, but they’re sharing applications!
      I ended wondering if I should report a bug about Rythmbox (let’s say) on Gnome page or on RH.
      Not to mention that sometimes is a little tricky to login.
      Your idea makes sense to me too.

      • Kamil Páral

        I agree it makes sense from user point of view. But currently it doesn’t work that way, and we’re very long way from any kind of a federated bug tracker system. So at the moment, you can technically file everything into a single place, but if you want to maximize the report usefulness and the likeliness of having your bug fixed, you always need to find the closest upstream available and report it there. Otherwise it’s very likely it will go unnoticed, unfortunately. Since we cannot do a better job in merging the bug tracker systems, I think we should at least do a decent job in directing people where it’s best to file a particular bug. That’s what I tried on that linked wiki page, and Jiri mentioned it in the article.

    • Samuel Sieb

      You can file them in the Fedora (Redhat) bugzilla. Often the upstream developers are either part of Redhat/Fedora or monitor bugs filed there. Or the packager will forward the issues upstream if necessary. It can sometimes be better to also file upstream, but it can certainly be a pain to keep track of them all. (I have accounts on several upstream bug trackers.)

    • Leslie Satenstein

      I second your request. I ran into the problems where the software is used by Fedora, but because it was a Gnome feature, it was never forwarded to the Gnome project.

      If I buy a car, and I have problems with a tyre (tire), Do I go to the tire manufacturer or to the car company? If it is a defective battery, do I go to the car company (dealer), or the battery manufacturer.

      Fedora needs a person to review the bugs and to forward the bug report to the appropriate developers. Gnome, Apache,. Libreoffice, KDE, and perhaps a few others.

      • Kamil Páral

        Your comparison doesn’t really apply, because you compare a product you paid for and have some warranty for, versus a community project run by volunteers, who have no obligation to the end user (not customer).

        I mean, yes, it would have been great to make it super-simple for users, but it would require an army of volunteers who do nothing but shuffling bugs, and we do not have them. We have some of them, but nearly not enough of them. If you want to join QA, we’ll gladly introduce you to the basics and you can help out. Unless we have such an army, the best thing the users do is to optimize the process by smartly reporting to the most appropriate place where the right developers will notice it (because Libreoffice developers of course don’t follow Fedora bugzilla, so if you’re reporting a Libreoffice issue which is unlikely to be related to Fedora packaging, you have much higher chances of getting your bug noticed by submitting it into Libreoffice bugzilla).

        In a way this is already a form of contributing to Fedora and helping it out, by thinking ahead about the most appropriate place where to report your issue (and going through the painful process of creating yet another account) and filing it there. Such bug reporters save time of everybody, and also are very helpful in making sure the bug is actually fixed. For a community project, it is impossible to treat users like customers with full customer service, but it is helpful to treating them like potential contributors, because it helps the project grow. And contributing requires some effort, at least a little.

      • That’s a great idea. Now someone has to convince Red Hat…

  7. I tried Wayland but gave up after 5 minutes, the reason is that I couldn’t use the middle mouse button to copy highlighted text. As far as I’m concerned this is a show stopper. Little things like this make X so useful – most of my work is done in terminals so I really don’t care about all the fancy bells and whistles just the simple stuff.

  8. Martin

    I’m currently running F23 on my T450s – should I continue testing Fedora on Wayland on it or install Rawhide and test that one instead?

    • As stated in the article, fixes in Wayland support should be backported to F23 to make it easier for users to test Wayland. We really need feedback from daily usage and not everyone is comfortable running Rawhide on production machines. Running F23 to test Wayland should be just fine.

  9. Steve

    Hello Jiří ,

    I use Gnome on Fedora 22, and have used Wayland after initial upgrade from 21. That initial usage was not as I would expect in the area of responsiveness to user input, explicitly slow and the video would “stutter” through transitions. Some applications would present problematic issues, however all I tried ran. After the latest update to my current F22 install, I decided to try Wayland again, as requested in your article. I’ll be forwarding info to developers regarding whatever I find, or don’t as the case may be. Again I am struck by the video behavior as it opens the desktop during initial login, stuttery.

    • Hi Steve, please test Wayland on Fedora 23 or Rawhide. The Wayland support has moved forward significantly since F22 and many problems you encounter on F22 may be already fixed. F23 and Rawhide should have the latest Wayland support.

  10. Christopher Schafer

    Steam and FLT were running fine as well as on google chrome. I’ll test it out with some heavier software when I get home on my desktop. Good job!

  11. Frederico Miranda

    I would love to test Wayland on Fedora 23 (which I briefly did), but unfortunately I’m using a video card (Radeon HD 5450) that gives me issues with screen resolution. It’s not a big deal, since a small script using xrandr fixes it every time I log in.

    However, since X now runs rootless, xrandr is of no help. And when using the desktop environment under Wayland, I’m stuck on an annoying 1024×768 screen resolution.

    Oh, all the tricks I’ve learned to fix issues on X will become useless. I do not mind it, though.

  12. Ville

    My system seems to freeze randomly when launching applications on Wayland session (such as the Wallpaper changer, 2048 game or launching the Gnome extension website from the tweak tool). Any ideas how I could get some info about the freezes? I’m not able to resume the session at all and I have to do a reboot.

    • Ville

      Ah! Of course I was too hasty to post here. I’ll try my luck with the journalctl 🙂

  13. Andre GompeL

    I use Fedora 23 workstation (x86_64)
    With Mate (latest 1.12 I recalll) (And sometimes LXQt)
    I do NOT if I use the AMD driver open source or proprietary.
    Now how could I test Wayland with MATE and perhaps LxQt ?

    • Kamil Páral

      Please read the linked wiki page, only GNOME supports Wayland at the moment.

  14. Link Dupont

    Is gnome-shell supposed to be a wayland application? It’s showing up in my xlsclients output. LookingGlass also identifies it as a MetaWindowX11 GType. Is this normal or is my session messed up somehow?

  15. In reply to this comment from Leslie Satenstein:
    “in response to dns:

    Well, this is all nice, but what annoys me beyond my will to submit bug reports is the fact that i need to open a bugzilla account for a lot of stuff that has bugs. I have one open for redhat, but i also have a bug to report about libreoffice where i don’t have […]

    I second your suggestion. From Fedora20 to Fedora23, I saw around 500 Gnome bugs listed therein.
    But the Gnome people never looked at Red Hat bugzilla at
    When I grep’d a listing and sent it to bugzilla Gnome, they were in shock.

    Presumebly someone who works or is committed to Fedora should be transferring the Fedora bug reports to Gnome. Fedora is a leading development distribution, and my view is that it behooves Gnome to check with Fedora buglist on a very regular basis.”

    Just to confirm this…. Yesterday I filed a bug KDE related. Today there’s an assignment, three comments and two workarounds. Weeks ago I filed two Gnome related bugs. I’m still waiting for the reply or any life signal at all. It’s depressing.

  16. Dan Loomis

    Any idea when fixes will be backported to F23? I stopped testing Wayland a couple of weeks ago after two months after the nth time the disappearing mouse cursor in XWayland apps struck.

    • You should take a look at keeping an eye on those bugs with their fixes. So you’ll know when the fixes will be pushed to Fedora 23 updates & testing.

      Hope this helps.

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