Possible GUI protocol enhancement - cursor shape?

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Derek Fawcus

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Dec 26, 2015, 9:15:15 AM12/26/15
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Something I've noticed when using a web browser is that the cursor shape never changes,
always staying as a simple arrow pointer.

Referring to the protocol [1], I can't see any messages relating to changing the pointer shape.
So if one was to create the changes necessary to achieve this, would they be acceptable?
Or is there some overriding reason why the GUI protocol does not provide this mechanism?

DF

[1] https://www.qubes-os.org/doc/gui/

Marek Marczykowski-Górecki

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Dec 26, 2015, 9:35:43 AM12/26/15
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Having control over cursor shape it may mislead the user actions. While
it shouldn't be a problem inside the same VM, it may be complex to do it
right - to not interfere with windows of other VMs.
In short: without prior proper design, which would be simple and simple
to implement, we don't want to have such feature, at least not by
default.

- --
Best Regards,
Marek Marczykowski-Górecki
Invisible Things Lab
A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?
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Chris Laprise

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Dec 27, 2015, 6:40:55 AM12/27/15
to Marek Marczykowski-Górecki, qubes-devel, dfawcus+list...@employees.org


On 12/26/2015 09:35 AM, Marek Marczykowski-Górecki wrote:
> -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
> Hash: SHA256
>
> Having control over cursor shape it may mislead the user actions. While
> it shouldn't be a problem inside the same VM, it may be complex to do it
> right - to not interfere with windows of other VMs.
> In short: without prior proper design, which would be simple and simple
> to implement, we don't want to have such feature, at least not by
> default.
>
>

It seems to me the cursor would just take on the assigned shape for
whichever window/VM is active. The only security problem I see is if
malware tries to mimic a different UI element (i.e. a menu with a white
or green border)...but without ability to control placement, using that
to exploit would be a lost cause.

Cursor shape is a functional part of the UI, to the point of being
critical for certain apps like spreadsheets and drawing. If Qubes deems
this a possible source of confusion then it should explain the threat
model for cursors (having already done so for windows).

Marek Marczykowski-Górecki

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Dec 27, 2015, 12:51:53 PM12/27/15
to Chris Laprise, qubes-devel, dfawcus+list...@employees.org
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I see the problem, we need to discuss it:
https://github.com/QubesOS/qubes-issues/issues/1551

- --
Best Regards,
Marek Marczykowski-Górecki
Invisible Things Lab
A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?
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