I'd like to make thebes/cairo the default backend on linux, as we need
more testing and exposure than we're getting (it's getting much later
than when we'd originally wanted to have this done). Not having it
enabled is blocking some work I'd like to do as well.
The performance is bad (roughly 2x slower); there are things that we can
do to improve native theme rendering speed, but the big killer is text
rendering -- and we're still working to figure out whether it's an Xorg
issue and how we can work around the problems. Even with the bad
performance, however, it's usable, except for printing, which depends on
upstream cairo work on the ps/pdf output (and we'll know more there when
Stuart gets back from the linux printing conference).
Practically speaking, this will mean that we will have a dependency on
Render (buildtime but not runtime) and pango 1.6 (build and runtime).
--enable-system-cairo will not work (and probably wont' for the
foreseeable future). argo is already putting out linux cairo builds; we
could just switch it to produce the official nightlies, though that
would add a bunch of machines that are doing various tests to the "needs
upgrade" list, which already has a bunch of win32 machines (for vc8