Request for New Feature

Asked by Claimant Roollay

I'm not sure if this is the right place to post but please forward this to the right place ;)


I don't leave suggestions to software developers very often, but I just found out about LottaNZB, and I thought I should leave a comment : it's a great software, probably one that will make me stay on Linux for good !

That said, I have a few suggestions :

- Do you think you could make the speed textbox clickable so a menu pop. On this menu, you would display the percentages from 0 to 100 by steps of 10. Upon hovering : it the result would be displayed (% x prefered_speed_limitit). When you would click on a percentage, it will actually apply the percentage to the speed limit in your preferences menu.

This would make it easier, for example, when you have a small bandwidth and you are watching some video stream over the internet while you are downloading so you have to constantly change the speed limit by going into the pref menu ;)
(you can also add a keyboard shortcut on the menu item)

- Can you add a text field with the total remaining space on the drive of the Download folder ? And the tmp folder ?

- Extra feature : A menu to select which options are available to display (total queue space, disk space remaining...) when you right click on the bottom panel.

That's it, I hope the dev won't find my suggestions offensive, it's only some features that would make me love LottaNZB much more ! It's a low priority request, as I know you guys should have a lot on your plate already ;)



Question information

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LottaNZB Edit question
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Solved by:
Severin Heiniger
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Revision history for this message
Severin Heiniger (severinh) said :

Hi Clement,

thanks alot for taking the time to write down these thoughts on how LottaNZB could be improved. Writing useful software is definitely a good way to convince people to stick with Free Software and it's great to hear that this seems to be the case for you.

- There definitely needs to be a way to adjust the download speed limit directly from LottaNZB's main window. The corresponding entry in the preferences window is just not discoverable enough and requires too many clicks to get to.

As far as the concrete implementation is concerned, one would need to think about it carefully. I guess that most people don't set a download speed limit beforehand, but just want to set one when they need the bandwidth for something else, as you said. Transmission for example lets you pick a speed limit from a list or by toggling a button with a turtle icon, set to a predefined speed limit. The latter would however require another entry in LottaNZB's preferences.

I guess one could definitely make the download speed (or the icon left to it) clickable. If a download speed limit v has been set, the menu would contain "Unlimited" as well as the values 2*v, v, 0.8*v, 0.6*v, 0.4*v, 0.2*v. If no download speed limit has been set, the LottaNZB could remember the maximum download speed instead and use that as a starting point.

- Displaying the total remaining space on the drive of the download folder seems like a good idea too. May be one could put a drive icon left to the download speed icon with the text "x GB free". It would also be possible to make it red if the remaining space is smaller than the size of the queue.

- Right-clicking on a panel is not particularly discoverable. As long as there is enough space to display all the relevant information, it's probably not necessary to make it configurable.

Thanks again for your useful suggestions!

Kind regards,

Revision history for this message
Best Severin Heiniger (severinh) said :

The suggested features have been added in the latest code of LottaNZB. It will be available in the form of a daily build [1] (only for Ubuntu) in a matter of hours.

Thanks again for your idea and I'd love to hear what you think about it.


Revision history for this message
Claimant Roollay (claimant-roollay) said :

Hi Severin,

I've just updated my system, and I was finally able to take a look at your upgrades.
I got only two words for you : you rocks ! ;)

The new speed limit buton is exactly what I had in mind, plus the space remaining is also really nice ;)

However, I still have two minor requests :

- Regarding the "free space available" display : My download and temp folder are not on the same partition : your new update only displays the space available on the temp folder, not the download folder. So when a download finishes, LottaNZB sometimes fails to unrar to the final destination cause my disk is full :( That's why I wanted a "free space left" for the download folder and the temp folder. (And yes, I could also change my temp folder).

- Concerning the speed limit : from what I can see, changing the speed limit via the new button will change your overall preferred speed limit. This is good, but I was more expecting a choice of percentages of the max speed limit you have defined. i.e.: you set up your preferred speed limit to 1000kB/s, and when you click on the button, you can chose between 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1000kB/s or unlimited (by the way, I like the unlimited feature, I did not though about it ;) ) This will allow a more flexible configuration for people whose bandwidth is limited.

I also have a few other questions relative to the development : is LottaNZB developed in python ? Do you use an IDE to code the GUI ? or is it vim only ? and if you use an IDE, which one ? What should I do if I want to help you develop ? Do you have a CVS or GitHub where I can propose patches ?

Thanks again for the good work, Keep in touch !

(BTW, are you from France ?)

Revision history for this message
Severin Heiniger (severinh) said :

Hi Clement,

thanks for the positive feedback!

- Of course, I intended to display the amount of free space left in the download folder rather than the temporary folder. There was simply a bug in the corresponding code. As for users like you who use different partitions for the two folders, it's clear that they would like to keep track of the free space in both of them. Switching between the two values using a menu like the one for the download speed limit doesn't make much sense. Hence, the next daily build (will be available shortly) will display both values at the same time (only if they're different). I wasn't exactly sure what text to display in the case of the temporary folder. Space-efficient and understandable suggestions are welcome!

- As for the speed limit, I understand what you mean. The problem is that many users haven't set a speed limit in the first place. Also, users should probably not be forced to get to know two different concepts, i.e. the maximum download speed limit and the actual limit as a percentage thereof. In my opinion, the download speed limit displayed in the preferences window should always be in sync with the one selected in the main window, to keep things simple. But I absolutely agree that LottaNZB needs to be more clever when it comes to deciding what choices to offer to the user in the menu. In my previous response, I roughly sketched an approach that would incorporate your idea but also take users into account who don't have set a download speed limit.

LottaNZB is indeed developed using Python, in combination with GTK. I primarily use gedit for development, because it's lightweight and simple. Of course, one could use an arbitrary IDE or vim, too. We actually use to coordinate the development of the application. Anyone can create a branch of the code (bzr branch lp:lottanzb) [1], work on it and commit changes, and then push it as a new branch to After that, that branch can be proposed for merging into the main LottaNZB branch. In other words, you're completely free to dive into LottaNZB's code. Contributions are always welcome.

For the record, I'm not from France, but from Switzerland. ;-)


Revision history for this message
Severin Heiniger (severinh) said :

Displaying the name of the temporary folder is probably not a wise choice, because the user is unlikely to have heard of it (it's usually called 'incomplete'). So, one should find a better solution than "20.6 GiB free in 'incomplete'".

Another question is whether the free space in the temporary folder needs to be displayed at all time. It will roughly stay the same over time, unless the user adds other files to that partition or lets LottaNZB perform an unusually large download. So, one might think about hiding the value unless there might be space issues ahead, in which case one would display a warning.