Bug 25893 - Update to webkit2-2.26 makes some messages unreadable in Evolution when using a dark theme
Summary: Update to webkit2-2.26 makes some messages unreadable in Evolution when using...
Alias: None
Product: Mageia
Classification: Unclassified
Component: RPM Packages (show other bugs)
Version: 7
Hardware: All Linux
Priority: Normal normal
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Nicolas Salguero
QA Contact:
Depends on:
Reported: 2019-12-18 20:20 CET by aguador
Modified: 2020-03-18 01:15 CET (History)
3 users (show)

See Also:
Source RPM: evolution-3.32.2-1.mga7.src.rpm
Status comment:

Current plain text appearance with dark theme (24.34 KB, image/jpeg)
2020-03-18 01:14 CET, aguador

Description aguador 2019-12-18 20:20:29 CET
There was a change in this version of webkit2 (updated a month abo) that affected most HTML messages in Evolution prior to version 3.34.1 when using a dark theme. The upstream bug is discussed here:


To reproduce:

1. Set a dark theme (Adwaita-Dark, Vertex Dark, Breeze Dark)
2. Open an HTML message with the Evolution 3.32.2 (the version in Mageia 7) most (there are a few exceptions for some reason) even ones you have composed, sent and later reopened will have white text on a white background.

The obvious work around is, on a message-by-message basis, highlighting the message text (except composing is frequently affected as well) or using a light theme. Reverting to the prior version of webgtk2 may work assuming there are no other updated packaged that now depend on the later version of Webkit2.

I leave it to the respective package maintainers to see if the problem should be handled at with the webkitgtk2 package or Evo. On a personal note, I would love to see the current version of Evo backported, but given integration with Gnome, that may not be possible, at least not without considerable testing. I will also add that Evo was acting oddly in Mga7 laptop today, but that may have come from an unrelated issue.
Comment 1 Lewis Smith 2019-12-18 21:50:11 CET
Thank you for bringing this to our attention; and the evolution bug reference.

> Reverting to the prior version of webgtk2 may work
Worth trying downgrading it.

From the bug report referenced:
"I can confirm this with WebKitGTK+ 2.26.0. Looking in its inspector I see the iframe has set background-color and color styles, but these do not propagate into the inner content, though the main difference with the new WebKitGTK+ might be that they define color:text for <html>, which wasn't the case in the past. These do not seem to be possible to override on the iframe element, at least according to what I see in the webkit's inspector.
I guess they did it on purpose, thus Evolution should adapt."

It also notes:
"setting explicit color:inherit style on the inner document works."
If that means anything to you, it is a fix apparently.

> I would love to see the current version of Evo backported, but given
> integration with Gnome, that may not be possible, at least not without
> considerable testing.
Our current: evolution-3.32.2-1
The latest stable releases are the 3.34 series. 
But do we know whether that would fix this problem?
@aguador : would you be willing to test it if it can be updated?

Webkit2 has no formal or implicit maintainer; evolution no registered one, but Olav has done most recent commits. Assigning globally, CC Olav.

Source RPM: webkit2-2.26.2-1.1.mga7.src.rpm => webkit2-2.26.2-1.1.mga7.src.rpm, evolution-3.32.2-1.mga7.src.rpm
CC: (none) => olav
Assignee: bugsquad => pkg-bugs

Comment 2 aguador 2019-12-18 22:17:15 CET
Of course, I will gladly test the possible backport.

I have a Cauldron machine and use Evo 3.34.2 everyday with a dark theme with no problem.
Comment 3 Vincent D 2019-12-30 00:38:19 CET
Hi !

I tried the following patch concerning this issue:

Evolution seems to be working as before but without this annoying bug.

Maybe a nice maintainer could add this patch and only plan a bugfix update.


CC: (none) => vincent.dema+mageia

Comment 4 Nicolas Salguero 2019-12-30 21:32:59 CET
Suggested advisory:

The updated packages fix an issue:

webkit2-2.26 makes some messages unreadable in Evolution when using a dark theme.


Updated packages in core/updates_testing:

from SRPMS:

Assignee: pkg-bugs => qa-bugs
CC: (none) => nicolas.salguero
Source RPM: webkit2-2.26.2-1.1.mga7.src.rpm, evolution-3.32.2-1.mga7.src.rpm => evolution-3.32.2-1.mga7.src.rpm

Comment 5 aguador 2020-01-01 23:01:48 CET
Thank you for patching this, but for some reason the patch seems not to have taken. After installing evolution-3.32.2-1.1.mga7.x86_64.rpm the same problem appears: faintly visible grey on white. Tested before and after reboot and with three different dark themes known to work perfectly with Evolution 3.34 in Cauldron (including Adwaita Dark).
Comment 6 aguador 2020-01-03 19:04:22 CET
I have left the patched version of Evo in place and it is causing some strange behaviours. My default compose windows are plain text. If I try composing a second message while another I am writing is still open, the second compose window shows as plain text, but has white text on a white background. Will now downgrade to the unpatched version.
Comment 7 Lewis Smith 2020-02-09 21:11:15 CET
@ Vincent : re your comment 3. How did you try the patch? On Mageia's Evolution, or another one? Are you able to try evolution-3.32.2-1.1.mga7 from core/updates_testing? If so, please do.
In the light of the previous 2 comments, re-assigning back to you, Nicolas. This does not look ready for QA.
I shall try and test the pre/post update myself.

CC: nicolas.salguero => lewyssmith
Assignee: qa-bugs => nicolas.salguero

Comment 8 Vincent D 2020-02-27 16:35:42 CET
What I did:
# urpmi --buildrequires evolution
$ /sbin/urpmi --install-src evolution

Then in my rpmbuild dir:
$ tar -xJf evolution-3.32.2.tar.xz
$ vi evolution-3.32.2/src/web-extensions/e-dom-utils.c
thus I modified the lines as suggested by the above patch (manually)
$ tar -cJf evolution-3.32.2

And finally I compiled and installed the new rpm:
$ cd ..
$ rpmbuild -ba SPECS/evolution.spec
# rpm --replacepkgs --force RPMS/x86_64/evolution-3.32.2-1.mga7.x86_64.rpm

I need to check whether evolution is really working fine onto the computer involved (that my parents are using), in regards to the previous comments of aguador.
Comment 9 Vincent D 2020-03-12 12:01:41 CET
I can confirm HTML messages are well displayed and perfectly readable (using the rpm I created as explained below).

But I can confirm also the following behavior spoted by aguador:
"If I try composing a second message while another I am writing is still open, the second compose window shows as plain text, but has white text on a white background."

Also things seem to have evolved in the discussion at: https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME/evolution/issues/617

Now it seems that only WebKitGTK 2.26.4 need to be patched, not evolution. I do not know the status of the mageia webkitgtk package about the following modifications:
Comment 10 aguador 2020-03-13 09:19:01 CET
I believe I recall seeing a webkitgtk update which may have improved the situation, the worst case scenario seemingly being light grey text on white. However, as I use my Cauldron machine more and not 100% of the messages are affected, I cannot be sure.

The compose issue seems to be other. I just encountered two difficulties when trying to respond to a message when another compose window was open. First (in the second message):

The file «.evolution-composer.autosave-XXXXX» could not be saved automatically.

Error saving automatically due to «GDBus.Error:org.freedesktop.DBus.Error.InvalidArgs: Invalid page ID: 94».

Second the cut, copy and paste do not work in that situation.

These are theme independent as I tested with Adwaita as well.

If I get more time to investigate I may file a new bug.
Comment 11 Nicolas Salguero 2020-03-15 21:35:41 CET

Does webkit 2.28.0 from bug 26340 improve the issue?

Best regards,

Comment 12 aguador 2020-03-18 01:12:40 CET
Hi Nico,

Good point. I just checked and e-mail from a source that usually had unreadable ones, and it seems OK now.

Of course there is no good from which bad does not come. Now plain text messages have black on a dark grey background. Something I am seeing in Evo 36 as well and will check upstream.

Nevertheless, after attaching a screenshot of the latter, I will close this.

Comment 13 aguador 2020-03-18 01:14:07 CET
Created attachment 11554 [details]
Current plain text appearance with dark theme
Comment 14 aguador 2020-03-18 01:15:53 CET
Update of webkit has resolved the issue

Resolution: (none) => WORKSFORME

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