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KDE Releases Applications and Development Platform 4.12

samzenpus posted about 8 months ago | from the check-it-out dept.

KDE 44

KDE Community writes "The KDE Community is proud to announce the latest major updates to KDE software delivering new features and fixes. With Plasma Workspaces and the KDE Platform frozen and receiving only long term supportt, those teams are focusing on the technical transition to Frameworks 5. This release marks substantial improvements in the KDE PIM stack, giving much better performance and many new features. Kate added new features including initial Vim-macro support, and games and educational applications bring a variety of new features. The announcement for the KDE Applications 4.12 has more information. This release of KDE Platform 4.12 only includes bugfixes and minor optimizations and features. About 20 bugfixes as well as several optimizations have been made to various subsystems. A technology preview of the Next Generation KDE Platform, named KDE Frameworks 5, is coming this month."

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Love KDE (2)

socceroos (1374367) | about 8 months ago | (#45742885)

It has really come along from the 4.0 days. Very stable for me - use it all day, every day at work. Only problem I have is that if you have a auto-hidden panel and a full-screen Citrix app then there is a 10px portion of the screen that is unusable right over the auto-hide hover area.

Other than that - it's awesome. I can't live without Kontact, Dolphin, Okular and Gwenview.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45742917)

I use vtwm. It's worked well for me since X11R4, and continues to work well, without the eye candy, bloat, and screen confusion of the Gnome or KDE desktops. Just turned on 3 noob Linux admins to it, because it *leaves your computer free to do work* instead of burning cycles with transparency, rounding, and useless cutesiness.

1990 called... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45742963)

1990 wants its computing cycle counters back.

I'm not about burning CPU just for the sake of doing it, but if you've got them to spare, why are we worrying about whether it takes 20 microseconds or 50 microseconds to respond to a mouse click?

Re:Love KDE (2)

socceroos (1374367) | about 8 months ago | (#45743023)

I have a lot of respect for lean programs. I've been building my own hand-coded assembly kernel for the last few years as I have a fascination with lean, mean programming. However, KDE does offer a lot of very useful functionality that is an honest time-saver. I'm an akonadi+nepomuk convert. I also love KIO and Kate.

IMHO, if I was going for lean, I wouldn't be using a GUI anyway. Definitely not for Linux sysadmin tasks!

Re:Love KDE (1)

AvitarX (172628) | about 8 months ago | (#45745937)

KIO frustrates me, well, Dolphin's use of it or something.

When using SFTP:/ or FTP:/ access, things don't work right. Compressed files cannot be expanded in place, I assume because it calls up a command line utility.

Gnome handles this far better, creating a hidden, but browseable folder in your home directory, that can be accessed just like anything else.

Re:Love KDE (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 8 months ago | (#45743099)

I use vtwm. It's worked well for me since X11R4, and continues to work well, without the eye candy, bloat, and screen confusion of the Gnome or KDE desktops. Just turned on 3 noob Linux admins to it, because it *leaves your computer free to do work* instead of burning cycles with transparency, rounding, and useless cutesiness.

People seem to get this impression because the desktop effects stack of Linux is poorly optimized. It can be seen when trying to run a full bells'n'whistles Linux desktop on a low-end Atom/Bobcat system, and the animations turn choppy. At the same time, the same machines are butter smooth with Windows 7 and 8. (For games, Linux and Windows are already getting very close in terms of performance.)

Properly optimized, low latency, compositing desktop is a joy to use and will not "burn cycles" in a bad way.

Re:Love KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45743245)

This is an interesting troll effort, and I wonder what your point is. Linux has always scaled far better than Windows onto any hardware I've used.

Re:Love KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45743587)

Try using current Ubuntu+Unity with a machine, which does not have driver support for hardware 3d rendering (=Poulsbo). Every action after a login-screen startrs a slideshow which takes many seconds.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Fri13 (963421) | about 8 months ago | (#45744941)

Second gen netbook (Atom N420 if remembering correctly) here and Windows 8 doesn't even want to run in it, the beta works but is choppy and laggy when moving window or opening menus.
On same time, latest KDE is butter smooth, without frame drops or lagging. And the difference is HUGE, as the "eye candy" is very valuable usability booster while same thing can not be said from Win8 at all because it doesn't have shadows for windows, almost non-existing animations and then full screen start screen (only help to use Starter8 or similar).

Windows 7 or Windows 8 are not designed for low end computers like KDE. If you want speed and well made, then KDE is only choice from top-class.

Re: Love KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45742977)

Let's hope opensuse and kubuntu leave the 5.0 stuff alone until it's ready. 4.0 nearly killed KDE, but now it's awesome again. I need Konqueror, Kate, Tellico, and Clementine.

Re: Love KDE (5, Informative)

Christopher Fritz (1550669) | about 8 months ago | (#45743129)

"KDE 5" likely won't see the same issue that KDE 4.0 did. KDE is looking to disband the concept of the "Software Compilation" (all KDE programs released on the same day as part of a big upgrade, ready or not) which caused the KDE 4.0 issue (4.0 libraries were ready, 4.0 applications were not). With "KDE 5", you get the Frameworks 5 libraries, and each KDE program will release updates when they are good and ready, sticking with version 4 libraries in the meantime.

Re: Love KDE (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744167)

""KDE 5" likely won't see the same issue that KDE 4.0 did" More to the point, the transition from Qt4 -> Qt5 is absolutely no way near as hard as the transition from Qt3 -> Qt4 was, and they won't be re-writing the desktop shell this time. These two factors were directly or indirectly responsible for almost all of the terribleness of KDE 4.0.

Re: Love KDE (1)

HiThere (15173) | about 8 months ago | (#45748327)

No. The basic GUI design of KDE4 is inferior to the design of KDE3. I never had any hardware issues with it, but the design issues caused me to change to Gnome. And caused me to STAY with Gnome until the idiots at Gnome designed, and the distros supported, Gnome3.

At that point KDE4 became more usable than Gnome, but it's still not nearly as good as KDE3 was. It may be better than KDE2 was, I don't remember that clearly enough to be certain.

But it's design issues, not technical issues that are and have been the problems with the GUIs from day 1. (I rather liked Gnome1. I switched to KDE2 because the Gnome release at that time was unstable. I think they were switching to Gnome2, but memory's a bit vague on that point. I remember being impressed that in KDE I didn't need to drop into the command line to unpack a file...but that wasn't enough to decide me. I switched to KDE because the Gnome maintainers were pushing out code that wasn't ready. And removing features.)

Re: Love KDE (1)

Rob Y. (110975) | about 8 months ago | (#45746505)

Interesting. Why was this not done for the version 3-4 transition? Were the version 3 and 4 libraries unable to coexist? In my opinion, lack of backward compatibility has been the Achilles heel of KDE and most open source desktop environments. The fact that most of the code to run on top of those environments is also open source and can be released by distros at will (if it can be built against the distros' libraries) has helped to mitigate the problem - but of course, the fact that almost no closed source code exists for those environments is largely attibutable to the lack of backward compatibility with old versions. That - plus incompatibilities between different DE's - is the chicken that laid the egg of Linux desktop near-irrelevance. And I say that as a daily user of desktop Linux (Mint 15 KDE)...

Re: Love KDE (1)

Firetoad (125813) | about 8 months ago | (#45749805)

Interesting. Why was this not done for the version 3-4 transition? Were the version 3 and 4 libraries unable to coexist?

Essentially, yes. For instance, I've perused many of the development docs on the Trinity Project's [slashdot.org] wiki when I was interested in building myself a modern KDE3 desktop. The amount of effort that project's members have put into maintaining QT3/KDE3 apps and porting them to QT4 is impressive, and it's not hard to imagine that the level of effort required would have easily doubled the amount of effort it would have taken the KDE team to release KDE4.

Re: Love KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744575)

Why the hate on opensuse? It was actually one of the distros that specifically did NOT jump on the 4.0 release. They shipped both 3.10 and optionally you could chose 4.0 in the installation. IIRC, it even labeled it as "experimental". If you despite that got burned with 4.0 with it, it was 100% your own fault.

Re:Love KDE (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | about 8 months ago | (#45743003)

It has really come along from the 4.0 days. Very stable for me - use it all day, every day at work. Only problem I have is that if you have a auto-hidden panel and a full-screen Citrix app then there is a 10px portion of the screen that is unusable right over the auto-hide hover area.

  Other than that - it's awesome. I can't live without Kontact, Dolphin, Okular and Gwenview.

Can't say the same. I use it (4.10), but there are sometimes Plasma crashes under high load; the battery icon gives out a false empty battery warning on resume from RAM. Overall, the UI is clunky. KDE has never had good UI design & nice themes. There are the moments where you feel like operating Windows95.

GNOME3 should be stable enough now, I'll probably switch back to it soon. It gets out of the way and is appealing. I think the lessons from Mylyn should be taken seriously.

Re:Love KDE (5, Interesting)

Peter H.S. (38077) | about 8 months ago | (#45743107)

Different strokes....
I think KDE has a brilliant UI that supports my workflow wonderfully. I find it much better than Mac OSX and MS Windows in almost every aspect. Haven't used Gnome since the early 2.0 days, but I never liked how it worked or how it looked, and I found KDE programs superior for my use: K3b, Krusader, Kmail, Amarok, Kontakt, Digikam, Gwenview, KTorrent, Konsole are IMHO superior what else I have seen on Linux.

Never had KDE Plasma crash on me, even with extreme loads.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Rob Y. (110975) | about 8 months ago | (#45746665)

I love KDE, though I was about to post my usual rant about the indecipherability of the difference between "Special Window Settings" and "Special Applications Settings" after opening the "About KDE" dialog in Dolphin to determine that I have KDE 4.10.5. When that dialog appeared completely on top of my Dolphin window, I figured I'd go in and give it a try to get "Remember position and size" to work sanely - and y'know what, it suddenly works as I thought it should. For some reason my old settings were recorded strangely. But when I erased them and set just the "Special Window" remember position and size setting for the main Dolphin window, it worked like a charm. I swear I've tried that before and it never worked right. Also worked for Firefox, which I had thought might be a lost cause - since it's not a KDE app, and I figured must not identify its dialogs so that kwin can distinguish them from the main window.

So, yes, KDE is crazy complex, but it seems to work well these days. And while you can safely ignore most of the settings, the ones most people want are there and mostly decipherable. Mixed praise, I know, but at least it's coming from an undeterred KDE fan...

Re:Love KDE (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 8 months ago | (#45743117)

Gnome 3, yes, Gnome Shell and Unity, no. It's too bad too, as I actually didn't mind Gnome Shell that much.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Peter H.S. (38077) | about 8 months ago | (#45743025)

Krusader is a KDE favourite of mine. Very underrated. It is twin panel, tabbed file-manager, with masking filters (e.g. select only "*.otd" files), the ability to unpack archives, and has superb "synchronise folders" feature. It's mass rename feature is very good too.

Re:Love KDE (1)

socceroos (1374367) | about 8 months ago | (#45743199)

Does synchronisation use rsync or is it a from-scratch implementation?

Re:Love KDE (2)

Peter H.S. (38077) | about 8 months ago | (#45743279)

Does synchronisation use rsync or is it a from-scratch implementation?

Not sure, but I don't think so. It works a little different from simple folder syncronisation tools.

First it compares the two folders and then display display the differences using kdiff (or similarities, depending on the filters). There are various ways and options for filtering this, but when satisfied, one use the filtered output to synchronise the folders.

So it gives one a very good overview of what is going to be synchronized, and what exactly you want to synchronise at all. So folder synchronisation for the control freak.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Windwraith (932426) | about 8 months ago | (#45743933)

Krusader is just plain excellent. Perhaps the best twin-pane file manager I can think of.

Re:Love KDE (1)

Peter H.S. (38077) | about 8 months ago | (#45744693)

I think Krusader is the best file manager at all. Using drag-and-drop with multiple windows is just a pain on MS Windows and Mac OSX.

Almost everyone I know who doesn't use a twin panel filemanager have an incredible messy 'home' catalogue. Things just get dumped there, and because reorganising using MS Explorer sucks, the crust just accumulate.

GPG wallet (2)

Peter H.S. (38077) | about 8 months ago | (#45742995)

I look forward to the GPG backend to Kwallet. I was never quite sure how safe the encryptet wallet was, but with GnuPG I know what I get.

Ctrl-Click to launch URL's directly from Konsole looks nice too. It is a "right mousebutton" context menu at the moment, but clicking underlined URL's just seems right.

Great for "journalctl" with the "-x" switch that enables the catalogue db's, so that error messages in the log file are displayed together with full explanations and URL's pointing to support and documentation etc.

Re:GPG wallet (1)

socceroos (1374367) | about 8 months ago | (#45743193)

Agreed. I'll be switching to GPG in the next 10 minutes.

KDE on windows (3, Interesting)

staalmannen (1705340) | about 8 months ago | (#45743461)

I wonder if I could use the KDE on Windows effort on those asking for help with Windows 8 (right now i have just slapped classic shell on there). My "secret" hope would be that when they are comforable enough with KDE I could convert them to a proper OS (I usually give OpenSuse KDE to novice users but use Arch myself). The case for an alternative user-installed desktop environment has never been greater on Windows, so definitely an opportunity.

Re:KDE on windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45745869)

It is possible to run Plasma on windows, see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3CSwR3CrsQ

It runs surprisingly well, but is far from being usable on a day to day basis, due to lack of task manager/system tray/start menu integration.
IIRC this is possible because Amarok needs Plasma (the context view is 100% Plasma), so Plasma was ported to Windows when Amarok was, but no Plasma Workspaces developer actually worked on it.
Though I'm sure if someone decided to, the Plasma team would welcome it with open arms.

Kongrats! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45743811)

Kkkudos kto kyhe KKDE kteam! Kthis kis kuite kthe kakomplishment! Kviva kla krevolukion!

KDE could improve further with this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744213)

...make the UI a bit more calmer and simplified.

Right now there's a lot of things all the time and visual distraction is high. Strip the UI to its basics. Give the user the option to add more crud if they want to, but please rework the graphical look and feel to be more minimalistic.

E.g. in a file browser you don't need to see how much space you have left all the time, you don't need to see zoom level, you don't need to see file preview in a separate box, you don't need a text to know that the folder you just selected has been selected (you can see it because the background changed color), etc. It's NOT cool and it does NOT look good.

Everything should be clean and simplified. When you need to see zoom level or space left, bring these up with minimal clicks or key presses.

And drop the gradient shading already!

Maybe this is some cultural thing, I don't know, but it unfortunately keeps me off KDE because I can't stand the clutter.

Re:KDE could improve further with this... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744621)

You know they have, as opposed to a certain other DE given *you* the power to strip down the UI to the basics. It takes about 20 minutes, and you do it /once/.

In other words, what you're asking for is perfectly achievable, only you have to man up and do it yourself rather than demanding others to conform to *your* tastes with the defaults.

Man up, been there, done that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45745579)

Trust me, I tried. I used to be a KDE user starting since 2.0 times, I tried numerous themes and configurations and other things and never quite found something to my liking. Close, but not close enough.

The UIs in the applications are always "full on" regardless of what kind of window title bar or decorations I have.

I even got so frustrated that I started designing my own theme but then thought what the bloody hell, this isn't what I should be doing. If the apps are cluttered it won't help.

I've really not touched KDE in 5 years. Perhaps it's time to try again!

Re:Man up, been there, done that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45747753)

I agree with the sentiment, sorry if I came off harsh. I mean, blue glow on window borders, RLY?

Obviously different people have different preferences, and I really don't understand why the default has to be "full tilt". But hey, at least it can be changed, far more than any other DE than I'm aware of. Personally "Lucky Eyes" is my favourite, but as said, horses for courses.

Re:KDE could improve further with this... (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about 8 months ago | (#45747063)

Razor-qt - another Qt based DE - is what you seem to be looking for. Otherwise, KDE is a good platform suite, if you throw in its applications, such as Calligra & stuff.

Kontact (1)

water-and-sewer (612923) | about 8 months ago | (#45744305)

KDE is definitely a nice desktop environment, though I confess I'm still a big fan of KDE3 (and even Windowmaker). There are still a couple of things I just don't get though, so there's still some room for reason to prevail as the KDE4 platform matures. (I'm using opensuse 12.3, for the record).

1. It annoys and scares me that all of the Plasma desktop widgets seem to have an option where they can be controlled remotely. I absolutely don't understand the point of that, worry about its security implications, and find it a waste of disk space.

2. No offense (and this is coming from a guy who prefers KDE over Gnome) but a lot of Plasma desktop applets are really useless. I can dig the newstickers, RSS feeds, comic-of-the-day stuff, etc. But what's up with the red bouncy ball? What's the point of that?

3. I'm a bigger fan of the KDE4 apps than I am of the Plasma desktop (even if I do respect and agree with how they've made it into a system that can produce different screen/work environments for tablets etc. instead of the Gnome "stuff-it-down-your-throat approach; Win8 as well). And there are some great KDE4 apps. But Kontact is not one of them. I anxiously install and run it on every new desktop, thinking "this time, it's going to work." And it never does. Kontact on my opensuse box regularly gets hung trying to open a "choose a file" dialog box (say, if I'm attaching something to an email). I blame its ridiculous database and akonadi semantic crap foundation. I find myself using Sylpheed or Thunderbird, but more often I just go to Mutt, which remains unsurpassed for the power emailer. But Kmail/Kontact has so much promise. Why can't they ever get it right? (by the way, a QT alternative I like more and more is Trojita. It's standalone, super fast, and interesting.)

Re:Kontact (1)

AJodock (1901718) | about 8 months ago | (#45746119)

And there are some great KDE4 apps. But Kontact is not one of them. I anxiously install and run it on every new desktop, thinking "this time, it's going to work." And it never does. Kontact on my opensuse box regularly gets hung trying to open a "choose a file" dialog box (say, if I'm attaching something to an email). I blame its ridiculous database and akonadi semantic crap foundation.

No such issues here. I use Kontact every day at work hooked up to exchange (IMAP + Davmail to hook up to exchange). I have occasionally in the past seen issues with the open file dialog when you have favorites added that are no longer accessible like NFS or SMB shares. I haven't seen that in ages, but maybe that is just because I don't have anything added into my favorites. Running Kubuntu instead of OpenSUSE here.

Akonadi works pretty well now too, but there are some occasions where the IMAP process seems to get stuck doing something or other in its database and it sits at 100% of 1 core of my CPU. I just give it a kick with akonadictl restart and that usually clears it up.

Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744309)

Is the latest KDE still like Gnome w.r.t. copy/paste? ie, inconsistent use of mouse/keyboard?

I love linux in general, but I loath this bullshit backward copy/paste crap which forces me to remember which keys (or mouse) to use in different apps. I'm a keyboard jocky, and anything which breaks my typing rythm is an impediment.

I only use windows for $work, but fuck me upside down, copy/paste "just works" everywhere.

This is one of the fundamental problems of linux in my opinion - basic shit like this never gets fixed because it's not sexy.

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (1)

marsu_k (701360) | about 8 months ago | (#45744643)

I'm not sure what you're referring to - it's ctrl+c/ctrl+v everywhere (except Konsole, you have to use ctrl+shift there, for obvious reasons). You can also use the old X11 method, select the text with the mouse and paste with middle mouse button.

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (1)

Rob Y. (110975) | about 8 months ago | (#45746703)

What I don't get is why 'select text with the mouse' can't copy to the same clipboard that Ctrl-C does. At work, I use PuTTY to get to my unix system from a Windows desktop, and have gotten so used to 'highlight == copy' that I curse other Windows apps that don't do it. So I'm glad that KDE does. But I always find myself trying to right-click/past what I've highlighted and end up pasting the wrong thing. Why on earth are these 2 clipboards not unified?

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (2)

AvitarX (172628) | about 8 months ago | (#45748281)

You're welcome
http://userbase.kde.org/Klipper [kde.org]

I think it has to do with X specifications, they have different names and stuff.

FWIW,I want to be able to select, Ctrl+X then select somewhere else and Ctrl+V to kill what I've selected (for example copy and paste a URL into and address bar), so selecting editable text should not place into the copy buffer IMO.

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (1)

JesseMcDonald (536341) | about 8 months ago | (#45749609)

Why on earth are these 2 clipboards not unified?

Because that would make it less usable. The Ctrl-C clipboard is meant for more permanent data, while the mouse selection is more transient (it changes whenever you select anything, even if you didn't want to paste it elsewhere). If you unified the clipboards, for example, then you couldn't copy something, select something else, and then paste to replace the selection.

You probably don't notice this problem with PuTTY because it's the only program updating the clipboard on mouse selection, and the only reason to select anything in PuTTY is to copy it to the clipboard. It might make sense to do the same in Konsole, though, or in other terminal emulators.

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45744705)

This is one thing that is great on MacOS X. It's Cmd-C, Cmd-V everywhere whether you're in an application or in a terminal.

PCs could really do with an extra key for this stuff, but it's wasted on the Windows key.

Re:Simple, centralised, cross-app copy/paste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45746239)

What do you think this is Windows? KDE's shortcuts are highly configurable.

In Konsole -> Settings -> Configure Shortcuts -> Set "Copy" to Win (Meta) + c
Repeat for paste with Meta + v
Then do the same for normal apps in System Settings -> Shortcuts and Gestures -> Standard Keyboard Shortcuts

Might need to verify that there aren't any global shortcuts using those combinations first.

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