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KDE GUI Software Linux

KDE's Version Timing Drops It In Ubuntu Support Priority 187

Posted by Zonk
from the not-tomorrow-but-soon dept.
News.com is reporting that the next version of Ubuntu will see KDE unsupported, but only for the time being. Because of the dramatic changeover from KDE 3.5 to 4.0, Ubuntu sponsor Canonical is unwilling to initially support the popular Linux GUI. Gnome will still be supported, and the company expects to return support to kubuntu soon. "Developer interest is focused on KDE 4.0, but it's not mature enough yet to use in the next KDE-based variation of Ubuntu, called Kubuntu, Scott James Remnant, leader of the Ubuntu Desktop team, said in an explanation to a Kubuntu mailing list. But most Kubuntu developers adding features "upstream" of today's products are focused on KDE 4.0, meaning that it's risky to release a long-term support version based on 3.5."
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KDE's Version Timing Drops It In Ubuntu Support Priority

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  • Re:News? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BlueParrot (965239) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @05:46PM (#21851868)
    Previously kubuntu release have been synchronous with the ubuntu releases, this decision breaks that pattern which is why it is news. It looks as if ubuntu and kubuntu may actually diverge enough to become separate distributions.
  • by empaler (130732) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @06:03PM (#21851998) Journal
    They're aiming at releasing twice a year with enough new features to catch the interest of the public, and only release STABLE every now and then. Next scheduled release (April 08, 8.04) is the upcoming stable branch.
    KDE4 will probably be backported to 7.10, and will most certainly be included in 8.10.
    The reiterate how above relates to your comment (sorry, I get carried away sometimes), the point of the twice-a-year release schedule is being able to make press releases and submit a lot of stories to Digg and Slashdot. Seen Slashdot's BSD coverage lately [slashdot.org]? That's fewer stories for all the major BSDs (save for Mac OS X) than for one Linux distribution in the past year. Novelty is key if you want attention. By the time the same (matured, stabilized) features are added to BSD and Linux distributions that aim more at stability, it'll seem stale compared to the newest (not-quite-stable-yet) features in Ubuntu.
  • by Realistic_Dragon (655151) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @06:04PM (#21852018) Homepage
    The Gutsy version of Kubuntu broke a _lot_ of things on my powerbook. Up until this release I was really happy with Linux on it, rating it well above OS X for geeks. Right now I'm seriously considering reverting back to Feisty.

    So, with that in mind, it's actually nice to see them declare that something won't be working _before_ I waste time trying to upgrade to it. I can then make an informed decision about what to do, instead of using a half assed release that would disappoint me. Not meeting expectations is about the worst thing you can do to your credibility.
  • Disappointing Turn (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jekler (626699) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @06:37PM (#21852212)
    I think this move is a mistake because the goal of Ubuntu has been to lessen the gap between non-technical users and Linux gurus. This introduces another layer of complexity for those non-technical users. I think it's a mistake to mix LTS and non-LTS in same-numbered/named versions of the OS. They have a variety of options here and I think they picked the worst of the lot. They should just add it to a community maintained repository or a backport from the next version.

    Someone with an active interest in Linux isn't likely to be confused, but there's a growing number of Linux users who don't follow Linux as an interest, it's just the thing on their computer. More than most other distros, those are the people that Ubuntu has been trying to cater to. I think they chose the worst possible option given their target audience.

    It might seem ridiculous to think a seemingly minor detail could confuse or scare off people, but after years of working in support (and I think any support representatives would agree) you might be surprised at how easily people form mental blocks and shut down (mentally) when faced with any computer-related issue. When you walk someone through a process and a button doesn't say exactly what you indicate, they panic. To them "END" is not the same as "FINISH" or "DONE, even though they should all mentally register as a word signifying completion. And then they won't even tell you the name of the button that appeared on their screen, they'll only tell you that they don't see the one you said, like you're playing some sort of sadistic "I Spy" riddle game. Sorry for the digression. Old trauma.

    (I'm not knocking Ubuntu for catering to non-technical users. I prefer Ubuntu myself, though I've been a Linux user much longer.)
  • by ditoa (952847) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @08:06PM (#21852762)
    Your comparison is idiotic, momentum is needed regardless of if there is a "race" or not. Momentum is needed just to get things done in general. I am surprised you do not understand this.

    As for the pointless attack on "lusers", what exactly is your point? That the default configurations are too simple? How is this a bad thing? You can change it however you want so why complain? Because it is not how YOU want it? Linux still has many rough edges, making it simpler is important not just for wider adoption but also just to make lifer easier for people. Providing I can still change it, I don't care how it is by default. Having everything complex from the get go is just stupid, why make things harder than they need to be?
  • by arendjr (673589) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @09:11PM (#21853112) Homepage
    This makes no sense. You're assuming dropping the LTS term will make it more complex for non-technical users, but non-technical users don't care about the LTS term. The only people that care about the LTS term are people that need support, like IT departments, people who are not that easily confused. Really, non-technical people don't care about LTS, don't care whether their operating system carries an LTS label, and what they don't care about, they're not confused about, they just want it to work.
  • by shadylookin (1209874) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @09:13PM (#21853134)
    I imagine a lot of Ubuntu's users don't want to be guinea pigs for KDE 4, and to claim 3 years support for something that will only be supported for a fraction of that time would be dishonest. Besides 18 months of support isn't that bad considering with Ubuntu's 6 month release schedule they'll be on something like 10.2 before support for 8.4 will be gone.
  • by Kjella (173770) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @09:44PM (#21853302) Homepage
    I use Kubuntu. Right now KDE is in a major transition phase, moving from KDE3/qt3 to KDE4/qt4 is a bigger change than Gnome has ever done, seriously. While a few things survive porting it's fairly close to a rewrite of everyting KDE is. Supporting KDE4 for a LTS is a "no way" kind of thing, it'll barely be released and KDE has some creative defintions of RC. The only real option would be supporting KDE 3.5, which while I think would be good it something upstream may or may not do. After all, "kubuntu" will support all the server packages in Ubuntu, just not KDE. If they've been recültant to promise 3 years support, I certainly understand why Canonical would. When push comes to shove, they really don't want to sell much more than what upstream provides anyway.
  • by gambolt (1146363) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @09:57PM (#21853372)
    why run a release? At any point testing is more stable than most of Ubuntu, which is based on a snapshot of unstable.

  • Re:real shame (Score:2, Insightful)

    by domatic (1128127) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @11:10PM (#21853720)

    GTK already snapped up most of the cross platform action and troltech hasn't done much to go after it. Most QT stuff at this point is strictly Linux as "K" apps.. there's not much incentive to port to windows or mac because there are already GTK equivalents in that space.



    If the OS X native port of GTK doesn't get its ass in gear, that is about to change. GTK on OS X means using X11. KDE4 apps on Mac will run native. About a year from now, we'll be seeing polished KDE4 apps on Windows, Mac, and Linux.
  • by SoopahMan (706062) on Saturday December 29, 2007 @11:39PM (#21853828)
    Strongly disagree. Ubuntu is doing a lot of things right, and the recent commercial end-user available machines rallying around Ubuntu/Gnome shows it. If anything other projects should speed up to keep pace with Ubuntu.

    The regular release cycle helps contributing developers to enjoy their work - they can count on finished new features to be out in less than 6mos, rather than less than a year, which can be pretty exciting. And it aids iterative development - a year between releases can encourage hail mary style development where you go big and failures are crushing.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 30, 2007 @04:09AM (#21854880)

    This is the most blatant bit of racism I have ever seen.
    The poster is probably not even racist, he's just another troll trying to get a rise out of people. Slashdot used to be famous for having some of the worst trolls online (there were even groups of trolls working together) but nowadays you rarely even have a chance to see them before they're squished by moderation. Count your blessings that you weren't around when GNAA was here crap-flooding.
  • by moro_666 (414422) <kulminaator&gmail,com> on Sunday December 30, 2007 @04:26AM (#21854914) Homepage
    I have to second that statement.

      With the 2 latest releases of Ubuntu :

      * Take a shiny new lenovo laptop with ati x1400 graphics and try to "ubuntu it" ... it won't work. the "open source" ati driver doesn't support the card, the vesa graphics doesn't manage to display the installer window (because the resolution is too small, probably a vesa bug) and the automatic tool that lets you switch between resolutions and drivers just crashes along.
      * Why why why and why does the default desktop install cd come without a command line installer ? if you can't make X work for everyone, give us the command line installer, ok ?

      Now if the LTS comes out with the same "features" towards ati cards (and no workaround to install the native ati driver that at least brings X up), and also skips proper kde support, i'll kick it out from my laptop.

      KDE is the only reasonable X window manager for me, i have grown into it through out the years and there's nothing that will make me move towards the clumsy, ugly and slow gnome. If ubuntu says "let's only do gnome officially for a while and let the kde people suffer", i will go and 'suffer' my ati based laptop to gentoo. It works like gold on my secondary and i don't have to be shaking like a madman every 6 months.

      And modding the parent down for no obvious reason is a lame move from mods. Stop it dudes, he didn't say anything wrong. LTS is a bad joke as far as i can tell (old packages, old bugs and no real solutions to the bugs because eliminating the bugs would introduce some new ones).

  • by Khaed (544779) on Sunday December 30, 2007 @05:20AM (#21855066)
    Eh, I went from Slackware to Ubuntu because I wanted it to just work. My printer randomly stopped working and refused to reinstall no matter what I did, I spent hours reading about my printer and Linux, CUPS, etc. Nothing worked, at all. I bought the printer for its linux support. After a while I decided that it wasn't worth my time to fuck with text file configurations, recompile things, and in general be frustrated that no one had an answer.

    If that makes me a luser, it's a badge I'll wear proudly while I use my time to do something other than fight with programs written for people who live in basements and consider what distribution they use a realistic indicator of the size of their cocks.
  • Re:Not suprising (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jilles (20976) on Sunday December 30, 2007 @06:44AM (#21855320) Homepage
    So basically you are telling all those companies out there considering to switch to linux that in 6 months there is going to be noone around to support whatever they are installing now?. Pretty tough message either they install stuff that is pretty much untested and might become usable over the next year or they install stuff that is pretty well tested but that nobody wants to support anymore. Sounds like Microsoft stopping support for XP when they were still beta testing Vista (which some people might argue is still ongoing). Building good quality software is about more than tossing the next version over the fence: you need to have a credible plan for the most loyal users of the old version.

    The KDE people are not willing to support 3.5 for five more years (the duration of LTS support contracts of Ubuntu). That's understandable. Even Microsoft plans to end commercial support for XP before then. But at the same time, 4.0 is in no shape to make it into a LTS supported release either.

    The problem here is fundamentally that release schedules of various OSS projects are poorly aligned and that that occasionally leads to regrettable delays in getting software in the hands of people. Only a small portion of users ends up using the latest and greatest. For something like a major desktop platform release, the transition period is measured in years. KDE 4.0 will take quite some time to get adopted. Now is not a good time to stuff it into a LTS distribution.

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