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KDE GUI Upgrades

KDE 4.0 Is Out 165

Posted by kdawson
from the years-in-the-making dept.
Many users wrote to alert us that KDE 4.0 has been released. Here's Computerworld Australia's take on the release KDE 4.0 is based on the Qt4 toolkit, which brings significant enhancements in the way memory is used. "So it ends up making KDE less resource intensive than KDE 3, which is quite an improvement," according to Australian KDE developer Hamish Rodda, who calls the new architecture "future-proof." Computerworld notes that developers are already at work porting the new environment to Windows and the Mac.
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KDE 4.0 Is Out

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  • I've been looking forward to this showing up. It looks like they are having a bit of a challange porting it though :-(.

    Oh well. It will probably show up with 4.1, which is fine, the bugfixes for missed critters will be done by then.
    • Re:woo-hoo (Score:4, Informative)

      by CastrTroy (595695) on Friday January 11, 2008 @10:21AM (#21998448) Homepage
      I hope that they get Amarok working on Windows. That's one app that I think it miles ahead of the windows counter-part (iTunes or WMP). It has all the things that the other ones are afraid to offer. Like Automatic lyric downloads, and links to the band's Wikipedia page, that are viewable right in Amarok. Those two features make Amarok a lot better. I also like how they manage the playlists, and how they make it easier to have a temporary playlist of the current music you are listening to.
      • by ByOhTek (1181381)
        *shrug*, I've always been an xmms/winamp fan.

        I'm looking forward to multiple desktop support in windows that is better than the MSVDM, and free as in beer.
        • I'm a fan of mpg123 and shell scripts myself. It needs so few system resources it's silly. But Amarok, which I used when I ran KDE, is quite an excellent piece of software.
      • by MrNemesis (587188)
        Hmm, I sense you might not be so pleased with amarok 2; its interface is a huge step backwards IMHO, and too much like iTunes for my liking. Apparently they've also done away with support for having a massive current playlist, which completely ruins the way I've grown accustomed to listening to music. Nice to have the developers call you "stupid"...
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by lbbros (900904)
          Do you realize you're talking about something that hasn't even had an alpha release? A lot may change, or may not, but there's no guarantee at this point.
          • by MrNemesis (587188)
            Yes, and I'm also aware that "don't bitch about the way the interface has looked for the last six months, it may well change completely even though the devs show absolutely no sign of doing so" has been the default excuse to anyone who expresses concern that their beloved music player is about to turn into the bastard offspring of iTunes and WMP, rather than maintaining its own identity.

            All I'm doing is expressing concern about it now, before it's released. Should I wait until it's complete before I bitch a
            • by lbbros (900904)
              No, you should wait at least until there is at least one release such as an alpha. Amarok is changing quite constantly.
              • by MrNemesis (587188)
                And then answer when it's at alpha will be the same as it's ever been. If I'm wrong, I'll even go so far as to buy a hat in order to eat it.
  • by minginqunt (225413) on Friday January 11, 2008 @09:43AM (#21998016) Homepage Journal
    Australian KDE developer Hamish Rodda, who calls the new architecture "future-proof."

    That sounds like a challenge to me.
    Oh, it's on.

    Love,

    The Future.
  • by donscarletti (569232) on Friday January 11, 2008 @09:44AM (#21998036)

    I'm a keen and loyal Gnome user and a former Gnome developer.

    I think the 4.0 release of KDE deserves an un-abbreviated summary on the front page.

    Congratulations on this milestone guys, keep up your work.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by debilo (612116)
      Yeah, I think so too, but at the moment KDE4 is nothing to show off, really. Most changes seem to have happened under the hood, and from a user perspective there is not much else to mention. It feels like KDE4 = KDE3 + new theme - functionality. I don't want to sound too negative, though, we were told to expect maturity with later point releases.

      I hope then it'll be worth a full summary on the front page.
      • by jeffmeden (135043)
        So reducing resource usage, thereby allowing it to run smoother on a given platform, is 'nothing to show off'? The only good OS is a new, feature-bloated one you say? Well you enjoy your Aero and Vista, we will keep our KDE and Linux thank-you-very-much.
        • by Nossie (753694) <IanHarvie@@@4Development...Net> on Friday January 11, 2008 @10:55AM (#21998916)
          you actually tried it yet?

          from my own toying it really does seem to be quite feature incomplete ... no disrespect to KDE, they said it was incomplete and it IS incomplete ... looks like an interesting option but in its current state I'd have to say gnome had more 'options' and that's saying something!

          BTW just to emphasize, I've never been a KDE fan, I'm not really a huge fan of gnome either these days ... but feature wise KDE3.x IS much more complete, they have made some great advances but I'm not sure I'd have called this a .0 release
          • by pallmall1 (882819)

            from my own toying it really does seem to be quite feature incomplete
            Yes, it still suffers from the main problems in RC2, which are summarized here [linuxtechdaily.com].
          • Just think back to Gnome 2.0. At least the KDE guys clearly told us that the barebones KDE 4.0 is due to necessity and not choice.

            I'm back to using Gnome sometimes (first time since the glorious 1.4 times =) and I have to say it works quite well. It's just that with all the "We know what's good for you" and "You are too dumb for options" talk around 2.0 they managed to drive me off quite thoroughly. Had they just told us that there was a lack of features because 2.0 was a rewrite and they didn't have time

        • by Bogtha (906264)

          So reducing resource usage, thereby allowing it to run smoother on a given platform, is 'nothing to show off'?

          This was mentioned in the summary. What do you want them to do, mention it twice in the summary?

      • by xtracto (837672) on Friday January 11, 2008 @11:03AM (#21999040) Journal
        I think the summary at OSNews [osnews.com] had it right. KDE 4.0 is not KDE 4 per-se, this release represents the technology backend release (the middleware) to developers all over the world. It is from now on that developers should get attention to KDE 4.0 and start porting or writing applications for it.
    • Probably because everyone who has been keeping up with the whole affair knows that this is going to be a buggy release, and that the next version (4.1) is going to be the actual version to use.

      Personally I'm a GMONE user, so this isn't going to affect me at all. But it is still good to know that there are alternatives, especially for people who prefer there X/GNU/Linux desktop to be slightly more Windoze like.

      *Insert joke about MS Windows versioning (point zero releases and all that) here.
    • I think the 4.0 release of KDE deserves an un-abbreviated summary on the front page.
      Since Andover.net brought Slashdot and Freshmeat under one corporate umbrella in about 1999, a lot of Slashdot users suggested that too-frequent reports of software releases made Slashdot look like "Slashmeat". Now, release stories often get posted to section and, once they have enough comments, automatically promoted to front page.
  • Configurable? (Score:5, Informative)

    by debilo (612116) on Friday January 11, 2008 @09:54AM (#21998128)
    Not having tested any of the betas or release candidates, but having seen countless stunning screenshots, I was anxious to try it out. Just installed it on Kubuntu, and to my dismay I found it to be a bit of a letdown. There's hardly any options to customise the desktop/menu/taskbar or general behavior, it seems to lack most widgets found in KDE3, and I have seen no option to add your own non-officially packaged apps as an icon to the desktop/taskbar.

    The menu is a bit awkward to navigate, and again there are hardly any options to change the default behavior or look. I know they promised more features for 4.1 or 4.2/3, but I was still a little shocked as to how completely barebone it felt compared to KDE3, which I will continue to use for the time being.

    Anyways, I'd still like to thank the KDE team for their effort, and I'm looking forward to using KDE4 once it has been optimised.
    • I really liked the presentation and the way things looked in general when i tried the Kubuntu with KDE 4 RC1, however when I tried it there were some serious graphics issues especially with the widgets on my laptop (which has an intel graphics set). So hopefully they've fixed that in the last couple months because I definitely plan to try it out again! Who knows, maybe this would even be perfect for the eeePC :)
    • Re:Configurable? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Bralkein (685733) on Friday January 11, 2008 @10:32AM (#21998582)
      Yeah, KDE4 is definitely being developed according to the "release early, release often" philosophy here. For months now the word has been that KDE 4.0 will not completely realise all of the hopes for KDE4 as a long-term project, rather it is targeted towards enthusiasts and developers. I think it's a fairly good idea, because the ball needs to get rolling in order to build activity and interest around the new platform. Aaron Seigo, a high-profile KDE developer made this blog post [blogspot.com] which clears up a lot of the confusion around this 4.0 release.

      As I've mentioned elsewhere, KDE4 is still making rapid progress, and in the mean time KDE3 is still a great desktop. When KDE4 is ready for mass consumption (hopefully 4.1 will be better in this regard, scheduled for 6 months or so), the Linux distributors will pick it up and start delivering it as a supported option. Until then, this first release still shows a great deal of progress, and I think the developers can definitely justify a bit of self-satisfaction!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by lbbros (900904)

      Let's quote the Plasma FAQ [kde.org] (disclaimer: I'm no KDE dev, but I wrote it):

      Q. I can't my favorite [ insert feature here ]!

      Don't forget that Plasma is still in its infancy (it's brand new, after all) and that KDE 3 was an extremely polished codebase: it took seven years to get to that, while Plasma had about 18 months to get to its current status. With time, the Plasma developers plan on reintroducing features that have been missing and fix regressions. As KDE progresses through the KDE4 cycle, Plasma wil

    • Re:Configurable? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by MrNemesis (587188) on Friday January 11, 2008 @12:01PM (#21999936) Homepage Journal
      KDE without configuration options? What's to differentiate it from GNOME?!

      Yes, I am only joking. But there's no way I'm shifting to KDE4 until it has at least the level of beautiful tweakery that by beloved KDE3 has. When I tried out one of the RC's (more deserving of the "alpha" moniker if you ask me), I too was similarly astounded at the lack of options for even changing basic things like the colour of the panel (I tend to keep my desktop in neutral, low-contrast colours and the big'n'shiny'n'curvy look of the default KDE4 is about as appealing to me as regurgitating a whole lobster).

      I'll also reiterate my stance on widgets - No. Fucking. Way. Why should I minimise every app I have just to be able to see an OpenGL clock or something useless? If it deserves to be treated as an app, then treat it as an app rather than desktop eye candy and give it a taskbar slot or a system tray icon. My desktop is visible for all of every three seconds every time I log in, otherwise it's covered with whatever app(s) I'm using at the time - I don't see the point in using your desktop as anything other than a workspace, your filesystem is where the eye candy (applications and files) lives.

      I find Kickoff awkward; Lancelot IMHO is a much nicer K-menu replacement. I'd still like there to be an option for there to be a simple ye olde style menu as well.

      I must be a bit of a luddite or something...
      • by Bogtha (906264)

        I'd still like there to be an option for there to be a simple ye olde style menu as well.

        Lots of people do. Aaron Seigo had code for it but refused to commit it [blogspot.com] because he thought people were being mean. Quote:

        i have two directories on my devel system here, one containing the start of a menu oriented display of the data models in kickoff, another which is a straight port of the kicker kmenu code.

        however, in line with my recently adopted "i don't reward negative behaviour" position, due to the

        • by lbbros (900904)
          However there is a traditional menu available. Look under the Add Widgets dialog.
      • by JohnFluxx (413620)
        > I'll also reiterate my stance on widgets - No. Fucking. Way. Why should I minimise every app I have just to be able to see an OpenGL clock or something useless?

        There's a shortcut you can hold to see the desktop widgets so that you can quickly see them.
        • by MrNemesis (587188)
          Why not just treat them like a typical app and give them a taskbar entry so I don't need to hold down a special shortcut? I really don't think reinventing the "every interactive GUI program has an entry in the taskbar" paradigm for the sake of having some shiny eye candy on the desktop is really worth it, and KDE3 already has support for hiding taskbar entries for arbitrary apps if that's what floats your boat (not tested to see if KDE4 has the same functionality).
  • More than Memory (Score:5, Informative)

    by Assembler (151753) on Friday January 11, 2008 @10:05AM (#21998250)
    The KDE4.0 release is about so much more than memory usage!

    o. Complete library overhaul
    o. Complete graphical overhaul
    o. Simplification (see Dolphin)
    o. New desktop, taskbar, dashboard

    The changes to a desktop environment don't get any bigger than that. I'm very surprised that the article summary only seems to mention memory usage.
    • by pizzach (1011925)
      KDE4 sounds basically like a total rewrite. They somehow did it much faster than e17. Is it because of developer/user base size?

      I have been a gnome user for the longest time as I have waited for e17 to mature. But kde4 is the first version that seems to be the version to interest me the most in a long time.
      • Well, the developers say that KDE 4.0 is far from finished:
        "KDE 4.0.0 is our "will eat your children" release of KDE4, not the next release of KDE 3.5."

        Speaking of which... I've been using e17 for a while. It is not feature-complete but it is use-able. And it does not crash on me like XFCE does (I'll probably get modded down for saying this...)

        Anyway, I am not here to bash anyone, just wanted to put things in perspective. Enjoy your WM, whatever it is :)
    • Does anybody else here completely dislike the idea of Dolphin? For one thing, I always thought that whoever decided that it was a good idea to make the file manager and the web-browser one and the same must have been smoking crack or similar but it doesn't look nearly as customizable as konqueror (the file manager) has in Dolphin. Is there anybody here who uses it that can enlighten me?
  • Distribution support (Score:2, Informative)

    by tonan (325152)
    Looks like Kubuntu already released a CD [kubuntu.org] to install KDE 4.0 alongside your KDE 3.0. There are releases for openSUSE [opensuse.org] and Debian [debian.org] also, but it looks like other distributions are still working on it (including Fedora/Red Hat and Madriva).
    • http://www.kubuntu.org/ [kubuntu.org] also has instructions for installing kde4 alongside your kde3 packages by adding a repository. You can either run the kde4 apps from within your regular kde session, or you can choose kde4 as an option from the login screen.

      I just spent 20 minutes playing around with it via this method, and have seamlessly switched between kde3 and kde4 and back again.
  • My congratulations go out to the KDE 4 development team. While this release may be a little rough around the edges, it's an excellent base and framework for some seriously good releases to come. Thank you!
  • I'm sticking to KDE 3.5.8. I'm surprised that they released it this early considering the reported huge amount of bugs. I mean, Canonical wouldn't release Kubuntu 8.04 as a long term release because they knew that KDE 4 wouldn't be ready for prime time and nobody will support it in 2011. On the flip side, I'm glad (to quote Meatloaf) the Monster is loose. This means that KDE can go from (IMHO) XP look to something much closer to OSX. It also means that Amarok 2.0 is one step closer to reality for my Window
  • Wake me up when 4.1 is out. I'm going back to bed.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      sounds like a cron job. script it yerself.
  • While I use KDE and like it, I doubt very much that the sentence [[KDE 4.0 is based on the Qt4 toolkit, which brings significant enhancements in the way memory is used. "So it ends up making KDE less resource intensive than KDE 3, which is quite an improvement,"]] is true: Qt4 use double buffering to provide smoother scrolling so I doubt that it's using less memory that KDE3..

    I remember a blog (linked by /.) which tried to measure the memory consumption of KDE but the author failed to measure accurately the
    • by pembo13 (770295)
      People have been reporting better memory usage by Qt4 since it came out, independent of KDE4
  • i got a kick out of this and I figured it was worth pointing out since it's common place to not RTFA. I took the "visual guided tour" [kde.org] and where they talk about KRunner on the Desktop page, they give an example of using KRunner as a calculator:

    KRunner also acts as a simple pocket calculator. Just type a mathematical equation in the form of "=1337*2" and KRunner instantly shows the result.

    thus proving that KDE 4.0 is, without a doubt, t0t411y 1337.... *2.

  • Can't help it but the GUI design looks shoddy. Icons to big, bad alignments across the board. The design team needs another month or two. Visually this is a beta.
    • by T-Bone-T (1048702)
      I agree. I find it strange that the menu in the second screenshot doesn't match the rest of the bar.
  • Yay, KDE4 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by z0M6 (1103593) on Friday January 11, 2008 @12:49PM (#22000610)
    Unlike the bunch here that cries "It should be called KDE 4.0 Beta 1", I believe that it should be called KDE 4.0. It signals that the base technology is ready and it is time for adoption by a larger mass than what the release candidates had. Remember that KDE 3.5.8 is a matured product, KDE 4.0 is not. It doesn't happen over night.

    Whiners aside, yay, KDE 4.0 is here. Congratulations everyone!
  • by Dr.Dubious DDQ (11968) on Friday January 11, 2008 @03:03PM (#22002694) Homepage

    As soon as this shows up in Gentoo Portage (the main branch, not an SVN overlay) I intend to backup my configuration and switch to KDE4. Yes, I know I'll run into things that don't work the way I expect and a few missing features. I figure if I want to see KDE 4.1 sooner, I can at least put in some effort to test and report problems. Now that the feature-freeze is over, developers ought to be able to deal with the "but the icons are icky" complaints that everyone seems to make, too.

    • by Bent Mind (853241)

      As soon as this shows up in Gentoo Portage (the main branch, not an SVN overlay) I intend to backup my configuration and switch to KDE4
      Why switch? If it's done like previous KDE upgrades, it will be slotted. Just pick your preferred environment from KDM and use both effortlessly.

How many NASA managers does it take to screw in a lightbulb? "That's a known problem... don't worry about it."

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