Why KDE

September 21st, 2007

I just suddenly felt an urge to write right about KDE after reading troy’s recent post (Troy, your marketing fever and ideas are contagious!!). I will probably be writing about something that has been written over and over again, but let me give it my own personal flavor. So…

Why use KDE?

A. Integration done right (TM)

KDE has to be the most correctly integrated environment I’ve seen. Everything just fits and works perfectly with one another. Now, users coming from Windows are probably still traumatized from the Internet/Windows Explorer fiasco and ditch/bash KDE (specially Konqueror) because of that. I’ve seen it happen. What I would like to tell them is, “Give it another look.” KDE has triumphed where Microsoft failed. And one of the things that make this possible is KParts.

You will hardly find any user guide or handbook about KParts, because it isn’t a separate visible application. The magic of KParts happens behind the scenes. KParts is KDE’s component framework (for you techies out there, it is somewhat similar to GNOME’s Bonobo and Microsoft’s OLE). What this basically means is that parts (components ) of one application can be embedded in another application to take advantage of its features, without reinventing the wheel. No, you don’t put the whole application inside another application. You only put a part of the application, usually the core part which has the basic functionalities and features of that application. So what does this mean for the user? Lots!

1. Your favorite features in just one app

Let’s say you love Kate’s syntax highlighting and automatic indentation. Let’s also say you love Konsole’s schemas and notifications. Or let’s say you really like how Konqueror renders web pages. But you also need a great IDE for programming, or a web editor for creating those kool web pages. Do you need to give up those features that you love just to use these apps? With KParts, you don’t have to. KDevelop, KDE’s premiere development environment, the superb text editing/coding features from Kate and gives you an easy to access embedded Konsole, all through KParts.

2. Reduce, reuse, recycle

KParts also help make apps smaller. By embedding small reusable parts of another program, the developer shaves off from the total size of the application. Imagine if you had to write dozens and dozens of lines of code just to implement a feature that’s already in another app. Smaller, more robust, less resource intensive. What user wouldn’t want that?

3. Stable and Secure

KParts is integration done properly. It seems that one of the fears of users is that with all these integration, crashing one app, such as Konqueror, will bring down the whole system. Perhaps their fear is based on Konqueror resembling Internet Explorer. But such is not the case in KDE. Aside from a few background processes (lovingly called daemons in the *nix world), which are absolutely necessary to have a running system (every operating has some of those right?), there is no single point of failure or crashing. The integration that KDE implements doesn’t literally tie one app to other apps. It also doesn’t mean that if the KPart falls, so does the app that uses it. For example, if you were previewing a text file in Konqueror while Kate is open, crashing one app doesn’t crash the other. And Konqueror, just because it is the file manager, doesn’t crash the whole desktop if a web page or an embedded media player happens to take it down. So you get the best integration without the system crash.

B. Access anywhere from here

Network transparency is touted as one of the major features of KDE. Big words, but what do they mean? To put it simply, allows you to access and use files found on remote servers or locations (across a network) as if they were located in your own computer (transparent). The guy behind this magic is called KIO, or KDE Input/Output. And the little guys that implement this are called kioslaves. Kioslaves are small programs that implement network transparency for different types of protocols, such as HTTP/HTTPS (for the web), SSH (secure shell), FTP (file transfer), and lots more.

Sounds fun! But how does it work? Let’s say you have a text file in your web server that you want to edit. Usually, you would have to either login to your account in the web server, say, through SSH, and edit from the command line. Or you would download the file, edit it, and upload. Using kioslaves, you don’t have to use anything else except your text editor. Simply open up Kate, go to the Open File dialog box, type in your account’s URL in the web server with the appropriate kioslave (for SSH, you have a choice of sftp:/ or fish:/), login when it asks for you username and password, and open the file. Edit it. Save it. And you’re done! All within Kate. Convenient, isn’t it?

But wait, there’s more! Kioslaves doesn’t just do remote filesystems. It also allows you to access what I call pseudo-filesystems, allowing you to view and use certain filetypes, media, and locations as if they were regular files. Want to view your Audio CD as individual files and rip them in different formats? Put in you CD, type audiocd:/ in Konqueror, and drag & drop away! Want to view a tarball or a ZIP file right within Konqueror? Just use the tar:/ or zip:/ kioslaves. Want to see your drives, mounted or unmounted? Head on over to media:/ and see them. In fact, your Trash can is easily accessed through a kioslave!

And the fun doesn’t stop there. kioslaves have also other interesting and useful uses not directly involved with files. You can view man and info pages right inside Konqueror with the man:/ and info:/ kioslaves. Some distributions have added their own brand of ingenuity by creating customized kioslaves. openSUSE has sysinfo:/ which gives you useful system information and links to your devices at a glance. Kubuntu has an apt:/ kioslaves which gives users a quick and graphical way to search for packages, both offline and online. You can even view your K Menu (applications:/) and system settings (settings:/) right inside Konqueror if you want to. Now that’s funky!

C. Go krazy with choices

Like it or not, KDE gives you tons of choices. There’s a setting for almost every option under the sun! We could always argue that the choices are not presented in a pleasing manner, the fact is that they are there. You, as the user, have power. You, as the owner, have control. You can almost do anything in KDE, set it up any way you like to. Beautify it. Simplify it. Fill it with panels and icons. Use only one with a clean desktop. Set up different wallpapers for each desktop. Use only one desktop. Install glossy widget styles, funky window decorations, and shiny icons. Stick to more simplistic and non-distracting themes. Control your media player with simple commands from your IRC client. Create right-click menus that automate your tasks. Send control messages to an application with a keyboard shortcut.

And that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Every KDE application has its own load of settings. Dig through them like you would digging for gold. Who knows, you might find a valuable treasure.

D. Amazing Apps

KDE has in its arsenal a wide variety of utterly incredible applications. Conqueror your files and the web with Konqueror. Rediscover your music with Amarok. Burn with K3b. Communicate with Konversation and Kopete. Organize your life with Kontact and the whole KDE PIM team. Dump your brain in Basket. Launch yourself with Katapult. Be productive with the lightweight, versatile, ODF-compliant KOffice. Paint stunning images with Krita. Manage your photos with Digikam. And many, many more.

And the best thing about these wonderful apps is that they are constantly evolving. They are getting better and better, thanks to the wonderful people helping make these wonderful software. And they could always use a helping hand. So if you can help in anyway, please do. (But more on that later)

Seamless integration, network transparency, amazing software, and more. All these make KDE the perfect desktop. Well, almost.

But not all is fine and dandy

It would be complete arrogance to say that KDE is absolutely perfect. It definitely isn’t. KDE has some rough edges of its own, which, in a way, is also good. It means there’s room to grow, improve, and innovate. Perfect is stagnant, boring, and impossible. At least there’s chance for some more exciting adventures.

One of the most popular criticisms of KDE is in the area of usability. KDE has too many options. Either that or it doesn’t display them quite properly. A cursory glance at the configuration options of some KDE apps seems to confirm this. And indeed, it’s like a jungle out there. Looking for the correct option can be a daunting task. It may be that the option is placed in the correct group or location. But the configuration window that slaps you in the face the first time you see it can be a daunting experience. First impressions are never to be underestimated. But at the same time, do we really want to get rid of those options, or the easy access to them that we have? Are we amenable to stripping off “non-essential” options and dumping them all in some configuration file, accessible through some database-type of application? It’s a battle between the simple and the powerful. Fortunately for us, KDE is taking the steps to make sure that it ends up with a win-win solution. Responding to the growing needs of users, KDE has setup the Human Computer Interaction Working group, or the KDE HCI WG (I love these acronyms!). The group will ensure that for next lifecycle, usability will play an important part in KDE in delivering the best user experience KDE has to offer.

Another rough edge that KDE has, in my opinion (opinion being the operative word), is that it is missing the human aspect. Sure KDE is great and all, but so far, I’ve seen that it appeals more to the technically literate. KDE reflects more its technological prowess more than its human dimension. I think this is the field where GNOME excels a bit more: human relations (not to say that developers are inhuman). Advertisement, community, PR, etc. Some say this is the effect of culture, GNOME being more US-based and KDE being more European. Again, fortunately, that will not stay true for long. Thanks to the efforts of the KDE Marketing people, KDE can reach out to more diverse audiences, through more diverse media. Hopefully, we can show them that the gearhead does have a human face.

Last, but not the least, is a problem that KDE shares with most other FOSS projects: human resources. Yep, KDE could use more helping hands. We have quite a number of active developers, but there will always be some forsaken areas that needs some loving attention. And there are definitely other ways to help KDE if you don’t know how to code. Contributing to KDE means more than just programming. There are lots of areas that users can help with. And the KDE community is very welcoming and helpful. You’ll be up on your feet contributing to this awesome project in no time. So yes, KDE needs you. So get involved!

The wonderful world of KDE

Awesome features, user empowerment, a great community, multiple venues of contribution, and a potential for innovation and growth. There can be many reasons to use KDE. But the biggest reason will be your choice. So come in, into the world of KDE.

… if you’re a former user and have strayed far away, come back for a visit. You might rediscover an old friend.
… if you’re a new user, explore every nook and cranny. You might discover hidden delights.
… if you haven’t used KDE before, jump in! The water’s fine.

See you around the korner… along the road to KDE 4.

References:

  1. KParts Wikipedia entry
  2. Breaking the network barrier (article on kioslaves)
  3. Customizing your KDE desktop
  4. Get involved with KDE

KDE® and the K Desktop Environment® logo are registered trademarks of KDE e.V.

46 Responses to “Why KDE”

  1. Jonathan Carter Says:

    Good post (although, a bit long). Since you’re on a KDE marketing roll, perhaps you should turn this blog entry into a KDE/Kubuntu poster?

    The layout of the post seems quite good for that. You might just want to summarise the text more and add some more pictures.

  2. nixternal Says:

    nice work jucato! You forgot one thing though, Vista rules all :p

    !nixternal

  3. john Says:

    Great post. Good work, explaining the details so that beginners can understand something.
    This is important!

  4. fyanardi Says:

    Nice article! Well written and covers major KDE strengths. And KDE needs more marketing power, you’re correct!

  5. CyberAng3l Says:

    Great article :)

  6. Jucato’s Data Core » Why KDE < Iqag Notes Says:

    [...] -Jucato’s Data Core » Why KDE [...]

  7. mexlinux Says:

    Ubuntu needs to take KDE seriously, with such a great Desktop we must not be treated as second class citizens

  8. Jucato Says:

    Thanks for all the comments! I was a bit anxious how this post would turn out, since it’s my first try at a sort of marketing article.

    @Jonathan: sounds like an interesting project. I’ll see what I can do.

  9. dave Says:

    I have been wanting to switch to KDE for the reasons you have cited above and have just tried Kubuntu in the last 48hrs. I am relatively determined to do it… but… there are so many things I need to either a) get used to or b) change to make them like GNOME that I’ve been having a hard time.

    * didn’t like single click to open/run… found the option though.

    * didn’t like the big on-hover notices… eventually found the option for that after turning off all the tooltips thinking that was what they were.

    * didn’t like the apps panel shwoing apps from all workspaces… fixed that.

    * didn’t really like the tool bar at all really but I fixed that.

    * installing themes ain’t easy. Still haven’t worked it out. It might not end up being hard but it’s not as straight forward as GNOME (drag and drop).

    * don’t like that I can’t drag and drop text. I imagine there’s an option… haven’t found it yet. Something to do with klipper maybe.

    * vi seems to be different arrows don’t work in insert mode. Find that confusing. Don’t know why it would be different unless I was using an older version of vi and it’s changed between versions. Weird anyway.

    * don’t know how to get rid of that side panel in Kate. Need to work that out.

    * Kontact (which was one of the big reasons I really wanted to use KDE cause evolution is not featured enough) is buggy: it gives me a weird message about “korganiser resources” when I’m creating new todos then creates two todos instead of one?!? I’ll need to spend some time on that one.

    * fonts on konqueror and firefox are all over the place. I’m not sure why, but firefox seems to render fonts differently in KDE than GNOME? I know how to set fonts in KDE and in firefox but I couldn’t get them to look right.

    * I don’t like that when I search on google for “kubuntu blah blah” I just ubuntu results and they deal with GNOME. Not really a KDE issue but still.

    * There are some other issues to do with xorg.conf I need to sort out - correct screen res, touchpad scrolling - the vendor of my machine supports ubuntu but not kubuntu. And everytime I do anything with xorg.conf I end up having to revert to the previous version ’cause X won’t load.

    * IRC channel was almost empty. I think I ended up to talking to you Jucato… thanks for your help!

    Anyway. I will keep trying but I’m gonna have to go back to GNOME for a while just to be functional and stay sane. Over the next few weeks I will keep coming back to KDE to try and fix the above probs and hopefully I’ll be able to make the switch. I really want those killer apps (amarok, kontact, konqueror, etc.) to be native so they load faster and integrate better. And I really like the idea of having so much control… but it’s gonna take time for me to gain control over it.

    :)

  10. Jucato Says:

    @dave

    Thank you for at least giving KDE an honest try, which is the least I could ask of non-KDE users. And yes, switching to something new involves some time and effort to get used to it or to make it behave like what you are used to. But do keep in mind that KDE is not GNOME, nor does it try to be. So naturally, some things are done and implemented differently.

    > * installing themes ain’t easy. Still haven’t worked it out. It might not end up being hard but it’s not as straight forward as GNOME (drag and drop).

    Yes this is quite true. KDE’s theme options are more powerful than what GNOME offers, once you understand how and why it’s done. But that in itself is a bit difficult, and the act of changing or adding themes can indeed be a daunting task. If you’re still interested in learning how that works, see the link to customizing your KDE desktop in the References above.

    > * don’t like that I can’t drag and drop text. I imagine there’s an option… haven’t found it yet. Something to do with klipper maybe.

    Could you please elaborate? Drag and drop text works fine here

    > * vi seems to be different arrows don’t work in insert mode. Find that confusing. Don’t know why it would be different unless I was using an older version of vi and it’s changed between versions. Weird anyway.

    Um… vi isn’t a KDE app, nor is it a GNOME app. vi should work the same anywhere, but also depends on how your distro sets it up.

    > * don’t know how to get rid of that side panel in Kate. Need to work that out.

    Those side panels in Kate are permanent. You can hide them, however, by clicking on the tab.

    > * Kontact (which was one of the big reasons I really wanted to use KDE cause evolution is not featured enough) is buggy: it gives me a weird message about “korganiser resources” when I’m creating new todos then creates two todos instead of one?!? I’ll need to spend some time on that one.

    This is a bug particular to the Kubuntu distribution and to that release only. I recall a simple update resolves the problem.

    > * fonts on konqueror and firefox are all over the place. I’m not sure why, but firefox seems to render fonts differently in KDE than GNOME? I know how to set fonts in KDE and in firefox but I couldn’t get them to look right.

    Konqueror and Firefox (which, by the way, isn’t *the* GNOME web browser) use different engines to display web pages. So they will really look different.

    > * I don’t like that when I search on google for “kubuntu blah blah” I just ubuntu results and they deal with GNOME. Not really a KDE issue but still.

    One of the sad facts of life is that Kubuntu will always be Ubuntu’s younger sibling…

    > * There are some other issues to do with xorg.conf I need to sort out - correct screen res, touchpad scrolling - the vendor of my machine supports ubuntu but not kubuntu. And everytime I do anything with xorg.conf I end up having to revert to the previous version ’cause X won’t load.

    The X window system falls outside the direct control of KDE or GNOME, since it works underneath KDE or GNOME. Most of these xorg.conf issues are more distribution-related than KDE related. The unfortunate thing is that regular users usually cannot or do not make that distinction. So no, KDE has nothing to do with your X not loading. :)

    > * IRC channel was almost empty. I think I ended up to talking to you Jucato… thanks for your help!

    There are always more than 200 people in the #kde and #kubuntu channels. But one factor that must be considered in IRC support is that everyone there is a volunteer who are there to help, when they are able to help, when their timezone permits it. It would have been nice if we lived on flat earth. (I hate timezones!)

    Anyway, I wish you the best in trying out KDE for the next days or weeks. And don’t worry if you really can’t stay. You can use your favorite KDE apps without problems. Just keep in mind that some of the problems you might encounter could be specific to a certain distribution only. If you are ever in need of help, you can use the IRC channels or you can drop a support question in:

    http://www.kde-forum.org/
    http://www.kubuntuforums.net/ (if you’re using Kubuntu)

    See you around! (I hope)

  11. dave Says:

    Just a couple of follow up things:

    * don’t want to make KDE into GNOME; I just want to get it doing some of the things I like from GNOME. Because then the learning curve will be less steep.

    * I will take th time to work out themes in KDE. I do really want to. Mainly because I hate staring at a lightbulb all day and dark themes solve that problem. :)

    * When I selected text in my previous Ubuntu install I could click down on it and drag the text to a new window or a new position. Now when I click to drag it just puts the cursor where I click. Maybe it has to do with that one click to open/activate thing.

    * The vi thing maybe something to do with my arrow keys and xorg.conf. I bought this laptop from a company that installed and set up ubuntu for me. They may have done somethings to get the arrow keys recognised across the board. In vi on KDE the arrow keys put letters on the screen instead of moving the cursor around. I really didn’t think it was a KDE vs GNOME thing; just a that install to this install thing. Could be versioning of vi (all though I doubt it), could be a keyboard thing (more likely).

    * In Gedit you can swap the side panel for tabs across the top. That’s what I was looking for in Kate. I’ll get used to it. It’s just a waste of space when I usually only have a couple of files open at a time.

    * I’m glad to hear about the Kontact thing. I will look into it again. I found google results referring to a bug but didn’t find a solution. I will look again now that I know there is one.

    * I know about firefox in GNOME. Epihany is the default web browser. But I was talking about Firefox and Konqueror both in KDE. Firefox seems to render fonts differently in KDE than it did in GNOME (unless it’s because I ended up with a different version of firefox?) I tried fiddling with the fonts in KDE and in firefox but it was still rendering some text too big and some too small. I couldn’t find a middle ground for firefox. I could for konqueror though.

    * The xorg.conf thing I only mentioned because I don’t have support for the machine from the company I bought it from when I use Kubuntu but I do when I use Ubuntu! I am going back to Ubuntu I’ll get their support to set everything up again and will then instal KDE and start using it instead of GNOME. AT least I’ll have a safe place to go back to when I’m tearing my hair out. :)

    * IRC: I was just so used to going to #ubuntu and finding 5-10 conversations going on at once that I found #kubuntu like a ghost town. I didn’t mean anything negative by what I was saying sorry if it came out that way.

    I will keep trying. I really want to get the benefits of KDE. And I will look at the forums. Thanks for the links. I usually hate forums though because for some reason I can never find what I’m looking for (I think it it is difficult to search for the solution when you don’t even know how to describe the problem) and I hate posting questions because I’m sure I’m duping someone or I could probably find the answer if i googled harder/better and then when I post questions I don’t get answers. And that’s on the ubuntu forums. I imagine my chances on the Kubuntu ones will be lower. :)

    Thanks for your reply

  12. nosrednaekim Says:

    Hey,

    Good post… I think the killer feature of KDE is the integration. control Amarok from within konqueror? totally amazing.

  13. Hisham Ali Says:

    I don’t know a lot about programming and toolkits. But, the question that I keep asking and get no answer for is about porting firefox to qt. Is it really difficult? If not why don’t kde devs (or any volunteer programming) do it? I imagine that would increase the popularity to kde. And please don’t tell me just use firefox in kde. I know that it is possible, but I hate that kind of solution.

  14. Troy Unrau Says:

    @Hisham Ali

    Well, Firefox implements it’s whole user interface using XUL, so in order to port it to KDE and have all the extensions work, you’d have to re-implement XUL for KDE. The side effect is that it would still look and behave exactly like the old version of firefox, since XUL controls the appearance.

    There was a port of Gecko to kparts at one point, which allowed konq to embed the gecko rendering engine rather than khtml. The problem was that it was slower than KHTML, and was never maintained, so it died a few months after it began.

    Frankly though, if it wasn’t for the lack of a rich-text editing widget for konq, I’d never have a need to use firefox anyway. (And I personally usually just use opera for those websites, since it’s faster.)

    Cheers

  15. Hisham Ali Says:

    Thank you for your reply. I don’t know what is exactly what XUL is. But I think I get the idea. What about the file selector and the scrollbars in firefox, they look the same other gtk apps. Would these two also need reimplementing XUL for KDE. Thank you in advance.

  16. nixternal Says:

    @Dave

    To get vi to work like it does in Gnome, you need to install vim-full. Kubuntu ships with vim-tiny. vim-full was built specifically for Gtk applications, so it will install some Gtk dependencies. I myself prefer the vim-full over vim-tiny.

  17. pxn7 Says:

    @Jucato
    Great article, keep up the good work. I may even be tempted to start contributing to KDE myself, I would like to learn to code in KDevelop, do you know of any helpful resources to being in KDevelop?

    @Dave
    Try kde-look.org for all your themeing pleasure :)

    Also, some of the posts above state that opera is faster than firefox… I have only recently started using opera i would have to agree here, plus the added bonus where it also renders widgets using the QT theme too. My question is why it still uses the older QT file-selection dialog as opposed to the native KDE file-selection dialog?

    Oh, nevermind, I think I may have just answered my own question.

  18. Dread Knight Says:

    Krap ^_^

  19. Xerop Says:

    First off, great article!

    I haven’t been able to try any latest releases of KDE. But everytime I tried them I ran into two errors. SMB seems to crash a lot in Konqueror. And a lot of times when I try to launch applications they don’t launch after the first click, the bouncing icon appears then disappears and nothing happens. After I click the second time the application launches.

    Third, wanted to reply to the second comment by nixternal (I may have misinterpreted, but you were joking, right?). I just ran into an interesting issue in vista. It seems a couple of the DVD’s I ripped (yes I do own them. why you ask? because I don’t want to go searching for them every time I watch them, there is a reason I have a 500gb HDD.) Don’t want to playback voices. I assume vista’s DRM is at work. All of the audio plays but the voices are all missing.

  20. puNk!d Says:

    I’m a die-hard KDE fan, too! I ever tried Gnome, Xfce4, fluxbox, fvwm, e17, kde … and i sticked to Gnome for almost one and a half of year, but since i immigrated to KDE, kde has always become my first DE choice.

    I really agree with you on the KDE’s excellent integration. Basically i use kwrite to deal with the text documents, while i can easily use quanta plus to do some code writing as its syntax highlight, keyboard shortcuts … are almost the same as kwrite/kate.

    Meanwhile, I cannot find a better audio player that Amarok, it is so powerful. Convenient music library management, last.fm built-in support, with amounts of script to enhance my music listening experience. That’s one of the best Apps i found in linux world.

    Honestly speaking, i think Gnome’s file manager Nautilus is quite lame, comparing to KDE’s konqueror. With it, i dont need any extra ftp software. As well, some apps such as k3b, amarok provide great intergration with konqueror, letting me easily deal with the multimedia and cd burning under konqueror.

    P.S: I didnt say that Gnome was bad, actually i still use ubuntu on my old comp while compiling and running kde on my new comp’s Gentoo system.

  21. Ratty R Says:

    Kioslaves, as a good thing? Sure, they’re better than GNOME’s vfs layer, but the fact is that when you have any non-KDE apps running, Kioslaves become a huge hindrance. We need to ditch Kioslaves for FUSE, and fuck any platform that can’t get FUSE (why should the Linux desktop be held back?).

  22. chepel Says:

    You CAN hide sidebars in Kate.
    Try menu: Window->Tool Views->Show/Hide Sidebars
    Default shortcut is: Ctrl+Alt+Shift+F.

    Regards!
    P.S. Good article!

  23. Chris Says:

    Is it possible to switch from GNOME to KDE w/o completely replacing a present Ubuntu install w/ Kubuntu one?

  24. jo momma Says:

    KDE is my fist choice, but it always looks like it just came out of a dogs ass, and i don’t want to spend hours customizing it

    hopefully KDE4 will look much much much much better

  25. Adam Says:

    I suppose it’s a bit esoterik, but I absolutely kannot stand everything having K’s in place of the proper letters. It’s kompletely childish and takky. Kome on, KDE, grow up. There’s a reason why every other operating system/desktop spells things the korrekt way — because it’s korrekt.

    Moreover, it’s enough to turn me off of what is otherwise a rather impressive desktop.

    My $0.02.

  26. Ben Says:

    @Chris

    sure, I to install kubuntu desktop on *buntu I think the command is.

    sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop

    Then you can select kde for a new session.

  27. G|oS|co Says:

    Yeah your long post made me want to use KDE even less … perhaps a bullet point article with picture showing KDE v G might be better … but its easy for me to criticize … good work for writing it up.

  28. nixternal Says:

    @Xerop

    ya, that was a joke about Vista. Jucato and the others somehow started a joke quite a few months back, and if you do !nixternal in one of the *buntu channels that has ubotu in it, you will see what I was referring to :)

    I recently tried out Vista since I got it free through school, and I am utterly amazed at just how bad it really is.

  29. Jucato Says:

    Sorry for not having been able to reply sooner. Once again real life foils everything. So let me go through some of these:

    @pxn7: I’m still trying to get my head around KDevelop too. Specially trying to find out if it’s at all possible to use it for a simple 2-3 file C++ program, *without* having to create a project. :)

    @Xerop: I mostly get that non-launching behavior with Firefox and nothing else. The fox just hates me for loving the dragon

    @Ratty R: But GNOME VFS doesn’t work on non-GNOME apps either. So the same is true with GNOME. At least you did say that kioslaves are better. :) Anyway, I’m leaving it to http://freedesktop.org to get a cross-desktop solution started. And I hope that they do consider kioslaves as the bases (yes, being a bit biased here).

    @chepel: Thanks! I totally overlooked that. I guess one of the disadvantages of too many options is that you tend to forget/overlook others that you don’t usually use.

    @Adam: iReally don’t know but iFind some properly (emphasis on properly) named K apps to be better than some gnome-naming. True, there are some bad K-names, but there are good ones too. It takes more creativity to find a proper name with a properly placed K than to gnome-everything or iEverything.

    @G|oS|co: Your nick made me not want to reply, too. but that wouldn’t be fair. :) Anyway I sort of intended this “post” to really be something that can be used as an “article” sometime in the future. Hence the length.

    So anyway, I have been dugg, for the first time. An exciting experience, growing paranoid if my site would handle the traffic. Fortunately for me, it did. :)

  30. MD Says:

    kioslaves and Gnome VFS are both the wrong solution. Virtual file systems should not be implemented at the application or desktop level, but at the operating system level, so that *all* applications can benefit, regardless what desktop they were written for (if any). FUSE (see http://fuse.sourceforge.net) is the way to go.

  31. joe momma Says:

    how many years of development does kde need to make text fit inside a window, or window to auto resize to fit the content? im tires of having to resize every god damn window,

    also the KDE control center is kind of a joke, windows95 has a better control panel

    konqueror sucks. i hate that its integrated everywhere, good thing dolphin is coming,

    there are other things that can be bitched at, but overall its the ugliness and lack of fit and polish that makes it less poular than gnome

  32. Why KDE Says:

    Tektag / tim…

    I just suddenly felt an urge to write right about KDE after reading troy’s recent post (Troy, your marketing fever and ideas are contagious!!). I will probably be writing about something that has been written over and over again, but let me give it m…

  33. Brad Says:

    Great article, but it runs contrary to my experience. I like KDE and use kubuntu on my primary system dispite these issues, but I can’t consider this article very accurate.

    In my experience things don’t integrate very well in KDE. ARK’s integration with knoq, for example, is sketchy. Some compressed files have right-click menus while others do not.

    Drag-and-drop doesn’t work very well. A lot of apps just don’t support it, which isn’t terrible, but I can’t do something as simple as drag a file from one folder to another. Konq seems to forget my folder settings a lot, and doesn’t have easy shortcuts. To change the view of the current folder, for example. (It has a button that looks like it should do that, but doesn’t.) Dolphin does better at this so I’ve been using it…

    As for stability, the OS itself has been very stable, but a lot of the software isn’t. ktorrent krashes on me constantly. (k intentional) It’s pretty unusable. I’d use Az but it is so much slower… I hear it’s bloated. Anyhow, firefox crashes on me, dolphin sometimes crashes on me… though I have the same issues on my Ubuntu systems so I can’t really blame KDE I guess. Yes, when things crash usually it only effects that app and at least I don’t have to reboot, most of the time. But sometimes other odd things happen, like my external storage device will unmount for no reason I can see.

    It took me forever to get xorg.conf set up correctly, such that I have video at all, and the resolution I have still isn’t the best my monitor supports. (If I turn it up X doesn’t load.) Though again, I suppose that isn’t a KDE issue. It’s hard to tell a lot of the time what particular software is responsible for an issue.

    Getting konq to do what I want is an issue by itself, I don’t want to use dolphin, but I pretty much have to in order to do anything with any efficiency.

    As for the “amazing” selection of software… I can’t seem to find a decent usenet client. Klibido chokes on large newsgroups (though I am glad it doesn’t cause the OS to choke as Windows does in similiar situaitons) it still is mostly unusable. Plus, klibido “forgets” my newsgroup subscriptions every time I do the “download groups” function. It’s also a pain that often when I simply select an article it begins downloading it, and not only downloading it, it actually opens the binary attachment if there is one. I have to tread on eggshells to make sure I don’t launch every article I want to look at. Pan is far worse, but I suppose it was written more for text-based groups… and not really binaries.

    I have also yet to find a good par/par2 repair utility. Or something that can split/join files. 7-zip works fantastic on windows for compression/decompression/splitting/joining… but the one in kubuntu’s software repository seems to be command-line only. I wish it integrated with konq like it integrates with explorer on windows.

    A previous poster mentioned the fact that the #kubuntu chan on freenode is often empty, which is true. Keep in mind that Kubuntu is part of Ubuntu though, not an alternative. Meaning people in Ubuntu are often willing and able to help with Kubuntu issues.

    Anyhow, I’ve had other issues as well. I can’t get the feature that is supposed to remeber window settings to work, and I can’t find a color scheme I like. And there are just too many options for me to customize my own.

    Another issue is documentation. Simple documentation. The author of the above article mentions making right-click menus… I’ve been trying to find information on that, but haven’t been able to. I can’t find any decent beginners guide actually. kubuntuguide.org seemed promising when I first heard about it, but it’s just a list of command lines to install popular software for the most part.

    I was reading a bit about gutsy and I think it may solve a few of my issues… but who knows. I’m not sure where I can go for information on that either. Which ties into the marketing issue brought up by the author I suppose.

    The above issues are unresolved, of course, there is also a large amount of issues I’ve fixed but have no idea how I did it. I’m somewhat worried when gutsy comes out something will break that I got working, or I’ll have to reformat and I will not remember everything I did. It took me several days to get kubuntu running decently… I don’t ever want to go through that again, but what choice would I have?

    That’s not all, but enough for now.

  34. Jules Says:

    A couple of further points for Dave:

    > * don’t know how to get rid of that side panel in Kate. Need to work that out.

    Have you tried just using KWrite instead? I understand that Kate uses KWrite as its part for text editing so using it directly avoids the extra interface components when you don’t want them. I like the side panel of open files for the most part but there are plenty of times when I just want to quickly open a single file in a separate window and so use KWrite then.

    > * fonts on konqueror and firefox are all over the place. I’m not sure why, but firefox seems to render fonts differently in KDE than GNOME? I know how to set fonts in KDE and in firefox but I couldn’t get them to look right.

    I think this is largely down to the Kubuntu/Ubuntu installation (although it seems to be shared by most installations I’ve tried). I’ve found that I get nice and consistent font handling across all applications by installing and switching to the Microsoft fonts.

    Hope this helps, regards, J.

  35. leo Says:

    @Brad

    >* In my experience things don’t integrate very well in KDE. ARK’s integration with knoq, for example, is sketchy. Some compressed files have right-click menus while others do not.

    That’s strange. Do you know which (types of) compressed files give you right click menu options? Works here for seemingly everything.

    >* Drag-and-drop doesn’t work very well. A lot of apps just don’t support it, which isn’t terrible, but I can’t do something as simple as drag a file from one folder to another.

    Of course you can. What exactly are you trying to do? I find dragging to be fairly well supported, but the two main problems are dragging from one konqueror window partially in the background, to another one is annoying because KDE raises the first one when you press the mouse button, which obscures where you want to drag. Then you need to drag to the other window in the task bar, wait for it to appear, then drag to it. Also, you can’t drag text from web pages in konqueror.

    >* As for stability, the OS itself has been very stable, but a lot of the software isn’t. ktorrent krashes on me constantly.

    Dunno what version of Kubuntu you’re using, but one of them had an unstable version of KTorrent. If your version is anything less than 2.2 (Help -> About KTorrent), it will likely be unstable. I don’t know if KUbuntu has updated packages somewhere though. (That’s why I use plain Debian, there are always updated packages).

    >* As for the “amazing” selection of software… I can’t seem to find a decent usenet client.

    Yeah, can’t help you there. Tried KNode?

    >* Getting konq to do what I want is an issue by itself, I don’t want to use dolphin, but I pretty much have to in order to do anything with any efficiency.

    Could you elaborate on why Konq is not efficient? I love konq, I find it to be the most efficient way to work with my files, but I don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish.

    >* Anyhow, I’ve had other issues as well. I can’t get the feature that is supposed to remeber window settings to work, and I can’t find a color scheme I like. And there are just too many options for me to customize my own.

    Try kde-look.org They have some color schemes to download there.

  36. mexlinux Says:

    I’m building a blog showing advantages of both desktops KDE and GNOME.
    You might find it interesting:
    http://www.bbnuke.com/kdevsgnome

  37. Brad Says:

    Leo, I would be happy to go back and forth but it would be difficult here. E-mail me, brad @ bradsnet.net, and I would be happy to discuss it.

  38. Greg Martyn Says:

    @dave
    Kate supports tabs with a plugin. In the Settings menu, choose “Configure Kate”. Click “Plugins” on the left (it’s under the “Application” category.) Finally, check the “Kate Tab Bar Extension” and hit OK.

    The KDE3 version is a little primitive, but the KDE4 version works as you’d expect. (right click menu, etc)

  39. Some of the reasons for using KDE « Linux and Unix Top News Says:

    [...] read more | digg story [...]

  40. Partha Says:

    for Dave, if you like dark themes and also don’t mind the Apple OS-X brushed theme, I think you should try baghira. I am using gentoo and the official package name is “baghira”. If you are using Kubuntu or any other debian system, I think the package is “kwin-baghira”. You can find the tutorial on how to use the brushed theme at http://baghira.sourceforge.net/OS_Clone-en.php

    Regards.

  41. Michael Says:

    I am a Linux noob. I started playing around with it when Ubuntu started becoming popular. The more I played with it the more I liked it, but Ubuntu uses the Gnome desktop. I read an article in a linux publication that highlighted the features of Konqueror and I immediately decided to give Kubuntu a run. I must say that I am impressed with Konqueror and it’s many features and abilities. I especially like the way it interfaces with an FTP site. It my opinion it is worlds better than what is offered by Windows Explorer or Internet Explorer.

    Thanks to articles like this one, I am learning more and liking KDE more every day. I played with basKet for the very first time after reading about it in this article. Neat stuff. Thanks for taking the time to write about it.

  42. Some of the reasons for using KDE « Hot WWW News Says:

    [...] read more | digg story [...]

  43. Jucato’s Data Core » Archives » Glancing back at '07 Says:

    [...] and hopefully get to help others as well. I was also able to write my first (and so far only) “marketing” article about KDE, which found its way to dig, probably generating the most traffic on my site. I wanted to follow it [...]

  44. The Linux Index » Juan Carlos Torres: Glancing back at ‘07 Says:

    [...] and hopefully get to help others as well. I was also able to write my first (and so far only) “marketing” article about KDE, which found its way to dig, probably generating the most traffic on my site. I wanted to follow it [...]

  45. Dvd Burning Programs Says:

    Whatz up Guru, what made you want to write on Why KDE? I was wondering, because I have been thinking about this since last Saturday.

  46. Steven Russo Says:

    Hey awesome blog! Know anyone who would be interested in part time admin’ing a Linux box? Hit me up!

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