FEB
23
2007

Third KDE 4 Development Snapshot Released: "Kludge"

The KDE project announces the availability of the third development snapshot of the upcoming KDE 4. This snapshot is meant as a reference for developers who want to play with parts of the new technology KDE 4 will provide, those who want to start porting their applications to the new KDE 4 platform and for those that want to start to develop applications based on KDE 4. This snapshot is not for end users, there is no guarantee that it will be stable, and the interfaces are subject to changes at any time.

This new development version of KDE features the following new technologies:

  • Sonnet which has previously been covered on Linux.com.
  • Solid, KDE 4's unified layer to deal with hardware and network resources.
  • Vastly-improved support for the Windows and Mac OS platforms by cleaning up the source code from dependencies on X11. See kdelibs.com for more information.
  • The recently added filemanager Dolphin which will be the default filemanager for KDE. Konqueror will still be available and share much code with Dolphin.

After "Krash", the first development snapshot, this is another milestone towards KDE 4.0 which will be released later this year. The KDE developers aim at a release in summer 2007. Reaching this target depends on application developers picking up the new technology to use in their applications. While "Krash" marked the milestones initial Qt 4 port, the use of D-Bus as the inter-process-communication system, the merge of Phonon as the multimedia framework and CMake, KDE's new buildsystem defines this latest release.

The next planned change is new integration of Oxygen, the new artwork concept. Work on Plasma is also taking up pace.

Download the 3.80.3 source, or install packages for Kubuntu or openSUSE.

For those who want to keep track of the development process, KDE Dot News regularly covers new and upcoming technologies through the series "Pillars of KDE 4" (informing about upcoming technologies) and "The Road to KDE 4", which covers new functionality that has been integrated in the official development tree.

Questions about KDE 4 are answered on various mailing lists such as kde-devel and kde-buildsystem, as well as on #kde4-devel on irc.freenode.org. Documentation for getting up to speed with KDE 4 development is available from a number of sources.

Comments

Will there be Live-CDs?
Will there be nightly builds?


By Jan at Fri, 2007/02/23 - 6:00am

This is a single milestone release, sort of like an alpha or beta release, only it's not that level of stable yet.

Here's a list of available binaries I've got so far:
Kubuntu: http://kubuntu.org/announcements/kde4-3.80.3.php
OpenSuse: http://repos.opensuse.org/KDE:/KDE4/openSUSE_10.2

If you know of any other distros/platforms that have binaries for 3.80.3, please feel free to post them in the comments, as it helps everyone find them :)

(there's also http://kdesvn-build.kde.org/ , a script that helps build KDE 4 from SVN - it build trunk, rather than the tagged tarballs, but for some people, this is what they want...)


By Troy Unrau at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

Nice to see Suse packaging all modules, and also them splitting their packages more granular.


By Anonymous at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

Fedora:
FC6 i386: http://apt.kde-redhat.org/apt/kde-redhat/fedora/6/i386/RPMS.unstable/
FC6 x86_64: http://apt.kde-redhat.org/apt/kde-redhat/fedora/6/x86_64/RPMS.unstable/
Rawhide i386: http://apt.kde-redhat.org/apt/kde-redhat/fedora/development/i386/RPMS.un...
Rawhide x86_64: http://apt.kde-redhat.org/apt/kde-redhat/fedora/development/x86_64/RPMS....

Currently, I have kdelibs4, kdepimlibs4 and kdebase4 packaged up. These are safely parallel-installable with the KDE 3 packages. If you want to migrate your KDE 3 settings, copy your "~/.kde" to "~/.kde4". (Yes, the packages are patched, this is not the default behavior of KDE 3.80.3.) Thanks to Rex Dieter for building my SRPMs and hosting the RPMs in his repository.


By Kevin Kofler at Fri, 2007/03/09 - 6:00am

What's wrong with konqueror as default file manager?
Dolphin does not look so good...


By CHX at Fri, 2007/02/23 - 6:00am

I've used Dolphin and as a file manager it works fairly well, though I find the lack of tabs and built-in console a little annoying (but then again, it is pre-1.0). But, to be honest, if the profiles issue in Konqueror were sorted out so that we could have different toolbar sets per profile as well as different sidebar folders per profile, then most of Dolphin's advantages would evaporate.

I really don't need to see my internet bookmarks toolbar when doing file managing and I don't really need to have file-manager type buttons when browsing the internet...


By David P James at Fri, 2007/02/23 - 6:00am

This has been what i've hoped devs for years to do.. One of the things keeping me on gnome actually.


By Goalie at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

It also kept me away from KDE for a long time. I've been waiting for a separate file manager and I am very relieved to see it finally happen.


By Alethes at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

there are seperate filemanagers available for kde (krusader for example)

and you can use konqueor as file manager only, while using firefox as browser


By otherAC at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

while this isn't an attempt on our part to get gnome users to convert, it is an attempt to broaden our appeal in general.

i want to hear macos users say "ok, -now- i can use kde because ".

and when i say "broaden", this implies growth rather than shifting. so we need to continue to satisfy our current user base (we owe them, if nothing else =), which means not jumping a "this is the ONLY way" position of insanity.

it'll be fun to see just how well this all works out.


By Aaron J. Seigo at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

Well I also use a mac on a daily basis. There really isn't that much open source for macs especially stuff that runs native. There's a lot of shareware and a lot of commercial. GTK+ doesn't run native while QT does. There's a real demand and it looks like KDE will get there soon :D

When Kde4 is released I will certainly be cherry picking all kinds of applications as I currently do. I will also let windows users know of all the cool kde apps especially amarok.


By Goalie at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

kde apps on mac os is great and better than the alternative of just mac os with non-kde apps, but i'll be honest: i'd rather see mac users using kde apps on kde. =) that's my personal goal (as opposed to the goal of the kde project as a whole =) ... which means we have to make something compelling enough out of the kde platform that we can woo mac and windows people off their current systems


By Aaron J. Seigo at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

I love the idea of running my favorite KDE apps (and there is a lot of them) on my macbook, since I can't run Linux on it due employer requirements. I would however prefer running them on a OS supporting a full KDE environment.

There is one thing keeping me on OS X, the most important is FileVault, encrypted home, everything else I could do without or has a working replacement for under Gentoo.


By Morten Sjøgren at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

> ok, -now- i can use kde because

o.k. here comes a still and future ex-Windows user to tell about kde migration:
-now- i can use kde because:
Konqueror renders most web-pages quite well
Konq is also a good file manager, but a separate app would be preferable
Dolphin will be a good thing. Web- and file browsing are unrelated, IMHO
Amarok is a hammer, albeit not totally stable (crashes upon hilbernation)
OOffice integrates quite nicely and can convert M$-Office files nicely
KOffice is very feature-complete (KPlato etc...), COULD be better than OO
Oxygen seems nice, Solid as well, though I've not tried KDE4 yet.
In all, the KDE4 technologies seem extremely promising!
and of course: Linux is the best feature of KDE: real multitasking and user!!!

What still needs improvement until Windows users can fully switch IMHO:
KOffice needs better M$ filters. Can the new DOC to ODF filters be integrated?

What could be done to increase the good impression:
3D: IF, then "real 3D" à la looking glass, not a "2D+" à la compiz, please!

And of course the long-time missing linux features:
hilbernation, graphics card support, my scanner doesn't work...
but KDE for this KDE is not to blame!

By the way: congratulations for a post system that works without registration!!!


By sulla at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

>KOffice needs better M$ filters. Can the new DOC to ODF filters be integrated?
AFAIK: No. OO.org is converting to it's internal representation, not to ODF. That makes it very hard, if not impossible to reuse in KOffice.

Personally, I think it is more important to really have a *good* ODF support.

>3D: IF, then "real 3D" à la looking glass, not a "2D+" à la compiz, please!
No, thank you. I have never seen a usefull 3D interface just yet. Sure, some 3D effects can be usefull and make the environment very good looking, but I think a complete 3D interface is just nonsence while we still have 2D monitors.


By Andre at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

And add to that that most people can't see 3D, only 2D. Lots of people do not have a perception of depth.


By Tim Beaulen at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

You forgot to cite the recent study where 88% of respondents admitted this.
/end_sarcasm


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

Well, if Sun can do a Word<->ODF converter on Windows (even if using half of OpenOffice internally) then it should theoretically be possible to have something similar for KOffice. Or maybe have OpenOffice as optional runtime dependency and use it for converting MS Office documents to ODF documents by calling it from the command line and reusing this output.

Maybe Sun's new filter for MS Word will get OpenOffice some more refactoring so that the converter part can be used seriously as a library in some time.


By Jakob Petsovits at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

Thats what I ment. Probably one could use this converter and execute it from the KOffice load dialog as a command line script when accessing a word file. As long as it makes the word file acessible in Kword, I wouldn't mind the fulter using some OO library or even java...

As for 3D: thats why I put "IF" in capital letters: I also don't think that 3D is a good idea per se. I don't think the compiz effects are useful. Its no 3D after all, just using some 3D engines of the graphics card. I liked Suns idea however to attach notes to the back side of windows, thats real 3D. and if you move windows in the background they become smaller. And the 3D CD-changer also looks cool. But this is all real 3D, i.e. 2D windows live in a real 3D space. Of course, the apps are all 2D themselves. However, I could imagine a spreadsheet document having 3D data like today you have a 2D table and several sheets one beside the other...


By sulla at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

I'd also like to see a many-to-many command-line office-format-conversiontool. Would fix most, if not all, of our worries and duplicate work.

As for your 3D: The resolution of the current monitors is actually quite low for doing that kind of stuff: the windows would quickly start becoming fuzzy and unreadable if you make them smaller/zoom them out...


By Laurence at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

probably OO.o could make it possible to convert MS office doc's to ODF from the commandline (though you'd have to wait for OO.o to start in the background, which means you'd have to wait 5 minutes to convert a file) but then they'd have to spend time on it, to no real benefit to OO.o users, and why would sun do that?


By superstoned at Mon, 2007/02/26 - 6:00am

this is a HUGE amount of work, beyond the resources the koffice team currently have. they've rightfully prioritized features, stability and ODF ahead of this. new efforts are not discouraged, of course!

for ms office integration there is OOo. not perfect, but it works just fine in kde and helps resolve the ms office issue in the immediate term.


By Aaron Seigo at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

I work regularly on Windows and on KDE. On Windows I use Firefox as a browser and of course Explorer as File manager. This is actually cumbersome, annoying and I much prefer my KDE experience where I use the same app to do both.
I like to browse FTP sites and to be able to sort by type of files, by date or anything. I like to be able to use the "copy to" fight-click option to select several files or entire directories and copy them in a single click where I want them on my disk. I like to upload files on my personal web site by just drag and drop, without having to fire up a specific and annoying FTP app.
I also like to connect to other machines through SSH or SMB transparently.
As a matter of fact, Konqueror versatility has probably been THE feature that made me prefer KDE since the begining.
I can't see any reason why having a different app for browsing and file management is preferable.
And all this thing about clutered interface and everything seems to me a lot of wasted time : most people in the world use MS apps who are clutered as hell, that shows that most people are not really paying that much attention to this. I don't say that it's not desirable to clean up GUIs a bit, just that forcing people to change their habits in order to achieve this goal doesn't seem to me the best way to attract users. How much oversimplified MaCOS X is, it has not really attracted that many new users to MAC and a lot of people I know, who are not computer scientists far from it, actually find Windows easier than Mac.
What I like in KDE is that it allows me to work the way I want. I don't want to be forced into a way of working just because someone somewhere thought it was better. Most of desktops do that and none actually succeed. So please do not go that way too.


By Richard Van Den Boom at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

What you are writing about is network transparency, and Dolphin supports this, too (at least it is stated on their website, I haven't used it already).
As I understand it, only webbrowsing, also viewing HTML sites, execute Javascript code, ... isn't supported.
At least I hope I am right here, because these features are what I'm missing most when I have to work on a Windows desktop.


By veru at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

... it's actually very nice to be on an HTML site, click on a link to a FTP site and keep on browsing on the same windows or in a tab.
Having to fire up a new app, with a potentially different behaviour is annoying to me.


By Richard Van Den Boom at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

you realize you can keep on using konqueror right? Right?


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

Currently there is no choice, either you use konqueror, i.e. all-in-one, or not. Koqueror is a power-user tool and hence a bit too much for "beginners" who just want to browse the web or manage their files. Hence Dolphin was introduced.

Those that need and want konqueror, just continue using it.


By Anonymous at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

I disagree, beginners would have no trouble with Koqueror. They'll just ignore most of its features. on the other hand dolphin is much faster


By ben at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

> beginners would have no trouble with Koqueror

please tell universe that it messed up and to fix reality.

thank you.


By Aaron Seigo at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

yeah right, I'll go tell my 9 and 7 year old.
They have both FF and Konq installed on their respective system and both choose to use konq exclusively.


By Kay at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

And this has nothing to do with them seeing you use konq?
Nothing to do with konq's opening links (mail, etc) by default in your desktop environment? Let me take a wild guess on this on, it's KDE.
Oh, by the way we're talking about a file manager here, not a web browser. And konqueror, for the record, is still going to
a) be around AND
b) be doing both.


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

It doesn't matter why they use it, the fact that they _can_ use it says plenty.

You don't have to cripple things to make them easy


By mabinogi at Mon, 2007/02/26 - 6:00am

I live in a famaly of permement beginners, and I've studied their software habits.

What they don't understand they ignore* meaning functionality cannot hurt them unless it bloats the program or introduces a security risk.

* There is one exception, if the computer asks them a question, something like this is the first time you've used this program, please custiomise it. This can confuse them and then they ask me for help.


By ben at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

I don't live in a family of beginners. I won't pretend to be a studier of software habits. I have made a few observations on my short time here on planet earth with respect to people and computer programs.
a) People don't like change
b) People like simple interfaces
However, if an interface is changed to be simpler then
c) People don't like simple interfaces if it requires them to change how they work.

Boggles my mind. The thing with dolphin being available is that "people" in group A will be happy since they can keep on using konq; people in group B will be happy since they get to use something simpler, and the rest of you in group C will be happy as you get to complain about something.
Then you'll actually be even happier when you start using the apps and settle into groups A or B again. There'll even be a rare few who will, astonishingly, settle into groups A and B!
i.e. switch to Dolphin and then not want to change.


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

> beginners would have no trouble with Koqueror

please tell the universe that it messed up and to fix reality.

thank you.


By Aaron Seigo at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

I am fixing reality ever second sunday, but reality is broken beyond normal fixing. So I am going to replace it this summer, so you better hurry


By Universe at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

My wife is everything but a power user. She's an animator, having graduated from an art school, and she has no experience whatsoever with a computer. She had no difficulty at all browsing the web and managing her files with Konqueror, without any other input from me than the ones needed to understand what's a directory and what's a file, things you will always have to understand, whatever the file manager.
Most people only copy/paste, create new, double-click to open a file in the appropriate app and move files and directories by drag and drop.
They can manage easily any file manager as long as they find these options easily (which is the case with Konqueror). They will juste discard other options at first. Having the other options visible is not really an hindrance as far as I've seen and sometimes, it allows the most adventurous beginners to actually try the options they wouldn't even know to exist otherwise.
The speed issue can be an argument, but on a recent computer, I don't find Konqueror's speed a trouble.


By Richard Van Den Boom at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

> She's an animator, having graduated from an art school, and she has no experience whatsoever with a computer.

That's how I know you're a) LYING, b) know nothing about "art school" and c) Probably don't have a wife.

Cheers.

P.S. They use macs a lot. Some institutions (non-universities mostly) even use PCs in the animation studios when they want to live dangerously.


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

> I can't see any reason why having a different app for
> browsing and file management is preferable.

for many it isn't. for many more it is.

we're trying not to force our (or your) perception and preferences on them. we're also trying to optimize for the majority, nor are we trying to ship hobbled apps (people assume so little of the final state of dolphin *sigh*)

so if you can't see a reason for different apps, rejoice.
for those who do, now they can rejoice too.

what a concept! it's like we dropped the chocolate in the peanutbutter!


By Aaron Seigo at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

>for many it isn't. for many more it is.
And what are you basing this claim on? Any statistics, any poll that proves this?
Or are you just basing this claim on what you think is the good thing, based on some personal experiences?
My personal experiences, for what it's worth, tells that it does not really matter. The whole world statistics, showing that most people use Explorer which is at the same time a web browser and a file manager, seem to prove you wrong, beginners easily use the same app for both tasks.

Well... anyway, I'm probably making too much noise about this, since the willingness seems to make both apps live, I guess there's not much point being worried.


By Richard Van Den Boom at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

Of course we have the statistics, here they are:

66% of the universe agrees, adding dolphin as the default file manager will not cause KDE to implde upon itself.

Happy?

MY FAVORITE line of yours however has got to be this one:
>Or are you just basing this claim on what you think is the good thing, based on some personal experiences?
Much like you and you "wife" mayhaps?

but this one comes pretty close too:
>The whole world statistics, showing that most people use Explorer which is at the same time a web browser and a file manager, seem to prove you wrong, beginners easily use the same app for both tasks.

Ah the whole world statistics. So because users on a different system, who are largely unaware of alternatives choose to actually Live with what they are presented with, it is automatically good.
By your logic we can say that the jews absolutely loved their concentration camps. Good on yah sir. Good on yah.


By illogic-al at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

Are you really that stupid?


By Sergio Pistone at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

Come on, guys, let's not fight about this. We're KDE users, and many of us (including me) don't understand why anybody would use Gnome - it's less powerfull, and the so-called usability we don't care about. But many people seem to do, no matter what we thing or what 'statistics' we quote or use. Now KDE is adding an option for those who prefer this 'usability', without crippling the userinterface or removing capabilities in any way. This will help some people use KDE, and won't make a difference to us.

So WHY are we fighting about this?!?!? Please, a big hug, no more flames, and be happy...


By superstoned at Mon, 2007/02/26 - 6:00am

Well in all fairness by default is forcing a shift. I have been testing out an older stable version of Dolphin in the repos and reading Dolphins progress. It could be a good thing, but I'm still dubious. The interface seems overly simplistic and slightly lacking (no up arrow to navigate up and out of the directory tree).

I really don't want to see a shift towards:
1. Gnome UI -- because "simplicity" is the popular thing this year (just say no to the sparse wide fat huge buttons of gnome).

2. Firing up several applications that each perform a unique task -- This is especially a concern. I don't want to return to the thinking of yesteryear where we compartmentalize resource locations and functionality. I like that, now, I can edit files using Kate over SSH. I like that the remote server I'm working on is seamless to me. I don't want to fire up Kftpgrabber or FileZilla, a web browser, a minimalist file manager, a graphic viewer, etc.

Even with that concern I'll keep an open mind. After all an open mind is what drew me from gnome to KDE.


By R Liden at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

KDE is adding an option for those who prefer this 'usability', without crippling the userinterface or removing capabilities in any way. This will help some people use KDE, and won't make a difference to us who don't like it - Konqi won't go or lose anything. So let's assume the open mind doesn't go, allright?


By superstoned at Mon, 2007/02/26 - 6:00am

I totally agree! In every point.

And I have a question concerning this stupid folder dialogue. Can I switch back to the normal file dialogue?

Why shouldn't I see what's IN the folders? I can't understand this design decision. It's far the weakest "feature" in the whole KDE. It's annoying each and every time I have to select a folder/directory.

Tim

P.S.: What's great in konqueror is this great symmetry. If you break it, you break konqueror. I like konqueror for being such versatile. I don't have to learn a lot of different user interfaces for the same actions. And more: I can do what I want to do. No artificial limitations. Exception: this stupid folder dialogue. What I'm missing since switching to KDE 2 is the possibility to select multiple items on HTML pages like I can in the other protocols like file, ftp, sftp or so.


By Tim at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

the only thing changing in KDE 4 will be this:

The current 'filebrowsing' kpart in konqueror will be have a new 'shell', called dolphin. It will be the default filemanager. It's a bit like we get a second konqi, but then a very limited (filebrowsing) one, meant for the basics of filemanagement, and the old konqi will still be available.


By superstoned at Mon, 2007/02/26 - 6:00am

KDE 4 has been broadly advertised and it may have induced a rather strong hope among both KDE and non-KDE users. IMHO, the first stable release ought to be truly stable and well featured (no missing applications or so). Otherwise, potential new users may just throw KDE away.

Besides, long life!


By Hobbes at Sat, 2007/02/24 - 6:00am

Well, some Gnome users find Dolphin to look quite a lot like Nautilus :o)
http://www.digiplace.nl/pivot/entry.php?id=650


By otherAC at Sun, 2007/02/25 - 6:00am

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