MAR
1
2007

The Road to KDE 4: Dolphin and Konqueror

As some of you who monitor the KDE news sphere may have noticed, there has been a recent addition to the kdebase module. The Dolphin File Manager has been added to complement Konqueror's browsing capabilities. Read on for more information about this new File Manager and its relationship to Konqueror and the rest of KDE.

A brief history lesson so you can get an overview of how file management has evolved with KDE: In KDE 1.x, KFM (the KDE File Manager) was born. It was a very rudimentary, very basic file manager with limited web browsing capabilities. Below is a shot of KFM browsing files (from the kde.org screenshot archive) so you get an idea of how it operated.

While it's obvious that KDE has come a long way since KDE 1.x, it is still easy to see which parts of KFM have inspired Konqueror's contemporary design, which was introduced as part of KDE 2.0. KParts technology revolutionized the way we used our File Manager application, turning Konqueror into a full fledged web-browser, and more. Here's a shot of Konqueror from KDE 3.5.6, and you can see that while the user interface is much improved, the same basic concepts remain visible from the KFM days.

Konqueror really shines as a beacon of KDE technologies in the KDE 2.x and 3.x series, showcasing the best parts of KDE technologies. Konqueror showcased the power of KDE's IO slaves, allowing true network transparency when managing your files over FTP, fish (SSH), HTTP, and much more. Konqueror is so advanced that you can enter an FTP URL into a HTML upload form and it just works as you would logically expect it to (as far as I know, it is the only browser which allows this). It also featured KParts, which allowed it to embed just about any sort of viewer required, directly into the interface, embedding things like KPDF, KWord, image viewers, and most importantly, the ever-improving KHTML page renderer. This is important, since even Konqueror's icon views were implemented as pluggable parts, making just about any kind of icon view possible.

So, Konqueror is a really powerful tool that can do just about everything you and your system can possibly want, and with this power comes unlimited configurability and extensibility through control modules and plugins. However, what often happens in Konqueror when you are browsing the internet is that Konqueror still wants to behave as a file manager and not a web browser. This split behavior is easily noticed through elements such as toolbar buttons. For example: the "Up" arrow is still available on the toolbar even when browsing Google Maps, but it is totally irrelevant in this context; another is having a web bookmarks toolbar visible while sorting icons in your /home folder.

Introducing Dolphin: Dolphin is a new File Manager for KDE 4 which is dedicated 100% to file management, and is not intended to be a one-size-fits-all tool as Konqueror currently attempts. It is intended to optimize your file management related tasks, and present an easy to use file manager for casual KDE use. That doesn't mean it won't be powerful or configurable, only that Dolphin is being built for a single purpose.

Dolphin isn't a total rewrite however, and is not intended to compete with Konqueror, rather the two applications will be complimentary. Dolphin uses the already existing IO slave facilities of the KDE platform to perform remote or local file management, meaning that it will be capable of doing all of the 'remote management' type activities that Konqueror has already matured. Dolphin just won't show web pages or PDF files embedded as Konqueror does.

And Konqueror will benefit from Dolphin as well. Konqueror is not going to disappear for KDE 4, although its user interface may yet see some adjustments as its primary utility will not as the default file manager. Of course, Konqueror will still be available for file management tasks as it has been in the past - there will be no changes in this regard. Changes made to KDE's icon view parts through the development of Dolphin will also help to improve Konqueror's icon views, as they both share these libraries. As stated before, Konqueror loads all of these icon views as pluggable libraries called KParts - improvements to the underlying KParts automatically benefit all users.

So lets take a look at Dolphin and Konqueror as they currently exist in KDE's Subversion repository. Please keep in mind that these snapshots represent developer work-in-progress builds and, while publicly available, are not representative of the final appearance or intended functionality of either applications, nor are they recommended for everyday use.

Konqueror currently looks something like this, and the icon views only half work. The problem is that these file views are simply direct ports of the KDE 3 codebase. Konqueror will eventually receive the same fileviews that Dolphin is currently using.

You can tell from Konqueror's default configuration of using tabs, and various other related interface choices that Konqueror is now mostly a web browser that also happens to do file management. While Konqueror's roots are truly derive from file management, it is more frequently operated as a browser these days by many KDE users. Konqueror does a great job as a web browser, underpinned by the fact it now implements CSS 3, including the highly-anticipated 'opacity' tags.

So while Konqueror continues to improve as a browser, it will continue to maintain KDE 3.x file management standards, providing a baseline functionality, and will be improved as code is shared between itself and Dolphin.

Dolphin is a whole different animal. It is a 'real' file manager - it's interface has a lot of elements which are specific to a file manager and cannot really be justified in a browser. This is best demonstrated with a screenshot.

Notice the implemention of a 'breadcrumb'-style directory selector, which works well for file management in a lot of cases, but is totally useless if you need to enter a URL when using a browser, and so becomes the sort of widget which is only useful when dealing with file hierarchies. Breadcrumb widgets may be familiar to anyone who has used OS X's Finder or GNOME's Nautilus. Another comment about the above screenshot: clicking and holding a breadcrumb item displays a list of directories that are at the same level as the one clicked, allowing for more efficient navigation.

However, using the breadcrumb widget is not essential, and if you are more comfortable with a Konqueror-style location bar, this mode of operation is easily configurable, as seen above. In fact, much of Dolphin is configurable, illustrated below.

This screenshot evidences the amount of effort KDE is spending trying to make configuration layouts sane while still providing as many options as reason allows. Also note the improved appearance of the configuration dialogs in KDE 4. Of course, this is going to be revisited somewhat as the dialog is too tall for some screens at the moment. After the Oxygen visual components go live, this dialog will be even easier on the eyes.

So, Dolphin's functionality is not entirely new, other than it presents itself in a new way. It can be seen as a hybrid between the power of Konqueror and the structure of Nautilus. Dolphin still builds on a strong KDE base, reusing existing technologies like KIO slaves and so forth. Right-click actions that were available in Konqueror will still be mostly present (except that Dolphin will necessarily load files externally instead of using embedding viewers). And Konqueror can now improve its web browsing experience even more, doing so without losing the file browsing support that has been there since KDE 2.0.

When KDE 4 is released, Dolphin will be configured as the default application for the local file:/ protocol, as well as the default file manager listed in the applications menu. Konqueror will ship as the default web browser, and will still be usable as a file manager to those that prefer the historical lifestyle. Users of KDE will have the ability to set the default file browser, much like how KDE 3.x can use third-party applications such as Krusader as the default file manager. Stay tuned for more information as Dolphin and KDE evolve towards 4.0.

Comments

Currently, when I open a terminal window from dolphin, it opens to ~ , instead of the present working directory. That's all I need to know. Please don't make this the default file manager.


By blackbelt_jones at Mon, 2007/11/26 - 6:00am

QUOTE

And Konqueror will benefit from Dolphin as well. Konqueror is not going to disappear for KDE 4, although its user interface may yet see some adjustments as its primary utility will not as the default file manager. Of course, Konqueror will still be available for file management tasks as it has been in the past - there will be no changes in this regard. Changes made to KDE's icon view parts through the development of Dolphin will also help to improve Konqueror's icon views, as they both share these libraries. As stated before, Konqueror loads all of these icon views as pluggable libraries called KParts - improvements to the underlying KParts automatically benefit all users.

END OF QUOTE

Look, fine, make whatever piece of crap you want the default file manager, but don't try to "integrate" Konqueror into some grand scheme.

News flash: Konqueror is not a particularly good web browser. That's why every kde-based live CD distro carries firefox (or ice weasel.) Nobody is going to want to use dolphin as a file manager and konqueror as a Web browser. They're going to use firefox. Konqueror is a terrific file manager which happens to function as a web browser. This enables all kind of cool tricks with html, (you can open applications, directories, almost anytghing with an html link) but for surfing, and streaming media, firefox is faster and has the cool plugins. It is as a file manager that konqueror lives or dies, and I think you'rfe crazy if you think large number of people are going to use both Konqueror AND Dolphin. They're going to chose sides.

Okay, I don't really have any profound knowledge about how other people use Konqueror, but, neither, clearly, do you.


By blackbelt_jones at Mon, 2007/11/26 - 6:00am

Okay, so the open terminal window seems to be working now, maybe I imagined the whole thing, who knows? I'm having a hard time figuring out just how horrified I should be by this.


By blackbelt_jones at Tue, 2007/11/27 - 6:00am

I tried Dolphin, and I can see where a new user might find Dolphin a lot more hospitable than Konqueror , and that's very important. I want to support you in this,

But Konqueror is the biggest, most comprehensive power-user desktop application ever. After five years, I'm still finding new ways to use it. I use it in fluxbox, where it is almost a desktop environment onto itself. I created a special Konqueror homepage where html links can be used to open applications, directories, webpages, even shell scripts.

So when you do your "adjustments", please don't assume that people are going to be using both Konqueror and Dolphin.

Konqueror is the most powerful, most awesome desktop application, ever. Please respect the awesomeness. Don't curtail Konqueror's awesomeness to fit into an "integrated Desktop".

Also, even if Dolphin is the default file manager for KDE, please don't make it the default manager for Konqueror. In other words, when I open a file in Konqueror, I don't want to see a dolphin window. This kept happening again and again, until I was forced to uninstall dolphin.


By blackbelt_jones at Tue, 2007/11/27 - 6:00am

"Konqueror will ship as the default web browser, and will still be usable as a file manager to those that prefer the historical lifestyle."

"HISTORICAL LIFESTYLE?"

How did I miss that before? F*** this, I'm archiving all the KDE 3.5 source code I can get my hands on!


By blackbelt_jones at Wed, 2007/11/28 - 6:00am

I came into this discussion a bit late. I had no idea what Dolphin was until I installed the 7.10 version of Kubuntu. I hated it immediately. After finding that Konqueror was thankfully still included, I opened up Adept and removed Dolphin from my copy of Kubuntu. Whoever thought including a half finished piece of S**t like Dolphin would be a good idea should be forced to go back and use Windows Vista FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES. Its horrible.
I agree with the many other posters here that Dolphin is a bad idea. Fine, include an option to use Dolphin for those who wish to, but don't make it the default file manager.
BTW, the FIRST thing I do now after loading up a copy of Kubuntu?
Remove Dolphin.


By lpbbear at Sat, 2007/12/01 - 6:00am

I firmly believe one of the most important pieces of software ever developed for the operating system has been Konqueror. I classify it as the only real Universal Resource MANAGER. There are small issues with Konqueror that could easily be fixed rather than relegating KDE to even greater complexity.

I would like to see more effort into streamlining KDE and clarifying its interface. There is no sense in having two editors, a host of PIM hooks, and far too many controls and subcontrols. And now there will be more than one way to drag an .mp3 from one folder to another. BLOAT!!!


By mark at Wed, 2007/12/12 - 6:00am

the beauty of open source world - "being free" - is also its curse :))
In my opinion dolphin is nothing just resource waisting... better idea is to improve konqueror!!!! not by get rid of unused features but providing a very simpler profile (with less options available for those overwhelmed)....

the only direction for kde is to provide as much customization as possible in most logical way...

kde should be reliable project with no revolution in user space only stable improvement...

eg I liked feature of ioslave /devices:, after that was a disaster of /media: because it didn't behave in the some way and it took a lot of time to restore functionality... and now they disappear in kde4... because its dolphin for files!!!!

if some users like simpler file manager do it but why destroying thing liked by others????

dolphin doesn't allow for multiply windows view (only vertical)... a lot of people use it in horizontal mode


By genesiss at Fri, 2008/01/18 - 6:00am

A cluttered interface with icons that are far too huge, I really don't like Dolphin, deep six it.


By Steve at Sun, 2008/03/16 - 5:00am

Here's an idea that will blow your mind - how about *you* don't use it, and the KDE guys don't "deep six" it so the many people who do like it can continue to use it?

Oh, and I suspect you meant "lose", not "loose".


By anon at Sun, 2008/03/16 - 5:00am

See the thing is my opinion on this will change if Dolphin actually becomes a useful tool. As far as pwole liking it, well, people like windows too, and there are some that even like Vista. Even if the dev team does stop working on Dolphin *you* can continue to use it, the same way *I* can continue to use Konqueror, or whatever other better file manager can be found.
Good call on the "lose" vs "loose". Thank you.


By Steve at Tue, 2008/03/18 - 5:00am

I've given KDE4 a chance more than once, I've tried it when it was beta, RC, 4.0.1 and I ran trunk a couple of times, last time was yesterday. Still I can't coerce myself to use it daily even though I really want to, not because of the bugs in Plasma or the lack of apps but because of Dolphin and the Dolphin KPart that has RUINED Konqueror.
I think Dolphin is Complete And Utter Crap (TM) and the mentality behind Dolphin is the cancer that's killing KDE, and I see that many agree with me at least partially.
Is anybody working on a Konqueror fork or maybe a port to KDE4 of the old Konqueror file KPart from KDE3?
Damnit I will pay gold and bleed C++/Qt from my fingers day and night just give me a real file manager on KDE4 not this gnomish krap.


By Teo Mrnjavac at Mon, 2008/03/31 - 5:00am

This kind of rant isn't really worth responding to, but for any more civil people who are interested: both Peter and the Konqueror devs have stated on numerous occasions that any features that have disappeared from Konqueror in KDE4 as a direct result of the use of the Dolphin KPart are to be treated as bugs, and patches are welcome: Konqueror is still the "power user tool", and they have no interest in crippling it (largely because they are probably power-users themselves).

"Damnit I will pay gold and bleed C++/Qt from my fingers day and night just give me a real file manager on KDE4"

Great - go for it!


By anon at Mon, 2008/03/31 - 5:00am

I am sorry that it has been decided to "abandon" Konqueror. Its multiple personalities were the prime reason for me to keep using it. Nice things such as the UP (URL) arrow and CLEAR (URL) icon gave it an enormous advantage over its competitors, in both web an file browsing.
Troy Unrau gave _no_ valid reason for "abandoning" Konqueror.
Even a newbie could make good use of it. And he/she would not be confused: he/she could use different applications for "fileing" and "webing", if he/she wanted to!
What should be done, was to improve it, not substitute it!
I am very sad for KDE's developers decision!
José


By José M. Cruz at Wed, 2008/04/23 - 5:00am

I am a power user and find that dolphin has slowed down my functional ability to work significantly. My number one complaint is the lack of a tree view as I often use this to move files and directories around the system.

Cheers


By cthulhu at Sun, 2008/04/27 - 5:00am

Dolphin vs Konqueror is like Tux Paint vs. The GIMP, or Windows' Command prompt compared to a Linux bash shell. Dolphin does an acceptable job as a file manager. Konqueror does a phenomenal job as a file manager.

The effort should be to improve Konqueror. Many suggestions have been made, such as allowing toolbars and sidebars to be saved with the profile. Dolphin should ABSOLUTELY NOT be the default file manager.


By Ramon Casha at Wed, 2008/06/04 - 5:00am

Konqueror is dead. Really. It uses the same part as Dolphin use, so all the context menus it had and things like spring loaded folders (when you drag a file over a folder without letting it go, it opens the folder!) are not in KDE4 Konqueror because Konqueror shares the same shitty code as Dolphin has.
Dolphin and Konqueror in KDE 4 are useless. I can't even select multiple files by holding down ctrl which is a PITA if there are files I don't want to select with the mouse.

Well, the whole KDE is dead for me anyway. Next to useless plasmoids and dolphinism.


By anon at Wed, 2008/06/04 - 5:00am

Konqueror is dead. Really. It uses the same part as Dolphin use, so all the context menus it had and things like spring loaded folders (when you drag a file over a folder without letting it go, it opens the folder!) are not in KDE4 Konqueror because Konqueror shares the same shitty code as Dolphin has.
Dolphin and Konqueror in KDE 4 are useless. I can't even select multiple files by holding down ctrl which is a PITA if there are files I don't want to select with the mouse.

It's bad all right, but I bet it turns out okay in the end. KDE 4.1 RC2 only reinforced my bad feelings about KDE4, but Konqueror will live in the end. I've heard that it's supposed to b easier to write extensions for Konqueror 4, so maybe an extension is all that's required to fix konqueror. I'm prepared to keep using KDE3 until KDE5 comes along.


By blackbelt_jones at Sat, 2008/07/26 - 5:00am

The fact that people think that

a) KDE4 will not see any major improvement until sometime past 2013; and

b) That KDE5.0.0, when it arrives, will be strictly better than the last entry in the KDE4 series

absolutely boggles my mind.

Anyway, I don't see any reason why Konqueror 4 should be easier to write extensions for - do you have a source/ justification for that?

"Fixing" Konqueror - whatever that means - simply requires that people step up and help. Of the two examples your parent gave, one is simply false (you can select multiples files by holding CTRL, using either the mouse or the keyboard) and for the other, a complete newcomer submitted a 5 line patch (excluding comments) that restores spring-loaded folders a couple of weeks ago which Peter says he will incorporate once it is modified a little and he is done fixing bugs for 4.1. Just 5 lines, and yet the parent seems to think that this is some massively intractable problem that is either incredibly hard to fix or that the developers don't want added.

It's sad that people are so pessimistic, as it makes potential contributors think that either fixing their pet bug/ restoring their pet feature is too hard or that it won't be accepted by devs.


By anon at Sat, 2008/07/26 - 5:00am

Times ago, it was hard to accept Konqueror in KDE, mc had been the tool of choice.
But it took no long time to find out how to connect these two tools.
Working with the mouse, it was less time consuming to go to the path, taking a look on the files, an with F4 (Extras-Terminal) I got the Konsole and the bash.
In this enviroment now I took the mc and made the task on the keyboard without a mouse, without the overhead of konqueror. Trying commands in the Konsole have been possible, but now all the goodies are lost (Forget the included terminal, forget the Konsole in KDE4, with is not capable fixing the window-size permanently, .. ).
Firefox is the webbrowser of my choice, but useless for working on local html-files. There was konqueror the tool of choice, because it was a browser and filemanger.
The Konqueror is now useless, moving files to directories on left tree is impossible, Dolphin is totaly useless, MC is now my only tool, back to the roots? Worth to think about fvwm again?
Maybe, it seems to me that kde4 will get a windows clone: always hoping to get the thinks I need, but always getting gimnicks not needed.

What will I use:
Firefox - no need for konqueror
mc - No need for dolphin

Please think about the further way, explorer is now much better than these two tools. I'm really sad.


By thomas at Wed, 2008/07/30 - 5:00am

Amidst all your whining, you forget to mention the only relevant details that will get your concerns addressed: what you feel is lacking from Konqueror and Dolphin.

About the only information you gave on its drawbacks (apart from a thoroughly worthless "it's useless") is that "moving files to directories on left tree is impossible" (can anyone verify if this is the case?).

When are people going to learn that writing a paragraph of whining *without giving any specific details on what the problems actually are* isn't going to help their situation? Talented though the KDE devs are, I'm fairly sure that they aren't mind-readers :)

So, for everyone who truly wants KDE software to improve (rather than just whining on forums which, while I'm sure it is cathartic for you, is of absolutely no practical worth to anybody. Including yourself.):

- Cut the Livejournal crap and the "KDE == teh GNOME/ Windows/ whatever" droning; and
- Give us specific criticisms that we can actually work on!


By anon at Wed, 2008/07/30 - 5:00am

"About the only information you gave on its drawbacks (apart from a thoroughly worthless "it's useless") is that "moving files to directories on left tree is impossible" (can anyone verify if this is the case?)."

Nah, it's not true. Dropping files on the treeview is perfectly possible. Dropping files on the Places icons works fine, too. Just tested it with Dolphin on Windows, at work, where I don't have access to Linux. (Btw -- starting Dolphin 4.1 on Windows is much snappier than with the last RC.)


By Boudewijn Rempt at Wed, 2008/07/30 - 5:00am

You're probably feeling a little deja vu, then? ;)

http://dot.kde.org/1179921215/1214618001/


By anon at Wed, 2008/07/30 - 5:00am

Just a comment: this article mentions the "up" button on the Konquerer interface as if it's a bad thing in a web context: however that feature is one you have to write a plug-in for in browsers like firefox: it's great if you want to move upwards in a directory in contexts that might resist you just changing the url.

In my humble opinion, and forgive me for now knowing a better place to post this, I would keep that feature.


By John at Wed, 2008/10/22 - 5:00am

By way of introducing this I'll say that I have given Dolphin a chance and it does some, a few things, very well.

It is better than I feared but it isn't really all that good. In the process it's crippled Konq and both a file manager, in my experience, as a browser.

First let me address the problems with Dolphin. If, as it seems here, the inspiration for Dolphin as a file manager has largely been from Nautilus and Explorer there has been every reason to fear that this was going to be a dumbed down file manager. For what it's worth Nautilus and Explorer are worst-of-breed not best-of-breed file managers. Nor is Dolphin in any way comparable to Midnight Commander which is best-of-breed.

The first and major problem is Views. Views must be set, individually for each folder instead of default. If you want folders view in each folder you get that by default on first start. And heaven forbid that you want something else because the user cannot click View, select Details and easily make it the default. Nope, it's hidden down at the bottom of the menu as Adjust View Properties. (-3 for awkwardness and -1 for hiding the default choice so well.)

Nice but it's not, as near as I could find, mentioned in the Dolphin Handbook. (-1 for it seems you don't want people to know that.)

(Just why folder view is so popular in file managers of late is one of the biggest mysteries of my life, btw. It tells me nothing at all about them, rents up far too much screen real estate and, in the end, doesn't even have a lot of visual appeal.)

Now for Details view, in case you missed it, the one I find (found) most useful. Details reveals a wealth of information hidden by a Folder view at a glance. Add some details columns and you can see a lot of information there. A far better way of managing files and folders that a screen full of folders.

Also a far better way of seeing if something has gone haywire. Date stamps are wonderful things.

One HUGE problem, by design it seems, is that while you can sort on the additional information columns once they are displayed you can't move them around to see what you want or need to see in the order you want or need. They're frozen there in arbitrary order. (Mostly, it seems, the order you selected them.) C'mon guys even Explorer does that! (-5 for usability crippling).

Columns is an interesting concept in that it provides a visual drill down of a folder into subfolders and so on. Drilling down using the mouse is fairly quick but going back is kinda slow. Still, I can see a use for it once it's refined and made a little quicker. (+2)

The Information column. Is it really necessary to have the folder icon so huge? Look, I'm near sighted but I can even see it clearly across the room with my glasses off. So it's too big!

The concept is good as is the rating and goes some way towards building a semantic desktop but it really needs thinking through. The icon does not need to be so huge nor should it be. The tagging ability is nice but as long as I'm in Details view the rest of it is redundant and shouldn't appear at all. In fact under Details tags should be an Additional information column and yes, along with the rest of them freely rotateable. (+1)

If you are to borrow from anything for tagging and such do have a look at how Adobe Bridge handles it.

The items in the right column (Places) are done right and work well.

The split function works well though it is the mirror image of the functionality of Konq veterans which takes some getting used to. It's certainly nothing to boast about. It's existed, as you point out, for all practical purposes, forever in KDE.

Is Dolphin a KDE replacement? Emphatically no. Conceptually it's a giant step back to KFM. Is it capable? Yes. Does it rank as a default. No. Not unless you truly want to emulate broken file managers like Nautilus or Explorer and I don't think that was the intent but that is the road Dolphin is on.

KFM was capable too, remember. Outstanding it was not. Dolphin is not outstanding.

Konq, on the other had has been the swiss army knife of GUI file management almost since it's inception. The fact that it's also been a very capable browser only added to its luster as a file manager.

As it shares the file management code of Dolphin, along with the assorted strong points and drawbacks I'll skip that except to note that the code runs noticeably faster in Dolphin for some strange reason.

I'll mention, too, that on the Places menu in Dolphin if one plugs in a USB key or drive it instantly appears though there is no such capability for Konq. (-10 because is more than annoys me and shouldn't have happened.)

Konq retains most of it's swiss army knife characteristics that have made it a power users delight. For that, I guess, we should be thankful. It is noticably slower in some things and crashes more than I'd like. (In fairness Dolphin is crash prone too and both crash in similar circumstances.) The speed differences are there in both 32 and 64 bit builds.

As a browser it's taken a few steps backward in that it no longer renders a number of sites at all or as well as it did in it's previous incarnations. Behind a router forget it. So the wonderful advantage of being able to look for solutions on the Web to something I found within the file manager part without leaving the central tool is gone, at least for now.

All in all, then, in spite of Troy's otherwise good, if misguided, in my opinion, PR in the previous post in tracing the evolution of file management in KDE from KFM to Dolphin Konqueror remains the best of breed file manager and Dolphin does nothing to change that. As I hinted above it's really a prettier evolutionary throwback to the concepts behind KFM.

Dolphin isn't a worst-of-breed file manager such as the sad default excuses for file management in Windows and GNOME. It's not best-of-breed either. It's kinda like the kid that gets through school with straight C's. Capable but uninsipiring and not likely to be remembered or amount to much.

Finally, what triggered this response was this. Troy finished his post with the following statement. "...Konqueror will ship as the default web browser, and will still be usable as a file manager to those that prefer the historical lifestyle. Users of KDE will have the ability to set the default file browser..."

The remark is offensive, uncalled for and insulting and deliberately expressed to be so. What it indicates is that in Troy's perspective, is that both the file management part of Konq and the browser part are in the not to distant future to become abandonware and no amount of asking, praying and encouraging that neither happen will change that. It'll be like pissing into the wind of a Force 10 Gale.

There is no other way to read that remark and, now, no other way to read the often angry and irrational responses by some, a minority to be sure, defenders of Dolphin.

A file manager based on any part of Nautilus is nothing to be proud of and it is not now and never has been something to emulate as it emulates the worst file manager of them all -- Explorer.

Troy, if I wanted to use GNOME, I'd be using it. I use KDE because it is a far better desktop manager and continues to be in KDE 4.2 in spite of mistakes such as Dolphin and disasters such as the Kickstart confuser.

Konqueror given the chance was and is the future not the past. The fact that for, whatever reason, KDE developers chose the past with Dolphin (and Kickstart for that matter) mystifies me but that's not your decision not mine.

ttfn

John (a now insulted and very angry Konq user.)


By TtfnJohn at Wed, 2008/11/26 - 6:00am

While it would have been nice to have had a vote concerning the switch to dolphin as the default file manager, of course the day to day users of KDE were not consulted in the decision to replace konquerer as the flagship application of the project. I have been using KDE since KDE 1 days, even compiling it from source code uncountable times (how many remember the initial koffice versions with icons that looked like lego bricks?).

While I have flirted with gnome from time to time as it developed in parallel, KDE was always the first choice in large part because of konquerer. I have been using the various (broken) releases of KDE 4 for some months now and must say that it has not (yet) fullfilled its promise. Konquereor simply saved me time. I am a professional educator, scientist and archaeologist. The ability of konquerer to facilitate multiple views of information in one place --- web resources, sftp connections, pdf files, and local file views among many other resources --- is a stupendous attraction. It simiply saves me time. I can open one "container," choose a profile and get to work. With dolphin and firefox (I can not use konqueror in KDE 4 because it is broken), I estimate that I loose several minutes each time I must switch around and open multiple programs to get started.

The average user --- whoever that is --- wants to work productively and efficiently. Please, please focus on konqueror and mending its deficencies. You might start by facilitating the function of firefox plugins like zotero on konqueror. You might also facilitate the switching of button bars in sync with the displayed plugin. If the file browser needs fixing, then facilitate its development as a plugin to konqueror's universal container. A much better use of time would have been the development of a mechanism to access and manipulate metadata notes for files much like Gnome's Nautilus has. A universal metadata note taking system to store notes about files, sftp files, web resources locally would be a much more useful addition to KDE.

Those of you who have worked hard on the long term development of konquereor as an application deserve to be pround of your accomplishment. I noticed in today's NYT a full page add for Apple's G3 iPhone. Prominent among the icons displayed on it's "desktop" is the icon for safari, a fork of konqueror. While konqueor is downplayed and allowed to remain broken in KDE 4, the many, many users of the iPhone browse the internet with a tool that is a descendent of konqueror!

While we all understand the attraction of starting a new project like dolphin rather than emending and extending an existing one like konqueror, the real long term success of KDE lies in improving and streamlining the product. As a commentator above pointied out, why spend time on several applications like multiple multimedia tools when the user wants a single tool that works well with all the kinds of data they may encounter. Embrace, develop and extend a single audio media tool, a single video media tool and the single universal resource container, konqueror.

Chris


By Dr Christopher ... at Sun, 2008/12/07 - 6:00am

"I can not use konqueror in KDE 4 because it is broken"

Can you point out exactly what is broken in Konqueror from KDE4?


By Yves at Mon, 2008/12/08 - 6:00am

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