KDE 4.1 Beta 1 Released

The KDE Project is happy to set the first beta of KDE 4.1, codenamed Caramel, free today. KDE 4.1 is intended to meet the needs of a broad range of users and we therefore respectfully request you to get testing Beta 1. Beta 1 is not ready for production use but is in wide use by KDE developers and is suitable for testing by Linux enthusiasts and KDE fans.

Highlights of 4.1 are a much more mature Plasma desktop shell that returns much of the configurability that was missing in KDE 4.0, many more applets and look and feel improvements, the return of Kontact and the rest of the KDE PIM applications, and many improvements and newly ported applications. The feature set is now frozen, so the developers look forward to using June and July to metamorphosing your bug reports into rock solid code, completing documentation and translating everything into your language. A series of Bug Days where users can contribute quality assurance to the release will continue towards 4.1's final release on the 29th of July, so watch the Dot for details.

For more details, see the release announcement and info page or if you are at LinuxTag, see KDE 4.1 being presented in Berlin this Friday.

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by Will Stephenson (not verified)

And kwrite now has bidi support, so kedit was retired.

by sebas (not verified)

It's gone. It was unmaintained for quite some time already, and kwrite is a good simple editor that should cover pretty much all usecases.

by sebas (not verified)

It's gone. It was unmaintained for quite some time already, and kwrite is a good simple editor that should cover pretty much all usecases. Kwrite has all the features that kedit had (and kwrite didn't) in kde3, and it's quite a bit faster.

by Raul (not verified)

Thanks, i always throught kwrite was more heavy, i will start using it

by levin (not verified)

And what abou priting support in KDE 4.1 ? because in KDE4.0 is not...

by Morty (not verified)

KDE 4.0 supported printing just fine. Lot of the advanced printing functinality of KDE 3 was not there, but printing is supported and works.

As for your question, if you read the anoncument you see "A new printer applet provides unparalleled printing power and flexibility on the Free Software Desktop.".

So my guess is thet they have done some improvment and extended the printing support a bit from what it was in 4.0. And of course improvments and new cababilities in Qt 4.4s printer support also helps.

by Odysseus (not verified)

Printing support has improved, look for an article in the Digest soonish (if I ever escape form work for long enough to write it). Basically, QT4.4 gives us a vastly improved Print Dialog on Unix, which I've further enhanced with a few extra Cups features. Printer management is still an issue, Jonathon Riddell has imported a new python based tool which I haven't had time to look at yet so can't comment on.


by fhd (not verified)

Many people bitched about KDE 4.0, including me (though only in my head).

After some clarifying words in aseigo's (and others) blog(s), I was assured that KDE 4.1 will kick ass, and have been at war with KDE 4.0 bitchers from then on.

But I've tried to use KDE 4.0 all the time. In fact, KDE 4 is the only reason I'm using KDE, I never liked KDE 3 a lot. Approximately one and half a year ago, I discovered first mockups of KDE 4 and became certain that it will just rock. To become a KDE 4 user, I got rid of Gnome (have been a gnomie for years) and got myself KDE 3. I never managed to get a "beautiful" desktop with it, because I never wanted to put much effort into it. So it looked like kindergarten but was a very powerful tool to me.
I've been following KDE 4 development very actively all the time, and now the day has come I've been waiting for - the 4.1 beta!

When I get home from work today, I will do nothing before the beta is not installed on my system.

Judging from the screenshots and changelogs so far: GREAT WORK!
This looks like a total usable release, I'm ESPECIALLY looking forward to finally using the new Kontact, Kontact is IMO the best out of all KDE programs. I hope my kitchensync setup continues to work nicely.

So to sum this up, thank you for KDE!!!

by ad (not verified)

Man I like KDE a lot, but shouldn't you wait until you try it before making this kind of post? :D

by fhd (not verified)

Yeah I should, but I was at work and it is all windozes here :)

However, I can underline it now, 4.1 ROCKS!

I even switched from Kubuntu to openSUSE to try it (Kubuntu's KDE support is just sick lately compared to the GNOME Flavour)

by Riddle (not verified)

I love to see people converting from Gnome :_)

by debianita (not verified)

I AGREE, i have using kde 3(i love it)for years, but is realy nice what are you doing whit kde 4,

by Adrian Ribao (not verified)

First of all I want to say I know:
- This is the first beta, not ready for production
- It's a big project and developers had too much work to do
- I'm using packages from the experimental branch of debian, and this is not good at all.

after all I must say I really like KDE, I think it's the greatest project made by the open source community, but... imho, KDE 4.1 isn't what I was waiting for, at least at this point (beta1).

I found some problems just starting, some of have already been posted here.
1.- No autohide panels, I really need them
2.- The widgets can't be moved in the panel (I mean change the position in the panel)
3.- It's not possible to configure the widget to be on the TOP of all the other windows, this would be even better than 1 & 2, since we could have a menu on the top left corner. 1 & 3 together would be the typical stuff that makes KDE the best desktop ever. Example: One widget on the top-left corner always over all the windows, and an auto hiding panel in the bottom with the task bar, paginator...
4.-Plasma was using 50-70% of my CPU. I don't know why. My system was very slow.
5.-I don't like the theme, but this is not important, I just wanted to say it :-)
6.- I can do the same things in KDE 3.5.9 much faster than in 4.1. This is what is killing me, when you upgrade the software, you must:
1.- Increase productivity of the users
2.- Make it more attractive
If you change priorities you'll get a copy of Windows.
There are a few things you can do in 4.1 and you can't do in 3.5 to make your life easier, and a lot of things in 3.5 you can't do in 4.1.

In my case, I can't give up productivity in favour of eye-candy.

I want to make this clear: This is just an opinion.
I understand KDE developers, and I'll support them, but this is the second time I don't like a KDE release, and I feel like if I say it, it might help. I just want to be constructive.
What do you think about this?

"I just want to be constructive. What do you think about this?"

There's some decent information in there, and you've civilly made some concrete suggestions that devs can actually work on, so I think this counts as contructive :)

1) They are still on the 4.1 Feature Plan - hopefully there will be time to add them.

2) This is known and planned, but unfortunately almost certainly won't make in to 4.1 due to the freeze :/

3) Again, 4.2 - it's on the feature list ( http://techbase.kde.org/index.php?title=Schedules/KDE4/4.2_Feature_Plan ) as "Top-level windows plasmoids".

4) Sounds like a bug - report it, making a list of what widgets you had running at the time.

5) Heh :) Try this one:


6) Ok, this is the weak part of your post: you don't give any examples at all. Also, comparisons to Windows are unfounded and *extremely* irritating to developers.

Also, the "KDE4 is just eye-candy" is very annoying and untrue.

Anyway, hope this helps! :)

by Adrian Ribao (not verified)

You are right, kde 4 is not only eye-candy, I know it, but it's one of the most important parts, and I shouldn't have wrote about windows, I'm sorry about this.

I had a few plasmoids running, I don't remember the exact names: calc, kate sessions, terminals, notes, and perhaps one or two more, but when I took a look at the system CPU usage, I only had the picture frame plasmoid running. and the two panels.

I'll post some examples, but now I must go for a while.

I think it would be great if we don't have to wait 6 months until we can use all the features we miss, maybe they can be implemented in each 4.1.x release.

It would be helpful if you posted more information about your system, such as graphic card and driver, distro etc.

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

2) Moving plasmoids inside the panel works (almost, with a little bug) fine even in 4.0.3. If it does not work in trunk, it is a bug that can and needs to be fixed, isn't it?

by Jonathan Thomas (not verified)

Currently, moving around applets that have already been added to the panel is impossible without removing and re-adding them entirely. This goes for both trunk and 4.0.x.

by MamiyaOtaru (not verified)

I miss kicker :(

by Kevin Kofler (not verified)

The 4.0.3 binaries you're using are patched. That feature is a patch Stefan Binner added to the plasma-4.0-openSUSE branch, and we're also shipping it in Fedora.

by yyyyyyyyyyyyyy (not verified)

can we please vote againt panel hiding if less than 50 percent of the users need it ?

What do you mean "vote against it"?

That's quite and arrogant attitude. You do realize that if all features with less than 50% of the userbase was removed, there would be almost nothing left? For some of us its quite a dealbreaker (i'm still using 3.5.9 exactly because of it) and for those who do not use it its just a configuration option that's not checked...

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

I think/hope it was irony.

I support some of the points, especially those pertaining to the panel. The panel is the thing that I am most unhappy about. After 4.0 release I thought that since the panel is a plasmoid then it wouldn't take that long to at least bring it to match Kicker. I am sure that it will surpass Kicker in time but TIME is the key word here because a lot of us are running out of patience.
The panel is just not there yet but I hope that it will be by the time 4.1 is released.

BTW, aren't there any one here who can write a panel plasmoid? Is it that difficult?
What about the XQDE project? Anyone knows if it's still alive?

by Boudewijn Rempt (not verified)

"BTW, aren't there any one here who can write a panel plasmoid? Is it that difficult?"

Haven't you tried?

Lol, I have two left hands when it comes to programming ;)

1 and 2 are definite annoyances. Hopefully they will be fixed before 4.1.
3 will likely be somewhat difficult to achieve, given how plasma is implemented.

4 is some sort of bug. I'm using the same packages from debian and am not seeing this. What video card and drivers do you have?

5 is preference.

6 needs elaboration. I think 4.1 is much nicer than 3,x ever was. Please give concrete example of exactly what is faster in 3.5.9. THat will help people actually fix things.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

Kickoff is slower to navigate than Kmenu to the point that after trying it, I grew so frustrated, I only use Alt+F2 any more.

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

It's 2 clicks to switch to the traditional menu (try right click on the menu button).

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

Thanks for the info. I am aware a classic menu was implemented (for which I am grateful) but Alt+F2 is now just a habit. I find it faster than either menu.

So why complain about Kickoff T.J? I guess you enjoy griping about KDE 4.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

He asked specifically for an example of how something in KDE 4 slows you down productivity wise. I provided a specific example.

by jos poortvliet (not verified)

Hey, how do you like the new Alt-F2 launcher, I mean the one just recently added before the beta? IMHO it really rocks...

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

I have only seen screenshots. I have no intention of using KDE 4.1 ever.

That being said, the screenshots do look nice for the new Krunner dialog.

by morrissey (not verified)

"I have no intention of using KDE 4.1 ever". So..

Why do you come here
why do you hang around
I'm so sorry
I'm so sorry
Why do you come here
when you know it makes
things hard for me
when you know, oh
why do you come?
Why do you telephone?
and why send me silly notes?
I'm so sorry

I guess you haven't noticed the search box in Kickoff. Apart from that you can add all your most often used programmes to favourites. I love Kickoff because of these features. I don't navigate, that was yesterday. I just click once on the start button and then my favourite programme or i use the search box. I bet that you can never beat me using the traditional menu :)

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

I don't need a search box if I can navigate in less than two seconds with a traditional menu, or just type it in via Alt+F2.

openSUSE had search in the traditional menu before developing Kickoff. I'm not against search. I'm against Kickoff's scrolling within a menu, and several slow layers.

Vista's menu also comes under fire for scrolling within the menu.

Relax dude :D We already have two menus in KDE 4, Kickoff and the traditional KMenu. And more menus are coming, Raptor Menu and Lancelot ;).

Personally, I always use Alt+F2 since it is the fastest way to launch a (GUI) program.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

You miss my point. Initially Kickoff was going to be the only option, and we were told to live with it. It wasn't until there were enough complaints that an alternative was presented.

Removing choice is not what KDE is supposed to be about.

I don't know since when the traditional KMenu existed, but IIRC it already existed early this year (maybe 4.0? or even earlier), maybe you were misled by some people saying Kickoff the only option? :D

If Kickoff was the only option, and then they added the traditional KMenu later, that means the developers listen to users, no? :p

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

It was added before the 4.0 official launch. But during the Alpha and Beta launch, it was the only menu.

do you ever not complain in dot, seems that is all you ever do, and since you have no intention of upgrading to 4.1, why not move to gnome then they can put up with you

by Sebastian (not verified)

I also experience that I use Alt+F2 extremely more often than in 3.5.x

But the reasons are different:

o I changed my own customs and learned then names of executables of my favourite applications.

o KRunner has been improved over Alt+F2 in 3.5.x

o Kick-off is mainly for beginners. I use it not that often, but I do use it whenever I need to search for an application I do not know the name of. The search function indeed is very good.

Indeed, I believe the combination of KRunner and Kickoff is a real improvement over the classic K-Menu.

by Adrian Ribao (not verified)

I found many problems with the panels and plasmoids. KDE crashed a few times.
Moving some of the widgets in the desktop was a pain, very slow and buggy.
I decided to disable all the desktop effects, but the system was still very slow.
CTRL+F12 was very very slow also, between 3 and 5 seconds to show up.

The widget used to show the content of a folder is very useful, but not 100% usable yet. It has no scroll.
When I added a system tray widget to the new panel, it didn't work, neither in the desktop.
Resize some widgets was weird, for example, I couldn't resize the widget that shows the devices to get all the devices shown at the same time. Resize in one direction only worked in some widgets.

I think my computer is no too old and should run KDE4 smoothly. Besides, I have a GeForce FX 5600.

I also had problems with konqueror, but I think this is because of Debian. When I was using it as a web browser, the status bar was empty, the icon of the microformat plugin was not shown. The search field that usually is on the right of the url bar, wasn't there, and the zoom of the web pages is very slow also.

When I wrote about all the things we can do in 3.5 and not in 4.1 it was basically because of the panel, but I'm sure there is more things I haven't tried yet.

I thought that maybe it would be good to assign shortcuts to the widgets, I mean, if you press "c" the clock shows over the windows, and also if you move the mouse to one specific place like top-left corner, the Menu widget is opened. This is just an idea for 4.2

I just used 4.1 for a few hours, so I can't say much more about it, I had to get back to work and I decided that 3.5.9 was better. Anyway, I'll probably install it again in the near future, I need to keep testing.

KDE 3.5x is definitely snappier than 4.0x independent of hardware but 4.0x seems to handle my nvidia card better than 3.5x. In 3.5x, if I have composite turned on without using Compiz then the desktop would simple freeze after not using it for a while and the only thing that would help is pressing the restart button. That doesn't happen in 4.0x but you have to use the nvidia hack to get a little speed if the composite effects are turned on.

The panel and plasmoids have gotten better with the Beta 1 release but there are still quite a few glitches and missing features.

by Andrew Lake (ja... (not verified)

Don't forget to report bugs.

Remember that because developers are so close the design, they often unintentionally adjust their usage patterns to what works. So if something doesn't work for you, no matter how obvious, report your bugs.

This is Open Source.

by KDE4 daily on o... (not verified)

> 4.-Plasma was using 50-70% of my CPU. I don't know why. My system was very slow.

same issue in my system!
just remove the "showdesktop" plasmaoid from the panel and you can use KDE4 again! :)
i don't know if "a showdesktop-application" is so difficult, but it is buggy since a long time, and if it works, you can go and get a coffee while minimizing windows with this plasmoid. ;)

anyway, kde4.x kicks everything, i love it, and, everything is getting better compared to kde3! you just have to be patient :)

by elsewhere (not verified)

Hmmm. I just opened a bug report with openSUSE because of this same problem (having never experienced it with previous 4.0/4.1 builds), though I'm running on 11.0 factory.

After reading your message, though, I got rid of the showdesktop icon from the panel, and I can confirm that the spike is gone and my system isn't running on all cylinders any more.

Bizarre, but then, it is still a beta... ;)


> 6.- I can do the same things in KDE 3.5.9 much faster than in 4.1. This is what
> is killing me, when you upgrade the software, you must:
> 1.- Increase productivity of the users
> 2.- Make it more attractive

That's intentional. Now that it takes more time to do something, you can longer
enjoy in eyecandy.