KDE 4.2 Released

It has been a full year since the beginning of the KDE 4 series and today the KDE community proudly announces the release of KDE 4.2, "The Answer". This
third feature release brings a stunning amount of new features and great stability. The KDE community is confident that KDE 4.2 is a compelling choice for the majority of end users, after previous releases targeting enthusiasts.

Read the official announcement and have a close look at what is new in the Visual Guide to KDE 4.2. The release information page gets you to the source and packages.

KDE 4.2

KDE 4.2 brings better task management and new features in the Plasma workspace and KWin, and more polish to many applications. Dolphin allows for a more streamlined workflow. The improved IMAP support and new look further enhance the KMail user experience. The improvements to the KDE development platform, combined with the LGPL Qt libraries, make KDE the most appealing free development platform.


It isn't the only one, just the only big one -- Ark Linux packages both sesame2 and redland, defaulting to sesame2.

I didn't know for Ark, it's good. It's really too bad that debian, ubuntu and fedora refuse to package sesame2. So something should be done to solve this strange situation where one of the kde4 brick will never be provided (at least for Fedora) because it's use java (perhaps a mono backend could be better for them... No please don't do it, it was just a joke).

I wanted to show you how horrible that system notification plasmoid is but
when I started copying something kde just got frozen or something crashed

so I can only show you this:

-rw------- 1 test users 16M 2009-01-25 19:41 core.10280
-rw------- 1 test users 23M 2009-01-25 19:47 core.10693
-rw------- 1 test users 15M 2009-01-25 19:48 core.10751

On the other hand, maybe is better to just show you the screenshot without
the sysnotif. plasmoid. I put the gkrellm over the cashew just I don't have
to look at it, but it also has a nice feature of showing how nice kde4 is to
your CPU. Btw. there's no fonts in plasma, asegio said it's a driver
problem (radeon, open source):


My conclusion is that KDE4.2 is buggy, crashy, slow (could be qt4 fault), inconsistent and extremely unpolished desktop environment... so if you want
it to succeed then there's only one solution: make 4.3 a bugfix-only
release. There are just too many bugs, but I think that six months of
bugfixing could create a usable product out of kde4.

Btw, you still have red/yellow items in:


maybe some of the fanboys could help here if programmers don't have time?

I'd like to see how fanboys all of a sudden do the programmer's work. Programming is an art that requires long training to do it right, esp. in code like Plasma's that partially fiddles around with the Xlib directly.

Concerning the feature plans: You contradict yourself. You tell us to slow down feature development, yet you moan about unfulfilled feature plans.

About the Plasma problems: That is one problem. The other one is a driver problem (as you said yourself). We are not responsible for fixing the ISVs drivers, point (says a NVidia user).

There is a point in that Qt 4.4 is a bit slot, it has lacked optimization work in the past. But Qt performance is going to shine again in 4.5, as far as I can consider.

> I'd like to see how fanboys all of a sudden do the programmer's work.

...read more carefully, I meant they could update the feature plan.

> You tell us to slow down feature development, yet you moan about
>unfulfilled feature plans.

Again wrong. I'm just telling that those lists should be updated: if feature is done then make it green, if not (re)move it.

> The other one is a driver problem (as you said yourself)

Even if it is a driver problem, everything else works fine with them. This
happens with radeon drivers and to less extent with intel. And then you say that nvidia drivers are bad. :-)

> But Qt performance is going to shine again in 4.5

They told me so when 4.4 was about to be release.

> ...read more carefully, I meant they could update the feature plan.

Where? Only words count that were actually written.

> you say that nvidia drivers are bad.

No, I referenced that NVidia users had a hard time. ATI users are still having their hard time, as you have noticed. That is not a contradiction.

>> But Qt performance is going to shine again in 4.5
> They told me so when 4.4 was about to be release.

I did not hear of that, ever.

I don't have hard time with my radeon, everything works except plasma.


I just want to add that I'm sorry about my first comment in which I show that one can in only one minute:
- make almost whole desktop black
- make plasma crash
- make it use 100% of you CPU

I shouldn't post it. We should censor screenshots that show kde in bad light especially in time when we all must be happy and celebrate the best release ever.

what you should do is complain to your distro's whose tweaks of KDE most likely caused the problems you were having.

Personally I have had none of those problems, so one has to wonder if it is KDE or more likely your computer or distro.

My distro is kde from svn, and my problems are not only mine, they are reported at bugs.kde.org and confirmed by popular vote.

"Programming is an art that requires long training to do it [correctly]"

+1E+99 (couldn't agree more)

This is certainly correct.

I would also say that knowing a programing language is not the same as knowing how to program. A relevant question is how much of KDE is written by trained programmers and how much of it is written by self taught hackers?

Using my OpenID on the dot and running pacman -R kdemod-uninstall && pacman -S kdemod-complete from chakra =)


He KDE-folks,

this is a really great release. It looks mostly polished and stable. I guess some of the minor probs are still there from RC1, but still I can start preparing for migration. I hope that next Kubuntu will have a better release then the last. Or is there any other cool and stable.deb-based KDE-distro out there?


The release announcement contains a Flash video? WTF? Adobe Flash is not Free Software, is not an open standard, and is not available on all platforms. Official KDE announcements should not be requiring proprietary Flash. At the minimum, KDE should at least provide a link to an alternate format.

The video is hosted on blip.tv, which also offers a Free alternative.

But how does one get it without Flash? The content is still application/x-shockwave-flash. Don't take my word for it, look at the page source itself.

Yes, there is a link in the player. But the player is Flash Player, so you need Flash in order to get to the link where you don't need Flash. See the problem?

.. that should also shut up some french gnomes:


In the future everybody will be happy ;)

at the minimum you should grow up.

Great job! I've been using the 4.2 development releases on Kubuntu 8.10 and wrote a rant/review on my experiences here.

In short: I think KDE 4.2 is ready to replace 3.5 as the primary desktop for the average user, and I'm excited to see what will be coming next. I also attack some of the misconceptions that have grown around KDE 4 because of earlier releases, and because of people not trying to actually use KDE 4 the right way.

I love how customizable is KDE4:

All that I wait for 4.3 is the possibility of decently link activities with virtual desktops with a GUI and panel independency on each different activity. :-)

How can you set that?

Check http://forums.kde.org/ for tutorials on how to tweak KDE 4. :)

Make's me think of the Pink Floyd song:

Breathe, breathe in the air

Don't be afraid to care

One feature from KDE 3.5 still seems to be missing. It is the possibility to select more than one window in the taskbar by holding ctrl. You could then e.g. show them side by side. (even Windows can do this btw.)

But still KDE 4.2 is of course a great release. It's my favorite desktop besides E17.

KDE3 could do that? I never knew.

Gonna have to try that when I get home. :)

by Vin

How do you select multiple windows in KDE3.5? Tried the ctrl, but it doesn't do anything...

I don't have KDE3.5 at the moment, but I remember that I could do it. ctrl works in windows, so I thought it's the same in KDE, but I'm not 100% sure.
Maybe it's kdemod-specific? To be honest, I only tried it once, after I found out that it can be done in windows and later tried it again in KDE4 where it didn't work.

Maybe this is not the best place to ask it, but I hope somebody knows: can I debug the source of a program (in my case KRunner) without compiling the whole KDE from source? I am not a KDE developer but I know programming to some extent so maybe I would be able to find the location of a serious bug (screen blinking every few seconds) that few people seem to be able to confirm. (I use openSUSE 11.1.)

Install the debug corresponding packages from YaST.

Thanks, I have kdebase4-workspace-denugsource installed, but it is only a pack of .cpp and .h files, without CMake files. How do I compile it?

That is not meant to be compiled, you should be running the binaries from the kdebase4-workspace package. The -debugsource is used by gdb to display useful backtrace information and such.

If you want to compile a KDE application and debug it, you will have to install the debug packages for all affected libraries (libqt4 and libkde4/kdelibs4 may be enough for the start, add third-party libs to that list as required). Then get the application's source from somewhere and compile it. (CMake should default to the Debug profile, use the -DCMAKE_RELEASE_TYPE=Debug switch to be sure.)

That all depends. If your distribution provides a debug package, use that (in *buntu, it would be something like kdelibs-dbg). If it lumps debug in with development, use the development package.

... over KDE4.1, which was a major improvement over 4.0. Good job.

the new weather plasmoid? Using OSB (unstable, 4.3 trunk) I can't find it :-(

It's in the kdereview module currently, but it should have been moved to kdeplasma-addons by now already.

Great work thank you very mush

Previous releases had a Changelog.


Is there a changelog for the 4.2.0 releaes? For example i like to know WHAT exactly was improved in the IMAP protocol.

thanks, but the IMAP improvements are not mentioned there at all...

maybe I should just dig into svn ;)

No Mac-style menu bar?!?!?!

What a shame!!! whit such a great and beautiful desktop the lack of this feature is a real shame...


Not time for me yet to change (and please don't send links about that ugly extra software to add that menu bar... It should be native in KDE)

This looks like a solid release. Thanks and congratulations!

I gave 4.2 a go from the RC, and despite a number of serious outstanding problems with my favourite apps (Kontact doesn't remember it's position, fi) it's the first 4.x that a 3.x user might actually enjoy using as it's got most of the features back.

I gave 4.2 a go from the RC, and despite a number of serious outstanding problems with my favourite apps (Kontact doesn't remember it's position, fi) it's the first 4.x that a 3.x user might actually enjoy using as it's got most of the features back.

I am posting this with KDE 4.2. Startup time was very slow, but I am absolutely amazed. It is very usable and convinient for me.

A few points:
- Icon for the traditional menu should be different from the kickoff.
- Lancelot is very nice but needs performance work and be polished.
- some painting issues
- Why no drag and drop adding lancelot from the desktop to a panel
. locking the desktop widgets needs a usability review.
- plasma quickstarter default size too small
- previewer plasma default size looks strange

Great work. So far it is all rock-solid and I didn't feel it was new and just did my work. So this a brilliant indicator it feels right.

In the KDE case, the first startup is usually a bit slower since it often involves updating config files. The next logins should be a bit quicker, although there's probably quite some room for improvement still.

It took a long time downloading, but I'm finally running 4.2 as my desktop. Lots of big improvements. I'm still a heretic, because I still have love for KDE3 (and 2 and 1), but 4.2 is starting to grow on me.

Yes, KDE 4.2 has shown great progress. Keep up the good work.

I do still have a wish list which is basically the stuff in the Konqueror "Tools" menu:

Open Terminal,
Find File,
Auto Refresh,
Archive Web Page,
Change Browser Identification.

To me these are more important than the fancy new widgets.

I note that "Open Terminal" is on the menu, but only issue is that I can't seem to find it to put on a toolbar. And, yes, we now have "Find File" but it isn't a KPart which I prefer.

You realise (in Kubuntu, at least) that you can get stuff in the, "tools" menu by installing the package, "konqueror-plugins", right? :D