4.1 Release Candidate Out For Testing

Today, we are passing the last milestone on the way to KDE 4.1, a release that will be suitable for a larger audience than 4.0 has been. While it is not yet up to the features that people are used to from KDE 3.5, KDE 4.1 provides a significant amount of improvements over KDE 4.0, which some said was a bit of a bumpy ride. Sources and available packages are linked on the release info page.
KDE 4.1-rc1 is the only release candidate for KDE 4.1, which will be released on July 29th.

The development in trunk/ in Subversion has already been opened for feature development, which is going into KDE 4.2 (to be released in January), but developers are strongly encouraged to concentrate on bugfixing in the 4.1 branch for now. Do give RC1 a spin, file bugreports and fix things, there is only a week left until 4.1 is being tagged. Do have your changes in the 4.1 branch reviewed by your peers, though. Note that some users might still be suffering from performance problems with NVidia graphics chips. There is a page on Techbase that gives some more information about it. Make sure you report bugs via KDE's Bugzilla so they can be addressed and do not get lost.

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by Jonathan Thomas (not verified)

Yeah yeah, we're still trying to get the new plasmoids to be packaged. We're having a bit of trouble with the transitional package to the new plasmoid package. Hopefully we'll get this resolved soon...

by Jonathan Thomas (not verified)

Install the kdeplasma-addons package now, and everything should be back to normal.

by Iuri Fiedoruk (not verified)

Thanks, I tought it was a problem in the source, not in the package :)
Alas, there was a problem with oxygen-icons package conflicting a file with libkdepim, I had to use dpkg --force-overwrite to install 4.1 RC1.

Thanks for the packages, I'm very grateful :D

by Iuri Fiedoruk (not verified)

For some reason, I can't find the folder view plasmoid :-(

by Iuri Fiedoruk (not verified)

OK, just found it on the kdebase-plasma-kde4 package. Did not undestood why it is separated from the rest...

by Adrian Baugh (not verified)

Thanks, the new package sorted it out for me. I still don't have working plasmoids in amarok 2 alpha though - if I drag applets to the middle pane, nothing happens.

by Hobbes (not verified)

I wonder why the (color) themes are so dark. I am not sure what gives this feeling (taskbar only?), but the overall desktop seems dark. It is really different from KDE3 which uses many shiny colors. I think it is obvious, even from the screenshots here: http://www.kde.org/screenshots/.

What is the rationale behind this style? It sounds like a trend as Microsoft Windows Vista also has a dark default theme (I do not know about the other themes, if any exists ;-) ).

Maybe displaying dark colors requires less energy. (BTW, does anyone know?) But this is probably not the reason!

I tried to find more colorfull and brighter themes (on kde-look), but I did not succeed. I also tried to change the color of the taskbar, but I could not find the option. Is it possible to change that color and to tune the look of this taskbar?

by Sinok (not verified)

You may use the aya theme wich adapts automatically to the colors of the window theme (Oxygen is quite clear by default, isn't it?)

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

Also, what is a problem, I think, all the themes included by default are similar dark themes (although there is the Aya theme which follows the system colors) and the user does not have the option to modify the color. In KDE 3, while it follows the system color by default, the user can set any custom background, and not just select from a list of themes, most of which have a black or dark grey color.

by Stefan Majewsky (not verified)

"In KDE 3, while it follows the system color by default, the user can set any custom background, and not just select from a list of themes"

Do I understand that right that you are not able to select an arbitrary wallpaper? I can. Right beside the wallpaper selector there should be a button which lets you choose an image file to use as wallpaper.

by David Johnson (not verified)

The widget style has a light and "airy" theme (Oxygen) as do the window decorations (Ozone). But the default Plasma theme is dark and dreary.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

I think black is sexy personally. I like dark themes.

To each their own. I'm pretty sure in time we'll see all kinds of colors for plasma themes. I believe there is a "fluffy bunny" theme right now which is bright pink.

by Steve (not verified)

> Maybe displaying dark colors requires less energy. (BTW, does anyone know?)

It depends on your screen. CRT and plasma displays both draw more power to light a pixel than not to light it. TFTs and normal projectors use a light source that is always on, so the power draw for a white screen is the same as for black.

The amount of power saved (for CRT and plasma) is not huge either, because the device still has to run all of its other circuitry for processing the signal and so on.

You can be sure that saving power was not on the agenda of anyone creating a darker theme. If you really want to save power, turn everything off! :-)

-- Steve

by NabLa (not verified)

It doesn't require less energy, unless you are using a CRT monitor.

I use a dark theme as it's just easier on my eyes when indoors.

by Responses to (not verified)

Personally I think that new KDE looks really bad.
It is a failed attempt to mix crapy Vista and OS X and then call it "new".
There is nothing original about the new KDE GUI.
Lets hope that 3.5 is supported and updated until KDE hires an artist who can come up with a new KDE look and feel that also makes sense and is original too.

by Boudewijn Rempt (not verified)

Are you actually under the impression that KDE is an organization capable of actually hiring someone? That KDE is produced by paid people? Well, you are wrong. All design work on KDE4 is volunteer work -- and personally, I think KDE4 looks really great. But neither my nor your opinion has any worth, you are an anonymous coward so you don't have any credentials at all anyway, and I'm only a developer, so I don't have any design credentials until I prove otherwise.

by Michael "troll ... (not verified)

Yes, KDE4 takes some stuff from Vista and OSX. Linux desktops always take some ideas from other desktops. Frankly, so do proprietary desktops do too (Windows was originally said to be too Mac-like). However, there is plenty of originality in Plasma.

* The "everything is a widget" design: I've used Vista and OSX and cannot place panel stuff on the Dashboard/Sidebar, nor can I place Dashboard/Sidebar widgets on the panel.
* The ZUI
* SVG themes
* The ability to use non-native widgets: Plasma can currently use dashboard widgets, and other widgets are planned.
* compatibility with touch screens: yes, that's what the cashew is for.

by Lee (not verified)

What I find interesting is that both Vista and KDE4 have followed a dark visual theme, and both seem to generate very intense, negative reactions. There are certainly valid reasons for some of those reactions, but the level of intensity which is rarely seen against other offerings makes me wonder if there's a common issue there, and if it might not be the appearance.

I may post this again on the next big dot announcement (final realease is real soon) to get more attention... I want some feed back.

I like dark color schemes personally, but I find dark color schemes have a big problem when you try to open up certain webpages... the dot, I think, is actually a big offender. Another bad site in facebook (maybe that will change with the new interface).

The problem is that the html page is rendered using the same color scheme as the desktop environment... this causes a lot of problems. My solution was to call setQPallete (i think that was the command) early on in the life of the khtmlpart, and set a generic color scheme that was a standard "paper" colored scheme. There were some complains about this on the k-c-d list, I'll repost them. But I still think the idea is valid: when rendering a webpage, it shouldn't look different just because someone has an unusual color scheme; thats just asking for trouble. The whole point of a webpage is for it to render the same everywhere.

This is something I'm perfectly willing to fix but its more a matter of what my follow users and developers think need to be done. What are you opinions?

by Boudewijn Rempt (not verified)

I think you're placing your suggestion in the wrong place. You need to get onto the right mailing lists and irc channels, figure out who the people are who care about color schemes in KDE (Mattew Woehlke springs to mind) and the people working on khtml and start discussing your ideas directly with them, possibly sweetening them with some patch or prototype. The dot isn't really a place where developers discuss their work, but if you got to the right place, you'll quickly find yourself embraced and extended :-)

by Yves (not verified)

On wxga resolutions it makes sense to use a vertical panel.

Unfortunately the task manager does not look well, since it does not put the text in vertical direction.


instead of


Also, the main launcher icon does not scale well


by Luke Chatburn (not verified)

Actually... I think the vertical name as you want it is tricky to read.

On your screenshot, however, the reason that it is hard to read the horizontal name, is because the buttons are rendering the icon to the left of the text, and not offering a lot of room for the text, which is then faded out when it becomes too wide for the narrow space.

What is needed, is a quick patch to the buttons to change the button rendering to icon-above-text when the taskbar is vertical, which ought to fix the problem, more or less...

by Manuel Mommertz (not verified)

it's even funnier if you shrink the panel to not use the whole screen from top to buttom. than it uses the default grafics instead of the grafics for the right location. look at the screenshot to see what i mean. the left bar is ok, the right bar looks... not that nice.

by Yuriy Kozlov (not verified)
by Michael "nothin... (not verified)

This is actually a regression (WoC?), because I distinctively remember it working in an older KDE4 version. It's a problem now (it doesn't work anymore on my system either), though.

Yes, you should file it as a bug.

by JRT (not verified)

It appears to me that neither of the two possibilities is "correct" since if you have a wider vertical Panel you might want horizontal text.

Simple solution is to have the widget configurable for either vertical or horizontal text. This is needed in any case because you need to be able to choose which one you want with a Task Manager that isn't on a Panel. Being able to choose icon size and position (just like with a toolbar -- that includes text only or icon only) would also be nice.

How is the clock on a vertical Panel? In KDE-3, it only works if the Panel is wide enough. Is this a similar issue?

by elveo (not verified)

mentions Uwe as contact.

by elveo (not verified)
by Gerry (not verified)

It works. Visually it seems crisper.

Looking forward to getting Kontact back.

Thank you. Just have to learn how to use new features. :)

by Paul Thomas (not verified)

This is my first attempt at Kde 4.

I must say I am impressed and I'm looking forward to installing it as my base desktop environment. I'm running debian and I'll probalby wait until they move it to testing.

As for the things that bug me, there are some :(, I will look at he bug reports and file my comments there.

Keep going. At last something new and exciting in the DE world.

by Kitsune (not verified)

Gotta agree, I've been using openSUSE's KDE development branch for a while now (following KDE 4.1's development) and have found it to be quite stable and with very few issues. The only crashes I've really had were with KNotify randomly going down (which is something that happened to me randomly in KDE 3 as well on other machines... KNotify has always seemed like the first thing that'd go down if there was any issuue at all). All in all, KDE 4.1 is extremly nice and rather stable for me, can't wait to see 4.2's path!

by Hernán Lorenzo (not verified)

I am waiting to Debian Lenny to have all of these beauties (eye candy) and new and improved functionalities that have been promised. I cant wait to try it, but I can not give me the lust of trying it in another distro. Keep going, you are getting closer to something bigger than everything seen so far...

by AB (not verified)

I have installed the experimental packages in Lenny and they work quite well.

by Michael Thaler (not verified)

I am using KDE 4.1 Beta 2 from Debian experimental as my main desktop environment for a couple of weeks now and I am quite happy with it. It is quite stable and with the tips given on http://techbase.kde.org/User:Lemma/KDE4-NVIDIA compositing works quite well with my NVidia 8600 GT. The only serious bugs I encountered is that KMail crashes if you switch between folders to fast and that some plasma applets do not work. But I hope they get fixed before the release. The first packages for KDE 4.1 RC1 are already in incoming.debian.org.

by markus (not verified)

I am trying to compile it but kdelibs 4.0.98 soon failed and complained about a "kdesupport" package.

When I asked on IRC I was told that kdesupport is provided by my distro (i have no distro, i run a "source distro" on my own....) and that it is in fact not "one" package but "multiple" packages (how informative....)

It would really be easier if the last known URL to packages like these would be detailed. After all
you guys use cmake which is supposed to be better than autoconf, so why not take advantage of
it and help the users too. At least with modular xorg you normally get exactly what is missing,
and although the complexity in modular xorg is annoying, I can at least tackle the problems
one after the other.

How difficult is it to say that, if you need qimageblitz, to just say so (as example)? Doesnt
even need to be an URL, i can google on my own, but in this case googling didnt really help nor
did the official wiki.
Or that one needs "akonadi"? I saw an email from april about this being in kdesupport.
Saying that one needs "kdesupport" when this is hard to GET or download, is kinda a
bad way.

Compiling something is normally not a huge,nsurmountable problem for me, more or less - after a little work things normally will compile, if the author didn't make a bad job in the first place.

I verified that between kdelibs 4.0.98 and 4.0.85 there must have been some change, because kdelibs-4.0.85 did not complain to me about an ominous "kdesupport" package and in fact finished creating its cmake-job (i didnt start to compile it because I dont see why i should compile 4.0.85 when 4.0.98 is out)

So, if one wants to build from source, this URL is not enough at all:

But the name of the package "automoc in kdesupport" demands that users have some dependencies
WHICH ARE NOT DESCRIBED IN DETAIL to the user who wants to compile kde 4.0.98 from the
official tarballs!
So what is a user supposed to do here?

I was told to look at:

But this also does not help AT ALL for several reasons. Where is kdesupport?

The first google result is:

Compiling Kde 3.5.9 is really easy compared to how often kde 4 changes those things,
I am getting irritated. I have no problem if things change quickly, but I am getting left
out if there are constant referrals to "use your distribution" instead of telling
people what package they need to use. Not everyone is a newbie, really ...

Thanks for anyone who can help me though. If anything, maybe this post can help to smoothen
out things for the next release, or for others who will have similar problems.

by Kitsune (not verified)

Looking around on one of the mirrors this looks like the package you'd want: http://ftp.ussg.iu.edu/kde/unstable/snapshots/kdesupport.tar.bz2

The page you linked to (http://techbase.kde.org/Getting_Started/Build/KDE4) includes a section about updating kdesupport, although thats unfortunately only if you're using SVN.

by David Johnson (not verified)

It was somewhat disconcerting when I found the following message a while ago: "The xxx repository is no longer consistent with KDE trunk. Please install the xxx package from your distribution."

But wait, this is from the kdesupport README file in trunk!

by Carlo (not verified)

> Compiling Kde 3.5.9 is really easy compared to how often kde 4 changes those things,
I am getting irritated.

KDE 4 isn't even feature complete yet, nor has it had the time of bug fixing KDE 3 had. Nothing to be irritated about.

by SVG (not verified)

This always worked for me.

Install subversion.

Then :

svn checkout svn://anonsvn.kde.org/home/kde/trunk/kdesupport

I am now using trunk version but I think this should work with RC1 tarballs too.

by Alex (not verified)

We moved the automoc tool out of kdelibs into kdesupport. This makes it possible that cmake based non-KDE applications can also use automoc, e.g. phonon, akonadi and other Qt-only packages.
We did this maybe 2 months ago, but it was optional until maybe 3 weeks ago, probably that's why not everything wasn't updated yet.


by Artem S. Tashkinov (not verified)

But still that would be GREAT if you created a tarball of extra apps/libs required to build KDE4.

Things that live only in SVN sometimes do not not even compile ;-) SVN version of kdesupport may have features incompatible with release - since release happens at a defined time, while trunk version keeps changing.

by Iuri Fiedoruk (not verified)

Some days ago I saw that PHP-Qt bindings where integrated into KDE, so it occurred me, what bindings KDE currently support?
All bindings supported by kdelibs are also supported by plasma?
- I want to create some nice plasmoids with PHP :-)

Thanks in advance.

by Richard Dale (not verified)

At the moment you can write plasmoids in C++, QtScript, Ruby and C# (with Python to come fairly soon I believe). There are C++, Python, Ruby and C# bindings for kdelibs.

We hope to get the PHP-Qt bindings up to speed with respect to the Ruby and C# ones and their coverage of the kdelibs apis for KDE 4.2. Before then we hope to have some PHP Plasma bindings working.

by Iuri Fiedoruk (not verified)

Nice to know, great news!

I do not use C++ because I think writing things as plasmoids in a compiled language does not make much sense for being small things, that would be faster developed. C# for patent/litigation/m$/etc reasons is out, and I do not want to learn even one more language (my head will hurt if I pass of 10).
So my hopes are in Plasma bindings for PHP, that would allow me to write a plasmoid in no-time and help plasma a bit, once after all the criticism I've made on it, I'm in debt :)

by Madman (not verified)

Well, it now has (some) support for Mac Dashboard widgets, which are written entirely in HTML, CSS and Javascript. I expect PHP wouldn't be so hard to implement.

by Richard Dale (not verified)

Implementing PHP Qt and Plasma bindings support is solving a different problem, than supporting HTML, CSS and Javascript via WebKit. We are not using web based apis like the DOM, but Qt ones like QObjects, QGraphicsView features, slots and signals and so on. It may be possible to integrate PHP with WebKit too, so that you could use it like you use Javascript, I'm not sure.

by Michael "Web Se... (not verified)

Also, just my 2C, wouldn't PHP bindings allow you to reuse code from your web services in Plasmoids?

by Luca Beltrame (not verified)

I'm hoping proper Python support comes by KDE 4.2 because I have all sorts of ideas that I would like implemented... (and sadly I only "speak" Python).

by Simon Edwards (not verified)

Python support for Plasma shouldn't be a problem for 4.2. Someone else has already made a good start on the problem and has handed their work over to me to integrate it proper into KDE SVN.