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Old 10-02-2009, 03:58 AM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default KDE 4 Isn't Too Bad, After All

When KDE 4 was first released, I didn't care too much for it, and I thought I never would. But due to recent circumstances, I ended up installing the latest version to see if things changed for the better, and to my surprise, they have. That might be an understatement, because as I see it, KDE 4.3 is easily one of the most polished desktop environments out there.

You can read the article here and discuss it here!
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Old 10-02-2009, 10:46 AM   #2
Brett Thomas
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As I type this from my nice and shiny KDE4.3 desktop, all I can say is, "Welcome to the party."

Rob more than anyone knows I'm an old Gnome holdout, having found KDE far too "windows"-ey for my preference. I was the type of guy who used to use lightstep just to be able to tolerate the windows UI as a productivity workspace. I always used Gnome cause, well, it was handy and functional and more mac-like than windows-like.

Now that I've really taken some time to play around with KDE 4.3, I'm in love with everything I hated about KDE 3.x and 4.0-2. It's easily a MUCH MORE POLISHED desktop than even Windows and MacOS at the moment. Of course, I suppose that's probably because the KDE guys have the ability to focus on just desktop functionality.

If you're curious to give it a try but not up for running Linux, KDE is now available as a desk replacement for both Windows and Mac. I've not tried it, but I'd love to hear the user experience if somebody does!
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Old 10-02-2009, 11:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Williams
You create a shortcut on the desktop? It's a widget
that was true on KDE 4.0. Then they implemented the "Folder View". Now you can use your desktop as you always used. The desktop shorctus are true shortcuts, the files are true files.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Williams
Once the process is complete, the notifier doesn't close automatically, and I can't seem to find an option to change that.
Right click on the "Notifications" icon (the "i" on the systray) and select "System Tray Settings". Then the "Auto Hide" option and check "Automatically hide new notifications and jobs after a short delay".
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Old 10-02-2009, 11:24 AM   #4
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I'm a Gnome man, there I said it. Like Brett I found KDE 3.5.x too much like Windows and stayed away until I found Pardus. Instantly I got used to KDE and found it not too bad. Like everyone else on the planet, I played with KDE 4 when it first was released and laughed and laughed at what they had produced (sorry KDE guys), but something there kept me coming back. Anyway, I put together a spare PC and installed Arch on it, and then instead of Gnome (oh I hate to say this) I put KDE on it.

Now that we are at 4.3.1, I have to say that I quite like it. It feels more robust and with each new point release more and more features are being added or bugs and quirks ironed out. The jury is still out with Amarok I'm afraid, I think thad those guys have a harder mountain to climb than the KDE guys but thats just my opinion.

With Gnome 3 looming on the horizon with all their changes, who knows, I might just end up a KDE guy

Last edited by AmblestonDack; 10-02-2009 at 11:25 AM. Reason: Correcting spelling mistakes
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Old 10-02-2009, 11:42 AM   #5
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I'm interested to see where Gnome3 will go...but to be honest, I'm not really as excited about it. Gnome2 was VERY CPU/memory intensive under the right circumstances - KDE4.3 is actually snappier, which is odd for all the eye-candy. That being said, this is the beauty of 'nix - I can bounce back and forth as I see fit
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Old 10-02-2009, 05:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett Thomas
Now that I've really taken some time to play around with KDE 4.3, I'm in love with everything I hated about KDE 3.x and 4.0-2. It's easily a MUCH MORE POLISHED desktop than even Windows and MacOS at the moment.
I'd have to agree. As I use it, I find it just as polished as say, Windows 7, yet can't help but think about how this is a free operating system... not a $199 one. The quality is top-rate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonnymous
that was true on KDE 4.0. Then they implemented the "Folder View". Now you can use your desktop as you always used. The desktop shorctus are true shortcuts, the files are true files.
Yes... but "Folder View" is a widget ;-)

I used that in the past, but it never seemed to keep my icons in the same order I'd want them. As it stands now, I just prefer to not use the desktop at all. I can easily access any part of my computer easily enough, including folders and application icons, so it's not really needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonnymous
Right click on the "Notifications" icon (the "i" on the systray) and select "System Tray Settings". Then the "Auto Hide" option and check "Automatically hide new notifications and jobs after a short delay".
Doh! Thanks for the heads-up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmblestonDack
Now that we are at 4.3.1, I have to say that I quite like it. It feels more robust and with each new point release more and more features are being added or bugs and quirks ironed out. The jury is still out with Amarok I'm afraid, I think thad those guys have a harder mountain to climb than the KDE guys but thats just my opinion.
Yes... and it's too bad. The fact that it deleted a lot of my album art was frustrating, and the fact that it won't even use the album art built into iTunes files confuses me. Amarok 1.x supported that just fine. The devs have also seemed to take a cue from the other KDE developers by removing customization as well. I forgot to mention it, but one thing I hate is that you cannot customize the on-screen display (the pop-up that shows up whenever a new song plays). You used to be able to adjust the color, the font, etc... but now, you have virtually no customization at all.

The same could be said about other aspects of KDE. Take the clock for example. You used to be able to adjust the font size... you can no longer. You can adjust the font itself, sure, but being able to control the size would also be nice...
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Old 10-02-2009, 09:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Williams
Yes... but "Folder View" is a widget ;-)
I was not talking about the folder view widget that you drop from the widget list to the desktop. I was talking about the "folder view" option of the "Desktop Settings" dialog. On that dialog have two options: "Desktop" and "Folder View".
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Old 10-02-2009, 11:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I was not talking about the folder view widget that you drop from the widget list to the desktop. I was talking about the "folder view" option of the "Desktop Settings" dialog. On that dialog have two options: "Desktop" and "Folder View".
Oh geez!

Thanks a ton... I had no idea that option was there. I think I'll keep it on Folder View now that I (you've) found it... will make it easier to deal with files.
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Old 10-02-2009, 11:47 PM   #9
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Default KDE4 for newbies and seniors

Enjoyed the article. Kinda thing Ill be passing on to friends who want to know more.

Im the kind of guy who likes things my way not someone elses (I hate all defaults and the 4.3 light scheme even more but that's ok, It takes 3 secs to change Air theme to Slim Glow or Glassified or others) so 4.3 finally does everything I need it to.
4.2 was the one I found ready for my family and inlaws but 4.3 fixes a few nagging things.

I now have 5 people in my extended family who are using KDE4.2 who are over 70 and 3 never touched a computer and KDE was easy for them ti pick up..
One of the reasons is I can customize the desktop to my needs and also to the needs of seniors (hint: make everything BIG!!)... there is no one desktop look..

One more thing: we had a installfest at our local LUG last week and I had two identical laptops running the latest Ubuntu and Kubuntu side by side and we asked people who tried them which ones they preferred and felt more at ease.
Kubuntu was the overwhelming favorite. 78%.
People kept asking if the other was some kind of old Win95 clone and the comments of fugly were many.
This of course is not scientific but with the 25+ installs I have done on my own (family, friends, coworkers whom Ive installed PCLinuxOS and now Mandriva 2009) I used to offer two live CD's (old hardware automatically was given XCFE), I also have about 75-85% KDE numbers so i wasnt surprised.

I used E17 and XCFE as well but KDE4.3 is an absolute pleasure to use.
PCLinuxOS was the best 3.5 I used for friends and newbies (Im a Gentoo guy so taht wasnt really an option) and Mandriva 2009 is right now the best KDE4 Ive used but to be honest the differences are there for power user because more than a few people will mention that 'they all look the same'.
Which is true.
The real question when choosing a Linux distro isnt which distro to use but which desktop.
The desktop choice is the big one, the distro choice (using the same desktop) is just semantics for geeks.

Id like to finish off with some numbers that were given with teh release of KDE4.3:
"The KDE community has fixed over 10,000 bugs and implemented almost 2,000 feature requests in the last 6 months. Close to 63,000 changes were checked in..."

Look at those numbers and remember the numbnuts who cried that teh devs didnt listen to the users. Remember them because you wont hear any mea culpas like the (half assed) one SVJN gave recently after he had hysterically cried out for a 3.5 fork.

I worked on 2-3 small projects over the years and I cant even comprehend the organizational demands of 10,000 bugs, 2,000 feature, 63,000 changes in 6 months.
That is just phenomenal.
Just like the desktop.
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Old 10-03-2009, 10:24 AM   #10
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Oh geez!

Thanks a ton... I had no idea that option was there. I think I'll keep it on Folder View now that I (you've) found it... will make it easier to deal with files.
No problem! Anything, just ask.
I Forgot to thank you for being so open minded about KDE4. Some kde3 users hate kde4 and not for valid reasons. They say something like "I don't like KDE4 because it's way above KDE3 on most things" and they usually never be more specific than this. This only leads to trolling and don't allow kde4 users like me to help them out.
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Old 10-04-2009, 06:14 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered
I now have 5 people in my extended family who are using KDE4.2 who are over 70 and 3 never touched a computer and KDE was easy for them ti pick up..
Geez, where were you the other day when I needed you?! In all seriousness, that's cool to hear. I have to say, I'm surprised by the result of your test at your local LUG. Most people I talk to in Linux circles tend to prefer GNOME, and I think part of it is because they first downloaded Ubuntu and decided to stick with it. Curious though... wouldn't people at a LUG already know which desktop environment they prefer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered
I used E17 and XCFE as well but KDE4.3 is an absolute pleasure to use.
I admit that I haven't used either in quite a while, but in the past I've found both to be too minimalistic for my tastes. I really should check them both out again soon though, since either of those would be ideal for notebook, or netbook, use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered
"The KDE community has fixed over 10,000 bugs and implemented almost 2,000 feature requests in the last 6 months. Close to 63,000 changes were checked in..."
Those are huge numbers... especially given that KDE 4 has been out for less than two years and 4.3 is essentially the third major follow-up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered
I Forgot to thank you for being so open minded about KDE4.
Well, part of my job is to be open-minded, so I guess it comes with the territory. I admit that I was very, very adamant about installing it, but I'm glad I did. So far, I haven't run into a single real issue, so no regrets!

There are of course some things I'm still not thrilled over and wish were changed, but that can be said about any OS, really. I'm happier with KDE 4 over KDE 3.5 though, and that's really all that matters to me. I can deal with the odd inconvenience or two.
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:30 PM   #12
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I've been enjoying the release myself. I was going to ask you about that neat cityscape wallpaper, but TinEye found this, so I'm happy!
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
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I've been enjoying the release myself. I was going to ask you about that neat cityscape wallpaper, but TinEye found this, so I'm happy!
I get pretty much all my wallpapers from InterfaceLift.com. It's regularly updated and the wallpapers are top-rate!

http://interfacelift.com/
http://interfacelift.com/wallpaper_b...rk_knight.html
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