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In Search of KDE 4

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Dear Ma,

As you know I've been trying to like KDE 4 since its inception, but that hasn't happened. Despite my resistance, I know I need to make the move. KDE 3.5 lost its last footholds in Linuxville and it will be hard to continue using it. So, with the good things I've been hearing about 4.3.2, I figured now was the time. It's been quite a journey so far, and I'm probably not home yet. But here are some of the places I've seen and things I've done.

The Portage Penisula


Being from Gentoo I first tried KDE 4 from the Portage peninsula first. First was an extended visit into Toorox. It was so pretty there I almost sent for all my files to stay. But it didn't take long before ground trimmers began crashing once in a while and the traffic congestion just slowed things down to a crawl. The building regulations were so fixed, it was difficult to customize anything. And they were using version 4.3.0 of the plans, so, I packed up ole kitbag and headed further up to Sabayon.


Then I returned home to upgrade the old homestead back in Gentoo, but something didn't turn out just right. It was very slow even without any fancy decorations or anything. So, I thought I'd head out again and see the sites.


Sabayon was pretty too and things were much easier to customize for as much as KDE 4 will allow. However, it suffered from a bit of congestion causing it to be a bit slow going for aging bit conveyance. And there was this rumbling under the streets all the time swapping back and forth. It was fairly stable there tho, which as I was to come to discover is a major asset.



Not being one who can stand slow traffic I left for the country of RPM. First stop, Mandriva. They are still under construction over there, but most of the work is done, just a few last minute touches were left to do. But unfortunately they must have built on a fault or have lower standards because things kept crashing all around me. Of course they aren't done yet, but Mandriva has always had trouble with those earthquakes. They were real bad over in the Akregator section of town, that Kontact foundation crashed several times a day. I had to move to steadier ground. I might go back after they've wrapped up construction.


Little to the east of Mandriva is PCLinuxOS, so I thought I'd stop by there. Unfortunately, all their infrastructure is still quite old. The planning committee is working pretty hard towards the citywide rollout, but for now citizens have to file their own /etc/apt/sources.list and wait for delivery of the upgrade kit. Fortunately, workman did all the heavy lifting putting everything in place, so I just stood back and let them have at it. They finished pretty quick and the result was fairly nice. They even decorated it to their own ethnic tastes. One of the best things is the speed. They left out some of the most confining curves and signs such as the desktop search, which made commutes much faster. Now they did leave in some of the fancy architecture, but it still was much faster than anywhere else I've been. Once I removed those, it is quite comfortable here. I did feel one little quake that crashed the Akregator, but hopefully they're rare here. And they insisted Firefox be the on ramp to the information superhighway, but I could file for a new association and they let me use Konqueror. It has met most of my needs. If it just wasn't for getting my heart broke once here, I might would stay. But there's just too many bad memories on every steet and corner here. I'll probably be continuing on at least visiting elsewhere for a while. Maybe by the time the committee here rolls out the citywide reconstruction...

I've done flybys of openSUSE, Fedora, and even over the TGZ Island of Slackware, but I didn't land and look around, so I'd like to re-visit those places. I'd like to travel some more exotic and smaller locales such as Mepis, Pardus, Vector, and others too before I decide where lay down root. I hear good things about North APT. I'll let you know what I find in those villages after I get my Visa straightened out and get there. I can't wait to sample their local ambiance and cuisine.

Oh, here's a postcard of my digs in PCLOS. I might repaint and some other stuff, but for now this is what it looks like. I wish you were here!

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Move to KDE4

On one of my desktop machines, I installed Mandriva cooker over a month ago. As I've updated to massive changes on nearly a daily basis, it has been a bit of a rocky road--but, of course, it's starting to stabilize as the final release approaches. I think I'm going to really like Mandriva 2010 Final.

PCLOS, though they've backported drivers, needs to use a newer kernel. It was the need for this that drove me from PCLOS to Mandriva.

It's interesting times with OpenSuSE, Mandriva, Sabayon, Ubuntu/Kubuntu and other new releases coming out.

re: kde4 pclos

yeah, I had to update to their only other alternative kernel ( in order to access my ext4 partitions. I have older hardware, so I didn't have any other issues with the kernel. But I thought was still a wee bit old. I'm sure it'll be updated when they put out a release. My install claims to be 2010 right now.

RE: Dear Ma,

Dear Ma,

As you don't know, because there is no such thing as an afterlife, and if it was, you wouldn't care about Linux,

Despite my constant attempts to like the latest-and-greatest KDE 4.x.y, it looks more and more like something I could never use, and something that is much more cumbersome than Vista and Windows 7, albeit it's slightly more usable than the utmost $h1t, Mac OS X Leopard.

Unfortunately, GNOME itself starts being filled with useless crap, maybe in the attempt to prepare the users for the failure of GNOME 3.0.

As I can't get Prozac w/o a prescription (nor can I get Vicodin; I am not dr. House, I have no blue eyes and I am shaving regularly), I *have* to use what the market and the developers-on-steroids are offering me.

Fortunately, it looks like not everybody is on steroids. XFCE looks more and more attractive in its *stability* of the features, some missing stuff can be workarounded (think Gigolo to mount network resources for Thunar), and once you don't want to run it on a very old computer, the latest Xubuntu 9.10 looks extremely well (hint: I keep for myself a very few annoyances; still, Ubuntu is not originally "designed" for XFCE).

So, I am happy to tell you that KDE, no matter it's 3, 4, 5 or whatnot, is a dead horse for me. I am also happy I can live with XFCE instead of GNOME. I am happy I can *know* how my desktop will look like in 1, 2 or 3 years from now -- that is, not crucially different from what it looks like today -- and this, not by using an obsolete distro, but by using a desktop environment whose developers, no matter how stupid or lazy they might they be, they're not on illegal drugs like aseigo.

Oh, here's my postcard.


re: dear ma

Yeah, I might try others. I enjoyed fluxbox a bit once upon a time, but I still used kde apps. If I moved to xfce, I'd still need kde apps.

I wouldn't be any happier in gnome or using gtk apps.

Maybe someone will donate a copy of Windows 7 to tuxmachines! lol Big Grin

KDE 4.3

I've been loving KDE 4.3 more than anything I've ever used. I currently use it in the beta (since alpha) of kubuntu 9.10. Give it a whirl, it's great Smile

re: kubuntu

well, I was thinking of giving kubuntu a test drive when it goes final.

re: re: kubuntu

I've tried Kubuntu 9.10 Alpha5 and it was excellent... that is, for a KDE4 distro.

Still, it was too clumsy and complex for me (Win7 looks more usable), most likely because of the basic failed concept in KDE4...

...and secondly, it was too unpractical (and dumb!), because both Dolphin and Konqueror4 lack something that Konqueror3 had, something that Thunar and PCManFM have, something that now even Nautilus has, something that Windows Explorer has for 10-12 years already: a one-click, true "Compact List"/"List View" which means what it means in the aforementioned Thunar and PCManFM -- not the queer thing that it is now in Dolphin and Konqueror4.

This is a terrible usability show-stopper for me.

KDE4 might be one step ahead, but it's several steps backwards.

KDE good.

You complain too much.

re: KDE good

Yes, lets all apologize for half ass software. Surely if we don't complain, the dev's will just fix it because they're all freaking geniuses and can guess what the users need. That's worked great so far, lets not rock the boat eh?

Dont drink and type.

You drink too much.


Do what I do and file bug reports. KDE4 has moved very quickly in the right direction (since 4.0) and 4.4 is scheduled for January IIRC.

Linus intends to revisit KDE4. Big Grin

I hope so

A friend of mine got Win 7 and had some bad news about KDE 4. Win 7 was much much faster according to him and if he was telling the truth.

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