Wednesday, May 15, 2013

KDE rocks again!

Many years ago I was a strict KDE fan. I loved how functional it was.
That was in the KDE 2 and 3 days.

Then KDE got more and more buggy and slow, and I moved to Gnome 2 and all it's glory.

As I wrote in the preceding article about K3B, KDE apps in a non KDE environment used to be a very buggy and slow proposition.

When K3B didn't act slow and buggy, I started to wonder if KDE itself had gotten better.

Out of curiosity, I installed the bare minimum KDE package available for Ubuntu (kdebase-workspace) and kmixer (package name kmix) to try the environment out again.

I was pleasantly surprised at a rock solid and fast (in comparison to gnome 3 and unity) desktop environment.

I have to say now that KDE is my number 2 desktop environment choice. I still think nothing holds a candle to XFCE, in my opinion.

The few tweaks I made where setting up nm-applet as a startup app under the system settings, (otherwise I had no network manager visible) and changing the desktop theme to "oxygen" so it was easier to read the kde bottom bar.

I added kmixer (kmix) to the apps I installed because I had no volume control on the desktop without it.

I also could not stand the extra zero in the 12 hour clock, so I changed the format under system settings > locale > country/region & language > date & time tab > time format: pH:MM:SS AMPM.

The small p in pH:MM:SS AMPM does the trick.

This is my result:
Click picture to enlarge
I have no way of demonstrating the speed to you, but the base kde packages needed aren't very big, so if you are feeling adventurous give it a try.

I do want to mention that when installing the kdebase-workspace package, it will ask you if you want to use lightdm (ubuntu's default desktop manager) or the kde alternative. I stayed with lightdm and so far have had no issues.

If your Linux distribution does not have an easy way of installing KDE, or if you would just like more information, you can check out or the #kde irc channel.

If you don't have an IRC client, or you don't know how to use IRC, I have made a special browser link to the channel here: Freenode's KDE IRC Webchat

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