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September 12, 2008

Lancelot Menu for KDE 4.1 [video]

by @ 3:32 pm. Filed under KDE Tips

Here is a nice demo of the new Lancelot menu for KDE 4.1:

more information

screenshots

From a linux.com article on Lancelot:

“KDE 4 is barely eight months old, and already it has three options for a main menu. Until now, users have either used the default Kickoff, which makes for awkward navigation of the menu tree, or reverted to the familiar but unwieldy classic menu. Now, with the first full release of Lancelot, users have another option that overcomes the shortcomings of both other alternatives and gives KDE 4 a thoroughly modern menu.”

“According to comments on the project Web page by main developer Ivan ÄŒukić, Lancelot started life as a SuperKaramba applet for organizing desktop icons. Its name is a homage to Monty Python and the Holy Grail — as evidenced by the default grail icon — as well as a pun on “launch-a-lot.” As ÄŒukić ported it to the new KDE desktop, the project changed in nature, first to keep pace with rumors about it, and then because of his dissatisfaction with Kickoff. ÄŒukić is apparently not alone in his dissatisfaction, because within days of the 1.0 release being announced, Lancelot packages started to appear in many major distributions.”

Read “Lancelot reaches Holy Grail of KDE menu.”

June 5, 2008

Dazzling New KDE 4.1 Theme

by @ 1:57 pm. Filed under KDE Tips

First, as everyone knows, KDE is the best desktop environment there is. Linus Torvalds says it best, “I personally just encourage people to switch to KDE. This ‘users are idiots, and are confused by functionality’ mentality of Gnome is a disease. If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it. I don’t use Gnome, because in striving to be simple, it has long since reached the point where it simply doesn’t do what I need it to do. Please, just tell people to use KDE.”

Don’t look at me, I didn’t say it. It just happens to be correct. As long as we’re all clear. That quote has been a badge on my OpenSUSE Linux blog since day one.

What is exciting to see is some of the beautiful artwork for the themes that is being done for KDE 4.1. Specifically, let’s hear it for the new KDE 4.1 Plasma theme:

KDE 4.1 Plasma Theme

Read more about the KDE 4.1 Plasma Theme.

January 15, 2008

KDE 4.0.0 release rocks the Linux world

by @ 7:01 am. Filed under General Linux, KDE Tips, Linux News

KDE Logo

Imagine for just a moment, if you will, the amount of glee experienced by KDE users everywhere upon hearing the spectacular news last week when KDE 4.0.0 was released.

If you have ever thought about taking KDE for a spin, the time is now.

There are tons of reasons that you would choose to use KDE over all other desktop environments. My big four are:

1) kio-slave. For anyone who doesn’t know what this does, it gives KDE the ability to interact with remote filesystems via FTP, SSH, etc. You can open up a remote filesystem, and drag and drop a text file right onto your Kate icon. Kate will open the file for you to edit it. When you are done editing, just click SAVE and close the file. KDE via kio-slave saves the file back to the remote fileystem (assuming you have the proper privileges). This is the one thing that has the supremest of importance to me. It is possible to have one Konqueror window open and have it split into 16 different panes, each pane connected to a different filesystem or directory, whether local or remote. If you have never done this, you have to try it some time. You can split Kate windows the same way. Before anyone says it, I realize that you can make other desktop environments do this, but KDE just does it right out of the box.

2) It is very configurable. Upon using other desktop environments in Linux, I wasn’t able to tweak things just as I like them. With KDE, I have generally been able to find a setting to adjust what annoys me. To get an idea of all the categories of settings that there are to play around with, let me show you a list of them:

KDE Settings List
CLICK IMAGE FOR LARGER VERSION

Now THAT is what I call a bunch of options.

3) KDE has a huge install base. Do not misunderstand me as saying that it is trendy. Believe me, I am not into ‘trendy’. Having a huge install base gives something staying power in the industry. This is why I recommend one of the main 5 or so Linux distributions to new Linux users. Yes, you could look at something like Sick Interesting Cool Killer Linux Distro that is the best one ever made. However, if only 4 people on the planet have it installed, you are going to have a really hard time finding support for it. You will have no one to whom you will be able to ask questions. There will be no support pages, HOWTOs, forums, etc. where you can go to ask questions and find answers. Being as I am, I like to get answers quick. I like to use things for which I know I will be able to get support. KDE has a lot of support and a large install base. Besides that, Linus recommends it. If you visit my blog page, you will see this quote in the upper, right corner:

“I personally just encourage people to switch to KDE.

This ‘users are idiots, and are confused by functionality’ mentality of Gnome is a disease. If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it. I don’t use Gnome, because in striving to be simple, it has long since reached the point where it simply doesn’t do what I need it to do.

Please, just tell people to use KDE.”

Straight from the man himself.

4) I love eyecandy. It is a great thing to be able to switch around window decorations, window themes, mouse themes, icon themes and wallpapers as one wishes. KDE on Compiz Fusion is unbelievably cool. I set up beryl on my laptop awhile back (before beryl re-emerged with compiz), and had a ball with it. Compiz Fusion on OpenSUSE 10.3 is even better than that. I am an eyecandy freak.

KDE 4.0 with all of its improvements looks absolutely cool.

Here is an excerpt from the announcement:

“The KDE 4 Libraries have seen major improvements in almost all areas. The Phonon multimedia framework provides platform independent multimedia support to all KDE applications, the Solid hardware integration framework makes interacting with (removable) devices easier and provides tools for better power management.”

“The KDE 4 Desktop has gained some major new capabilities. The Plasma desktop shell offers a new desktop interface, including panel, menu and widgets on the desktop as well as a dashboard function. KWin, the KDE Window manager, now supports advanced graphical effects to ease interaction with your windows.”

“Lots of KDE Applications have seen improvements as well. Visual updates through vector-based artwork, changes in the underlying libraries, user interface enhancements, new features, even new applications — you name it, KDE 4.0 has it. Okular, the new document viewer and Dolphin, the new file manager are only two applications that leverage KDE 4.0’s new technologies.”

“The Oxygen Artwork team provides a breath of fresh air on the desktop. Nearly all the user-visible parts of the KDE desktop and applications have been given a facelift. Beauty and consistency are two of the basic concepts behind Oxygen.”

Read the entire announcement here.

A review of KDE 4.0.0 by Thom Holwerda can be found here.

Sink your teeth into the new and improved KDE!

May 18, 2007

K Menu Icon Size for your openSUSE Desktop

by @ 7:32 am. Filed under KDE Tips, SUSE Tips & Tricks

Here’s a cool tip for people who are KDE users, as it is plainly clear that this is the correct desktop to use, per Linus Torvalds.

In recent versions of KDE, there is a new K Menu layout. This is called the “SUSE Menu Style”. The traditional K Menu style is called the “KDE Menu Style”. You can switch between them by right-clicking on the K Menu. There is an option to switch to switch in the small menu that appears.

If you are a fan of the traditional “KDE Menu Style”, this tip may come in handy. It does not appear to work the same in the “SUSE Menu Style” layout of the K Menu.

When I do a fresh openSUSE install, I like to have my machine set up exactly how I like it. I have a small document that I go through to set some KDE tweaks to suite my taste. One of these happens to be the icon size in the KDE Menu. If you would like to adjust this, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open your favorite text editor. Edit the file located at ~/.kde/share/config/kickerrc
  2. Go to the [menus] section of this file.
  3. Edit (or add, if it isn’t there) the “MenuEntryHeight=” variable to be the height, in pixels, that you wish the K Menu icons to appear.
  4. Save and quit.
  5. Restart the KDE Panels with this command: dcop kicker Panel restart

I have tried settings as low as 4 and as big as 128, both of which work but are outside the range of usability. My personal preference is 16, but whatever suits your taste.

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