KDE 4.1? No, thanks

I am using KDE since switched from Duron 600 to Athlon XP (few years ago). IIRC it was 3.1.something then. It was nice improvement from my desktop built on ROX-Filer + gnome-panel and WindowMaker. Time passed, my machines got faster and faster, 3D hardware acceleration was added with NVidia cards and then KDE 4 started to appear…

I installed KDE 4 on my desktop and tried to use it for few months. First it was 4.0.x but I upgraded to 4.1-svn packages when they started to be available for Debian. Ideas which KDE team has are nice but usability of such desktop is much worse then KDE 3.5.9 one :( Too much bling, too less features so I “upgraded” back to 3.5.9 to get nicely working system.

What did I lose with KDE 4.1 (tried final release yesterday):

  • fast desktop switching (if there is Konsole open on desktop it will render for long time)
  • fast Konsole tab switching (I have 2-8 tabs in terminal)
  • ability to set/move panel at any edge of screen (now I use top panel, used more)
  • ability to reorder applets/plasmoids in panel (ops – there is a way but not as intuitive as it was in 3.5)
  • Klipper is not usable (crash on nearly each use, not launching browser)

From what I read on KDE website Konsole problems are related to NVidia cards and workaround is given. I wonder why there is no check in preferences “I have NVidia — do not use ARGB windows then” or other way. I think that it should be easy to check with few function calls which OpenGL libs are in use…

Looks like now I have to wait to 2009 for KDE 4.2 and then check does it behave or not. Or maybe it is time to check XFCE or other environment?

3 thoughts on “KDE 4.1? No, thanks

  1. Musaad Haider

    Believe me, I have the same story. But I don’t think we’ll have to wait for KDE 4.2 for things to be be in stable and working order. I am looking forward to the first monthly release (KDE 4.1.1) which is supposed to contain a lot of fixes. I bet things will get a lot better with it.

  2. Michał Roszka

    When I desire a cup of espresso, a mug of sweet and delightful latte macchiato does not work for me at all. Human beings do not extract espressos back from latte macchiatos, do they?

    By the analogy, when it comes to GUIs, if I had to personalise a desktop environment, I would rather build up the configuration on some decent default settings instead of spending hours on turning most of so called “hot features” off.

    As a former Mac OS X and Ubuntu user, I have been through Aqua and GNOME. And as I somewhat enjoyed KDE 3.x back then in my Debian days, I have also given the 4.1 release a try. I have come to a conclusion, that GUIs are getting sluggish and dull in a way.

    Practically there is not much of a choice. Recently I have switched to XFCE. I do not like to customise and personalise things too much and also right now I am too pressed for time.

    I know that habits are the hardest thing to change. Nonetheless, I would recommend you to give XFCE a shot. Right now I use it as it is out of the box and I feel it hits the sweet spot between being pretty and being useful.

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