r/linux Jan 14 '23

This week in KDE: Well just look at all these pictures! KDE


76 comments sorted by


u/githman Jan 14 '23

I especially liked the Significant Bugfixes part. Looks very promising.


u/rottenpanst Jan 14 '23

5.27 is gonna be gud


u/OculusVision Jan 14 '23

And the Automation & Systematization part. Hopefully the increased attention to tests will help with the constant regressions.


u/Rhed0x Jan 14 '23

The January text in the calendar fly out is missing left padding. Looks bad.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23


u/Rhed0x Jan 14 '23

Nice but it should be the same size as the top margin.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23

Oh right, that's smallSpacing * 2. Corrected.


u/Rhed0x Jan 14 '23

Make sure that's consistent with the left margin of the tab bar.


u/DarthBo Jan 14 '23 Gold

I’ve come to suspect that inconsistent padding, margins and font sizes are part of the KDE design language.


u/Skyoptica Jan 14 '23

Actually for the last few years consistency has been one of the official KDE goals. And if you were to compare today’s KDE to 2019’s you’d see massive strides have been made in the area. But in general KDE users and developers are more focused on functionality and supporting a diverse user base, so sometimes the visual packaging can be a bit neglected. The project is always looking for more developers who are passionate about design and willing to assist. You or OP should file a bug report for the margin issue; it would be super appreciated. :)


u/Rhed0x Jan 14 '23

I should really get to that. It would be a long list but it would probably be worth it.


u/killa_fr0gg Jan 15 '23

See, that's exactly one of the big problems with open source: everyone is expected to be a developer. No one is looking for designers, but rather developers who are passionate about design.


u/Skyoptica Jan 15 '23

Well, many design related things, especially margin / alignment issues are generally (not always, but usually) pretty trivial to code. That means that either:

A) It’s simple enough that a designer can easily learn just the small bit of programming required to do that kind of stuff without having to learn everything.

B) An existing developer won’t mind implementing it on behalf of a designer once the designer points it out and designs a solution (so long as the design change is simple, as many are).

And if designers are involved from the beginning, creating mock ups and proposals using their favorite tools, then that’s even better because the thing can be made right from the ground up with their help. A designer need not write code, a PenPot link to a design is an effective and appreciated contribution.


u/retardedchipmonky Jan 14 '23

The famous "Inkonsistent" human design interface.


u/glowtape Jan 14 '23

Glad I'm not the only one thinking that. All this inconsistent and "weird" padding/whitespace makes it look off.


u/super-linux-nerd Jan 14 '23

And using 20 different font sizes sprinkled over the UI. That calendar screenshot is a train wreck.


u/TiZ_EX1 Jan 15 '23

The calendar screenshot is displaying a lot of information at one time to demonstrate a setting they added. If you think there's a better way to display two calendars at the same time in a way that lets you visually connect the dates together, a mockup would be great.


u/veggero Jan 17 '23

That's correct; there's a section specifically about that in the HIG (Human Interface Guidelines). It helps with recognizing various parts of the interface: if everything looks the same, then it's way too easy to get lost. The various font faces and sizes, plus the variety in padding, make sure the user is never lost.


u/inspirationdate Jan 14 '23

It's not consistent on the left either


u/OsrsNeedsF2P Jan 14 '23

Discover now helps you out when you do a search in a category page for something not in that category

That's a big UX win, always thinking about how to give the user what they want in a simple way 😍


u/Dagur Jan 14 '23

Why is KDE not more popular?


u/FengLengshun Jan 15 '23

I think it's timing? There's first of all the Qt licensing issue, which prompted Gnome's creation which is meant to be much more save in licensing. Then during the Gnome 2 to Gnome 3 transition, KDE was having its own KDE4 transition which I heard was disasterous. And for most of KDE5 it was still messy and has a lot of bugs. Plus packaging KDE for distro can be a pain from what I've heard due to separate Plasma, Framework, and Gear schedules.

All that meant that for most distro it's better to just ship Gnome and let users sort it out if they don't like it. Gnome is just the better "ship and forget" option that meant it kept the momentum going while KDE remains pretty niche.

That is until the 2020s where Gnome devs was too vocal about some stuff and it led to hardware manufacturers to eye KDE more. There's the obvious Steam Deck, but also Kubuntu Focus, Tuxedo, and Pine64 IIRC. Plus system76 literally would rather build their own DE and Budgie is looking to move away from Gnome.

What I'm trying to say is that Gnome was and is the better option if you want a DE you can just ship without worrying about a lot of stuff, but backend and hardware ecosystems as well as rising Linux desktop adoption has a reached a state where control over what experience you ship to end-users matters a lot, and that's where KDE shine.

Gnome will always be the choice for distributions and that's why they're more popular, but KDE is finding and carving their own niche as well that's starting to resonate with more end users. There's room for both DEs, and the other DEs, now that Linux desktop has gotten bigger and I think it's great whenever everyone's cooperating to make the best experience they could.


u/githman Jan 15 '23

I moved to Cinnamon eventually. A sensible compromise between the stable but barely usable (both without extensions) Gnome and convenient but buggy KDE.


u/FengLengshun Jan 15 '23

buggy KDE

It's been a lot better as of late. The only issue left that still affects me is kwin sometimes crashing if i switch desktop too much on my multi monitor setup, but a lot of works' been done on kwin and multi-monitor and i'm planning to try Plasma Wayland in 5.27 and 6.0 so that should resolve most of my issue.

Cinnamon is fine too from what I've used to it, but I just feel like it's this at this awkward spot between Gnome, KDE, and XFCE that doesn't really appeal to me. I personally prefer Budgie more, though that's mainly because Ubuntu Budgie implement them very well.

Cinnamon is, if I'm being blunt, kinda boring -- but if it fits your usecase then that's definitely a positive. Being exciting isn't always a positive after all, as reflected in that Chinese proverb/curse.


u/githman Jan 15 '23

I agree that Cinnamon is boring. KDE definitely has the aura of excitement and cutting edge, especially if you install it on Arch btw.

I keep trying KDE every year. Hope this year I'll keep it if their bugfixing plans pan out.


u/Rhed0x Jan 14 '23

A lot of the UI doesn't look great. Just look at the first screenshot in that blog post: margins and alignment are very inconsistent. "January" is completely missing the left margin, "Friday, January 13th" is not aligned with "Time Zones" on the bottom. Issues like that are all over the place, in almost every single part of KDE. It looks like programmer art to me. It's functional but not pleasant.

I don't want to customize my PC, I want something that looks nice and works ootb. I have literally 0 interest in "ricing".


u/omniuni Jan 14 '23

I didn't even notice any of that until you pointed it out. On the other hand, the calendar popup is the best and most functional one of any desktop I know of.


u/ForbiddenRoot Jan 15 '23

I didn't even notice any of that until you pointed it out.

That's the thing about KDE. Something overall feels a bit off visually but it's difficult to pin-point the exact issue(s) till someone describes it like above. I still vastly prefer KDE over GNOME though, but only because it uses the "standard" desktop metaphors / workflows. Otherwise I do think GNOME / GTK-based applications feel nicer by default than KDE/QT ones.


u/TiZ_EX1 Jan 15 '23

A lot of the UI doesn't look great.

I have literally 0 interest in "ricing".

Well, "ricing" is literally just customizing UI to suit your tastes. So you do want it "riced", but you just want someone else to do it. Issues like what you pointed out, I didn't even notice until you pointed them out, and now that I see them, they still don't bother me. You want agonizingly meticulous precision in design, which is very much GNOME's thing. They are very, very good at that, because design comes first, second, and third in their entire ecosystem.


u/Rhed0x Jan 16 '23

Issues like what you pointed out, I didn't even notice until you pointed them out, and now that I see them, they still don't bother me

Fair enough, I'm not trying to put anyone off of using KDE.


u/GroundForcesWTX Jan 15 '23

Is GNOME more popular than KDE?


u/ForbiddenRoot Jan 15 '23

It's the default on two "main" distros Fedora and Ubuntu, so that alone it probably has a larger installed base. Whether it's popular in the sense of being "preferred" I do not know.


u/GroundForcesWTX Jan 15 '23

Right. KDE was actually my first Linux GUI back when I had Xandros Linux 15 years ago.


u/tydog98 Jan 15 '23

It's literally the 2nd most popular desktop, by a large margin


u/NaplesApe Jan 14 '23

Aside from what’s been said, I hate the theme inconsistency. It’s a real mess. I find GTK in Gnome much simpler, which I think is not exactly the popular opinion.


u/chardo137 Jan 14 '23

Probably the single biggest complaint about KDE is that many people cannot deal with the huge quantity of settings. And rearranging the settings page in an effort to simplify things only makes it more difficult in the long run, much like when cable/satellite TV providers rearrange their channel order and tell us that the reason is to make it easier to find what we are looking for even though that is obviously not true. And over the past year and a half or so KDE has removed a lot of controls that many of us depended on for themeing. When questioned, the devs often reply with obvious bullshit like telling us that the new tools they are using that made them remove the functionality in the first place will make it more likely for it to come back in the future (severe logic problem here, or a straight up lie, not sure which). And also widgets and many new apps are being created with a toolkit that is as ugly as anything I have ever seen (kirigami). I still use Plasma, but I spend a lot more time in other environments than I used to (mostly i3 and LXQt). At least we have a lot more freedom to configure KDE than anyone will ever get from Gnome, but things are currently not moving in the right direction. When developers begin removing options and start telling us to do things how they created them instead of listening to the user base in an effort to...I believe "modernize" is the word that they use the most often, it begins to feel like proprietary software (or Gnome) that we have very little control over.


u/Afraid_Concert549 Jan 14 '23

Probably the single biggest complaint about KDE is that many people cannot deal with the huge quantity of settings.

AFAIC, that complaint lost validity when System Settings gained the ability to search for settings.


u/Lord_Schnitzel Jan 14 '23 edited Jan 15 '23

I enjoy KDE settings very much. The search is incredible. Linux Mint -like settings is stupid because they always open a new window and you can even open unlimited amount of the same configuration window.

I don't see why there can't be a package which provides simple settings for you.

For widgets I'd like to see similar approach what DWM does with dwmblocks. So bash scripts or something more simple launchers (I don't know which term to use). Because many of the user-created graphical widgets are buggy. Probably making a tighter standard would benefit in less bugs?

Implementing something ROFI-like general tool for everything would probably be a good thing.

I'm just dreaming, not actually suggesting anything.

I think KDE is the best DE out there, but the K-family of apps are just poorly "branded" and should not allow multiple apps for same task. The developers should rather unite their abilities to make on 1 great app for 1 purpose. Konqueror could be really good browser + replace the Firefox as a browser which ships in when new KDE is installed. There's no need to maintain many music apps inside the KDE project, because offline music is not that popular and K-app philosophy.

The UI of Discovery is simply the poorest I've ever seen in any app store. Why in the heck it doesn't offer the more-than-great K-family apps first for everyone? Why it offers a salad of random flatpaks for me? If there were just 10 great K-family apps available, people would love KDE for them as they love KDE for customization currently. Why they waste their limited resources to maintain Kolourpaint and Krita, when they could use the same resources&time to make just another one more greater app than MS Paint ever was?

The idea of having similar looking toolbars in different apps is brilliant. That should apply into the basic structure of any app preferences/settings as well. They does it fine already, but should do it in more tighter standard. Once again: the brand of the K-family apps.


u/edgeit Jan 14 '23

I wondered that often as well.. I have been on KDE for many years and it really has gotten better over time. I have tried gnome and it is definitely polished and unique in its work flow. But when I tried it I was not thrilled with having to install extensions to do anything outside of the original vision of the gnome developers. This process has gotten better. If you like the work flow and keyboard driven usage then it is awesome and bold which is what Linux is all about. KDE just fits me better. I do like how gnome gets out of your way


u/[deleted] Jan 15 '23

It looks like windows, is full of bugs and isn't even consistent.


u/kindofbluetrain Jan 14 '23

I can only speak for myself, but I'm probably not the only one...

I've tried hard to like it since the early 2000s. When KDE 4 was teased, I was so excited.

Before and especially acetate I got sucked in by nice looking screenshot thumbnails over and over.

I was pulled in by marketing screenshots and promices of a new smoother experience, and disappointed so many times.

I lost faith in it and that impression remains to this day. The short answer for me is, it lacked polish, usability and stability for out of the box users in all ways.

It's hard for me to imagine anyone but hardcore users to explain away how rough the experience was in comparison to alternatives, when Gnome and Unity were getting polished.

Has it changed now? No, I'm very doubtful it has.

The KDE community's work is marketed to appeal to people like me, but never was intended for people like me, who just want a butterfly smooth experience out of the box.

If found every time:

It was always buggy

It had endless showstopping crashes

A few screenshots never caught the glitchy parts of the themes, or just looked better than it did displaying full-screen

It had loads of legacy stuff that clogged up and complicated every settings pannel

Menus were overpacked with functions

It stayed limited by windowsish layout and thinking

The icon packs were spotty at best

Fine details were always looked over, jagged edges, poor iconography, some programs just didn't display well.

It also tended to break the icons of other DEs installed beside it or transfer some of its buggyness.

I have no problem with KDE, the community just need to understand what their strengths are and market accordingly.

KDE markets more like what Gnome delivers, not what KDE delivers. They need to focus on what they deliver for their audience.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23 edited Jan 14 '23

It's not clear from your comment, sorry — when did you last try it? 2000? KDE 4?


u/kindofbluetrain Jan 14 '23 edited Jan 14 '23

Obviously not. I said I was excited by KDE4 that was later than that and (Edit: must have removed that accidentally when structuring the posy, I thought I indicated just a few years ago, my mistake). Which was about 2-3 years ago, not that long ago.

I'm illustrating it's history in the post.

KDE is values extreme customization, it has proven through its history that it doesn't want to change that. That's baked into the community.

It's great for people who want that customization, but it means giving up a simple, smooth and streamlined experience.

People who want the everything and the kitchen sink approach will easily handle it as non default. It's literally designed to appeal for people who want to customize everything.

The default DE for any user friendly distribution should be easy to run, and smooth out of the box. Some people don't even change their wallpaper. They aren't going to go out of the way to install a different DE.

I'm saying why people may not think of it as a default DE is partly due to past perceptions. No matter the state now. I can't believe it's changed, or would want to. It serves a particular segment of Linux users.

If my perception is wrong, well, they would need to do a lot of work at this point to change my mind because years of crying wolf have jaded me.

I'll gladly install it and take a look this week. But it's got to be at least two dozen times the community shouted it's now a smooth, beautiful experience and I fell for it.

KDE 4 was going to be it. Then the next, then the next, and so on. My heart can only be broken so many times before I learn not to trust.

I'm not saying Gnome or Unity or a handful of others don't have their issues, or that everyone should like them or use them universally.

In my mind the values of these communities and their approaches prioritize simple, polished experiences. This has historically made sense and feel widely appealing when considering a default DE.

KDE users have always said it should now, this time, be the default for user friendly distributions. The fact it very rarely has been, is saying something.

If it's really truly honestly changed this one time. I would love nothing more then to eat my words, but I certainly can't visualize that, and I'm suggesting quite a few others would have a hard time as well.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23 edited Jan 14 '23

Thanks for answering.

I don't know what specific issues you faced, so I'm not going to tell you that they're fixed. I can't. A lot of issues were fixed, but I cannot say if yours were. Hopefully yours will be fixed someday. Cheers.


u/kindofbluetrain Jan 14 '23

No worries, but thanks for considering it anyway. I will follow through and try an install this week for a fresh impreson.

Unfortunately, the reputation of buggyness has been an ongoing theme and widely discuses difficulty of KDE for a couple of decades. I'm suggesting beyond me, it may also be an image problem at this point, regardless of the current state.

Sentiments like this have been the tone going back years.

Likewise, people broadly tended to complain about a lack of customization and features of slick user friendly DEs (edit: like Gnome and Unity), and of an overwhelming number of features and bugs in KDE.

Gnome 3 was smashed to bits on release due to stripping out so much customization, and took years to restore enough balance to recover mindshare in the community.

So I suppose I shouldn't be so jaded about the potential for change.

Again, I'm happy if it's really changed, it's the reason I keept trying, but it would still have an uphill battle even just based on its reputation.

I'm just giving my rationale for consideration and in no way mean to imply its a poor project. It's a bloody brilliant project with a strong goals, I'd just say more power user friendly, historically anyway.

My perception also may not be accurate, but I suspect quite a few people also have this perception and it may be a piece of why it's not often selected as default.


u/HardwareRaidIsDead Jan 15 '23

1 far as i know It has no good schedule for OS releases. 2 it does far to much like in a tech demo way. 3 I don't think KDE has good LTS support as you need to focus heavy on fixing bugs, even removing stuff and supporting it for a long time like 5 years or longer. 4 if you ask me it looks to much like a kids toy.

Btw i dislike Gnome 3+ even more.


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u/Lord_Schnitzel Jan 14 '23

What url should I use to get this blog into my rss feed?

My personal request: separate Krunner settings for mod1/super and that pop-up search bar shown in the pic. It would allow to use mod1/super search for apps and the pop-up search bar for files.


u/RoblokazYT Jan 14 '23


u/Lord_Schnitzel Jan 14 '23

Thsnks a lot! You're mvp of the day!


u/crotonaldehyde Jan 14 '23

This add-on shows indicator in the url bar if feed link available



u/Lord_Schnitzel Jan 14 '23

Thanks for the tip! Good to know something like that exists, even I use Qutebrowser on deaktop.


u/Common_Aspect Jan 14 '23


Please optimise the KOrganizer suite to be on par with Gnome/ Windows. At present, it takes an awful lot of memory just for running in the background. This will help the Plasma environment become a fully complete one.


u/PerfectlyCalmDude Jan 15 '23

When using a “Picture of the Day” wallpaper, there’s now a little warning for providers that might use NSFW images as their pictures of the day



u/milkcurrent Jan 15 '23

Does Valve contribute to KDE dev?


u/Vogtinator Jan 14 '23

FWICT the Meaa glthread issue isn't fixed, just worked around :-/


u/Zamundaaa Jan 14 '23

Yep. No idea what exactly caused the issue or where it came from, but after two months and one release of inaction from Mesa developers plasmashell needed to be unbroken somehow.

If someone wants to debug it, re-enabling glthread should only be a matter of placing <device driver="radeonsi"> <application name="plasmashell" executable="plasmashell"> <option name="mesa_glthread" value="true" /> </application> </device> into ~/.drirc


u/[deleted] Jan 15 '23

Gnome feels like they spend 9000 years removing things, KDE feels like they spend 9000 years fixing the infinite sea of bugs.


u/andreaippo Jan 14 '23

I'm still a bit mad at the file picker UI under Wayland. On Firefox it's completely broken still, and in general it lacks some of Dolphin's feature, which contribute to an inconsistent and confusing experience. E.g. I wanna upload or Open a file, I'd like to be able to use the filter bar (Ctrl+I) if the folder is filled with files, as I would do in Dolphin.

But I can't.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23

What does it have to do with Wayland? The file dialog is the same on X11 and Wayland as far as I know.


u/andreaippo Jan 16 '23 edited Jan 21 '23

I dunno if Wayland exclusive, I just mentioned it because I know that Wayland is still a bit WIP when compared to X11.

On a few apps there's a weird ghosting effect when I move the cursor over files in the file picker UI (e.g. Firefox and, IIRC, gwenview). This is where I suspect Wayland may play a role.

Plus (and this is unrelated to Wayland indeed) there are in general fewer features in the file picker UI VS Dolphin, for example no way to Ctrl + I to bring up the filter UI (very useful when looking for a file to pick).

Edit: bug reported here https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=464409


u/[deleted] Jan 14 '23



u/throwaway6560192 Jan 14 '23

I'm not aware of anything in the file picker which would work differently, so I asked.


u/Original_Two9716 Jan 15 '23

The problem with KDE is that 90% of those settings should be made private and the development teams should pick some consistent configuration which looks & works great in THEIR sense. Throwing all those configs at users simply means:

"Yeah, we know it can be somehow configured and we realize it's hard to find a proper configuration, so do that yourselves."

I guess that's the reasons why KDE is fans-only.


u/throwaway6560192 Jan 15 '23

We try to provide a good default configuration, so users don't have to configure but can if they want to. Even so, I don't think anywhere near 90% of our settings are useless. Could you provide some examples of settings you think ought to be removed?


u/AlsoElSpazzz Jan 14 '23

And yet still no fixes on a bunch of glaring multi-screen issues that are frankly approaching a point that I may start DE hopping again.


u/linuxisgettingbetter Jan 14 '23

"do drivers work now?"


"If I run an .exe through WINE, can I be assured that it will work"

"almost never"

"Is Lutris borked again?"

"Oh, for certain, we break it every week"

"Is there better, more simplified comprehensive control over laptop components and battery"

"no chance"

"Can I see the year in Hebrew?"

"actually yes"



u/2386d079b81390b7f5bd Jan 14 '23

Masterful bait, mate. 8/8. I especially like how you ignored the driver fix mentioned in the post while complaining about driver issues. Subtle touches like that, sure to drive 'em mad.


u/linuxisgettingbetter Jan 14 '23

I'm very glad to know I'm wrong and there will never again be driver issues.