Sunday, January 27, 2008


Alas (and alack), I have reverted to using KDE 3.5.8. I wasn't going to, but yesterday then KDE 4.0.0 refused to load for some unknown reason, and I got thinking: Was it worth trying to fix it? Unfortunately, I could only think of four reasons to use KDE 4.0.0, and they weren't very convincing:

Reasons to use KDE 3.5.8
  • It's a stable, well tested system which has had most of the rough edges whittled away over time - and most of the time, it just works. (This reason could be expanded into many bullet points - one for each thing in KDE 3.5.8 which works which is broken in KDE 4.0.0, but I'll leave it rolled up into a single bullet point to save this looking more like a rant than it probably already does - and leave the bug reports in
  • I don't have to use AIGLX (the non-compositing version of KDE 4.0.0's KWin isn't very useable), and so everything is much faster, Google Earth works and I can watch videos. (In KDE 4.0.0 kaffeine and codeine just show an empty black box)
  • I can set up the panels just how I like them. (One medium sized panel at the bottom for the K-menu, the task list (or whatever it is called), a clock and the lock/logout buttons, and a small one at the top for a 'quick launch' bar, the pager and the system tray.)
  • I think the style I use in KDE 3.5.8 is sharper than Oxygen currently is, which looks a bit blurry somehow - I'm not exactly sure why though. But it makes it nicer to use.
Reasons to use KDE 4.0.0
  • Plasma on the desktop can be pretty (although it tends to crash a lot).
  • KWin with compositing looks cool.
  • Tabs in the Oxygen style look kind of nice.
  • I can find bugs and report them so that KDE 4.0.1/KDE 4.1 can be better.
I am well aware that KDE 4.0.0 is actually a beta release which has been release as a .0 release to try to get more people to use it so that more bugs can be reported and fixed, so I can't complain too much (although I would strongly argue for not releasing betas without the beta moniker, but that's another rant). I'll still boot into KDE 4.0.0 from time to time (that is, if openSUSE's packages fix themselves soon!) and look forward to KDE 4.0.1.


Adam said...

You can use both, to use plasma instead of kdesktop do "killall kdesktop;plasma" (thats if you have it in your PATH). Kde4 programs can be run while in a kde3 session and vise versa. Also to stick with kicker and get rid of the rubbish applet container in plasma check here:

avuton said...

Can't say the same here, I use the svn head (updated every 2 days) at home on a production machine, and I've been ready to go back to 3.5 if necessary but it hasn't come up yet. The most instability I have seen is in the programs (konqueror, kwordquiz so far).