[Novalug] Kubuntu and KDE-freakin-4
lug-user at drmikehenry.com
Fri Dec 5 22:01:15 EST 2008
I found Ubuntu 8.10 with KDE 4 to be somewhat of a disaster. The
keyboard shortcuts in KDE 4 are broken and won't be fixed until it
becomes high enough priority for some KDE developer. I couldn't find a
way to make things feel responsive like they do in KDE 3.5. Switching
windows with alt-tab was s-l-o-w. I found I had to pause between
bringing up the window menu (Alt-F3 by default) and pressing 'n' to
minimize a window, which was very painful. I didn't like that the new
Konsole now remembers the previous window size instead of using a
configured size. I like to keep 80x24 as a default and resize on a
case-by-case basis, but I couldn't figure out how to make that happen.
I also couldn't make dual-head work properly. I'm running on a Thinkpad
T61 with an Intel GM965 chipset. It works well in Ubuntu 8.4 with KDE
3.5.10. I had a general feeling of instability with KDE 4. It crashed
on me a few times. There are also some missing packages in KDE 4 that
haven't been ported yet; the one I remember is kdiff3, but I think there
were a few others.
Like Ken, after a few days of pain, I reverted to Ubuntu 8.4 LTS. I'm
not sure if and when KDE 4 will stabilize, regain its speed, and become
viable for me again. I really don't prefer GNOME. I tried GNOME with
Ubuntu for a few months, but I couldn't get used to a few things. GNOME
keyboard shortcuts are fairly inflexible, and the developers are
philosophically opposed to letting the user customize certain things.
For example, I wanted to configure Alt-right-click-drag to resize
windows because that's the KDE default to which I've become accustomed.
The GNOME developers are adamant that right-click must never be anything
but a context menu, so it's impossible to remap right-click (even with
the Alt modifier). People have submitted bug reports about this lack of
configurability, but they've been rejected. I don't know where KDE is
heading. It seems to me that KDE is adopting some aspects of GNOME, and
abdicating some of the window manager functionality to Compiz (though
that's probably an optional aspect). Compiz seems to be following more
of a GNOME model for keyboard shortcuts and configurability. I'm hoping
to try it again for Ubuntu 9.4 when it comes, but I'll certainly be
doing the installation to a test hard drive before committing myself.
I suspect that staying all-GNOME on Ubuntu will give you a much better
experience (assuming you like GNOME itself well enough). KDE is not as
well supported on Ubuntu as GNOME is, which is why I wanted to try GNOME
for a while. But you may still want to try an installation to a
separate partition or hard drive if you can, or do a full backup before
upgrading so you can revert if you are unhappy with the new installation.
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