As I mentioned a few days ago I have considered trying to use KDE again. Well yesterday I did a fresh install of Kubuntu 7.10 beta. Here are some of my initial thoughts:
- netboot installer garbles video output on macbook
- initial resolution wrong (1024×768) (#147323)
- brightness hardware keys don’t function in kde (functional in gnome) (#148776)
- netboot installer fails on selecting “ssh server” (#148577)
- $HOME/.kde/share/config/kcmshellrc not writable (#148847)
- hardware mute button does not completely mute audio (#149070)
My initial impressions are that KDE is very clean looking. The display is very crisp on my machine and its easy to navigate. It appears to have most of the applications I need out of the box. As usual the configuration options for KDE are extensive and I’ve customized a look and feel that I’m comfortable with very quickly.
I do have some initial concerns / questions on getting some of the functionality that I’m used to. In making this switch I wanted to give KDE and its default apps priority over the GTK based apps I was used to. I swear I gave Konqueror a good honest try but I just can’t use it for these reasons (if some of you are able to resolve these I’ll give it another go):
- Unable to use SOCKS tunneling using ssh -D port:host tunneling. In Firefox I can select “proxy -> socks -> localhost:port” and I’m done. I tried a dozen different combinations in Konqueror and I was not able to do ssh tunneling unless I used ssh -L port:host:port options.
- After getting the tunnel to work once and shutting down no I can get *no* sites through Konqueror. Resolving the same site in FF or even links works but Konqueror is complaining about not being able to reach any domain.
- Is it just me or is Konqueror slower in loading pages?
- Poorer compatibility with my wordpress install (yes, I’ll admit this may be a web-standards thing and not directly related to Konqueror).
- Scrolling seems to be broken in Google Reader with Konqueror. Scrolling with the mouse wheel scrolls the entire window, not just the reader contents.
There are also a few things that I’ve grown very used to in gnome that I’m wondering if KDE has capability for. Even if its not out-of-the-box is fine, I would just like support for the following:
- The auto-mounting system should be able to recognize luks encrypted removable drives and prompt for the passphrase to mount. Gnome does this and I’ve become used to the convenience.
- A utility that will initially prompt for and then cache my ssh passphrase. I have been using ssh-askpass-gnome in the past. Is there anything equivalent for KDE? I am aware I could manually use ssh-add but is there another KDE-ish utility for this?
I will be sticking with KDE for a while to try and help squash some of these bugs. Bug reporting and resolution is very important for all of us and I want to do my part to improve the overall experience. Expect some KDE related tutorials coming soon. I hope it will help expand the breadth of the blog content. I hope this post doesn’t come across as negative. I will be staying with KDE for some time. I want to learn more about it and learn the tools available with it. I also want to be able to expand this blog to reach the KDE crowd. I know KDE vs gnome can very easily pop up in a conversation like this. I’ll say now that any non productive comments will be deleted from the blog. Unless you’re helping to educate, offer suggestions on applications, or otherwise helping to improve the situation we don’t need to hear it.