Running KDE apps without kdebase (Re: Refactoring KCM technology)

David Faure faure at
Sat Mar 20 00:38:21 GMT 2004

On Saturday 20 March 2004 01:17, Brad Hards wrote:
> On Fri, 19 Mar 2004 23:06 pm, Waldo Bastian wrote:
> > > This does not come without complications however. kdesu is also needed in
> > > the setup described above which in turn suggests kdesu also is moved to
> > > kdelibs. I think moving kdesu also make sense with the same motivation as
> > > above - it is reasonable to assume 3rd party KDE applications need
> > > (kde)su capability, without having to install kdebase.
> >
> > As well as khelpcenter and drkonqi
> Two issues:
> 1. GPL vs LGPL for khelpcentre (and BSD and Artistic licenses for drkonqi and
> kdesu, respectively).
Why is this a problem? Libs in kdelibs must be LGPL, but not binaries, right?

> 2. This is a matter for packagers, not for CVS.
Arguable.... Very arguable in fact :)

The question at heart is: should the developer of KMyApp tell his users
"to use my app you need qt and kdelibs" or 
"to use my app you need qt, kdelibs and kdebase"

If the answer depends on the distribution/packages, it becomes very messy.

I think it makes sense to separate "what one needs run a KDE app"
from "what one needs to have a KDE desktop".
"What one needs to run a kde app" doesn't only means the libs, it means 
some binairies as well, of which kdelibs already provides quite a few,
but khelpcenter and drkonqi are missing indeed (and kdesu if it's true
that apps can need the kdeu binary, which I didn't know).

Hmm, if one wanted to push this further, one could say that the KControl
module to select the language is also needed... That's much harder to solve
though. Maybe we should have a command-line tool in kdelibs to select
the language used in KDE :)

And I just had an additional idea: when installing kdelibs on a new computer
or recompiling it after a BIC, one wants kdelibs to compile as fast as possible
to then recompile the apps (in other modules). More apps in kdelibs mean
waiting longer for the updated kdelibs to be installed. But the solution for
this is quite easy: something like a "make install-libs" target that would
recompile and install all libs only, no binaries. Then one can recompile
the rest later on. (With unsermake one can make $KDEDIR/lib/
where foo is a lib that depends on all others, but there is no such single
lib I think).

David Faure, faure at, sponsored by Trolltech to work on KDE,
Konqueror (, and KOffice (

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