Plasma Workspaces 4.11: the last feature release in the 4.x series for kde-workspace

Aaron J. Seigo aseigo at
Wed May 1 14:15:45 BST 2013

Hello everyone,

tl;dr -> 4.11 will be the last feature release of kde-workspace. Plasma Workspaces will be feature 
frozen and we are committing to 2 years of maintenance releases of 4.11. The next feature release 
of kde-workspace will be Plasma Workspaces 2, based on Qt5.

This does not impact kdelibs, kde-runtime or any KDE application development.

As you probably know, a number of the Plasma developers got together a couple of weeks back 
for a developer sprint, Tokamak 6, that focused on a Qt5 / Frameworks 5 version of Plasma 

We have already made significant progress in this effort: we have a functioning libplasma2, 
QML2 versions of Plasma Components and an alpha version of a new shell loader that will end 
up replacing the plasma-desktop, plasma-netbook and plasma-device binaries. At the 
development sprint we made further progress, some of which you can read about here:

In planning a roadmap for Plasma Workspaces 2, we realized that we have arrived at a point in 
development where, in order to move forward, we need to start porting the contents of kde-
workspace. In fact, some components in kde-workspace already have been!

KWin needs to complete the shift to Qt5, and this will not be possible to do while maintaining a 
compatible Qt4 version. The changes necessary have been made as minimal as possible thanks 
to work done in the last few 4.x dev cycles, but the remaining changes will be significant.

Due to the adoption of QML2 and the new unified shell binary significant changes to the desktop 
code base will occur that will cause a similar significant divergence.

Other components will be retired outright, such as KDM.

Finally, we don't want to make our users and 3rd party developers wait overly long for Plasma 
Workspaces 2. We want to have as little disruption to the release regularity as possible while still 
delivering a high quality product on first release. This means we need to start sooner rather than 

To achieve our goals, we have decided to put the 4.x version of Plasma Workspaces into 
maintenance mode. After 4.11, all feature development will happen in the Qt5-based codebase. 
We will continue to roll out bug fix, translation and stabilization releases of 4.11 during this time in 
sync with the KDE SC process for a minimum of 2 years.

The 4.11.x versions of Plasma Workspaces should be especially appropriate for use in long term 
maintenance/support releases of operating systems that package Plasma.

For Plasma Workspaces 2, our goal is to have a user ready release in Q2 2013. This release will 
not necessarily be tied to the release schedule of Frameworks 5, nor does it impact in any way 
application development which should continue developing again the 4.x kdelibs until such time 
as we have a working release of Frameworks 5.

This has been discussed within the broader Plasma community (inc focus areas such as Solid) as 
well as on the release-team mailing list. Additional feedback is welcome and we will do our best 
to address any questions that you may have. 

Cheers, and happy hacking :)

Aaron J. Seigo
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