some questions & more questions

Anne Wilson cannewilson at
Tue Nov 17 15:36:46 GMT 2009

On Tuesday 17 November 2009 14:49:20 spir wrote:
> Le Mon, 16 Nov 2009 21:36:05 +0000 (UTC),
> Duncan <1i5t5.duncan at> stated:
> Thank you for all this meaningful information. Try to make the best use of
>  it, but there are still some points unclear for me.
I'm going to snip lots out, to keep this short and readable :-)

> Right, didn't know about distribution specific kde lists.
> Now, the issue for me is to find the kde version running on my computer.
>  Package management says 5.28, but I know it's wrong. All system info progs
>  I could find say nothing about kde version, including KInfoCenter itself.
>  Tried to find kde's home dir (in the hope to get some info there by
>  watching text files), but could'nt succeed. Even "which kde" brings
>  nothing, (not even an error message). 

I don't know kubuntu, but I would guess there is some gui application for 
installing and upgrading packages?  If you open that and search for kdebase-
workspace or kdebase-desktop, that should give you the version number.

>  You may find me stupid, but it's a
>  common issue with Linux distributions: not only one cannot chose where
>  progs go installed, but there is absolutely no feedback about it (also,
>  prog-related files get installed in many dirs, actually, which indeed
>  complicates the issues when one needs to search for them).
Actually, once you get used to the structure you can find things almost 
immediately.  System-wide configurations are normally under /etc, for 
instance, while your personal configurations are in your home directory.  
There are slight variations from one distro to another, but by and large, what 
works for one is very likely to work for the others, too, so if you can't find 
anything, ask.

> This is strange for me. Kde has a great reputation of reliability. Kde 4
>  was out nearly 2 years ago and still ships with doc for kde3? Can you
>  imagine the jokes in the free software community if windows vista shipped
>  with docs for xp?
You must bear in mind that windows developers are paid, full-time workers.  
That's a very different situation.  The issue is being addressed, but it can't 
happen overnight.  Userbase (as in my sig) is the wiki by which we can get 
essential information around in the meantime.

> Thank you, found lancelot and indeed better fits my needs.
It has some great features, including the ability for a whole section to be 
torn off onto the panel.

> > > 5. amarok messes up files & folders
> > > When trying to play an album, another one is played instead. Feedback
> > > text shows the name of the album/folder I asked for, and the title of
> > > the song/file actually played. Minirok never plays the album I ask for,
> > > instead always the first songs of my collection, in alphabetic order.
> >
> > I gave up on amarok for kde4 (I used to use it with kde3), as they got
> > rid of all the features from the kde3 version I liked, and bloated it up
> > with a lot of (to me) "junk" that I hadn't the slightest need (or want)
> > of.[...]
> Ok, went back to gnome's music player and all is fine.
There are many possibilities for music players, and you should try a few, as 
one size does definitely not fit all.  Take a look at, and be aware that several 
applications that are listed as video players can also function as audio 

> > > 6. place icons on control panels
> > > Is it possible to drag/place icons on a control panel? How can one
> > > chose the place of or move icons once they are there (eg sent from
> > > kickoff)? Is there a control panel layout utility? Tried all what I
> > > could imagine without any success.
> >
> > Control panel?  You mean the various plasma panels (of which there's only
> > one by default, IIRC)?  Assuming so...
> They are called control panels in the docs, but the doc is not ok...
> [...]
From Lancelot, just drag and drop.  From kickoff, it's right click and Add to 

> Thank you, manage to do some things. The only bit I don't get is how to
>  first put a widget/icon/plasmoid on a panel. 

You can do this in several ways, but probably the easiest is from the 
configuration panel that opens up when you use the cashew on the panel.  There 
you will see Add Widgets.  Launcher icons, as I said above, you put on from 
the menu, Lancelot.

> > > 7. ATI Radeon
> > > Intended to activate the proprietary driver for my ATI radeon video
> > > card, but the setup menu does not show any. Is it now automatic? Or is
> > > there now a free driver for it? There used to be an entry in previous
> > > versions of ubuntu.
> >
> > This would be a *buntu specific question.  It's not something kde deals
> > with.  Ask on the *buntu forums/lists.
There are display problems with ATi, NVidia and Intel graphics cards - for 
many models but not all.  Be aware of that - it stems from changes at the 
level of X handling - and ask on lists as well as googling for your particular 
card.  The experience of others with your card is most valuable.  Proprietary 
drivers have been found to help for some cards and make things worse for 

> > In kde 4.3.3 at least, it's in "The application formerly known as
> > kcontrol" (aka system settings), under computer administration, keyboard
> > and mouse, keyboard (that's the kcontrol widget), NumLock on KDE Startup.
> Nothing like that by me. "keyboard and mouse" actually contains no setting
>  at all about keyboard properly speaking! I get in there settings about
>  mouse, joystick (so that the top-level should actually be renamed eg "user
>  input") and key bindings. Don't know where settings about key "speed"
>  (repetition, etc) are gone. I'll try to install the newest version kde
>  4.3.3 as soon as I can (also have major network connexion issues these
>  days).
It is definitely worth getting onto the 4.3 series as soon as possible.

> Well, actually noticed it works as expected when "leave" is activated from
>  kickoff. But direct computer switch happens in any other case. Just need
>  to know it, but consistent behaviour would be better.
I've never seen this behaviour, so it may be a *buntu issue, or it may be 
specific to your system in some way.

> There is definitively something wrong here, for sure, because the behaviour
>  is not consistent. Eg putting a CD may result in having matching icon (in
>  dolphin's view) -- or not. And once opened the corresponding folder may or
>  may show its content. Also, the CD's name is shown randomly (else I get
>  cdrom*).
The behaviour when a CD is inserted is probably matched to the type of 
content.  As Duncan explained, the content show up in Dolphin when it is 
mounted (which you can do either on the notifier or in Dolphin itself0, but 
audio CDs are not mounted, so it may well look different.

> > The user kde config is normally under ~/.kde, or sometimes ~/.kde4 or a
> > similar variant, depending on your distribution.  If you have /home as a
> > separate filesystem as in many installations, it's normally possible to
> > totally reinstall the "system" without touching user config, everything
> > in /home, at all.  Of course, if you have everything on the same
> > filesystem/partition, yeah, reinstalling will probably wipe it.
> Thank you. I thought the same but (at least by me) ~/.kde is nearly empty,
>  except for /share (which I wonder what may be used for, for there is no
>  local network, not even a second user -- anyway).
Take a look at ~/.kde/share/apps - you will find there your personal files 
regarding the applications, whereas in ~/.kde/share/config you will find your 
personal configuration files for the applications.  That are the two 
directories that you need to be aware of.  For the most part you can leave the 
rest to get on with things :-)

One page I would recommend that you read is - it gives you a lot of 
information about features in Dolphin that you might not otherwise find for 
some time.

KDE Community Working Group
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