There’s big news in Usability & Productivity: Firefox 64 can now use native KDE open/save dialogs! This is optional, bleeding-edge functionality so no distros ship with it yet, but it’s pretty simple to enable yourself:
- Make sure you’re using Firefox 64
- Install the xdg-desktop-portal and xdg-desktop-portal-kde packages
- Set GTK_USE_PORTAL=1 in Firefox’s Desktop file. Here’s how: https://www.reddit.com/r/kde/comments/a5cxwk/firefox_v64_can_now_use_the_kde_file_selection/ebmemp1/
Once you do this, Firefox should use native KDE open/save dialogs! Please give this a shot and test it out so bugs (like the empty filename field) can be found and fixed, which will make distros more likely to turn it on automatically. On that subject, I’ve filed tickets to get this integrated by default for Kubuntu and Manjaro.
If you find a problem, file a bug to the “xdg-desktop-portal-kde” product.
Of course that’s not all: a lot of improvements have been made to Discover, Plasma, and, heck, all over the place!
Bugfixes & Performance Improvements
- Plasma no longer crashes when clicking on the clipboard dialog’s “Disable this Popup” button (Kai Uwe Broulik, KDE Plasma 5.14.5)
- In Discover, when viewing a Snap app’s available channels, the version of the app available in each channel is now displayed (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.14.5)
- Discover’s app progress detail view no longer visually changes when you hover the mouse over a task, because nothing happens when you click on it (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.14.5)
- In Ubuntu-based distros, Discover now respects the system’s user-configurable check-for-updates frequency setting (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.14.5)
- Discover no longer futilely offers to show dependencies for locally-downloaded packages (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.14.5)
- Discover once again shows a Cancel button in its toolbar when an app is in the middle of installing (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- Discover now displays the correct set of information for locally-downloaded Flatpak packages that have fetchable metadata (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- Discover no longer crashes when uninstalling multiple apps in rapid succession (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- Fixed a weird bug in Discover that could cause the Featured list to lose entries after installing an app when multiple backends and sources are configured (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- In System Settings, it’s once again possible to set a font DPI lower than 96 (David Edmundson, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- When a dialog window is open and its parent window is minimized, the dialog window now gets minimized too (Vlad Zagorodniy, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- In Discover and other Kirigami-based apps, scrollable views’ scrollbars no longer overlap the content and no longer unexpectedly scroll to the top under certain circumstances (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Frameworks 5.54)
- The context menu for Trash icons on the desktop once again shows the “Empty Trash” menu item (Kai Uwe Broulik, KDE Frameworks 5.54)
- Drop-down menus in QML-and-Kirigami-based apps no longer have background highlights that are sometimes too short (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Frameworks 5.54)
- SQLite files now get appropriate icons (me: Nate Graham, KDE Frameworks 5.54):
User Interface Improvements
- While in Panel Edit Mode, it’s now a bit easier to figure out how to move a panel: the cursor changes to a more appropriate icon when hovered over the Screen Edge button, and when you click on it instead of dragging it, a helpful tooltip appears letting you know what to do (Björn Feber, KDE Plasma 5.15.0):
- The button on a panel that allows you to enter Panel Edit Mode and configure your panel now uses the standard “Configure” icon, instead of a hamburger menu icon (Björn Feber, KDE Plasma 5.15.0):
- The context menu for desktop icons is now identical to Dolphin’s (me: Nate Graham, KDE Plasma 5.15.0):
- Improved the user interface of the list view in the Desktop Effects System Settings page in various ways (Björn Feber, KDE Plasma 5.15.0)
- Discover now remembers your preferred sort order on the search results and Installed pages (KDE Plasma 5.15.0, Alex Pol Gonzalez)
- Discover’s Sources page now has a better interaction model: the list items are no longer uselessly clickable, and items that can be somehow interacted with have inline buttons (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, KDE Plasma 5.15.0):
Next week, your name could be in this list! Not sure how? Just ask! I’ve helped mentor a number of new contributors recently and I’d love to help you, too! You can also check out https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved, and find out how you can help be a part of something that really matters. You don’t have to already be a programmer. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!
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40 thoughts on “This week in Usability & Productivity, part 49”
but i think the job progress bar in discover need another look
this overlay look not very nice
maybe take the whole window hight make some improve
what do u think
Please file a bug! 🙂
It strikes me every week how many details were improved and I never noticed them even I use Plasma over 3,5 years… Kudos!
I’m happy with KDE Dialogs in FF, although I’m coping with it by using firefox-kde-opensuse which have already KDE dialogs and global menu. I wish Thunderbird added KDE file picker now since I do more operations on files (attachments) there then I do in FF. Current thunderbird-appmenu package only adds a global menu but KDE dialogs are missing so this would be awesome if thunderbird joined FF and add that support.
As to the request to Manjaro to integrate KDE file pickers in FF, it’s probably better to aim it at Arch, as Manjaro just takes upstream (Arch) FF and just adds branding (which is happening automatically in the fly by some scripts as I understand it). I’m not sure how easy it would add that support so maybe it would be just better to convince Arch maintainers to this idea.
In my experience, it’s pointless to request changes relating to integration and polish for distros like Arch or Debian. They very explicitly don’t care about those kinds of matters, preferring vanilla upstream packages. This is why the more user-friendly derivative distros like Ubuntu and Manjaro exist.
Sad to hear that but my experience is similar. Sadly, Manjaro team is small so they try to automate as many things as possible. It’s a miracle that we get firefox-kde-opensuse in Manjaro repos as an alternative. Just one of the developers is using it so he needs to compile it anyway so we get it as a bonus but it’s not promised and at any time it may disappear and then we have to use AUR version of that package (compile or use binary).
I guess it all comes down to whether they can make it automatic.
When I think of it, we are lucky on Arch side anyway, because we have so much choice and easy access to software and various versions. I would have no idea how to get this version of Firefox in, let’s say… Open Suse. Funny thing, I tried to find it as the patches are called open suse patches and yet search engine didn’t show ANYTHING on that topic for Open Suse and FF there is just the plain one, without KDE dialog and global menus.
So FF having at least KDE dialogs possible to be enabled manually for everyone else is a turn in good direction.
However, the print-to-file function of FF is still GTK3
The change I highlighted only added support for file open/save dialogs, not print dialogs. That’s a separate issue.
It’s curious, it works for me, I’m using Firefox beta (65.0b5) and it appears the KDE print dialog on Firefox to me.
Also thanks for the tip on getting KDE file open/save dialogs on Firefox!
These make me always excited that so many things are fixed and disappointed that none of them are bugs that I reported.
Looks like it’s time to dig into the code and start submitting patches, then! You seem fairly technically knowledgeable; I bet you could do it! See https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved/development
If I only knew C++ 🙂
I didn’t know any C++ when I started submitting patches a year and a half ago. You can do it! Besides, learning something new and fixing problems is much more empowering than complaining that other people haven’t done it for you. 🙂 The world improves when we take the initiative to make things happen!
My point was not to complain but to advertise my reports a little. Perhaps I should add some emoticons to make this clearer 🙂
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> When a dialog window is open and its parent window is minimized, the dialog window now gets minimized too
Very nice! That was a white noise annoyance…
hi Nate ! The FF opensuse patch leads to some files being randomly not saved (known issue), I guess this is a different implementation ?
Also, FF and TB have issues with the kde files associations : sometimes I have to make changes in the kde prefs to make them properly detected in ff. otherwise the default app for a given filetype is frequently wrong. install the gimp for instance, you’ll see what I mean 🙂 (pdfs get opened with it)
Correct, openSUSE’s patches are a different implementation.
Yeah, firefox-kde-opensuse do have issues with protocols. I was able to add proper magnet support but didn’t know how to add for example ocs-url.
So far that’s the only issue with this version of FF, but it has nothing to do with the options discussed here.
How fantastic: Mozilla finally surrendered to the silly KDE file handling approach…
Sorry, wrong on all counts: The patch was submitted by someone not associated with Mozilla; the effect is to use whatever file dialog is native to the platform (GNOME, KDE, ElementaryOS, whatever) and does not force anything on anyone; and finally, most people seem to prefer the KDE file dialog over the GTK one–especially people using KDE software.
Yes, I do prefer the KDE dialogs, but a long long measure.
I just tried that, and it does result in a different file save dialog being used. But it’s not the KDE one.
This is what I get:
But this is what an actual KDE file dialog looks like:
That’s the GNOME file dialog, not the KDE file dialog. Looks like it didn’t work for you. Are you sure you have the right packages installed and that you started Firefox with the environment variable?
Also, are you actually using Plasma, or GNOME (or something else?)
I’m on Plasma. However, it turns out I had xdg-desktop-portal-gtk installed, which is a dep of flatpak. I uninstalled it and that fixed the problem.
That makes sense! Out of curiosity, what happens if you have both installed?
At first it seemed that when both are installed, the GTK version wins. It was already installed because it was a dependency of something else, and I installed the KDE version on top of it. I logged out of Plasma and back in, and I was getting the Gnome file dialog.
However, it turns out you need to reboot. So I’ve now installed both versions, rebooted, and I get the KDE dialog.
I was just wondering, are there still any plans to make plasma hidpi scaling enabled? If im scaling it with integer value (2x) everything works just fine, and i’ve been using it for months. I’ve noticed only two annoyances, one is that when i mouse over to the bottom of the screen trying to press item on the panel, it doesnt highlight it. But if i move my mouse pointer just by 1px up, then i can select them just fine.
Another problem, is that when i minimize the window, the window animation doesnt go to taskbar in the bottom, but to the middle of the screen. I suppose the plasma gives wrong coordinates of the panel when i use hidpi scaling?
If you use Wayland, everything should just work properly.
When GTK_USE_PORTAL=1 is set, Firefox always keeps asking about being set as default browser on startup (without the variable, it remembers the setting and doens’t ask anymore). Is there any way to work around it?
Yes, you’ll need to set it in System Settings > Applications > Default Applications > Web Browser. I have an open patch that fixes this: https://phabricator.kde.org/D17372
It’s actually already set to Firefox for me in System Settings > Applications > Default Applications > Web Browser.
Darn, sounds like a bug! Please file one to xdg-desktop-portal-kde | General on bugs.kde.org.
I had this problem.
The solution was to make it default inside Firefox Settings. For some reasons was the confirmation was not registering. Just go there and done.
My problem is another.
I managed to make it work after updating, finally, to 18.04.1, but when I try to save an image for example the file name and extension is not automatically brought, the field is left blank and I need to give it a name and extension.
Because of this I had to undo and revert back to the GTK file selector.
This is a bug that’s already been fixed in the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.14.5 release. I don’t think it’s been backported to 5.12.x though, which you’re using if you have Kubuntu 18.04.
> Firefox 64 can now use native KDE open/save dialogs!
Great news, so we don’t need use plasmazilla forks of Firefox, that are updated very rarely!
From which versions of KDE this trick must work?
Any version that has the `xdg-desktop-portal-kde` package. In practice, probably 5.12.x and newer, though it may work for older ones too.
as always great work done!! Thanks a lot!
New report, new spanish translation to spread the word:
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When GTK_USE_PORTAL=1 is set, then on my system (Antergos) Thunderbird just crashes.
When I unset GTK_USE_PORTAL, then Thunderbird starts normally.
Therefore “Set GTK_USE_PORTAL=1 somewhere in your environment.”, in my opinion is not good idea. The only one safe place is Desktop file.
Additionally. In output messages (when I start Thunderbird from konsole) I see:
Gtk-Message: 16:59:34.827: Failed to load module “appmenu-gtk-module”
[calBackendLoader] Using Thunderbird’s builtin libical backend
But the same messages are visible when mentioned variable is not set.
Installing this package made that gtk+ applications crash.
Of course I followed your instruction. In Firefox I see filedialog (I tested only open action) from Plasma/KDE.
$ pacman -Q | grep xdg-
Thanks for testing! Might be worth a bug on Thunderbird: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/enter_bug.cgi#h=dupes%7CThunderbird
I will correct the original post.