This week in KDE: all about the apps

This week we landed a lot of nice improvements for KDE’s apps, which I’ve highlighted below! Of course we didn’t forget about Plasma, so have a look-see:

New Features

Dolphin now lets you mount ISO images using a new menu item in the context menu (Kwon-Young Choi, Dolphin 20.08.0):

Konsole now lets you monitor a tab for the active process to complete (Will Westrop, Konsole 20.08.0):

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

Improved search speed/performance in Okular’s sidebar (Ahmad Samir, Okular 1.10.2)

Fixed a very common Yakuake crash (Maximilian Schiller, 20.04.2)

Fixed a common crash in Konsole when right-clicking and using Qt 5.15 (Ahmad Samir, Konsole 20.04.2)

Gwenview’s touch gestures now work properly when using display scaling (Steffen Hartlieb, Gwenview 20.08.0)

Notes widgets placed in a panel now display the pop-up note if clicked on when all windows are hidden or minimized (Marco Martin, Plasma 5.19.0)

Clicking on the settings button for a notification now opens the Notification settings page with that particular app focused and visible (Benjamin Port, Plasma 5.19.0)

KRunner once again shows Firefox bookmarks (Alexander Lohnau, Plasma 5.19.0)

KRunner now does a better job of handling file paths beginning with a tilde (Méven Car, Plasma 5.20)

When using Dolphin to view the desktop using the special desktop:/ URL, the amount of free space is now correctly displayed in the status bar (Ahmad Samir, Plasma 5.20.0)

Dates displayed in the file overwrite confirmation dialog now respect the date formatting of your current locale (Méven Car, Frameworks 5.71)

Deleting files from a Samba share no longer displays a notification with an inaccurate number of deleted files (Kai Uwe Broulik, Frameworks 5.71)

User Interface Improvements

Okular’s sidebar user interface has been overhauled, with the result that it now takes up less horizontal space, is easier to show and hide quickly, has a more consistent appearance overall, and fixes many bugs (me: Nate Graham, Okular 1.11.0):

The default gesture for moving windows has been changed to Meta+click, to avoid conflicting with apps like Krita, Inkscape, and Blender which use Alt+click for their own usages. Tell all your friends and spread this information far and wide so people aren’t surprised! If you hate the new one and don’t use Krita, Blender, Inkscape, or another app which uses Alt+Click for something, you can of course change it back to Alt+click (Noah Davis, Plasma 5.20)

When dragging files from Dolphin (or elsewhere) onto the desktop, the files now end up at the location where you dragged them, rather than at the end of the last row (Radek Husek, Plasma 5.20)

The battery charge level icons displayed by the Battery And Brightness applet now reflect the current charge status more accurately (Daniel Roschka, Frameworks 5.71):
more accurate battery charge level icons

The standalone KRunner widget now closes the pop-up if you hit the Escape key while the text field is empty (Alexander Lohnau, Plasma 5.20)

When using an ultrawide screen wider than 21:9, the default horizontal panel now no longer spans the entire screen width, but rather remains at the size it would be on a 21:9 screen, horizontally centered. Also in this mode, notification pop-ups that are configured to appear close to the Notifications System Tray applet will pop up close to it rather than way far away in a corner of the screen (Kai Uwe Broulik, Plasma 5.20.0):

The new OSDs now show a percentage label for brightness and volume (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.20):

Screenshot_20200529_092619

How You Can Help

Have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved to discover ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

43 thoughts on “This week in KDE: all about the apps

  1. Wow! That was amazing!
    Lots of improvements and new features. I love those changes in Okular where the sidebar is more compact. I’m using Okular so much and those changes will be very helpful for me. Thank you guys!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My Windows 10 didn’t boot any longer after an update, so I installed Manjaro. Whenever one OS stops working I switch it. 😉

      Like

    1. Yes, that would make sense. However this is implemented as a plugin, and plugins’ menu items are automatically added to a lower section in the context menu. It would take some finagling to make this happen.

      Like

  2. Mounting ISO files from the context menu is an absolute must have.

    Thank you very much guys!

    From my experience, it happened sometimes to have disc images in different formats than ISO like MDF / MDS, IMG or even BIN.

    Hopefully in the future the mount optical disc image feature can extend to include also these formats.

    Monitor for process to complete is also cool, but I wish it could play a sound when the process finishes, if it cannot already.

    I’m thinking that this way I can put a long-running process in the terminal, raise the volume level of the computer and go away to do some other life activity where I cannot see the screen.

    When I hear the sound I can come back to do what I wanted to do next, like the sound of a microwave oven.

    Files dragged to the Desktop ending up where I dragged them is also a most welcomed feature.

    I was very annoyed that many times in the past dragging a file or a folder from an archive to Desktop would put it under the current window in which I was working.

    Nice to see this smarter behavior.

    I wished it was for 5.19, but anyway, I can wait for 5.20

    Congratulations and may thanks to all KDE developers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. >>Monitor for process to complete is also cool, but I wish it could play a sound when the process finishes, if it cannot already.

      If it’s implemented like the other 2 “monitor for…” options, it will have an entry in the list of possible notifications, and so you can have it do a lot of things when it’s triggered, like playing a sound or running a command =)

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Exactly right. You can customize what you want the notification to do in System Settings > Notifications > Applications > Konsole > Configure Events.

        Or click the settings button in the notification itself, once it appears.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Mounting iso formats from dolphin context menu has been easily done with cdemu. My question is does this support as many formats of cd images as cdemu? A list of supported cd image formats would be good

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Not sure about that currently, but hopefully it shouldn’t be hard to do it if not already implemented, assuming the Solid frameworks already support them.

      Like

  4. Really glad to see mount ISO option and Okular sidebar UI changes. 🙂 Another good change regarding Okular would be line break in ”Contents” and ”Bookmarks” sidebars, because as it stands right now (for example at 00:04) in order to see full names you need to resize the sidebar, line break would solve this issue.

    Like

    1. You can already enter an archive without mounting it using Ark; or did you mean in Dolphin?

      At this point you can just mount it and peer inside that way. 🙂

      Like

  5. Great work!
    Nate Graham, thank you so much for bringing the KDE Plasma news and improvements in a simple way. I really appreciate your work and everyone who collaborates to make this possible.

    Like

  6. Great improvements as usual!
    I’m particularly thankful for the Yakuake (Konsolepart, really, also affecting Dolphin’s integrated terminal) crash fix, which I was monitoring closely, and Mageia has already patched =)

    I’m a little wary of the “meta+click replaces alt+click” default change. I can change that in 3 seconds for me, but I fear it will bring a lot of grief from people, as is often the case when classic defaults are changed.

    Like

    1. Yeah, there was some pushback internally too, for the same reasons.

      In the end I think it’s the right choice because it was breaking various apps–including one of our own (Krita). Another thing to note is that both GNOME and ElementaryOS have since switched to using Meta+click for this, so we’re increasing cross-desktop consistency too.

      Changing defaults is often painful, but I think it’s worthwhile if the long-term benefit is considered high enough.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think for the savvy user, they’ll figure it out, but for the regular users like the ones that I mentor, they don’t know it exists so won’t know that it has changed. But I think this is a welcome change, I’ve had to struggle with this unwanted behaviour in Inkscape for too long.

        Like

        1. Wow, I just read through all the passionate position statements about changing from Alt to Meta and that was a tough battle. I really do feel that this is the right choice though. It’s not like KDE and Plasma have never changed things before behind the users’ backs and the users have had to figure it out again. Microsoft has done this, Apple has done this, so the argument for keeping the Alt+click because “that’s the way it’s always been” purity line of thought doesn’t hold up.

          Like

  7. 1. Mounting ISOs from Dolphin will be awesome, but what about countless image formats? Can we mount them too or still need to use cli?
    2. I still don’t like the new volume OSD… and hope there will be a way to keep the old style if someone wants it. Let’s call it “Legacy OSD” and gives us option to turn it on till the new, advanced solutions will replace it.

    Like

    1. The old “Mac OS X” is rather awful, as it blocks too much of your screen with a big silly monochromatic icon.
      I loved how Windows 10 (even though I’m not a fan of the OS) did it actually and this is a step in the right direction. It makes that big awkward icon small and less obstructive, as it should be. No need for crappy options to complicate things pointlessly, as KDE has too much of that kind of stuff already.

      Like

  8. Glad to see Yakuake is getting some love, unfortunatelly till this day it still doesn’t cope well with blurred transparencies, keep getting the “Konsole was started before desktop effects were enabled. You need to restart Konsole to see transparent background.” bug that has been there forever.
    This could be workarounded by putting this code in .bashrc, but alas, since kde 5.18.x it stopped working:
    if [[ $(ps –no-header -p $PPID -o comm) =~ ^yakuake$ ]]; then
    for wid in $(xdotool search –pid $PPID); do
    xprop -f _KDE_NET_WM_BLUR_BEHIND_REGION 32c -set _KDE_NET_WM_BLUR_BEHIND_REGION 0 -id $wid; done
    fi

    do you have any news on this one?

    Like

  9. Nate,
    Good Morning !
    This is my first comment, you already know if a bug has been solved in the iso that is on the kde neon website? the error iso at the end of the installation, i wanted to install neon on pcs here in Brazil.

    Like

  10. Wow, such nice new features and polish of KDE Software this week, really really good news :).

    That new OSD much more thin and with the % is such a nice improvement in my humble opinion :). A lot of improvement on KDE Apps too, Plasma 5.20 is taking such a good shape with a few (for the moment) nice changes I really wait with such enthusiasm.

    As always, I would like to thank you Nate and everyone else who makes this project and this software possible, you really make the difference, you really rock so hard, thank you very much!!

    I send you a huge, sincere, fresh & virtual hug to everyone, hoping you’re everyone safe and healthy, you and yours beloved ones ^^.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. There’s a bug about KDE Activities (374575 in bugzilla) which exists for years. This thing is really frustrating because there are at least 2 places where you can set shortcuts for activity switcher and none of them work.

    People found workaround to send d-bus command and that may be used instead whatever is used there to work.

    Like, there is some function. It exists but you can’t use it because it simply never works. At least there shouldn’t be ability to do something that doesn’t work.

    Like

  12. That sound OSD is really slick, love it as it’s less obtrusive! I just hope that silly linux bug for USB speakers gets fixed already so that when you drop volume under 30%, it no longer goes mute…

    Like

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