This week in KDE: New Spectacle features and tons of bugfixes

New Features

Spectacle now lets you annotate an existing screenshot via a button in the notification or the command-line --edit-existing <file> argument (Bharadwaj Raju, Spectacle 22.04):

You can now drag and drop music and playlist files from your file manager onto Elisa’s playlist panel (Bharadwaj Raju, Elisa 22.04)

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

Ark can now open zip archives that contain malformed PHP files (Albert Astals Cid, Ark 21.12)

Dolphin now displays the correct data when you create a folder while filtering the view (Eduardo Cruz, Dolphin 22.04)

Opening .m3u* playlist files in Elisa using the file manager now works properly (Bharadwaj Raju, Elisa 22.04)

Task Manager tooltips for single-window-non-web-browser apps that are playing media but don’t display the media name in the window title once again show album art instead of a window thumbnail (Bharadwaj Raju, Plasma 5.23.4)

Bluetooth status is now saved on logout when using the “remember” option (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.23.5)

Plasma panels now load faster on login and look less visually glitchy while doing so (David Edmundson, Plasma 5.23.5)

Discover no longer crashes when you open the description page of a Flatpak app you just removed (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.24)

Discover is now faster to check for Flatpak app updates (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.24)

The System Monitor app and applets now use less resources by not constantly polling for disk and sensor data when nothing would display the polled data (Arjen Hiemstra, Plasma 5.24)

It’s now actually possible to scroll the view in the Notifications applet when there are a lot of notifications in the history (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.24)

Transient jobs that display notifications with text like “Examining” or “Opening” no longer stick around and remain visible once the job has been completed (Kai Uwe Broulik, Plasma 5.24)

Adjusting the screen brightness when using a multi-GPU setup now always works properly (Dan Robinson, Plasma 5.24)

Right-clicking on the weather applet no longer offers a nonsensical menu item saying “Open in <text editor>” (Nicolas Fella, Plasma 5.24)

The Media Player applet now correctly shows “nothing playing” when the last media source app is closed (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.24)

Quitting and re-launching an app (or browser tab) that is playing media now causes the Task Manager thumbnail to correctly show the media controls (Bharadwaj Raju, Plasma 5.24)

Swapping the position of grouped apps/tasks in the Task Manager no longer causes them to display the wrong items when clicked while using the Textual List style (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.24)

In the Plasma Wayland session, the scale factor displayed in System Settings’ Display and Monitor page is no longer inappropriately rounded down when using a fractional scale factor like 150% (Méven Car, Plasma 5.24)

In the Plasma Wayland session, monitor names are no longer weirdly doubled in System Settings’ Display and Monitor page (Méven Car, Plasma 5.24)

Typing text to search in the Emoji Selector window as soon as it appears now works properly (Bharadwaj Raju, Plasma 5.24)

The Plasma System Monitor app and widgets of the same name will no longer ever nonsensically show negative disk read speeds (Arjen Hiemstra, Plasma 5.24)

Plasma theme graphics no longer sometimes go totally haywire and display in bizarre ways after they are changed in a new version (Marco Martin, Frameworks 5.89)

Monochrome Breeze icons are once again displayed in the correct color when using a dark color scheme (Rodney Dawes, Frameworks 5.89)

When using an icon theme that’s missing a requested icon, it will once again fall back to the next-closest icon in the current theme (e.g. edit-copy-location will fall back to edit-copy) rather than first looking for the icon in the fallback theme (Janet Blackquill, Frameworks 5.89)

In the Plasma Wayland session, the Morphing Popups effect now works–so most notably, panel tooltips will smoothly animate as they appear and disappear, just like they do in the X11 session (Marco Martin, Frameworks 5.89)

User Interface Improvements

Dolphin’s status bar no longer shows and hides itself according to the context; now its visibility is completely controlled by the user-facing setting to show or hide it (Kai Uwe Broulik, Dolphin 21.12)

When the “Bookmarks” button is added to Konsole’s toolbar, its popup can now be opened with a normal click, not a click-and-hold (me: Nate Graham, Konsole 21.12)

Spectacle now respects the last-used values of “include mouse pointer” and “include window titlebar and borders” when taking screenshots using global shortcuts (Antonio Prcela, Spectacle 22.04)

Gwenview now has support for large 512×512 and 1024×1024 sizes thumbnails (Ilya Pominov, Gwenview 22.04)

You can now find KWrite and Kate by searching for more terms like terms “text” “editor” or “notepad” (for KWrite) and “programming” or “development” (for Kate) (me: Nate Graham, Kate & KWrite 22.04)

You can now find Dolphin by searching for more terms like “files” “file manager” and “network share” (Felipe Kinoshita, Dolphin 22.04)

Dolphin’s URL navigator dropdown now shows hidden files when the main view is also showing hidden files (Eugene Popov, Dolphin 22.04)

Discover now shows you a sensible message when you have the Flatpak backend configured without any repos; it even gives you a button you can push to add Flathub (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.24)

When you’re using the system in a language other than English, search terms entered in System Settings’ search field using English will still find results (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.24)

When using a global scale factor, System Settings’ Display Configuration page now shows the physical resolution in the screen visualization view, rather than the effective scaled resolution (Méven Car, Plasma 5.24):

Hovering the cursor over a file or folder in the trash no longer causes that item to secretly get copied to /tmp so that thumbnails can be generated for it (Eduardo Sánchez Muñoz, Frameworks 5.89)

Scrollbars, progress bars, and sliders in the Breeze Plasma style now have the same slightly darker background color that they do in app windows (S. Christian Collins, Frameworks 5.89):

Tooltips for elided items in KRunner search views now use the same styling as elsewhere (David Redondo, Frameworks 5.89)

The icon chooser dialog’s search field can now be focused with the Ctrl+F shortcut (Kai Uwe Broulik, Frameworks 5.89)

The Escape key can now be used to close dialog layers in Kirigami-based apps (Claudio Cambra, Frameworks 5.89)

…And everything else

Keep in mind that this blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! Tons of KDE apps whose development I don’t have time to follow aren’t represented here, and I also don’t mention backend refactoring, improved test coverage, and other changes that are generally not user-facing. If you’re hungry for more, check out https://planet.kde.org/, where you can find blog posts by other KDE contributors detailing the work they’re doing.

How You Can Help

Have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved to discover ways to 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.

51 thoughts on “This week in KDE: New Spectacle features and tons of bugfixes

  1. Amazing, as always !

    I also can’t resist to take the opportunity to say that i’m posting this comment from a 2008’s Packard Bell (AMD Turion with 3Go Ram) with Debian and the latest KDE Plasma 5.23.3 on it, and it keeps amazing me how well it works !
    Well, it’s slightly slow (and browsing internet demands a lot of patience and zen) but the overall Plasma experience is almost flawless (i only turned off all the fancy effects, but it’s all super smooth)

    So for that, big big congrats to the whole KDE team, for delivering a powerful yet very efficient desktop that can be run even on very antique computers!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I run Neon on a 2012 computer. It has more RAM than yours does, but I have all of the effects turned on and it still runs perfectly. In fact, it’s faster than my 2016 macbook pro and a 2019 dell XPS 13 with 16GB of RAM and Windows 10 that my company sent me.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. The people who work on plasma, for the most part, aren’t paid by corporations.

          They are giving up their time to make these contributions. The currency for this software is not money but contributions in terms of code, documentation, artwork, support or bug reports.

          By asking someone else to do the bug report you are effectively saying ‘this has no value to me’.

          That’s probably not the case given you took the time to post in the first place.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Re: Ark can now open zip archives that contain malformed PHP files (Albert Astals Cid, Ark 21.12)

    No good, you should’ve banned opening archives with PHP files altogether! PHP must die!

    Like

  3. Could the utilities be named “kde-function” like kde-screenshot. I had to go google to understand what spectacle was meaning. That’s really making the experience unclear all these nonsense nicknames for secondary programs.
    For Krita by example, I understand it deserve its own name instead of kde-painting because it’s not a simple utility, but for a screenshot tool, that’s really pushing it.

    Like

    1. Where did you see “Spectacle” without its caption that tells you what it is? The caption should appear in the launcher menu and the task manager.

      Like

      1. When something needs an extra description name to be understood, it means it’s not clear enough by itself.

        Also, I use the terminal to run apps, not the menu.

        Like

        1. Also, I use the terminal to run apps, not the menu.

          Then you should already know how to find out an app’s executable name. This is an extremely niche use case not relevant to typical everyday usage.

          Furthermore if we took your suggestion, it would actually make life harder for you, not easier. Because if for example you wanted to launch Krita from a terminal, then you would need to go learn somewhere that the executable name is `kde-paint`, since trying `krita` would fail.

          Like

  4. A strange thing happened after updating to Plasma 5.23.4 in Tumbleweed, Chrome is no longer able to start in wayland with the appropriate flag –enable-features=UseOzonePlatform –ozone-platform=wayland

    Obviously removing the flag starts normally, I wonder what has changed …

    Like

    1. It is some kinda screwy. When I add flags to desktop file and launch it from there, then its window does not exist, while presented in taskbar. If you dare to right click on it and choose move window, then the whole wayland session will be hanged.
      Strange things:
      1) the user choosing window (that is appeared before main window if multiple users in browser exist) actually _is_ displayed and not screwed.
      2) If I start Vivaldi from konsole, then it actually _launches_ without no screw [but only if you did not screwed before]
      3) Even in situation 2, if you open another window, for example, ctrl+shift+n for new private window, then again it becomes screwed.

      I am not sure who’s bug that is. Maybe not kde itself, but Chromium. Just wanted to share experience. If you know the solution, please share.

      Vivaldi: 5.0.2497.24 (Stable channel) stable (64-bit)
      Plasma: 5.23.4.
      OS: Arch Linux

      Like

  5. RE: In the Plasma Wayland session, the Morphing Popups effect now works–so most notably, panel tooltips will smoothly animate as they appear and disappear, just like they do in the X11 session (Marco Martin, Frameworks 5.89)

    Mr. Graham, you are kind please to help me to identify precisely which patches are made for this fix?

    The Slackware 15.0 RC2 is in a late stage of freezing for the incoming release, so it’s “stuck” on Frameworks 5.88, but I would like to propose this patch to be added in a cherry picked way.

    Like

    1. If you click on the link in the article, it will take you to the bug report page for that issue, and the commit you would need to backport will be listed in the “Latest commit” field.

      Like

  6. Hi Nate,
    on the screenshot of the “Battery and Brightness” widget I see a checkbox which seems to need checking in order to inhibit sleep and screen locking. While this box is _not_ checked, below, I read that Elisa is _inhibiting_ sleep and screen locking. Is that an glitch that needs fixing?

    Like

    1. The checkbox lets you *manually* inhibit sleep and screen locking. Below it is shown which apps inhibiting sleep and screen locking *automatically*.

      I’m open to suggestions for how we can improve this, as it’s been confusing for quite some time forever.

      Like

      1. So what you basically have are two reasons for inhibition: manual and app-driven.

        Let’s stay for a moment with the manual case. Probably the use-case is that there is an app for which you don’t want sleep but the app does not take care of that on its own, but the user must do that. I might argue that that use-case is so rare that it does not require interaction on a primary UI-element, but I don’t have data.

        The current UI with the app-driven inhibition indented gives the impression that the manual way is superior or would influence the app-driven behavior. With my current understanding, this is however not the case. You can’t e.g. disable the app-driven inhibition. Therefore, my suggestion is to move both lines to the same level of indentation to not imply any dependency or superiority of one over the other. Also, changing the wording to “Manually inhibit…” might add clarity. However, you don’t win a Pulitzer Prize for that line.

        You could now even thing of making also the app-driven inhibitions tick able. Well, but maybe not. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Good ideas. The last time I changed the text, I did propose to add the word “manually.” however that makes the label long enough in English that it is too long to fit in languages like German and Brazilian Portuguese that typically have longer text than English does. So if we Added the word “Manually”, then we would need to condense other text.

          Not indenting the app-specific text is a good idea too. I’ll do that.

          Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Nate,

    I have password-less login from SDDM to Plasma, but I need to unlock my kwallet to sign in to my Wifi. Thus, the first thing I see on login is the password dialog do kwallet. What I _don’t_ see at that point is the panel. So now time, so start menu no nothing before unlocking kwallet. Is that intended behavior or should I report a bug?

    Like

    1. If the wallet has the same password as the user account, it should work. However I don’t know about the passwordless user case. That might be broken. It would be a bug, yes.

      Like

  8. Nate, is there a way to indicate from the GUI that an app should use a secondary graphics card instead of the primary one? (I’ve got an Intel and AMD in the laptop, and the only way to tell anything to use the AMD is with an environmental variable on a command line). I’d file a bug, but honestly not sure what this would get filed against. Thanks.

    Like

    1. The app’s desktop file has a flag for this, which can be set in KMenuEdit.

      That’s kind of a pain in the butt though and we do need an easier way to do this.

      Like

  9. Thank you so much for all the hard work that goes into the constant improvements and fixes. I am on Kubuntu 20.04 and so don’t experience most of these changes. Have been wanting to move to neon for the promise of constant updates. Its just that the current install is working flawlessly!! 🙂

    Like

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