This week in KDE: Firmware security page

Unfortunately we didn’t get any 15-minute bugs fixed this week, and overall activity was lower than usual. I suspect at least part of the reason is fallout from the ongoing war in Ukraine, which has affected several prominent Ukrainian KDE contributors and also cut off Russian contributors from many of their usual internet resources. Some humanitarian aid and media organizations that you can donate to may be found here. Let us all hope for peace, and remain united in our pursuit to build the finest and most humane software.

Nevertheless, back in KDE land we did accomplish quite a bit, including a fancy new “Firmware Security” page in Info Center!

15-Minute Bugs Resolved

None! 😦

Current number of bugs: 81, up from 80. Current list of bugs

New Features

Skanpage now lets you configure which scanner settings are visible on its scanner options sidebar, in case you regularly use any uncommon or non-default scanner options (Alexander Stippich, Skanpage 22.04)

KRunner and other KRunner-powered searches can now convert teaspoons and tablespoons to and from each other and other units (Corbin Schwimmbeck, Frameworks 5.92):

Just in case that was something you ever wanted to know

Info Center now has a new “Firmware Security” page that provides information about the security of your system’s low-level components (Harald Sitter, Plasma 5.25):

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

In the Plasma Wayland session, Yakuake’s “slide up/slide down” animation now works (Tiernan Hubble, Yakuake 22.04)

Adding tracks to Elisa’s playlist when shuffle mode is being used no longer causes the added tracks to have the wrong names (Martin Seher, Elisa 22.04)

When using a session, Kate now correctly saves its list of open documents/tabs when the app is automatically quit by logging out, restarting, or shutting down, so that the next time you open it, it shows that you were working on last time (Waqar Ahmed, Kate 22.04)

Dolphin’s context menu is now significantly faster to open when Ark is installed (Kai Uwe Broulik, Ark 22.04)

In the Plasma Wayland session, screen sharing/recording/casting in full-screen apps now works (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.24.3)

In the Plasma Wayland session, colors are no longer sometimes weirdly dithered with certain hardware (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.24.3)

The “Help” buttons in Info Center once again work (Harald Sitter, Plasma 5.24.3)

In the Plasma Wayland session, the virtual keyboard no longer overlaps half of your vertical panel setup (if you are using such a setup) when it appears (Arjen Hiemstra, Plasma 5.24.3)

When showing seconds in a Digital Clock applet, seconds no longer skip at minute changes (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.24.3)

In the Plasma Wayland session, hitting the Escape key while dragging something now cancels the drag like you would expect (Marco Martin, Plasma 5.25)

In the Plasma X11 session, rotating a touchscreen no longer leads to touches going to the wrong area of the screen; everything now works as you would expect (Marco Martin, Plasma 5.25)

Dolphin and Gwenview no longer crash when you drag a file or folder over the top of their Places panels (Someone going by the pseudonym “Snooxx”, Frameworks 5.92)

User Interface Improvements

Compressing files from Dolphin’s context menu now produces an archive file whose filename is based on the names of the compressed files, not the folder they live in (Méven Car and me: Nate Graham, Ark 22.04)

System monitor bar charts no longer erroneously lack spacing between bars (John Fano, Plasma 5.24.3):

Applet labels in the System Tray grid view are now vertically aligned such that the first line in multi-line labels always matches other applets even those with 1 or 3 lines (Michail Vourlakos, Plasma 5.24.3):

Text in Breeze-styled vertical tabs is now vertically centered in the tabs, rather than awkwardly top-aligned (Jan Blackquill, Plasma 5.24.3)

Menu items in Breeze-styled GTK apps are now exactly the same height as menus in Qt and KDE apps (Jan Blackquill, Plasma 5.25)

KRunner and other KRunner-powered searches now let you spellcheck words in any language with enabled dictionaries, not just the primary one (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.25)

The quick process view window that you can see by pressing Ctrl+Esc now remembers its size and position (in the X11 session, at least), and gets initially placed according to the specified window placement mode (Eugene Popov, Plasma 5.25)

…And everything else

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 more news from other KDE contributors.

How You Can Help

If you’re a developer, check out our 15-Minute Bug Initiative. Working on these issues makes a big difference quickly!

Otherwise, 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.

16 thoughts on “This week in KDE: Firmware security page

  1. Any chance we could add the ability to drag Windows between monitors (not virtual desktops) on the new overview?

    Some users on Reddit seemed to think you already could, but can’t on any of my machines.

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  2. “Firmware security” doesn’t sound right. IOMMU is not strictly a security threat (especially when not found. In the screenshot it’s written in red), nor is suspend-to-ram. In my opinion, “Firmware capabilities” is a better descriptive name. What do you think?

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    1. You are right. IOMMU is certainly not a security threat, but a security feature.
      It restricts the memory rage a device can access. Without it, a device has basically full memory access.

      Like

    2. The lack of IOMMU is a serious security threat, as any PCI/thunderbolt device gets access to the system memory. I won’t even talk about silent corruption of your data because a device wrote to an address after it was freed and ended up modifying your VFS cache (this happened a couple of times in our GFX testing @ Intel). Given that it is present on the vast majority of systems, but disabled by default in the BIOS, I think this definitely is a good addition here and people should enable that everywhere!

      Like

  3. Hello,
    for some days I can’t download new icon’s from System settings / Get new icons… There is an “unknown error from Open Collaboration Service” message (roughly translated from french). Is this a bug in kde software or a momentary problem from the servers ?

    Thanks all for your work

    Like

  4. Dolphin takes 20 seconds to startup on cold startup since KDE 4 was used. Please solve this type of issues instead adding resource-hungry features like GUIs.

    Thanks!

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    1. It’s probably your drive, no offense intended at all.

      You could try copying /usr/bin/dolphin to /tmp/dolphin and run it from there to see if that helps, as a test.

      I don’t think that’s the only thing it uses though, probably some shader cache and some qt cache stuff.
      Another thing I’d check is the terminal output, see if any error sticks out sorta thing, and what ones it has.

      The only thing I have to starts off slow are chrome browsers (it’s gotta generate some bullcrap or something, or call home, I haven’t checked what’s slowing that down on 1st run).
      And regedit… (it’s slower then it used to be to run scripts to import)
      And then running nvidia-settings scripts multiple times in a row, it has a weird delay inbetween runs it didn’t used to have at all.., but I don’t think that’s kde.

      I do know though if you start apps off a normal hd it’s going to be slow to start.
      Kde4 was snappy, I don’t think it can be beat unless the rendering gets redone, in qt it’s self.

      Like

  5. If you really want to help us, to contact your elected officials and representatives in government and demand a no-fly zone over Ukraine. Sorry for the off-topic.

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      1. I’m sure we all have strong feelings about what’s going on in Ukraine right now, and ideas about what should or shouldn’t be done. I know I do. Still, I feel like this blog is not the place for them, and for that reason whenever I have brought up the war, it’s been in the context of hoping it ends soon and expressing sympathy for the innocents who are being harmed or killed. Let’s keep it to that, and avoid discussions of geopolitics or military strategy on this blog. Those topics are interesting to me too, but there are better places for them. Thanks.

        Like

  6. Hi Nate. Just noticed that there is no easy way of pinning a Appimage file to taskbar, or launcher, or even make a shortcut. I know there are workarounds, but it needs to be made easier. Regards

    Like

  7. >Info Center now has a new “Firmware Security” page

    Thanks for this btw. It made me tinker with fwupdmgr and reveal several issues with my firmware configuration, and today I found how to fix a couple of them. Cool.

    Like

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