Status of the 15-Minute Bug Initiative

It’s been almost a year since I announced the 15-Minute Bug Initiative for Plasma. In a nutshell, this initiative proposed to identify and prioritize fixing bugs you can find “within the first 15-minutes of using the system” that make Plasma look bad and feel fundamentally unstable and broken.

This initiative has been a huge success so far! We started out with 100 bugs, and 11 months later we’re down to 47! But it’s even better than that; more bugs were added to the list over time as new issues were discovered (or created as a result of regressions), so the fact that we’re at 47 today means that a lot more than 53 bugs have been fixed. How many more? Well, the total list of 15-minute bugs fixed stands at 95 today!

This means that in total, there have been 142 15-minute bugs, and we’ve fixed 95 of them, for a fix rate of 67%. That’s not too shabby!

There’s more to do, of course. The remaining 47 bugs are some of the more challenging ones, and many are quite egregiously bad. I expect the fix rate to slow as the list is reduced mostly to issues beyond the capabilities or time budgets of volunteers. That’s one of the reasons why the KDE e.V. is looking to hire a Software Platform Engineer; in addition to other responsibilities, the person we select will be working on some of these bugs. Hiring someone technically skilled enough to consistently fix these complex bugs won’t be cheap, and if you’d like to help KDE sustainably afford that cost, please consider donating to our end-of-year fundraiser! It really does help. Thanks for being awesome!

This week in KDE: custom tiling

KWin got a very cool new feature this week: a built-in advanced tiling system that you can use to set up custom tile layouts and resize multiple adjacent windows at a time by dragging on the gaps between them!

This feature is still in its infancy and not designed to completely replicate the workflow of a tiling window manager. But we expect it to grow and advance over time, and also the new APIs added for it should benefit 3rd-party tiling scripts that do want to let you turn KWin into a tiling window manager. Thanks very much to Marco Martin for contributing this work, which will be released in Plasma 5.27!

But there’s much, much more as well!

Other New Features

You can now browse Apple iOS devices using its native afc:// protocol in Dolphin, file dialogs, and other file management tools (Kai Uwe Broulik, kio-extras 23.04. Link):

Konsole has now adopted KHamburgerMenu (Me: Nate Graham, Felix Ernst, and Andrey Butirsky, Konsole 23.04. Link):

As always, if you hate hamburger menus, you’re welcome to use the traditional in-window menubar, which is still there if you show the menubar using Ctrl+Shift+M, and won’t be going anywhere

By default, Konsole’s tab bar is now located toward the top of the window like in most other apps, rather than at the bottom (me: Nate Graham, Konsole 23.04. Link)

You can now drag an image onto the Color Picker widget to make it calculate the average color for that image and store it in its list of stored colors (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link):

When a KRunner search matches nothing, you’ll now be given the opportunity to do a web search for the search term (Alexander Lohnau, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Gained support for the Global Shortcuts portal, which allows apps on Wayland to offer a standardized user interface for setting and editing global shortcuts (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link)

User Interface Improvements

When you delete the current folder in Dolphin, it now automatically navigates back to the parent folder (Vova Kulik and Méven Car, Dolphin 23.04. Link)

When you launch Discover from the “Uninstall or Manage Add-Ons…” menu item in Kickoff for an installed app, and that app is available in Discover from multiple backends, Discover now always opens showing you the app from the backend it’s actually installed from, so you can immediately click a “Remove” button if your goal in opening Discover was to uninstall the app (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

Speaking of the context menu that contains that action, the first time you right-click on an app in Kickoff to show it, the menu now appears immediately instead of being delayed by a few seconds (David Redondo, Plasma 5.27. Link)

KWin’s “Cascaded” window placement mode has been removed, because now every other window placement mode where it makes sense includes cascading behavior itself! (Natalie Clarius, Plasma 5.27. Link):

The screen chooser dialog you’ll see for Wayland apps requesting screen sharing permission now includes preview thumbnails for each screen or window that you can share (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link):

Plasma panels now automatically become thicker as needed when you switch to a Plasma theme whose graphics don’t work in thin panels (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Plasma no longer somewhat strangely remembers different thicknesses for each panel in horizontal vs vertical setups; now each panel has one thickness and it keeps that thickness when you change from horizontal to vertical and vice versa (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

When you manually add your home timezone to the Digital Clock’s timezones list so that you can change it to something else when traveling and have your home timezone appear automatically, it now disappears automatically when you’re in your home timezone when displaying it would be redundant (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27, Link):

The Battery & Brightness widget now considers a battery that’s been charged to its configured charge limit to be fully charged (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link)

The questionably useful “Search For” section in the Places panel has been removed by default to avoid presenting so much visual clutter by default. The functionality is still available and you can re-add these items if you like and use them, of course (me: Nate Graham, Frameworks 5.101. Link):

The way the Places Panel looks by default now, with greater relevance

Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

Plasma is no longer capable of crashing in a loop on launch when any of the Qt image reader plugins that are installed on your system but aren’t in use to display the wallpaper are buggy and crash-prone (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

Scrolling on the language list sheet on System Settings Region and Language page is no longer almost unusably choppy (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.26.5. Link)

When your 3rd-party lock screen theme is broken but the kscreenlocker_greet background process has not crashed, you’ll once again see the fallback lock screen rather than the dreaded “your screen locker is broken” screen (David Redondo, Plasma 5.27. Link)

The Weather widget no longer escapes from its space in the System Tray and overlaps other icons at various icon and panel sizes (Ismael Asensio, Plasma 5.27. Link)

When Night color is active and the system or KWin is restarted, it now turns on again as expected (Vlad Zahorodnii, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Notifications can now be read using a screen reader (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Did a bunch of performance work to speed up the process of drawing UI elements in Plasma and QtQuick-based apps, which should result in faster speed and lower power usage (Arjen Hiemstra, Frameworks 5.101. Link 1 and link 2)

In the Plasma Wayland session, when you drag a window containing QtQuick-based user interface elements to another screen that’s using a different scale factor, the window instantly adjusts itself to display properly according to that screen’s scale factor, with no blurriness or pixelation. It even works when a window is partially on one screen and partially on another! (David Edmundson, Frameworks 5.101. Link 1 and link 2)

Other bug-related information of interest:

Automation & Systematization

Until this point, Plasma Mobile-focused apps have been released using a release schedule called “Plasma Mobile Gear.” Going forward, these apps will be moving to the normal “KDE Gear” release schedule, with “Plasma Mobile Gear” being discontinued to simplify and unify packaging (Link)

Added an autotest for local file size calculation in Filelight (Harald Sitter, Link)

Set an appropriate image for the Automation goal group, which was clearly the most important thing to do (Justin Zobel and me: Nate Graham)

Changes not in KDE that affect KDE

A new Wayland protocol for fractional scaling was merged, which opens the door for Qt and KWin to support it and then we get better fractional scaling visuals and performance for Qt and KDE apps! This work on the Qt and KDE sides is in progress, but not merged yet. Once it is, I’ll be sure to announce it! (Kenny Levinsen, wayland-protocols 1.31. Link).

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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

KDE’s end-of-year fundraiser is in full swing, so please consider making a donation!

Otherwise if you’re a developer, check out our 15-Minute Bug Initiative. Working on these issues makes a big difference quickly! And you can have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved to discover lots of 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!

Help KDE hire more people!

KDE’s 2022 year-end fundraiser is now live! Please go donate if you can. 🙂

It’s been several years since we did a fundraiser at the end of the year, and we’re going to be more on the ball about this going forward, given how much the KDE e.V. is expanding hiring. This year’s fundraiser sets the fairly modest goal of 20k €, which will help offset the cost of some of that hiring.

But of course… there’s no reason not to exceed the goal! The more money raised, the more contributors the KDE e.V. can hire directly, effecting the kind of professionalization needed to take KDE to the next level! We have big plans and we can’t do it without your help!

I know I’ve asked for a lot of donations recently, so if you’re feeling tapped out, this is a good time to go nudge your friends and family members who you’ve converted to KDE over the years! 😉 Help KDE challenge the big dogs and win!

This week in KDE: Humongous UI improvements

This week we have a lot of large and impactful user interface improvements across multiple apps and Plasma, not to mention progress on the big bugs!

New Features

Dragon Player–KDE’s venerable minimalistic video and audio player–has undergone a major UI overhaul, including adopting KHamburgerMenu and a welcome screen, a streamlined and more intuitive set of default toolbar buttons, and less glitchy behavior when opening videos in the Plasma Wayland session (Harald Sitter, Dragon Player 23.04, Link 1, link 2, link 3, link 4, link 5, and link 6):

There’s still a bit more polishing to do, but now this app is sleek as hell!

Filelight now has a list view on the left side of the window, providing a simple text-based method of viewing size information. This also fixes multiple bugs with the tooltips and eliminates blurriness in the radial graph view! (Harald Sitter, Filelight 23.04. Link):

Ark now supports extracting Stuffit .sit archives (Elvis Angelaccio, Ark 23.04. Link)

There’s now a new “Touchscreen” page in System Settings that lets you disable touchscreens and choose which physical screen their input gets mapped to (Nicolas Fella, sponsored by TU Dresden, Plasma 5.27. Link)

In the Plasma Wayland session, screens now get a default scale factor that more appropriately matches their DPI, based on what kind of device they are (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link)

You can now autostart apps multiple times (e.g. to launch multiple instances of it) and it also shows you the paths where autostarted scripts live (Thenujan Sandramohan, Plasma 5.27. Link)

You can now configure Folder View to show hidden files if you want (Willyanto, Plasma 5.27. Link)

System Settings’ Drawing ‘Tablet’ page now lets you map physical buttons on your drawing tablet’s pen to keyboard shortcuts (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link)

User Interface Improvements

When you unlock the screen by providing your fingerprint, you no longer have to redundantly click an “Unlock” button afterwards (Janet Blackquill, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

The way you choose or change a location in the Weather widget is now simpler and more direct (Ismael Asensio, Plasma 5.27. Link)

When using the Canadian weather provider, the Weather widget’s layout is now much better and clearer, and no longer sometimes gets visually cut off (Ismael Asensio, Plasma 5.27. Link):

On System Settings’ Users page, the way you choose fingers to use for fingerprint authentication is now much more visually intuitive. In addition, you can now un-enroll individual fingers, and when you change your password, you’ll no longer see the “passwords don’t match” message until after you click the “Set Password” button, or a few seconds after you stop typing (Janet Blackquill and Devin Lin, Plasma 5.27. Link 1, link 2, and link 3):

On System Settings’ Display Configuration page, screens are now required to be touching and not partially overlapping, which prevents various weird bugs from being able to happen (David Redondo, Plasma 5.27. Link)

The Audio Volume widget’s tooltip no longer unnecessarily tells you that output is playing on “Speaker” when there’s only one output device, and instead mentions the fact that you can scroll over the icon to change the volume (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2):

Breeze-themed Plasma popups now have a larger corner radius that matches the corner radius for windows (Niccolò Venerandi, Frameworks 5.101. Link):

The Breeze Icon theme now includes a themed icon for SimpleScreenRecorder (Manuel Jesús de la Fuente, Frameworks 5.101. Link):

Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

In the Plasma Wayland session, tapping a touchscreen after disconnecting an external screen no longer crashes KWin (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

Plasma notifications no longer have inappropriately sharp top corners (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

In the Plasma X11 session, disabling compositing no longer leaves an empty area around Plasma Panels (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

Searching using the KRunner-powered search in Overview no longer sometimes crashes KWin (Alexander Lohnau, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Landed a better fix for the problem of maximized XWayland apps sometimes having a one-pixel empty border on the right screen edge in the Plasma Wayland session (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link)


Other bug-related information of interest:

Automation & Systematization

Added some autotests surrounding Plasma wallpaper loading and assignment (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Added some autotests around the KFileFilterCombo UI component (Nicolas Fella, Frameworks 5.101. KFileFilterCombo. Link)

Changes not in KDE that affect KDE

In QtQuick-based apps, scrollable views where all content fits horizontally no longer shows a pointless horizontal scrollbar anyway. We had previously worked around this bug in most KDE apps, but now it’s fixed upstream so we don’t have to anymore! (David Redondo, Qt 6.4.2, but backported to the KDE Qt patch collection. Link)

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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.

A better fundraising platform

KDE is getting a much more user-friendly fundraising platform, and it’s a big deal!


Currently our small-donor donation page is https://kde.org/community/donations, which lets you make a single one-time donation. To make a recurring donation, you have to visit https://relate.kde.org, which is less user-friendly, and it’s always struck me as odd to have these split up in two locations.

Well, KDE is getting a much better donation system powered by Donorbox, which I hope will turbocharge our fundraising! It’s very user-friendly and allows you to easily make recurring donations, which is important. We already set this up for the Kdenlive fundraiser, and it was a smash hit, raising 100% of the funds in the first month of the 3-month campaign. That fundraiser has since moved into stretch goals!

We’ve now done it again, rolling out a Donorbox-powered donation UI on https://kde.org/bluefriday, our tongue-in-cheek anti-black-friday fundraiser, which will become a general end-of-year campaign. This work was done by members of KDE’s promo team and fundraising working group, principally Lays Rodrigues, Carl Schwan, and Paul Brown. And so far the response has been huge! The fundraiser opened yesterday, and at the time of publication, it’s already collected 530€ from 28 generous donors! And after the new year, the current plan is to continue to use the Donorbox-powered UI for all small donations.

This really goes to show how important user-friendliness is. When you make it easy for people to give you money… they give you more money! Thank you so much, everyone.

Why is all this money stuff so important? Well, it’s how the KDE e.V. pays for hiring (such as for the Platform Software Engineer position I blogged about two days ago), development sprints, conferences, infrastructure, and similar activities that help KDE thrive and grow. If we’re gonna hugely expand technical employment–which is a major goal of mine–then we’re gonna need a lot more recurring donations to do it.

So what are you waiting for? Head over to https://kde.org/bluefriday and make a donation today. If it’s a recurring donation, we’ll love you forever! 🥰

KDE is hiring a software engineer

Yes that’s right folks, it’s happening!!! KDE is growing up, joining the big leagues, and cooking on all burners!

The KDE e.V. recently dipped its toes into the waters of technical hiring by contracting with longtime KDE contributor Ingo Klöcker to maintain and improve KDE’s packaging infrastructure for non-FOSS platforms. Now we’re at it again with a new open position for a “Software Platform Engineer.”

This is an open-ended development position, with responsibilities for work on KDE frameworks, Plasma, Qt, middleware like Pipewire and Wayland protocols–basically, the same things that a lot of people are already doing. But… on a consistent work-work basis, for money, with your KDE friends as professional colleagues and supervisors!

If this interests you, check out the job ad and apply! We want lots of good candidates so we can feel bad about only hiring one person and then feel even more incentivized to open more positions for them too! And we have other open positions as well! So go apply for a career in KDE today!

Of course sustaining these high-pay technical positions won’t be cheap. The KDE e.V. can just barely afford it now, and needs a larger and growing budget to be able to sustainably keep up the pace of hiring. Please donate today! Every little bit helps. If you can swing it, make it an annual donation!

This week in KDE: less-rage-inducing error messages in Discover

This week I’d like to highlight a particular 15-minute bug that got fixed: When Discover shows you significant error messages, they now take the form of normal dialogs rather than tiny little overlays at the bottom of the screen that disappear after a few seconds. And it should now show you fewer un-actionable error messages in general too! These major improvements were contributed by Jakub Narolewski and Aleix Pol Gonzalez, and will show up in Plasma 5.27. Thanks guys!

But that’s not all! There was a lot of work on other significant bugs too, and we managed to knock out several, in addition to landing some welcome features and fixes:

New Features

System Monitor (and widgets of the same name) can now detect and monitor power usage for NVIDIA GPUs (Pedro Liberatti, Plasma 5.27. Link)

You can now show the current temperature in a badge overlay on the Weather widget’s icon–both outside of the System Tray and also for the System Tray version of it! (Ismael Asensio, Plasma 5.27. Link):

User Interface Improvements

Okular’s scroll speed when using a touchpad is now significantly faster, and should generally match the speed at which everything scrolls when using a touchpad (Eugene Popov, Okular 23.04. Link)

In Discover’s Task Progress sheet, the progress bars are now much more visible and not obscured by a pointless background highlight effect (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.26.4. Link):

When changing songs/tracks and the Plasma Media Player widget is visible, there’s no longer a brief flicker that reveals the icon of the app playing the media (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

A better error message is now shown when the Bluetooth file transfer service fails to start (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Discover will no longer attempt to check for updates when using a metered internet connection Bernardo Gomes Negri, Plasma 6. Link)

Other Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

When Konsole is launched after changing the display layout, its main window is no longer absurdly small (Vlad Zahorodnii, Konsole 22.12. Link)

Elisa should no longer stutter occasionally during playback (Roman Lebedev, Elisa 23.04. Link)

When using Latte Dock in the Plasma Wayland session, various windows and Plasma pop-ups are no longer mis-positioned (David Redondo, Latte Dock 0.10.9. Link)

In the Plasma Wayland session, Plasma should no longer sometimes randomly crash when you move the cursor over a Plasma panel (Arjen Hiemstra, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

When Kickoff is configured to use the default list item size, apps that live in the categories sidebar such as Help Center no longer have an awkwardly large icon (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

KWin now honors the “Panel Orientation” property that the kernel can set for screens, which means that many different types of devices that need the screen to be rotated by default will now have that done automatically (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Various Plasma UI elements once again have the correct size in the Plasma X11 session when not opting into using Qt scaling (Fushan Wen, Frameworks 5.100.1. Link)

Other bug-related information of interest:

Automation & Systematization

Wrote a new “Welcome to KDE” page which will also be linked to in our new Welcome Center app that will debut in Plasma 5.27 (me: Nate Graham)

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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.

This week in KDE: better environment variable support

New Features

KMenuEdit and the properties dialog now make it easy for you to set environment variables when opening your apps. This was always possible, but you had to know the secret special syntax (e.g. Exec=env FOO=1 kate); now the UI makes it easy and explicitly supported (Dashon Wells, Frameworks 5.101 and Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2):

User Interface Improvements

The option to disable the Secret Service interface now clearly explains what this means and why you might want to do it (Guilherme Marçal Silva, KWalletManager 22.12. Link):

Discover no longer shows categories in light text on the app cards because it’s mostly visual noise, and it also once again has an “All Applications” category you can use to see all apps and limit a search to just apps (me: Nate Graham and Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link 1, link 2, and link 3):

When the Battery & Brightness widget is configured to show you the exact charge percentage on its icon, it no longer does so when the battery is fully charged, since this is obvious (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link)

In a variety of scrollable System Settings pages, the separator above the footer buttons now matches the separator above the “Highlight Changed Settings” button on the sidebar’s footer (me: Nate Graham, Frameworks 5.101. Link):

Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

Vertically-arranged monitors are no longer slightly overlapping by one pixel, which can trigger various weirdnesses (Alexander Volkov, Plasma 5.26.4. Link)

Other bug-related information of interest:

Changes not in KDE that affect KDE

Firefox now supports the xdg_activation_v1 Wayland protocol, which means its windows will be able to raise to the top when a URL is opened in them from another app that also supports the protocol (Emilio Cobos Álvarez, Firefox 108. Link)

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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.

This week in KDE: Big brain KRunner

This week KRunner got a lot smarter about its search results. For years people have complained about various things not being the top item when they expect it, so Natalie Clarius and Alexander Lohnau decided to make some major improvements:

  • System Setting pages whose names exactly match the search term now have much higher weight so they should appear first (Link)
  • Various other things with an exact names match also now have much higher weight so they should appear first, and also recent files have their relevance reduced according to age (Link)
  • Entering something like “Time CET” or “Time Shanghai” now shows you not only the time, but also how much earlier or later it is than your current timezone (Link)
  • The exec= lines of desktop files for Chrome web apps and Flatpak apps no longer inappropriately get matched (Link 1 and link 2)

Thanks a lot, you two!

New Features

Gwenview now lets you change images’ brightness, contrast, and gamma (Ilya Pominov, Gwenview 22.12. Link):

User Interface Improvements

All of the global volume settings have been moved into the System Settings Audio Volume page, and the Audio Volume widget no longer has a separate settings page of its own. So clicking its configure button now takes you to System Settings. In addition, this has provided the opportunity to make the global mute feature truly global, and also make the sliders on the System Settings page only go up to 150% when you’re using the “Raise maximum volume” setting (Bharadwaj Raju, Plasma 5.27. Link 1, link 2, and link 3):

When using offline updates, you can now use Discover to see the changelogs for individual packages, just like you can with online updates (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Wallpapers in the wallpaper chooser grids you see in various places are now draggable-and-droppable, so you can drag them into image editors to edit them, into a file manager to copy them, and so on (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

While on the lock screen, you can now hit the Escape key to turn off the screen and save some power (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.27. Link)

When your computer is plugged in and using Performance mode or an app has requested to use Power Save mode, now you can see this right in your System Tray (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link):

Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

Krita now supports using a global menu (Antonio Rojas, Krita 5.1. Link)

Libreswan VPN detection now works if you’re using version 4.9 or greater, and detection for StrongSwan and OpenSwan should be more accurate now too (Douglas Kosovic, Plasma 5.24.8. Link)

In the Plasma Wayland session, when using the default setting of “Legacy apps scale themselves,” Steam and some other XWayland-using apps now get scaled to the correct and expected size (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.26.3. Link)

Switching between launcher widgets (e.g. Kickoff and Kicker) no longer re-arranges your favorites to be in alphabetical order; their manual ordering is now preserved (Bharadwaj Raju, Plasma 5.27. Link)

You can once again disable the “Present Windows” effect within the Desktop Grid effect, instead keeping windows where they are and using it as a Virtual Desktop switcher (Marco Martin, Plasma 5.27. Link)

All sorts of KDE apps no longer hang on launch when files in their “Recent documents” lists aren’t accessible for some reason (Christoph Cullmann, Frameworks 5.100. Link)

Other bug-related information of interest:

Automation & Systematization

When building a module using kdesrc-build fails, it now suggests a way for you to install missing build dependencies (Marius Pa. Link)

Added autotests to make sure file thumbnail generation doesn’t regress (Nicolas Fella, kio-extras 22.12. Link)

Added an autotest in KWin to make sure that auto-generated resolutions are generated properly (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Added an autotest in Plasma to make sure windows are correctly mapped to their Task Manager entries (Fushan Wen, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Web Presence

KDE now has a fancy new “KDE for Creators” website! (Carl Schwan, Nicolas Fella, Áron Kovács, and other folks in the Promo team) This complements the existing “KDE for Kids” page, and we’ll be adding more soon!

kde.org/hardware now much more prominently lists Tuxedo Computers‘ devices, now that they’ve switched to shipping Plasma by default! (Paul Brown, Carl Schwan, and me: Nate Graham, Link):

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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.

This week in KDE: next-generation improvements

As we near the end of Plasma 5, a lot of people are putting thought into what’s next for Plasma 6, beyond simply porting it to Qt 6. The general consensus is to avoid big architectural changes, with most of the major changes being UI improvements and new features. So KDE’s VDG team has been busy planning for that future, which has yielded a lot of improvements for the last and best version of Plasma 5!

New Features

If you really don’t like Dolphin’s recently-changed list view behavior of selecting or opening an item when clicking empty areas of its row, you can now go back to the old way (Felix Ernst, Dolphin 22.12. Link):

Discover now has a brand-new homepage design with dynamically-updating categories that shows popular apps, and a new set of featured apps that showcase the best of KDE (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Carl Schwan, me: Nate Graham, and Devin Lin, Plasma 5.27 . Link 1, link 2, link 3, and link 4):

You can now middle-click the Networks icon to toggle Airplane Mode on and off (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link):

“Running” (i.e. clicking on or pressing the return key for) dictionary definition entries in KRunner’s results list now copies the definition text to the clipboard, and even sends a system notification about this so you know that it happened (Alexander Lohnau, Plasma 5.27. Link)

In the dropdown menus for Dolphin’s path navigator bar, now hidden folders will show up there if you currently have hidden files visible (Eugene Popov, Frameworks 5.100. Link):

User Interface Improvements

On Info Center pages that consist of monospaced text, the text is now selectable (and hence copyable) and no longer slightly overflows on the right side (Ivan Tkachenko, Plasma 5.26.2. Link)

In the Plasma X11 session, portalized dialogs shown by Flatpak apps no longer use the wrong theming and colors (Harald Sitter, Plasma 5.26.2. Link)

Breeze-themed windows now have a subtle outline around them, which not only looks classy as hell, but it also helps keep dark-themed windows from blending into one another (Akseli Lahtinen. Plasma 5.27. Link):

Floating Panels now de-float whenever any window touches them, and the margins they gain when doing so are now smaller and less weird-looking. This also makes Panel Widget popups touch the edge of a floating Panel (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2)

The new portalized Kirigami-based app chooser dialog now has more focused and relevant text in the header area (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2)

You can now search in KRunner for “Save Session” to invoke the manual session saving functionality, and when you use KRunner to switch sessions, the message dialog it shows you is now worded more comprehensibly and doesn’t make what you’re about to do seem scary (Natalie Clarius, Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2)

KRunner’s “Recent Files” plugin now matches substrings (Natalie Clarius, Plasma 5.27. Link)

You can now resize Kickoff’s popup to be smaller than it is by default, if you want that (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Title text in QtWidgets-based System Settings pages now has the same padding and alignment as those in Kirigami-based pages, so there’s no longer a weird jarring difference between them as you switch pages (Ismael Asensio, Plasma 5.27. Link 1 and link 2)

Throughout KDE software, the appearance of list views and list section headers is massively improved (Devin Lin, Frameworks 5.100. Link 1 and link 2):

Panel Widgets’ popups are now displayed centered on their Panel when they could be displayed as such without becoming disconnected from their Panel icons (Niccolò Venerandi, Frameworks 5.100. Link)

In dialogs where you can permanently delete files, the buttons to do so now say “Delete Permanently” so you can be absolutely sure of what you’re getting yourself into (Guilherme Marçal Silva, Frameworks 5.100. Link)

Significant Bugfixes

(This is a curated list of e.g. HI and VHI priority bugs, Wayland showstoppers, major regressions, etc.)

In the Plasma Wayland session, the “Flat” acceleration profile now works properly (John Brooks, Plasma 5.26.2. Link)

In the Plasma Wayland session, tapping the address bar in Firefox with a touchscreen now always makes the virtual keyboard appear as expected, without you having to focus another app and go back to Firefox first (Xaver Hugl and Xuetian Weng, Plasma 5.26.2. Link)

Fixed one of the most common Plasma crashes when using Plasma Vaults (David Edmundson, Plasma 5.26.3. Link)

Fixed a recently-introduced glitch that could cause it to become difficult to click the top-right-most screen pixel to trigger the close button of a maximized window (Arjen Hiemstra, Plasma 5.26.3. Link)

Fixed a recent regression in the X11 session that would cause maximized windows to not redraw properly when using scaling (Xaver Hugl, Plasma 5.26.3. Link)

In the Plasma Wayland session, clicking and dragging something in Firefox no longer causes the cursor to get stuck in its “grabby hand” state until you drag a tab (Vlad Zahorodnii, Plasma 5.26.3. Link)

Other bug-related information of interest:

Automation & Systematization

Added a test case for Chromium web app icon display in the Task Manager, so it won’t break or regress again (Nicolas Fella, Plasma 5.27. Link)

Added a test case for panel/containment/screen mappings in Plasma, so we can start to weed out the issues in it without regressing things so often (Marco Martin, Plasma 5.27. Link)

We have a new wiki page that outlines some of the ways people can make a living working on KDE projects (me: Nate Graham. Link)

…And everything else

This blog only covers the tip of the iceberg! 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.