KDE 4.1 useful tips and tricks


When I tried KDE 4.0 first time a few monthes ago I was very disappointed. The system was absolutely unusable. Mainly it was the reason why I didn’t upgrade my Fedora to version 9. But after 10 was released I decided to make an upgrade. I thought that KDE 4.1 should be better. It’s really better but to setup my accustomed environment I spent two days including GNOME configuration because I couldn’t work in KDE. So, I decided to write that post to share my experience and use it my myself what I’ll setup another PC.

Customize panel

The fist problem with customizing panel was order of applets. I didn’t find a way to move applets to the specific place. After a few abortive attempts I realized that moving of applets is possible only in the Panel Setting mode. Just put mouse pointer under desired applet and drag it to the new place. Don’t forget unlock applets if you did it before.

The second problem was missing QuickLauncher applet. It’s very useful to have shortcuts of frequently used applications in the compact representation. Finally I found the unofficial build for Fedora 10 which works pretty good.

Keyboard, packages and shortcuts

The rest small problems are following. After upgrade, performed by utility PreUpgrade, Konsole and Konqueror disappeared. I like Konsole and prefer to use it because it offers a native and easy way to navigate between opened tabs – Shift+Left and Shift+Right, shows tabs bar on the bottom and stored title and number of opened tabs after closing. So, I need it. After a little research I discovered that the system missed kdebase package. After it was installed the Konsole and Konqueror appeared in the main menu again.

I use VIM with crtags plugin as IDE. To switch between main code window and list of available methods I pressed Ctrl+W. As you may guess in KDE 4.1 that keys combination didn’t work. Solution was to remap Ctrl+W to Ctrl+I in the Keyboard & Mouse system settings.

In the previous versions of Fedora I used xorg.conf to define keyboard layouts and shortcut to switch between them. After upgrade that approach doesn’t work. So, I added Russian language and define Ctrl+Shift switch option using Keyboard option in the Regional Settings.

After small tuning KDE 4.1 described above I can use system like in the previous version of KDE. Hope those tips will save your time when you’ll start using KDE 4.x

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Michael Stepanov

Site owner and admin :)

3 thoughts on “KDE 4.1 useful tips and tricks”

  1. IMHO 4.x release of KDE didn’t address the main criticism, but rather made things even worse. Instead of making configuration simpler and straight forward they made it even less obvious and harder to find, turning away from novice users.

    Another issue of KDE 4 is that they decided to come up with modern interface without having UI designers. The result, as I see it from user’s perspective, is a incomprehensible mess. They just throwed together transparency, gradient and other cool features. But it just doesn’t work this way! The first thing they should care about is user experience, and not throwing together all FX they can think off. They were better off with a bit older, but clean and tested interface.

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