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  • Features Baking For KDE 4.11

    Phoronix: Features Baking For KDE 4.11

    The KDE 4.11 Beta is due out anytime now and so with that here's a look at some of the features you can expect from this major KDE4 update...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTM4ODQ

  • #2
    Originally posted by phoronix View Post
    Phoronix: Features Baking For KDE 4.11

    The KDE 4.11 Beta is due out anytime now and so with that here's a look at some of the features you can expect from this major KDE4 update...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTM4ODQ
    One important thing that was missed... the bug that caused the taskbar to randomly re-arrange and overlap has been officially closed (Whether as FIXED or WONTFIX varies on your perspective lol) no one so far as been able to reproduce the behavior in KDE 4.11-- with the new QML based taskbar. So if you hate that bug you have to upgrade to 4.11 to not be affected by it.

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    • #3
      The biggest thing in this release IMO, is that they have FINALLY fixed tearing on kwin with intel. KDE has been unusable for about a year for me because they've taken forever to get that fix into a release.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ericg View Post
        One important thing that was missed... the bug that caused the taskbar to randomly re-arrange and overlap has been officially closed (Whether as FIXED or WONTFIX varies on your perspective lol) no one so far as been able to reproduce the behavior in KDE 4.11-- with the new QML based taskbar. So if you hate that bug you have to upgrade to 4.11 to not be affected by it.
        thank god, that bug really annoyed me too. Looks like with this release almost all my issues wth KDE have been sorted out and I can finally consider switching over to it. The only big remaining issue is that dolphin does not mount network shares and no video players properly support kioslaves so streaming videos from a smb share is a PIA compared to with gnome, but that can be worked around at least.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by bwat47 View Post
          The biggest thing in this release IMO, is that they have FINALLY fixed tearing on kwin with intel. KDE has been unusable for about a year for me because they've taken forever to get that fix into a release.
          Bwat, what tearing are you talking about?? I'm running Kwin on Sandy Bridge and haven't seen any tearing. Is it only visible without a compositor? (aka desktop effects disabled)

          Also, are you sure that its not the tearing that Keith was talking about at linux.conf.au? I forget what the exact reason for it was he said THAT tearing wouldn't be fixed until DRI3(000) shipped because it would take "That kind of software" to fix it, which wouldn't be a kwin fix unless they found a work-around.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by bwat47 View Post
            The only big remaining issue is that dolphin does not mount network shares and no video players properly support kioslaves so streaming videos from a smb share is a PIA compared to with gnome, but that can be worked around at least.
            Is that why Kwin first has to download the full video THEN play it? Always wondered why that happened... Surprised that DragonPlayer doesn't support kioslaves, hmmm..

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            • #7
              Finally!

              Originally posted by Ericg View Post
              One important thing that was missed... the bug that caused the taskbar to randomly re-arrange and overlap has been officially closed (Whether as FIXED or WONTFIX varies on your perspective lol) no one so far as been able to reproduce the behavior in KDE 4.11-- with the new QML based taskbar. So if you hate that bug you have to upgrade to 4.11 to not be affected by it.
              Awesome! That was always a nag I had...though I also use cairo-dock so I had an effective way to work around it. Great news.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by bwat47 View Post
                ...dolphin does not mount network shares...
                I'm curious as to what you mean by this? I personally prefer to do my network mounts via CLI in any case, however I've helped other people who were new to KDE to mount samba shares through Dolphin and it's actually rather trivial, from what I recall.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ericg View Post
                  Kwin first has to download the full video THEN play it?
                  I can't even get it to do this anymore. with the default dragon player (also tried smplayer) opening a video from a smb share in dolphin refuses to play at all. only way to get it to work is with vlc because vlc has its own smb module, but I have other issues with VLC that make vlc unusable for me unfortunately (severe audio/video sync issues when I increase the network cache setting)

                  Originally posted by t0ken View Post
                  I'm curious as to what you mean by this? I personally prefer to do my network mounts via CLI in any case, however I've helped other people who were new to KDE to mount samba shares through Dolphin and it's actually rather trivial, from what I recall.
                  With most other file managers, such as nautilus, thunar, or pcmanfm when you access a network share it mounts it on the fly using GVFS. This makes it so any application can access/play these files because they are treated like local files.

                  KDE does not mount the share, instead it browses the shares with its own KIO/Kioslaves system, the problem with this is typically only KDE software supports kioslaves, and in some cases even KDE software doesn't support them well enough (for example dragonplayer doesn't seem to support a smb kioslave and simply fails to play videos from a smb share in dolphin). Gnome's GVFS solution works with ALL software, its far superior.

                  I don't find mounting the share in fstab to be an acceptable solution. This is a laptop and the share is not always available, and with a CIFS mount you can get locking up issues in KDE when the share is not available. To me the only acceptably solution is something where I can easily mount and unmount the shares on the fly, as a user. SMB4k is the best I've found so far for kde but its kind of buggy unfortunately.

                  Originally posted by Ericg View Post
                  Bwat, what tearing are you talking about?? I'm running Kwin on Sandy Bridge and haven't seen any tearing. Is it only visible without a compositor? (aka desktop effects disabled)

                  Also, are you sure that its not the tearing that Keith was talking about at linux.conf.au? I forget what the exact reason for it was he said THAT tearing wouldn't be fixed until DRI3(000) shipped because it would take "That kind of software" to fix it, which wouldn't be a kwin fix unless they found a work-around.
                  I'm talking about this kwin bug: https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=307965

                  If you are using sandybridge with kde you *will* get tearing. Perhaps you haven't noticed it because its restricted to the top part of the screen (and on some screens it might be more noticeable than others). I found it quite noticeable when watching fullscreen videos on either of my intel laptops (one ironlake, one ivybridge), but when using the desktop its not really noticeable.

                  It is because of kwin using copysubbuffermesa you get tearing in kwin even with vsync on with intel hardware (because intel has not supported tear-free rendering with subbuffermesa for quite some time now, I believe its been since sandybridge). In KDE 4.11 they've added finally a new rendering path for intel that does not use this, and fixes the tearing. Ubuntu's compiz has had this bug fixed for ages, since the release of ubuntu 12.10. Its still not fixed in gnome-shell/mutter but there is a very easy workaround to fix it there (adding a single line to /etc/environment).
                  Last edited by bwat47; 06-12-2013, 07:42 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bwat47 View Post
                    I can't even get it to do this anymore. with the default dragon player (also tried smplayer) opening a video from a smb share in dolphin refuses to play at all. only way to get it to work is with vlc because vlc has its own smb module, but I have other issues with VLC that make vlc unusable for me unfortunately (severe audio/video sync issues when I increase the network cache setting)
                    Good to know, I hadn't tried it in a while I just knew when I HAD tried it I got "Download first then play."


                    I'm talking about this kwin bug: https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=307965

                    If you are using sandybridge with kde you *will* get tearing. Perhaps you haven't noticed it because its restricted to the top part of the screen (and on some screens it might be more noticeable than others). I found it quite noticeable when watching fullscreen videos on either of my intel laptops (one ironlake, one ivybridge), but when using the desktop its not really noticeable.

                    It is because of kwin using copysubbuffermesa you get tearing in kwin even with vsync on with intel hardware (because intel has not supported tear-free rendering with subbuffermesa for quite some time now, I believe its been since sandybridge). In KDE 4.11 they've added finally a new rendering path for intel that does not use this, and fixes the tearing. Ubuntu's compiz has had this bug fixed for ages, since the release of ubuntu 12.10. Its still not fixed in gnome-shell/mutter but there is a very easy workaround to fix it there (adding a single line to /etc/environment).
                    [/QUOTE]

                    And for the life of me I can't reproduce this using KDE 4.10.4... But regardless, whether I can reproduce it or not its still apparently a bug to be fixed, and its getting fixed, so thats good.

                    (for the record I cant even see it while playing video on a Sandy Bridge 1366x768 12inch laptop screen, so it may be resolution / screen size dependent. With Vsync enabled, btw which is supposed to make the tearing worse...)

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ericg View Post
                      So if you hate that bug you have to upgrade to 4.11 to not be affected by it.
                      Or simply use an alternative tasks widget like Smooth Tasks2 and although I haven't tested it, I'm pretty sure the QML taksbar also works with 4.10 because kdelibs is in freeze since 4.9 or so now.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Awesomeness View Post
                        I'm pretty sure the QML taksbar also works with 4.10 because kdelibs is in freeze since 4.9 or so now.
                        Sort of: The Task Manager widget uses the libtaskmanager library that's shipped with kde-workspace (the same module also containing the applet), and the QML rewrite coming with 4.11 depends on a matching version of the library (which however has otherwise stayed API compatible for third-party users). While it's possible to build just the library and widget and run them against 4.10, you'll run into runtime problems with some windows not being listed unless "Only show windows from this activity" is disabled in the settings (because the way windows are tagged to be on all activities has changed in 4.11, so there's a need for libtaskmanager and the rest of the shell to be in sync as well / the 4.11 lib doesn't agree with 4.10 shell behavior on the activities front).

                        Cheers,
                        Eike, who wrote the new QML version

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sho_ View Post
                          While it's possible to build just the library and widget and run them against 4.10, you'll run into runtime problems with some windows not being listed unless "Only show windows from this activity" is disabled in the settings
                          Sounds like a rather small tradeoff. In such a case I wonder why the QML widgets aren't released to KDE Look or wherever for users to beta test them without getting the beta-quality rest.
                          Incompatible options could be disabled.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Awesomeness View Post
                            Sounds like a rather small tradeoff. In such a case I wonder why the QML widgets aren't released to KDE Look or wherever for users to beta test them without getting the beta-quality rest.
                            Incompatible options could be disabled.
                            I could see myself having done so if it were just the widget, however as mentioned it does require a matching library, so at that point you're looking at:

                            - Releasing something that requires compilation, immediately limiting the audience (and the audience who is fine with compiling is more prone to being fine with just running a beta of the whole set).
                            - Putting together a new tarball for lib and widget, which involves such things as extracting the relevant translation files from the repositories (they are not kept with the source to make things easier for the translators), writing a new build system, ...
                            - Making the changes you suggest to deal with the incompatible-features situation, which invites the risk of creating entirely new bugs that result in feedback noise.
                            - Not to mention that testing against a workspace version it isn't destined to be used with might also turn up additional incompatibilities that were previously unknown, resulting in more feedback noise about things that don't actually need fixing.
                            - Dealing with the fact that our bug tracker doesn't know a version for this out-of-band release.

                            And so on, and so on - now imagine every developer doing that for their little piece of the whole, and it's a substantial overhead burden.

                            Edit: One more: Since the library has third-party users it involves keeping track of whether the changes that were done to it broke the ABI or not, and if it did, naming it differently in the special test release to avoid breaking other widgets the user may be using. More changes = more opportunities for bugs to creep in. This wouldn't be relevant for the actual 4.11 (beta or final) release because we put no ABI stability guarantee on libtaskmanager (unlike with kdelibs), so distros know they're going to have to rebuild downstream users of it.
                            Last edited by Sho_; 06-12-2013, 11:37 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by bwat47 View Post
                              With most other file managers, such as nautilus, thunar, or pcmanfm when you access a network share it mounts it on the fly using GVFS. This makes it so any application can access/play these files because they are treated like local files.

                              KDE does not mount the share, instead it browses the shares with its own KIO/Kioslaves system, the problem with this is typically only KDE software supports kioslaves, and in some cases even KDE software doesn't support them well enough (for example dragonplayer doesn't seem to support a smb kioslave and simply fails to play videos from a smb share in dolphin). Gnome's GVFS solution works with ALL software, its far superior.

                              I don't find mounting the share in fstab to be an acceptable solution. This is a laptop and the share is not always available, and with a CIFS mount you can get locking up issues in KDE when the share is not available. To me the only acceptably solution is something where I can easily mount and unmount the shares on the fly, as a user. SMB4k is the best I've found so far for kde but its kind of buggy unfortunately.
                              Hmm? It works via fstab just fine. Here's how it looks for me:


                              Note the "/export/storage on dragon". It's an NFS share. It's not mounted by default. When I click it, it gets mounted. When I right-click it and select Unmount, it gets unmounted.

                              I set up the whole NFS share not even by editing /etc/fstab, but by just using YaST with these settings (sorry for the localisation, but it should be straight-forward to understand):

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