A few weeks ago, during a little break from studies, I’ve finally found some time for installing Plasma 5 on my Arch Linux workstation. Before a not too deep period of usage I’d like to share with you my impressions on the current state of Plasma.
As the title says, I’m going to talk about the 5.2 version of Plasma so everything on this post will concern this version in particular.
Kubuntu 15.04 development is in full swing and it’s looking like our 10th anniversary edition will be a classic. We’re the first distribution to ship a stable version with Plasma 5, the desktop which is getting tech journalists excited. My new favourite desktop they say. A masterpiece in the making they’re calling it. The most exciting release in a long time they exclaim.
Kubuntu 15.04 Beta 1 is out and is working well for people wanting to try out Plasma 5. We’ve deprecated the 14.10 Kubuntu-plasma5 packages, they were only ever tech preview and I’m afraid we don’t have the person-power to keep them updated, if you want Plasma 5 use the 15.04 Beta 1 for released versions or use Kubuntu CI images for Git versions.
Q4OS is intended to be more than a community-supported general purpose Linux distro. The Trinity desktop provides a lightweight KDE environment and the Q4OS platform shows strong potential for business use. This distro could provide an interesting alternative for home and small business use, when the missing pieces between the current beta and a 1.0 and beyond release history are added.
Qt 5.5 is branched from dev and we now have the Alpha packages available. Main focus of Qt 5.5 is to polish and improve existing functionality, but as always there are also some new exciting features to talk about. With Qt 5.5, Canvas 3D is fully supported and a technology preview of long awaited Qt 3D is included. Qt 5.5 also introduces mapping support with a Qt Location technology preview. Qt 5.5 Alpha is the first step towards Qt 5.5 final release planned to be available in May.
The first bugfix release for Krita 2.9 is out! There are now builds for Windows, OSX and CentOS 6 available. While bug fixing is going on unabated, Dmitry has started working on the Photoshop layer style Kickstarter feature, too: drop shadows already work, and the rest of the layer styles are coming.The goal is to have this feature done for Krita 2.9.2, which should be out next month. And we’re working on a new Kickstarter project!
The Manjaro development team, through Philip Müller, had the pleasure of announcing the immediate availability for download and testing of Manjaro KDE 0.9.0 Pre4 computer operating system based on the Linux kernel 3.19, KDE Plasma 5.2.1, as well as the latest KDE Applications 14.12.3. This release migrates to an all-new and complete hardware-accelerated graphics stack based on OpenGL(ES).
I spent several more days playing with Kubuntu Vivid dev branch, testing Plasma, to see what more it can do. Sure, there are bugs and niggles, the repositories are sometimes quite slow and bits and pieces go missing, so you have to wait a few hours or days before you can have a successful update cycle. Some of the functions still do not work, some work inadequately, there are visual inconsistencies and other problems. But all in all, Plasma is progressing nicely, and it’s about to kick some major ass very soon. Let me show you. A sample of what I had the pleasure of doing one Saturday evening.
KDE has announced today, March 13, the immediate availability for download and update of KDE Frameworks 5.8.0, a collection of over 60 add-on libraries for the powerful Qt GUI (Graphical User Interface) toolkit. This release brings a great number of improvements over the previous version, KDE Frameworks 5.7.0, which was released on February 14, 2015.