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Essential System Tools: QDirStat – Excellent Qt-based directory statistics

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KDE

This is the latest in our series of articles highlighting essential system tools. These are small, indispensable utilities, useful for system administrators as well as regular users of Linux based systems. The series examines both graphical and text based open source utilities. For this article, we’ll look at QDirStat, a graphical application to show what’s devouring your disk space and help you tidy up the disorder. For details of all tools in this series, please check the table at the summary page of this article.

QDirStat is a continuation of the KDirStat utility. QDirStat is based on the latest Qt 5, and doesn’t need any KDE libraries or infrastructure.

If you come from a Windows background you’ve probably tried WinDirStat, a Windows port of KDirStat, the predecessor of QDirStat.

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KDE is adding Matrix to its instant messaging infrastructure

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KDE

KDE has been looking for a better way of chatting and live-sharing information for several years now. IRC has been a good solution for a long time, but it has centralized servers KDE cannot control. It is also insecure and lacks features users have come to expect from more modern IM services. Other alternatives, such as Telegram, Slack and Discord, although feature-rich, are centralized and built around closed-source technologies and offer even less control than IRC. This flies in the face of KDE's principles that require we use and support technologies based on Free software.

However, our search for a better solution has finally come to an end: as of today we are officially using Matrix for collaboration within KDE! Matrix is an open protocol and network for decentralised communication, backed by an open standard and open source reference implementations for servers, clients, client SDKs, bridges, bots and more. It provides all the features you’d expect from a modern chat system: infinite scrollback, file transfer, typing notifications, read receipts, presence, search, push notifications, stickers, VoIP calling and conferencing, etc. It even provides end-to-end encryption (based on Signal’s double ratchet algorithm) for when you want some privacy.

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Also: KDE To Support Matrix Decentralized Instant Messaging

Plasma 5.15.1 arrives in Cosmic backports PPA

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KDE
Security

We are pleased to announce that the 1st bugfix release of Plasma 5.15, 5.15.1, is now available in our backports PPA for Cosmic 18.10.

The release announcement detailing the new features and improvements in Plasma 5.15 can be found here, while the full 5.15.1 bugfix changelog can be found here.

Released along with this new version of Plasma is an update to KDE Frameworks 5.54. (5.55 is currently in testing in Disco 19.04 and may follow in the next few weeks.)

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digiKam 6.0.0 is released

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KDE
  • digiKam 6.0.0 is released

    Dear digiKam fans and users, following the long stage of integrating a lots of work from students during the Summer of Code, and after 2 years of intensive developement, we hare proud to announce the new digiKam 6.0.0.

  • DigiKam 6.0 Released With Video File Management, New Export/Import Options

    DigiKam 6.0 is now available as the Qt/KDE aligned open-source image organizer and with this new release has full support for video file management too.

    The DigiKam 6.0 release delivers support for video file management in the same manner as photo management, integration of import/export web-service tools in LightTable and Showfoto, expanded RAW image handling for more digital cameras, new tools for exporting to Pinterest / OneDrive / Box, and the ability to re-organize the icon-view contents manually.

KDE Plasma 5.15 Desktop Gets First Point Release with over 35 Improvements

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KDE

The KDE Plasma 5.15 desktop environment was released last week on February 12th with numerous new features and improvements, including a much-improved Discover package manager, improved integration with third-party technologies and apps like Firefox, refinements to the configuration interfaces, new options for complex network configurations, as well as redesigned icons.

The KDE Plasma 5.15.1 point release is a maintenance update addressing various issues in an attempt to offer users a more stable and reliable KDE Plasma 5.15 desktop environment. Highlights include restoring of legacy sessions, improvements to the Kickoff applications menu to return to the Favorites page after running a search, improved firmware update in Discover, and better comics support.

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Plasma Pass 1.0.0

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KDE

Last year I wrote about Plasma Pass, a Plasma applet for the Pass password manager. Over the couple last months I got some emails from packagers from various distributions asking for a proper release so they can package it…so here it is, proudly announcing Plasma Pass 1.0.0.

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Cutelyst 2.7.0 released, async is back!

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Development
KDE

Cutelyst a Qt/C++ Web Framework just got a new version. This time bringing back proper async support.

Perl Catalyst Framework was conceived as a sync/blocking framework, due that the Mojolicious framework was created, NodeJS and a few other web frameworks have pushed the async programming to the web. Performance wise being async doesn’t mean you get faster response times, rather the opposite, the need to unroll stack and make extra calls makes a CPU bound application slower.

But depending on the problem to solve it allows you to serve more users at the same time, using the same CPU cores. A typical modern application might receive a request from a Phone App then do a REST API call to an external API which might take 2ms or 200ms for the reply. While waiting for the response, typical sync/blocking applications can’t process more requests, or have to spawn more threads increasing RAM consumption and leveraging concurrency to the OS scheduler. On an Async web application, you can process another request while you wait for the previous request, thus possibly making the first request reply to be sent back to the user at a later time than if there was a dedicated process just waiting for his reply.

So, both ways have pros and cons and IMHO I’d like to support them both. When I started Cutelyst I thought that if I ever need async I could have a local QEventLoop to wait for the reply and would be able to deal with async requests, not recently I found out that supporting QEventLoop was causing stack overflow due it being used in pipelined scenarios, after that I removed it’s usage and performance improved in PlainText tests of TechEmpower, so I advised against using it and marked Cutelyst as not async.

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KDE Usability & Productivity

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KDE

  • This week in Usability & Productivity, part 58

    The System Settings Window Decorations page has been completely rewritten, bringing it into greater conformance with the modern visual style and fixing a huge number of bugs in the process (Valerio Pilo, KDE Plasma 5.16.0)...

  • KDE Continues Overhauling System Settings, More Discover Improvements

    Sunday mornings mean another weekly recap of the KDE improvements made, thanks to the great analysis by KDE developer Nathan Graham. While Plasma 5.15 was released this week, the KDE developers are already hard at work on KDE Plasma 5.16.

Tales of colours: GIMP and Latte Dock (KDE)

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GNU
KDE
Software
  • Colorization in GIMP

    As part of the Image team at GREYC lab (CRNS, ENSICAEN, University of Caen), I implemented the “fill by line art” algorithm in GIMP, also known as “Smart Colorization“. You may know this algorithm in G’Mic (developed by the same team), so when they proposed me to work with them, I wanted to implement this algorithm in GIMP core. Thus it became my first assignment.

  • Latte and a Colors tale...

    A few months ago while I was scratching Latte Dock limits an idea came and haunted my thoughts. How Latte could give the colors freedom for panels and windows that an Android phone already provides? Questions like this arose and solutions appeared suddenly in many different places, but an important and concrete dream prevail in the end.

Opening Files with Qt on Android

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Android
KDE

After addressing Android support in KF5Notifications another fairly generic task that so far required Android specific code is next: opening files. Due to the security isolation of apps and the way the native “file dialog” works on Android this is quite different from other platforms, which makes application code a bit ugly. This can be fixed in Qt though.

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