When I announced the “final release in the 4.9 series” last month I had no idea that there would be another incremental bugfix release… but the KDE 4.9 Release Schedule page was updated shortly after and here we are with KDE Software Compilation 4.9.5! What happened was that too many bugs had crept in the software right before release of 4.9.4 which were only discovered after the sources had been officially released. You can check out the release notes if you want to read more about this release of KDE 4.9..
And similar to this adding a rather unexpected extension to the 4.9 series, the developers are also talking about adding an extra Release Candidate before giving the green light to KDE SC 4.10. Several proposals for improvements in Dolphin and Akonadi/nepomuk are considered important enough that these patches should be added before releasing 4.10. This seems to be irritating several other distro packager teams who – unlike Slackware – have fixed release dates and therefore, fixed freeze periods. Well, we don’t suffer from a week’s delay and I would say, add those patches and make 4.10 a solid first release!
In spite of that (my opinion is irrelevant in the above story) the recent slips in the KDE release schedule and discovery of too many critical last-moment bugs make me a bit wary about possible resource issues in the KDE developer community. I hope this is not the start of a trend.
Another thing should be mentioned. I don’t know how many people use Kolab groupware in their organization (or at home) but if you do, you will have noticed that support for Kolab has disappeared from Slackware KDE packages after 4.8.x (meaning that Slackware’s own KDE still supports Kolab groupware). I discussed the lack of Kolab support in KDE 4.9 with one of the people using my packages. Indeed KDE 4.9 and later needs a couple of additional packages in order to be able to support the Kolab groupware server like it did in earlier versions. You will need libkolab, libkolabxml and this in turn needs xerces-c to compile. I added SlackBuild scripts and sources for these kolab dependencies in the “deps” directory of the KDE 4.9.5 sources, and xerces-c can be obtained from slackbuilds.org. So: if you need Kolab support, then you have to build packages for these dependencies (first xerces-c, then libkolabxml, then libkolab) and then rebuild the kdepim-runtime package of KDE 4.9.5.
I have no idea if this will ever end up in Slackware proper but it is not hard to add yourself.
Anyway. On with the show.
As you may expect, the Slackware packages for KDE SC 4.9.5 are ready for download and installation. Remember: my ktown packages for KDE are meant to be used on Slackware-current, since that is what they are built on. But the development of -current still has not deviated too much from the latest stable release (14.0), so that these KDE 4.9.5 packages work without any issue on Slackware 14. That is why you will find the packages in a “14.0” directory.
How to upgrade to KDE 4.9.5? Whether you are upgrading from the stock KDE 4.8.5 of Slackware 14.0/current, or if you are upgrading from my previous 4.9.4 packages, you will find all the installation/upgrade instructions that you need in the accompanying README file.
You are strongly advised to read and follow these instructions!
Highlights for the new set of Slackware packages:
- You will find five updated dependencies compared to Slackware’s own KDE 4.8.5: akonadi, qt, shared-desktop-ontologies, soprano, virtuoso-ose.
- Some of the “extragear” of the KDE in Slackware 14/current has been updated: with new versions of kdevelop, kdevplatform and oxygen-gtk2.
- The “extragear” section also introduces two new packages: oxygen-gtk3 (compared to the stable Slackware) which should give any software which uses the GTK+3 widget set a nice integrated look and feel when you run it in KDE; and kio-mtp which is required in order to access and manage files on devices running Android 4.0 and later. I heard that the version which I added to the KDE 4.9.4 set did not work so well, therefore I upgraded to the latest git snapshot. Feedback is welcome.
- Compared to KDE 4.8.5, there were two package removals:
- kdemultimedia has been split up into several smaller individual packages.
- ksecrets has been removed completely in the 4.9.x series.
Download locations (using a mirror is preferred:
- http://alien.slackbook.org/ktown/ (the master repository), rsync URI: rsync://alien.slackbook.org/alien/ktown/
- http://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/ (my fast mirror), rsync URI: rsync://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/
- http://repo.ukdw.ac.id/alien-kde/ (willysr’s Indonesian mirror), rsync URI: rsync://repo.ukdw.ac.id/alien-kde/
Have fun! Eric