I have released an incremental upgrade to my ‘ktown’ package set for KDE 5 aka Plasma 5. I have decided on a version tag for my packages, consisting of MajorRelease_Year.Month. Therefore, this package set carries version 5_15.02.
The KDE 5_15.02 increment contains the KDE Frameworks 5.7.0, Plasma 5.2.0 and Applications 14.12.2. Also present is a bunch of the “good old” KDE 4: most of kdebase, kdebindings and all those “extragear” packages like k3b and kdevelop which were missing in my 5_15.01 release.
This blog post will re-iterate some text of my previous Plasma 5 post, which I also encourage you to read, because it offers a lot more detail on the migration from KDE 4 to Plasma 5.
These KDE 5 packages of mine are going to be your only KDE desktop. There is no choosing between KDE 4 and Plasma 5 – KDE 4 will be mostly replaced. The “kde-workspace” package which provided the well-known KDE 4 workspace has been stripped down to the bare minimum, and has been replaced by “plasma-workspace”. The KDM graphical login manager has been retired and replaced with SDDM. While you will be presented with a pretty Plasma 5 workspace, most of the KDE applications you’ll be using are the familiar KDE 4 versions (with updates and bugfixes), nicely blending in to the new Breeze theme.
The highlights of this incremental release are:
- KDE Frameworks have been updated to 5.7.0
- KDE Applications have been updated to 14.12.2 (bugfix release, no new KF5 ports)
- For two applications, kate and konsole, that have already been ported to KF5 (KDE Frameworks 5) it became apparent that the KDE 4 embeddable component (or “part” in KDE terminology) was still needed. So, a katepart4 package has been added so that kdevelop works again, and konsolepart4 was added to bring back the embedded terminal in dolphin. These two packages don’t share any files with their KF5 alternates.
- The kde-workspace package has been re-added after stripping it so it no longer shares any files with plasma-workspace. The package is still needed by kget and kdeartwork.
- The sddm-theme-breeze package has been removed because the Breeze theme files are actually part of the plasma-workspace package now… and the sddm-theme-breeze package was mostly empty already in the KDE 5_15.01 release.
- In Applications 14.12.2, to date the only KF5 ports are still kate, konsole, analitza, gwenview, kalgebra, kanagram, khangman, kig, parley, kapptemplate and okteta. Apart from bugfixes to these and the KDE 4 based applications, the Applications 14.12.2 collection also contains updates for kde-workspace, kdelibs, kdepimlibs, kdepim and kdepim-runtime.
Testing Repository URL
I still consider KDE 4.14.3 the “latest stable” version for Slackware-current, and therefore the repository URLs http://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/current/latest/x86_64/ (for 64-bit) and http://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/current/latest/x86/ (for 32-bit) will keep pointing to KDE 4.14.3. You can use this repository URL for slackpkg+ or slapt-get or whatever package manager you use.
The URL http://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/current/testing/x86_64/ (for 64-bit) and http://taper.alienbase.nl/mirrors/alien-kde/current/testing/x86/ (for 32-bit) is pointing to my KDE 5 testing ground. I consider Plasma 5.2.0 a “testing” release, with potential to be your next stable desktop, but with some caveats and reservations. The URL itself will remain permanent, even when the versions of the software components get updated. Currently “testing” points to version “5” in the repository because versions of Frameworks, Plasma and Applications are not co-ordinated and package updates may appear in the next months for these sub-sets. The “5” is a good middle ground. You should use this “testing” URL when you configure slackpkg+ or slapt-get if you want to upgrade to Plasma 5.
You must use only one of these URLs!
Enabling SDDM in runlevel 4 instead of KDM
If you want to see the new graphical session (login) manager SDDM in action, add the following lines to the Slackware file “/etc/rc.d/rc.4” right after the line: echo “Starting up X11 session manager…”
# — 8< ————————————–
if [ -x /usr/bin/sddm ]; then
# — 8< ————————————–
… and then switch to runlevel 4 by typing at the command prompt (as root):
# init 4
Select “Plasma” from the SDDM session dropdown. Alternatively, if you prefer good old runlevel 3, you can type this at the command prompt (logged in under your own regular user account):
… and select “xinitrc.plasma” as your default window manager for X11. Then run:
To enter your desktop session.
Installing or upgrading Frameworks 5, Plasma 5 and Applications
As always, the accompanying README file contains full installation & upgrade instructions. Note that the packages are available in several subdirectories below “kde”, instead of directly in “kde”. This makes it easier for me to do partial updates of packages. The subdirectories are “kde4″, “kde4-extragear”, “frameworks” “plasma”, “plasma-extra” and “applications”.
Upgrading to this KDE 5 is non-trivial. You will have to remove old KDE packages manually. If you do not have KDE installed at all, you will have to install some of Slackware’s own KDE 4 packages manually. I can not guarantee that there will be no deal-breakers for you (missing functionality or persistent crashes).
If you are using slackpkg+, have already moved to KDE 5_15.01 and are adventurous, you can try upgrading using these four commands, this seemed to work (assuming in this example that you tagged my KDE 5 repository “ktown_testing”):
# slackpkg update
# slackpkg install ktown_testing
# slackpkg upgrade ktown_testing
# removepkg sddm-theme-breeze
If you are completely new to KDE 5 for Slackware, I urge you to also read my previous post about KDE 5_15.01 in its entirety. There was a follow-up article about the changes in system tray support in the Plasma 5 desktop which is mandatory reading material as well if you are using Dropbox, Skype and other non-Plasma 5 software that wants to dock an icon in the system tray.
Where to get the new packages for Plasma 5
Download locations are listed below (you will find the sources in ./source/5/ and packages in /current/5/ subdirectories). If you are interested in the development of KDE 5 for Slackware, you can peek at my git repository too.
Using a mirror is preferred because you get more bandwidth from a mirror and it’s friendlier to the owners of the master server!
- First, read all of the Notes at the end of the previous KDE 5 article, they still apply.
- If you want your shutdown/reboot options back:
- Solution: a simple patch which removes the use of “kwrapper5″ to start the KDE services will bring back both options. Kwrapper is meant to speed up the start of the Desktop Workspace and be a bit friendlier on resource usage but if you really do need shutdown and reboot options present, then apply the following patch to “/usr/bin/startkde”:
--- /usr/bin/startkde.orig Notes 2015-01-31 18:09:25.744173291 +0000
+++ /usr/bin/startkde 2015-01-31 17:49:18.938578280 +0000
@@ -380,7 +380,7 @@
# lock now and do the rest of the KDE startup underneath the locker.
test -n "$dl" && KSMSERVEROPTIONS=" --lockscreen"
-kwrapper5 ksmserver $KDEWM $KSMSERVEROPTIONS
+ksmserver $KDEWM $KSMSERVEROPTIONS
if test $? -eq 255; then
# Startup error
echo 'startkde: Could not start ksmserver. Check your installation.' 1>&2
- I can not find how to bring back the “Suspend” option for my laptop. Any help on this is more than welcome!
- Please report any other issue you encounter and I will add it here if it is serious enough.
Have fun! Eric