My thoughts on Slackware, life and everything

More May updates for Slackware’s Plasma 5 addon

Early May I published updates for my ‘ktown’ repository, mainly focused on Plasma5 whose packages I updated to 5.9.5 because this is the last release before moving to 5.10 next month. But there were new releases for Frameworks and Applications after that date, so I did a second May update: KDE 5_17.05_02.
It contains: KDE Frameworks 5.34.0, Plasma 5.9.5 and Applications 17.04.1 with Qt 5.7.1.

NOTE: I will no longer be releasing Plasma 5 packages for 32bit Slackware 14.2.

What’s new in KDE 5_17.05_02?

The remainder of this post is almost identical, every time I write about a new Plasma 5 release for Slackware. It contains the installation/upgrade instructions and other helpful remarks. If you are new to Plasma 5 for Slackware, I recommend reading on. Otherwise you are already knowledgeable, so have fun! You can stop reading now.

Non-ktown packages you probably want anyway

There are a couple of *runtime* dependencies that I did not add to the ‘ktown’ repository, but you may want to consider installing them yourself because they enable functionality in Plasma 5 that you would otherwise miss:

  • vlc: will give phonon another backend to select from.
  • freerdp: access RDP servers through krdc.
  • (only for Slackware 14.2) ffmpeg: used by several KDE programs.

All of the above can be found in my regular package repository.

In order for kdenlive to reach its full potential, you might want to consider replacing Slackware’s ‘ffmpeg‘ package by my version with extended functionality: more supported codecs including AAC and H.264 encoders.

Multilib considerations

If you install a 32bit program on a 64bit Slackware computer with multilib and that program needs legacy system tray support (think of Skype for instance), you will have to grab the 32-bit version of Slackware’s ‘libdbusmenu-qt’ and my ktown-deps package ‘sni-qt’, and run the ‘convertpkg-compat32 -i‘ command on them to create ‘compat32’ versions of these packages. Then install both ‘libdbusmenu-qt-compat32‘ and ‘sni-qt-compat32‘.
Those two are mandatory addons for displaying system tray icons of 32bit binaries in 64bit multilib Plasma5.

Installing or upgrading Frameworks 5, Plasma 5 and Applications

This upgrade should be relatively straightforward if you already have Plasma 5 installed. See below for install/upgrade instructions. For users who are running slackware-current, the most crucial part is making sure that you end up with Slackware’s packages for ‘libinput‘ and ‘libwacom‘. I had those two packages in the ‘current’ section of my repository for a while (they are still part of the ‘14.2’ section) but Slackware added them to the core OS. Failing to install the correct (i.e. Slackware) packages, may render your input devices (mouse and keyboard) inoperative in X.Org.

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“, “kdepim“, “plasma“, “plasma-extra“, “applications“, “applications-extra” and “telepathy“.

Upgrading to this KDE 5 is not difficult, especially if you already are running KDE 5_17.05. You will have to remove old KDE 4 packages manually. If you do not have KDE 4 installed at all, you will have to install some of Slackware’s own KDE 4 packages manually. Luckily, KDE 5 is mature enough that there’s almost nothing left from old KDE 4 that you would really want.

What I usually do is: download all the ‘ktown’ packages for the new release to a local disk. Then run “upgrade –install-new” on all these packages. Then I check the status of my Slackware-current, upgrading the stock packages where needed. The slackpkg tool is invaluable during this process of syncing the package installation status to the releases.


If you are using slackpkg+, have already moved to KDE 5_17.05 and are adventurous, you can try upgrading using the following set of commands. This should “mostly” work but you still need to check the package lists displayed by slackpkg to verify that you are upgrading all the right packages. Feel free to send me improved instructions if needed. In below example I am assuming that you tagged my KDE 5 repository with the name “ktown” in the configuration file “/etc/slackpkg/slackpkgplus.conf“):
# slackpkg update
# slackpkg install ktown (to get the newly added packages from my repo)
# slackpkg install-new (to get the new official Slackware packages that were part of my deps previously)
# slackpkg upgrade ktown (upgrade all existing packages to their latest versions)
# slackpkg upgrade-all (upgrade the remaining dependencies that were part of my repo previously)

And doublecheck that you have not inadvertently blacklisted my packages in “/etc/slackpkg/blacklist“! Check for the existence of a line in that blacklist file that looks like “[0-9]+alien” and remove it if you find it!

Recommended reading material

There have been several posts now about KDE 5 for Slackware-current. All of them contain useful information, tips and gotchas. If you want to read them, here they are:

A note on Frameworks

The KDE Frameworks are extensions on top of Qt 5.x and their usability is not limited to the KDE Software Collection. There are other projects such as LXQT which rely (in part) on the KDE Frameworks, and if you are looking for a proper Frameworks repository which is compatible with Slackware package managers such as slackpkg+, then you can use these URL’s to assure yourself of the latest Frameworks packages for Slackware-current (indeed, this is a sub-tree of my KDE 5 repository):

The same goes for Frameworks for Slackware 14.2 (change ‘current’ to ‘14.2’ in the above URLs).

Where to get the new packages for Plasma 5

Package download locations are listed below (you will find the sources in ./source/5/ and packages in /current/5/ and  /14.2/5/ 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!

Have fun! Eric


  1. Eduardo

    Thank you Eric! So far it’s working OK.

  2. Gérard Monpontet

    Work also here 😉

  3. Gérard Monpontet

    For root problem in kate and dolphin i have applied two opensuse patch who are present in this two src.rpm:

    i have also added the dolphinsu.desktop, now dolphinsu is appear on the kde menu. 😉

  4. Ian

    When you say you will no longer be releasing 32-bit packages for 14.2, do you mean that you will be continuing to release them for –current or that you aren’t going to be keeping up 32-bit packages at all?

  5. alienbob

    Ian – no words.

  6. supermaximus

    Why KDE 5 is still not in Slackware current? It released more than 2 years ago and should be quite stable.

  7. alienbob

    Plasma 5 will likely be added to Slackware before the next release. It is already rock solid. But that is not up to me – Pat Volkerding decides the pace of updates.

    Pat works from bottom to top: first the core of the OS needs to be stable and good, and then the desktop environment will be handled.

    In the meantime, you can get Plasma 5 packages from my repository.

  8. Robby

    Hi Eric

    Since upgrading to 170502 ( this morning ), dialogue boxes in gnome apps ( eg. Thunderbird ) are borked – dividing lines are missing and colours look off. I’ve done a full reinstall of all packages a 2nd time to make sure I didn’t leave anything out. But no luck. Any ideas?

  9. Ronald

    Have you tried using the latest qt which is now at version 5.9 with KDE? OpenSUSE Tumbleweed is now using qr5.9 I’ve tried build qt 5.9 on Slackware 14.2 using the slackbuild on your site and the slackbuild on but it failed to build due to the change of location of some directories. Not that it would make a huge difference whether qt 5.7.1 or qt 5.9 is used but it would provide Konqueror users who use WebEngine a more current layout engine. Although, I most commonly use Firefox to browse the web.

    The packages work well for the most part. The only serious bug is that the game knetwalk shows a black screen when the icons are set with qt5ct which is a program to set appearance and icons for qt5 apps when a minimalist windows manager is being used. I could report the bug at the qt5ct web site.

  10. alienbob

    Ronald, I am running the latest Plasma5 release using Qt 5.9.0 on my laptop. I have the 32bit and 64bit packages ready for Slackware-current but I am unsure whether I have the time to release packages for Slackware64 14.2 this month. Compiling Qt and Qt-webkit takes ages on my old hardware.
    We’ll see. But in any case, the new ktown packages will be uploaded somewhere this weekend if I don’t find regressions because of switching to Qt 5.9.

  11. alienbob

    Robby – it’s likely that this is caused by the GTK theme engine in Plasma5. It should be fixed in the upcoming Plasma 5.10 package release which I am preparing.
    See for the commit that should bring the fix.

  12. Robby

    Thanks very much Eric, I took a look at the patch but as other stuff might be affected, I’ll hang on for the updated package.

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