Linux #10 - KDE

By Pete | @kingpetey | 20 Oct 2002

KDE is one of the most popular and well known of the Linux GUIs. I personally find it my favourite however different features appeal to different people. I find KDE the easiest to use and it?s the best for new users. KDE can be started from the console if installed by typing KDM on most distributions. KDE should load pretty quickly on most modern computers and the desktop can be personalised depending on which user has logged into the computer.

This makes it good if your whole family uses the computer as each person can have a different desktop to suit their needs. The first thing you may notice is that to open something you only need 1 click and not 2. This can be changed from the control panel but normally speeds things up once you get used to it. Another thing you may notice in KDE is that you have 4 desktops! This is very handy if you have lots of programs open at once though takes a lot of getting used to if you have migrated from windows. It took me ages to stop just using 1 desktop and start using 4.

You can have up to 12 desktops in KDE, though I wouldn?t advise it as you may loose things! Most things work pretty much like Windows, for instance moving things round the desktop and browsing the K menu are all things you should be familiar with from Windows. The lock screen tool is also very handy if you have other people in your house that you don?t want to see what's on the desktop while you pop out for a while. The desktop bar is made up of a number of applets such as the clock and the show desktop button. You can add new applets but right clicking then clicking on add.

This also lets you add links to programs to the bar. The programs menu is not similar to windows as in KDE your programs are ordered by type, for instance Games would include all the games you had installed while internet would contain programs for the internet such as web browsers and internet setup. KDE comes with its own file browser and web browser called Konqueror that is built into KDE and can be very useful, it?s similar to windows explorer but has many more features. When quitting KDE you have a number of options, you can simply login as another user, reboot the computer and halt the computer.