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KDE and openSUSE: Plasma 5.17, Qt 5.14 and more

October 10th, 2019 by

It’s been way too long since the last blog post, so we’ve got quite a lot to report on!

Plasma 5.17 Beta

The Beta version of Plasma 5.17 was released with many new features and improvements such as per-screen fractional scaling on Wayland, a new User Interface (UI) for configuring permissions of Thunderbolt devices and network statistics in KSysGuard. The latter requires some more privileges than usual for a user application, so is currently being looked at by the SUSE security team.

openQA found a few bugs already, like GIMP looking more “colorful” than usual and some applications mixing Kirigami and Qt Widgets breaking some keyboard shortcuts. Both of those were addressed meanwhile and will be fixed in the final release of 5.17.

If you haven’t tested the Plasma 5.17 Beta yet, there’s still some time left! If you come across a problem in the software, please head over to the KDE bug tracker; if instead you find an issue that is openSUSE specific, go over to the openSUSE bugzilla.

To get it on your Leap or Tumbleweed installation, you can read https://en.opensuse.org/SDB:KDE_repositories.

In case you face some severe issues, the automatic snapshotting of the root filesystem using btrfs has your back and you can simply go back to the working state by booting into an older snapshot and doing a rollback.

Argon, an installable live medium that includes Leap 15.1 with the Beta and doesn’t require any manual repository addition, is also available.

openSUSE Leap 15.2

Like it happened for Leap 42.2, 15.2 will also see major version upgrades of many components.

Next to a new version of the Linux kernel, it’s planned to ship with Qt 5.12 LTS, Plasma 5.18 (of course also LTS) and the latest KDE Frameworks and Applications, which we can get in early enough for proper testing to ensure the best user experience possible!

This means that the “Full Wayland” session that landed in Tumbleweed a few weeks ago will also be available in Leap 15.2 and support per-screen fractional scaling.

As the target versions of Applications, Frameworks and Plasma aren’t even out yet, we’re currently integrating Qt 5.12 LTS with the latest packages from Factory.

Qt 5.14

Users of Tumbleweed and Leap with newer KDE software are used to having the latest available features and bugfixes, which is only possible by keeping up with Qt development and acting proactively.

So while the 5.14 branch of Qt is still young, we’re already busy integrating it into our builds. During the initial packaging of the 5.14 Alpha some bugs (QTBUG-78867, QTBUG-78881, QTBUG-78911, QTBUG-78948) were already identified and most of them fixed by now, so the KDE:Qt:5.14 project is built and usable by now. To develop against Qt 5.14 and test your applications with it, you can add the repo and get started.

So far it’s still in the phase of integration and getting everything in shape to build against it, but soon we’ll submit it to the Factory staging area to see how it behaves in there.

One of the most user visible features is that the implementation for scaling (for HiDPI displays) was mostly rewritten. Other noteworthy changes are the addition of various backends for hardware acceleration of Qt Quick using a new abstraction layer (opt-in), which can now also take advantage of Vulkan and introduction of a new “qtquicktimeline” module, which allows for easier integration of timeline-driven animations into Qt Quick.

Applications, PostgreSQL, Zypper Packages Update in Tumbleweed

September 13th, 2019 by

The past week produced four openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots.

The snapshots brought an update of KDE Plasma and Applications along with an update for the input framework ibus, two PostgreSQL versions and the command line package manager zypper.

KDE Applications 19.08.1 improvements to Kontact, Dolphin, Kdenlive, Konsole, Step, and more arrived in snapshot 20190909. Several regressions in Konsole’s tab handling were fixed and olphin again starts correctly when in split-view mode. The updated of the anti-virus package clamav 0.101.4 address two Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures. The GNOME web browser package epiphany 3.32.5 fixed a memory corruption and broken web process extension connection when using WebKit trunk. An update of links 2.20.1 brought stability improvements and also addressed a bug when connected with tor would send real dns requests outside the tor network when the displayed page contains link elements with rel=dns-prefetch. The Plasma desktop received a minor update to 5.16.5 and fixed KWayland-integration builds with recent frameworks and Qt 5.13. Some notifications were changed in the new minor version and the some functionality was improved for current weather conditions. The qrencode 4.0.2 package improved support for cmake. The snapshot was trending at a rating of 84, according to the Tumbleweed snapshot reviewer.

Multiple packages arrived in snapshot 20190907, which was also trending at a rating of 84. An update of ImageMagick 7.0.8.63 properly identifies the DNG and AI image format. About 15 CVE’s were addressed in the update of Mozilla Firefox to version 68.1.0, which included a fix for type confusion in Mozilla’s JavaScript engine Spidermonkey. An update for the Wayland input-method protocol was made in ibus 1.5.21 and improved Single Instruction, Multiple Data (SIMD) decoding of 24 bit files was made with the Free Lossless Audio Codec (flac) 1.3.3 package update. Improved performance of various Application Program Interface (API) such as JSON.parse and methods called on frozen arrays were made with the nodejs12 12.10.0 update and php7 7.3.9 provided a bug fixing release that fixed an Exchangeable image file format (Exif) crash (bus error) due to wrong alignment and invalid cast. Many other libraries were updated in the snapshot including a couple YaST packages.

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Tumbleweed Rolls with Package Updates of Git, Virtualbox, OpenSSH

December 6th, 2018 by

openSUSE’s rolling release Tumbleweed had a total of five snapshots this week and is preparing for an update to the KDE Plasma 5.14.4 packages in forthcoming snapshots.

The five Tumbleweed snapshots this week brought the 5.19.5 Linux Kernel, which was the only package updated in the 20181130 snapshot. The kernel-source 4.19.5 package added a force option for the pciserial device for x86 architecture and fixed HiperSockets sniffer for s390 architecture.

The most recently released snapshot, 20181204, had more than a dozen packages updated. GNOME’s application for manage their Flickr image hosting accounts, frogr 1.5, fixed issues with the content and installation of the AppData file and moved the functionality menu. GNOME’s goffice had a version bump to 0.10.44. Various rubygem packages were updated and the most significant change was of the packages was that rubygem-pry 0.12.2 dropped support for Rubinius. Both python-boto3 1.9.57 and python-botocore 1.12.57 had multiple application programming interface (API) changes. The obs-service-set_version 0.5.11 package needed “python suff” and now allow running tests with python3.

The first snapshot to arrive in December was snapshot 20181203. Among the package changes were an update to checkmedia 4.1, which fixed digest calculation in tagmedia, GNOME’s framework for media discovery grilo 0.3.7, and distributed compiler icecream 1.2, which made load calculations better and also cleaned up the general code. A python-docutils build dependency was added with cifs-utils 6.8 and elfutils 0.175 fixed three Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures issues. Major changes came with the man 2.8.4 package. One of the changes relies on decompressors reading from their standard input rather than redundantly passing them the input file on their command line; this works better with downstream AppArmor confinement of decompressors. Virtualbox 5.2.22 fixed a regression in the Core Audio backend causing a hang when returning from host sleep when processing input buffers and webkit2gtk3 2.22.4 fixed serval crashes and rendering issues and Fix a crash when using graphics library Cairo versions between 1.15 and 1.16.0.

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KDE and openSUSE: Plasma 5.14, Qt 5.12 and more

October 17th, 2018 by

Plasma 5.14

Plasma 5.14 was released with many improvements.

It was planned to have it in a released in a Tumbleweed snapshot on the same day, but openQA issues prevented snapshot 20181008 from getting published. Instead, Tumbleweed users got it with snapshot 20181009 on Thursday morning. Currently, 5.14.1 is staged to be accepted in Tumbleweed.

To get it on Leap 15 (and even 42.3 with restrictions), you can add https://en.opensuse.org/SDB:KDE_repositories#KDE_Frameworks_5.2C_Plasma_5_and_Applications. Note that those are not part of the official distribution and therefore not as well supported.

KDE:Unstable drops support for Leap 42.3

The KDE:Unstable projects will drop support for openSUSE 42.3 next week.

Builds of KDE software from git master have been available for Leap 15 even before the official release, which should’ve given everyone enough time to migrate.

The Argon media got switched to Leap 15 just after release as well. If you haven’t heard of Argon (and Krypton) yet, they’re installable live media with the latest version of KDE software on Leap and Tumbleweed.

See the wiki article (https://en.opensuse.org/SDB:Argon_and_Krypton) for more information.

Migrating to Leap 15 also means that less system libraries (like libinput) need to be replaced, as the version in Leap 15 is sufficient for now.

If you haven’t migrated to Leap 15 yet, read https://en.opensuse.org/SDB:System_upgrade#Command_line_2. The provided instructions work just fine for the KDE:Unstable repositories.

Goodbye to Webkit (from a default install)

Did you know that two major browsers, Safari and Chromium, are based on KDE software? That’s right, KHTML was used by Apple as foundation when creating the WebKit Browser engine. During the development of Chrome, Google forked WebKit into Blink. (more…)

What Is New With KDE’s Plasma 5.12 in openSUSE Leap

February 23rd, 2018 by


KDE Plasma 5.8 users coming from openSUSE Leap 42.3 to Plasma 5.12 on Leap 15 will notice significant changes when upgrading to the new versions.

The boot up time for KDE’s new Long Term Support release is faster and there is more optimization.

There have been performance optimizations all over the KDE desktop. The file operations in Dolphin are much faster now than with older KDE Frameworks releases. Plasma 5.12 has lower memory requirements and there are several new features users will notice from Leap 42.3 and Plasma 5.8.

The notification system gained support for interactive previews, which allows users to quickly take screenshots and drag them into a chat window, an email composer or a web browser; that makes it convenient for the user to not have to leave an application that is being used.

Music lovers will enjoy the new Music Controls in the Lock Screen. The new Media Controls include Previous and Next track. Play and pause are also included and it shows the song title that is playing. The lock screen controls can be disabled for added privacy.

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Tumbleweed Snapshots Update AppStream, Mesa, Frameworks

July 13th, 2017 by

This past week’s openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots have produced several fixes and improvements, including some for KDE users and those using AMD hardware.

Mesa 17.1.4 was among the most interesting packages in snapshot  20170710.

The update to Mesa brought an AMD drivers fix for the proper generation of Surrogate ID (SID) Tables and an RadeonSI improvements related to the Polaris 12 chip. Grep’s update to 3.1 makes it search for plain-text data sets faster. The snapshot also prepared for the 4.12 Linux Kernel with an update to linux-glibc-devel 4.12; Linux Kernel is expected to land in Tumbleweed before the end of the week. A fix for a “stupid” crash, according to the change log, with verbose mode and tone generation came with the update of mpg123 1.25.1 and the Newt library for color text mode and widget based user interfaces received improved handling of long strings.

Snapshot 20170709 brought very small changes to Wine and AqBanking. Wine 2.12 had performance improvements with async I/O and started MSI user interface support with the update to the newest version.

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