On 23rd of April 2015, Mihai Șucan passed away due to metastatic cancer caused by
5 November 2008, 20:38
One of the most common issues on Linux is font rendering. Usually the Arial font renders really badly, especially if
you use Gnome and you try KDE/Qt
applications (for example Opera).
Gnome and KDE use fontconfig to render fonts, but both use different settings. As such, if you pick your Gnome-based distro, you usually have problems with KDE/Qt, and vice-versa.
The Appearance properties (gnome-appearance-properties) allows you to nicely change the font rendering options. You
can also manually adjust these settings using the gconf-edit tool, just go to the /desktop/gnome/font_rendering
KDE has it's own appearance properties, but usually Gnome users don't know which one it is, and they don't want to
install the entire KDE package.
To adjust the font rendering options for KDE/Qt applications, here's what you need to know. You can create a per-user
~/.fonts.conf file, or you can set system-wide settings by editing /etc/fonts/fonts.conf (and/or /etc/fonts/conf.d).
Download my .fonts.conf file. Just save this in your home folder and restart your
KDE/Qt applications. I use the same settings in Gnome.
I do not recommend you to edit the /etc/fonts/fonts.conf file. However, you can still adjust global settings by
changing the symbolic links in /etc/fonts/conf.d. I did that myself.
man fonts.conf for more details.
Note: you might not like my font rendering configuration, because it also depends on your monitor and screen
resolution. Please adjust the settings as needed.
6 September 2006, 18:54
One of the first steps, and most likely the easiest, in making KDE and GNOME seem consistent is getting both of them
have the same themes.
I simply don't understand (somebody explain to me please) why is Kubuntu required to have a completely different theme
Seriously, guys, if you really want that, then no problem: Kubuntu blue and Ubuntu orange. BUT at least take the time
and provide both of the themes so we can select the one we want in the theme managers of both DEs.
I personally favour Ubuntu's theme. I can't get get KDE apps to look exactly as those in GNOME. I switched to
polyester, I applied my own color theme (the Ubuntu colors available on kde-look suck,
and that's nicely said - I had to make mine). The biggest problem is changing the icons. I believed this should be easy:
in kcontrol I find the icon set named Human. Yes, it changes most of the icons, but the most obvious ones are still the
blue KDE Crystal: file icons - and some others :). Again, KDE-Look provides amateurish Human iconsets for KDE which don't
even properly work.
Oh and for those wondering: somebody cannot live in a GNOME-only box, or KDE-only box. It's not going to happen, not
today, not tomorrow.
Hint: this is not a "job" that needs to be done by neither of the DE teams. It's the "job" of the distro
Making the orange theme the default in Kubuntu would be awesome, not because of the theme itself - I'd say the same if
Ubuntu would use by default the Kubuntu theme.
Bonus suggestion: while they are at it, they should configure the default behaviour of KDE to match the
one of GNOME (or vice-versa).
Summary of the post: get the GNOME theme on KDE, and get the KDE theme on GNOME. It's easy, it's doable,
both DEs are capable of it.
P.S. I don't like the purple theme in Kubuntu Edgy Eft.
17 June 2006, 15:56
Yet another blog post about KDE and Gnome. You've all been waiting for this one. :)
First of all, I use Gnome 2.14 and I have some parts of KDE 3.5.3 installed too. Why? Gnome seems to be better glued
together and more professional, feels less bloated and it also feels faster. I say it only feels so, because I haven't
done any real tests.
KDE got some real goodies like Quanta Plus which is probably the best web programmers editor I've used. Given it's
free ... I'd say it's amazing. I've seen loads of shareware editors that have far less features (for Windows of
KDE TV was also my favourite TV application since it's really good for all my TV viewing needs (it does have the
deinterlace filter :) ). However, since then I switched to tvtime, because I find it faster and better in some ways
(too bad I can't configure it too much, it's very minimalistic).
I was pleasantly surprised by Konqueror (as a web browser). I've never knew it's so powerful. Much better than IE. Too
bad it's very little known. I am aware it's not a browser as capable as Opera or Firefox, but it's very good (it can
properly render all the CSS layout sites I have).
Nicest surprise to KDE was KTTS. Nice stuff guys. Just one suggestion: add a global shortcut for reading the
KolourPaint is my choice for simple image editing (GIMP is too advanced/different for me ... even if I am used to
Kig and Kseg are two educational packages worth the time spent by their respective authors on development. Meaning
Kseg is a very cool dynamic geometry software, but it's not as complete as Kig. Kig, IMHO, will become my primary tool
for dynamic geometry. It's very, very good and advanced. Yet, I still need to learn some of its capabilities. :)
Amarok is the music player. Much better than Winamp and all others. I've tested Rythmbox, Banshee, juK
and other music players. None comes close to Amarok, which is feature packed and nonetheless it's fast enough. Don't expect
it to be as fast as XMMS, but it's faster than Banshee and Rythmbox which are the two music players receiving most attention.
Amarok has a very good collection, tagging with online database, automatic scoring of songs you listen most, it also picks
similar songs recommended by Last.fm. You can automatically search for lyrics, for artist information, similar artists,
etc. The context browser is very nice, because it automatically shows songs you are most likely to be interested of (favourites,
new additions, songs from the same album, same artist, etc). Other goodies includes are cover management (automatically
finds the cover online), Python extensions (web control and more), nice customizable OSD and lots more. Simply put, amarok
is the best player. It doesn't crash, it got a very fast collection search and analizer. Rythmbox and Banshee both crashed
when scanning my songs, LOL.
The funniest part in KDE is ... guess what? Image viewers. Amusing, huh? Most KDE image viewers suck big time. They
are even worse than the worst image viewer I've ever seen on Windows. There you go, I've said it. Shocking statement?
I'd say it's a shocking fact on my Ubuntu 6.06 install (and Ubuntu 5.10): just loading an image of lets say 800x600 in
Kview (or KuickShow, whatever) and zooming to 400% sends the system to hell :). Memory usage increases a lot and the
virtual memory is required, so the HDD activity raises like I'm copying several files on the network at once (it even
slows down mouse movements). I suppose it's because the 400% zoomed image is way too big to hold it all in the memory
:). Veeery efficient code. If this caused by the Ubuntu distro, then ... this is the worst thing Ubuntu has.
Worth noting is the problem doesn't apply to KolourPaint, which most likely uses a different library.
Here comes the irony: KDE image viewers have better support for image formats. I wasn't able to view some BMP images
with any of the Gnome image viewer (GQView, Gthumb and EOG). Also, I wasn't able to see any PSD image, only KDE
supports them. :)
So, my default image viewer is Gthumb and besides it I also have Kview. I removed all the other image viewers.
The latest Kopete seems to be a very attractive alternative to Gaim. I simply enjoyed "hacking" into the XSLT files to
change the display of the conversation. I also like it has notifications, and more options. What made me not to use Kopete: it's underdeveloped. Anyway, Kopete is still in its infancy.
Both desktop environments are not professional and fast enough. They should also follow stricter guidelines, making
them look more professional.
I like the panels, the applets, menus editing, the multiple desktops/workspaces environment, the keyboard
configuration (accessibility, layouts and variants). These are things Windows should get too, just like it should get
proper permissions per file and symbolic links. Windows is actually a very weak desktop environment compared to KDE
Gnome 2.14 has noticeable speed improvements. As far as I know, it's going to get more speed improvements for version
2.16. I like that. KDE 4 is going to be interesting, but I have a "hunch": it's going to be buggy, since they make big
I like the idea of KDE: having a single keyboard shortcuts editor in all applications, a single toolbar editor, menu
editor, etc. I also seem to like the idea of KNotify with it's integration with KTTS.
As for customization, KDE is the clear "winner". I like I can easily customize the themes and everything I want in a
single place: KDE Control Center. Yes, I know it's hatable, but it's also good. The themes in KDE seems to be more
flexible than the ones in Gnome.
What I dislike when I am in Gnome, if I start KDE applications, I'm seeing KDE, not Gnome. I know it's normal, because
they depend upon the KDE packages, but there should be more interoperability. Why not use the Gnome keyboard shortcuts
editor when in Gnome? Why not use the Gnome widgets (and more stuff)? Same goes for when I am in KDE: I see Gnome
It's all about consistency. Is that too much to ask for? :)
Projects like Tango Desktop Project, LSB and Portland are very good because they help with consistency.
I'm glad the latest Ubuntu uses the Tango icons.
KDE and Gnome also play the "catch-up with Windows" game Windows functionality, just like OpenOffice seems to do with
Microsoft Office. Microsoft will always be one step ahead, because they are currently modifying the rules of the game
with Microsoft Office, Windows Vista and more.
Why not be a bit different? Why not bring something new and better?
Thanks to Microsoft, alternative web browsers (Opera, Firefox, Safari, Konqueror) had enough time to go miles ahead of
KDE and Gnome had the same amount of time... and the heads of these desktop environments decided upon using the
allocated time to catch-up with Windows. They almost did. :)
KDE 4 received some good press, mostly hype currently (IMHO), about bringing new stuff to the table, about innovation
(Plasma, whatever). That's nice. I'd be glad if they'll succeed.
Another thing I do not like, specially in regards to KDE: they include a huge amount of packages. Come on, keep the
desktop environment only. Gnome is sticking to Epiphany, which is, with all due respect, yet-another Gecko browser.
Seriously, why would I switch to Epiphany? Both desktop environments should be bare bones. The other packages should
only be optional, just like
Konqueror, as a file manager this time, is more feature packed than Nautilius. However, I'm in favour for the
simplicity offered by Nautilius.
The overall conclusion is both desktop environments are powerful, each having its own strengths and weaknesses. I am
very well aware most of the ideas have already been expressed before by others, yet I think the more people voice
their opinions the closer we'll get to this happening (consistency, blah, blah). Those in charge of the development of
these two great desktop environments will take into consideration what the majority says.