Linux Mint 7 KDE Edition
I decided to refresh my laptop after it recently came back from repairs. While there was nothing wrong with it software wise, I was getting bored and wanted to try something new. Having heard good things about the mint KDE release, I decided to install that instead of my existing Windows + mint Gnome installation. I decided that I had no use of Windows any more as everything that I needed to do was available in Linux. I had it configured just so. I downloaded the KDE release of mint, all 1.1 GB of it and installed it on my laptop. My screen-shot review follows.
Pressing a key during boot fromt he live CD prevents it from starting the live session and brings you to this menu. The live session was giving mw problems by freezing so I decided to install instead of run live and then install.
The language seletion screen of the install
Time zone selection
Disk partitioning. Using the whole of the virtual disk
Ready to install. The install process was standard mint/ubuntu
Partitioning and formatting the disk
Copying the files
Done. Restart to use the new installation.
Using the system.
The boot menu of the first boot of the system
The login screen. The theme can be changed and you can also give a different language to the login screen selectively
The boot splash. I wonder if it ractually means anything
There it is, the desktop. KDE takes longer to boot on my laptop than Gnome. The desktop has a section where you can display the contents of any folder in the system. In my opinion, its quite a distraction and I turned it off.
The KDE menu is a trial at coolness. However, I feel it fails a bit. Not miserably but by just a bit. The regular segregated application list is there and the search is there too.
The search is pretty standard and offers no additional functtionality like the mint menu which allows you to also search for the package in the repositories and also install directly from the menu. The KDE menu tells you to go search on the web.
The file browser, Dolphin, is fine. Although I don’t really care about the “try to be MS” theme. Why does KDE assume that I want to make my Linux box look like Windows? Anyway, its pretty standard and I found nothing extraordinary.
The usual mint programs are also present like, mintUpdate, mintNanny, mintBackup etc.
Kopete refused to connect to my gtalk and yahoo accounts. I had to give up after repeated tries and install pidgin.
This is one of the most irritating problems with KDE apps. All of them want to run the system tray. You have to explicitly “exit” to close the application.
When you try to shutdown or log off the system asks you to confirm and also has a 30 second timer.
My experience with the KDE version was not very nice. I found myself taking longer to do things than what I could manage with my older installation of the gnome version of mint. Also, the clutter is just a real put off. While some people like a really loaded look, I prefer a clean look which can be customized if required. I tried to create a launcher for Google Chrome on the desktop with additional arguments in the command and the icon refused to show up as Google Chrome. Just kept showing a question mark.
While I have read that KDE is more configurable than Gnome, I found nothing to give me that idea. The central control panel is inadequate to say the least. There was no way for me access the Keyrings, which I needed to do to put in the password for my wifi connection. There was no direct way to do it. I had to put in the password on every boot to connect to the wifi. Very irritating.
In my opinion, Gnome is a lot easier to use than KDE. However, I am talking about the Linux mint implementation of Gnome.