Plasma 5 live images for openSUSE and on the default openSUSE desktop

A lot has been happening on the KDE side of openSUSE… this post summarizes what’s been going on so far.

Live media for Plasma 5

One of the most-often requested ways to test Plasma 5, given it can’t be coinstalled with the 4.x Workspace, is the availability of live images to test either in VM or bare metal without touching existing systems.

Given that other distributions started doing so since a while, naturally openSUSE couldn’t stay still. ;) Thanks to the efforts of Hrvoje “shumski” Senjan, we have now live media available for testing out Plasma 5!

  • Download location: the ISO file you’re looking for is called openSUSE-Plasma5 (currently x86_64 only)

The image is based on the current Tumbleweed and takes the latest code from git. If you test this in a virtual machine, bear in mind that there are some issues with VirtualBox and Plasma 5, and that QtQuick’s reliance on openGL can cause problems in general with virtual machines.

And if you find a bug… if it’s in the core distribution, or in the KDE packaging, head over to openSUSE’s Bugzilla. If it’s instead in the software, the KDE bug tracker is your friend.

Questions? Head over to the opensuse-kde ML, or the #opensuse-kde channel on Freenode.

Plasma 5 as default in openSUSE

You may have read on a recent Softpedia article that Plasma 5 is going to become the default in openSUSE. That’s correct (what did you expect, a retraction? ;): I and the others of the team (Raymond and Hrvoje) have been using Plasma 5 for a long time, not only because we like to stay on the bleeding edge ;) but also to see how it would fare for openSUSE. In the mean time, we reported bugs, sometimes fixed them, and occasionally landed one or two features in.

With the upcoming Plasma 5.3, we feel that it is of the level of quality expected from the default openSUSE desktop, and therefore we have set up preparations for the switch. As Rome wasn’t built in a day, it won’t happen straight away ;) but it will involve changes in the repositories and in the packaging, which are summarized below:

  • We will start the migration around the end of April, as long as the basic openQA tests are ready;
  • We will release KDE Applications 15.04 in Tumbleweed at the same time;
  • The KF5 ports of the applications present in KDE Applications 15.04 will obsolete their existing counterparts (hence the KF5 version will replace the 4.x version).  The same will happen for the kdebase4-workspace and Workspace 4.x packages;
  • Afterwards, the 4.x Workspace will not be supported or maintained for Tumbleweed. Help from the community is welcome in case anyone wants to step up and maintain the packages.
  • The default menu applet will be Kicker (as opposed to Kickoff used in the 4.x tiems;
  • The default theme for Plasma 5 will be Breeze (the upstream default), and we will use the menu structure provided by upstream KDE (as opposed to the custom structure we use today);
  • The repository layout will change. We will have three repositories holding KDE software:

    • KDE:Frameworks - the KF5 libraries and Plasma 5;
    • KDE:Applications - KDE Applications releases
    • KDE:Extra - Other KDE/Qt related community packages.
  • For each of these repositories, there will be also an “unstable” variant, tracking the current git master state.

(The full IRC log of the last meeting outlines these points in detail)

There are still some points open for discussion, in particularly for the update applet: should we keep Apper? Would Muon be a drop-in replacement? Or are we better off without an applet at all?

Of course, input  and help from the community is welcome. Hop on IRC or on the ML (see above for where to look)  if you want to help and participate in this large transition.

KDE openSUSE packaging

Dialogue & Discussion