A few days ago we advanced a novelty that will come soon to KDE neon– Windows-style offline updates. It’s an interesting change, but if Microsoft has taught us anything, it’s how exasperating something can be: you want to restart quickly for some reason and the team forces you to wait. For that reason, the KDE project will allow us to decide whether to use these types of updates or not.
It is the first novelty mentioned by Nate Graham in his weekly note about changes coming to the KDE desktop. As mentioned by “Pointieststick”, there was already a command line to deactivate the option, but now they have included another with a GUI (user interface) with which we will only have to check or uncheck a box. This will be available to KDE neon users from Plasma 5.22.
Other new features coming to KDE
- The global menu widget now includes a search field that can be used to quickly locate menu items (Plasma 5.22).
- Discover has gained the ability to update distros that use rpm-ostree, such as Fedora Silverblue and Fedora Kionite (Plasma 5.22).
- In the Plasma Wayland session, the screen projection will now go into “Do not disturb” mode by default, although this can be overridden (Plasma 5.22).
- Screen overscan values can now be set in the Plasma Wayland session (Plasma 5.22).
Bug fixes and performance improvements
- Gwenview’s speed, responsiveness, and memory usage have been vastly improved when loading and browsing large grid views, particularly for files located on network locations (Gwenview 20.08).
- Entering the password in the networks applet no longer causes the network list to reorganize as you type and sometimes sends the password to the wrong network (Plasma 5.21.5).
- The new Plasma System Monitor application no longer crashes when a new display style is selected for any of the sensors (Plasma 5.21.5).
- Sending files to Bluetooth devices from Dolphin now works again (Plasma 5.21.5).
- Discover redisplays firmware updates for eligible devices (Plasma 5.21.5).
- It is now possible to specify a user group for OpenConnect VPNs (Plasma 5.21.5).
- Long names on the Users page of System Preferences no longer overflow (Plasma 5.21.5).
- Fixed one of the ways that KWin can crash when using a multi-GPU system (Plasma 5.22).
- In Plasma Wayland session, KWin no longer sometimes hangs when displaying Task Manager thumbnails or ending a screen recording / casting session (Plasma 5.22).
- Accented and dead keys now work in the Plasma Wayland session when the virtual keyboard is available (Plasma 5.22 with Qt 5.15.3 plus KDE patches).
- The Present Windows effect now works in the Plasma Wayland session when triggered from grouped entries in the Task Manager (Plasma 5.22).
- The new SMART monitoring system no longer erroneously warns that VirtualBox disks are broken when they are not, nor does it track the status of devices without SMART support at all (Plasma 5.22)
- When using the new Systemd startup feature, processes that crash when logging out or logging in may no longer block restart, or fail to log in under circumstances where they would otherwise start normally ( Plasma 5.22).
- System Preferences no longer hangs sometimes when navigating from one QtQuick-based page to another (Frameworks 5.82).
- List items in all QtQuick-based KDE software no longer show excessive left padding for their icons (Frameworks 5.82)
Improvements in the user’s interface
- Digital signatures in Okular are no longer drawn with bad looking red text (Okular 21.04).
- When dragging a document into Okular using the mouse, the cursor now wraps horizontally when it reaches the edge of the screen, just as it already does vertically (Okular 21.08).
- On systems with slow PackageKit implementations (such as openSUSE-based distros), Discover now renders the initial view with a bit more precision while the metadata is still loading (Plasma 5.22).
- In Plasma’s new System Monitor application, any page with a search field now focuses on that search field by default when the page loads, so you can always immediately start typing to search (Plasma 5.22).
- The section separator of the Bluetooth applet now visually matches that of the Network applet (Plasma 5.22).
When will this all come to KDE?
Plasma 5.21.5 will arrive on May 4 and KDE Gear 21.04 will do so on April 22. KDE Frameworks 5.82 will be released on May 8th and Plasma 5.22 will arrive on June 8th. As for KDE Gear 20.08, at the moment we only know that they will arrive in August.
To enjoy all this as soon as possible we have to add the KDE Backports repository or use an operating system with special repositories like KDE neon or any distribution whose development model is Rolling Release, although the latter usually take a little longer than the KDE system.