Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 8th May 2009 09:41 UTC, submitted by lemur2
KDE It slipped by us, but the KDE team has released another minor bugfix release of KDE 4.2, version 4.2.3, a few days ago. Being a bugfix release, there are few user-visible changes, but still, there are a few things that stand out. "Online IMAP filtering in KMail has been fixed, KMail's system tray icon now reacts to changes to folder properties and updates the number of emails shown there automatically, and bugfixes, performance improvements and optimization in KHTML - painting and interoperability with web standards has been further improved."
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"Caveat: Because KDE4 expects its font rendering and drawing to be hardware-accelerated, it actually does attempt to do a lot more font rendering and drawing. As an experiment, re-size a Konqueor window on a KDE3 machine, and then do the same on a KDE4 machine. On KDE3, an outline of the Window at its new size will be drawn until you let the mouse button go, when the complete window is re-drawn at its new size. Once. On KDE4, the windows is continuously re-drawn over and over at differing sizes to "animate" the re-size operation.

Are you talking about rubber-banding? In kde3 you can go to 'Control Centre' -> 'Desktop' -> 'Window Behaviour' and click on tab 'Moving'. There you can select if you want to display contents of moving and resizing windows. This is not a new trick. I get your point about kde4 being slow on machines that don't have fast GPU. But a fast GPU should not be a requirement, i.e. some people don't want all the eye candy, they would rather have a basic and fast desktop. Anything on top of that should be optional. I think kde4 is trying to be so much like Windows Vista or Mac OS X, they have neglegted the basic philosophy of Unix - keep it simple stupid.

I didn't say it was a new trick ... I'm just pointing out that it is so. KDE3 used software rendering of the desktop, and KDE4 uses GPU hardware-accelerated rendering.

If you don't have a hardware-accelerated graphics capability (a working GPU) ... then KDE4 will be slow.

If, however, you do have a hardware-accelerated graphics capability ... then KDE4 is quite fast.

This is probably by far and away the primary reason why the user experience with KDE4 apparently varies so much from system to system.

On the system I am using right now, which has a fairly modest dual-core AMD64 CPU, 2GB RAM and an ATI Radeon HD 2400 PRO graphics card, as I type this, KDE4 is faster than any other desktop system. It absolutely flies. It is noticeably faster than XP and GNOME on this same hardware.

About the only thing that would be as fast is a very minimalist lightweight desktop such as JWM (Puppy Linux) or LXDE. But they are not much fun ...

However, I fully realise, YMMV. Not everyone has a system that runs well with KDE4.

Edited 2009-05-08 14:30 UTC

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