There’s a trick to getting the best of both worlds on Fedora — and I would imagine this works with any other distro under the same circumstances — and this is how you do it. You download the latest release as the “Desktop” version (again, that’s GNOME, as we outlined yesterday) and then download the KDE desktop with all the trimmings.
Then you choose your desktop from the switchdesktop from the command line and off you go. This way, you have all the GNOME and KDE bits needed to run each dessktop environment and, while it may be a bit tedious and may be time- and disk-consuming, it is quite handy when testing software to go back and forth between desktops to see how they perform.
Or maybe there’s a 12-step program for such behavior. Your guess is as good as mine.
In any case, using Fedora 16 KDE on the ZaReason Limbo 5440 reflects much of the experience of using Fedora 16 “Desktop” (GNOME) as outlined in yesterday’s blog item. Downloads are quick, response times even quicker. The Fedora 16 KDE spin comes with the KDE 4.7 version of the desktop — speaking as solely a post-KDE 4 user, I’ve always been impressed with the changes KDE makes under the hood. On the exterior things may not change much, but behind the curtain there are a lot of commendable things going on. Plus, the fact that KDE is not racing off to become a tablet desktop is a huge plus.
But I digress.
To make a long story short, the Limbo 5440 with Fedora 16 KDE is a remarkable pairing. I’m not that well-versed in the K Desktop Environment history, but my observation over the years has been that KDE has tried to be all things to all Linux users. As a result, there are a lot of KDE-based programs that come along with the desktop environment. That’s a good thing, and programs like Amarok and K3b are a testament to this.
Tomorrow we’ll have A Week in Limbo, Day 4: Off the reservation
(Larry Cafiero is one of the founders of the Lindependence Project and has just started testing and developing software in his new home office, which is the development side of Redwood Digital Research in Felton, California, United States.)