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Old 10-12-2009, 10:59 AM   #1
Lufbery
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Cool A quick review of Slackware 13 (32 bit) and KDE 4.3.1 on an old laptop...


Hi all,

This past weekend I installed Slackware 13_x86 on my IBM A22m laptop. The laptop is a Pentium III 1 GHz with 512 MB of RAM.

I was running Slackware 12.1 on this computer, so before I started I backed up my /etc, /home, and /root directories onto my desktop computer and then reformatted the hard drive. This gave me a clean slate for the new installation.

For the installation, I selected all of the package groups except KDE and KDEI. Consequently, the installation went reasonably quickly. I logged in as root and verified that X starts well without configuration. XFCE ran like a champ.

Prior to the installation of Slackware 13, I downloaded Vbatts's KDE 4.3.1 packages and copied them to a DVD. (More information on the packages is available in this thread.) While in XFCE, I quickly copied the packages to the laptop's hard drive and then logged out of X back to runlevel 3.

I installed the KDE 4.3.1 packages and I'm very happy with them.

I started on my post installation routine, but had to go to bed. Most importantly, I've created my regular user account and done a little configuration of KDE.

Here are some observations:
  • KDE 4.3.1 is as responsive on this machine as 3.5.10 was. In both cases I'm more than happy with the performance.
  • I always boot to runlevel 3 and the startup time for KDE 4.3 is just a little slower than it was with KDE 3.5 on the same machine.
  • There's not a ton of difference between KDE 4.3 and 3.5 in terms of the user interface. I switched the kicker back to the classic view and the deskotp to folder view and everything feels about the same. I made of folder /home/drew/Desktop and pointed the KDE folder view to it.
  • Konqueror works just fine, Dolphin is okay, and Konsole seems better/cleaner.
  • Xorg set up just fine without any intervention on my part so far. I will probably need to create an xorg.conf file to enable mouse scrolling, however. Sound works perfect.
  • I'm having the same errors with Akonadi errors as others have had. I will probably turn off Korganize and desktop searching. I'm sure the features are valuable, but I'm not using them right now. Perhaps I will in the future.
  • The latest version of Sbopkg installed and works just fine. I ran the SlackBuilds for madwifi so I can get my wireless up and running.
  • Alien Bob's VLC build works well too. DVDs play without any problems.
  • Emacs looks good and runs well. Nothing else matters.
  • KDE 4.3.1 doesn't have the "media" widget that shows what media are inserted (e.g. a DVD icon will show up in the task bar when a DVD is inserted and a USB drive icon will show up next to it when I insert a flash drive).
  • Finally, not installing KDE from the installation DVD and then installing Vbatts's KDE packages results in Koffice not being installed. This is fine with me because I never use it Koffice, I thought I'd point out a consequence of doing things the way I did.

Naturally, I have a few things I need to do yet: switch to the generic kernel and create an initrd, copy my old files back to the laptop, get wireless up and running, install some software, install the latest patches, and play with KDE's settings, but that's just a few more hours of work, and most of that time will be spent waiting for stuff to copy and/or compile.

The bottom line is that this release of Slackware is pretty darned good. I can't wait to upgrade my really fast, modern AMD Athalon 64 desktop with Slackware 13_X86 64!

Regards,

Last edited by Lufbery; 10-12-2009 at 11:08 AM.
 
Old 10-12-2009, 11:03 AM   #2
~sHyLoCk~
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Have fun with slackware. Btw kde4.3.2 packages are also available now.
 
Old 10-12-2009, 12:18 PM   #3
cwizardone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~sHyLoCk~ View Post
Have fun with slackware. Btw kde4.3.2 packages are also available now.
Yes, but they apparently only run on "current." I installed them on "stable" and got, as others have, the "white screen of death."

OTOH, the 4.3.1 packages run very well.

Last edited by cwizardone; 10-12-2009 at 12:20 PM.
 
Old 10-12-2009, 01:18 PM   #4
vbatts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwizardone View Post
Yes, but they apparently only run on "current." I installed them on "stable" and got, as others have, the "white screen of death."

OTOH, the 4.3.1 packages run very well.
the 4.3.2 is on -current, but only one batch of updates away from 13.0. the only "white screen" report was a less than stock system, and not fully on -current, so its a non-issue.
additionally, if you didn't upgrade to the packages i posted, then you'll be without k3b, amarok and koffice (with the 4.3.1) batch.

in the 4.3.2 batch, there is the beta3 of the next koffice.

as for the media plasmoid, i remember it being on the 4.3.1 panel, and its on the 4.3.2 panel for sure. mine responds to DVD's nicely, and the dragon player has done well for playing the movies.

Take care,
 
Old 10-12-2009, 01:36 PM   #5
Lufbery
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vbatts View Post
the 4.3.2 is on -current, but only one batch of updates away from 13.0. the only "white screen" report was a less than stock system, and not fully on -current, so its a non-issue.
additionally, if you didn't upgrade to the packages i posted, then you'll be without k3b, amarok and koffice (with the 4.3.1) batch.

in the 4.3.2 batch, there is the beta3 of the next koffice.

as for the media plasmoid, i remember it being on the 4.3.1 panel, and its on the 4.3.2 panel for sure. mine responds to DVD's nicely, and the dragon player has done well for playing the movies.

Take care,
Thanks for the follow-up. To summarize (because I'm sometimes a bit slow):
  1. You're in the process of updating the packages to that 4.3.2 works with the stable branches of Slackware 13. Is that right?
  2. The media plasmoid should be available and I'm just not looking in the right place.

Thanks again for your work to give us more options for Slackware and KDE.

Regards,
 
Old 10-12-2009, 01:54 PM   #6
vbatts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lufbery View Post
Thanks for the follow-up. To summarize (because I'm sometimes a bit slow):
  1. You're in the process of updating the packages to that 4.3.2 works with the stable branches of Slackware 13. Is that right?
  2. The media plasmoid should be available and I'm just not looking in the right place.

Thanks again for your work to give us more options for Slackware and KDE.

Regards,
* i'm not doing anything to the 4.3.2 batch. it is like /TESTING on -current
* media plasmoid is by default directly right of the kicker menu. if you need/want to add it, unlock the widgets -> add widgets -> search for "Device Notifier"

your welcome. i hope you keep hackin' and grinnin'
take care,
 
Old 10-12-2009, 02:00 PM   #7
cwizardone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vbatts View Post
the 4.3.2 is on -current, but only one batch of updates away from 13.0. the only "white screen" report was a less than stock system, and not fully on -current, so its a non-issue.
additionally, if you didn't upgrade to the packages i posted, then you'll be without k3b, amarok and koffice (with the 4.3.1) batch.

in the 4.3.2 batch, there is the beta3 of the next koffice....
Thank you for taking the time to reply, but it is most certainly an "issue" for me. I'm not about to run -current as I need a stable system to run my business. As I said, I'm running Slackware64-13 "stable" and, while your KDE 4.3.1 packages run very well, thank you so very much, the 4.3.2 packages did not.
Amarok and K3b are both running in 4.3.1. I prefer OpenOffice so KOffice is not something I want or use.
Thanks, again.
 
Old 10-12-2009, 02:11 PM   #8
Lufbery
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vbatts View Post
* i'm not doing anything to the 4.3.2 batch. it is like /TESTING on -current
Okay, I got it now. You were saying that only one batch of updates on -current will get one's system working with 4.3.2.

Quote:
* media plasmoid is by default directly right of the kicker menu. if you need/want to add it, unlock the widgets -> add widgets -> search for "Device Notifier"
Right, I got that, but it doesn't work like the old one, or at least I think it doesn't. The old one will show an icon of the DVD, CD, or flash drive on the task bar and give me a right-click context menu for each device. The new one doesn't seem to do that.

Oh well, it is what it is.

Quote:
Additionally, if you didn't upgrade to the packages i posted, then you'll be without k3b, amarok and koffice (with the 4.3.1) batch.
Generally speaking, being without K3b, Amarok, and Koffice is just fine for my laptop, but will present a problem for the Desktop, which needs K3b and Amorok.

As you say, I'll need to keep hacking a bit to see what my options are, and there are a lot of them -- install KDE compatibility libraries and install older versions of K3b and Amorok; install the official KDE 3.5.10 packages, upgrade to -current and install the new KDE 4.3.2, etc.

I'm glad there are so many choices!

Regards,
 
Old 10-13-2009, 10:09 AM   #9
Lufbery
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A further update:

I did, in fact, turn off desktop searching and Korganize. I don't use those features and turning them off is pretty easy. After working a bit more with the media plasmoid (to the right of the kicker), I'm getting more used to it. It does pretty much what the KDE 3.5 media widget did, but the interface is less clear. Oh well.

I'm having some problems with Wicd. It sees the network, and my settings are good, but it won't connect. Look for a new thread soon.

Regards,
 
Old 10-14-2009, 10:54 AM   #10
vbatts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwizardone View Post
Thank you for taking the time to reply, but it is most certainly an "issue" for me. I'm not about to run -current as I need a stable system to run my business. As I said, I'm running Slackware64-13 "stable" and, while your KDE 4.3.1 packages run very well, thank you so very much, the 4.3.2 packages did not.
Amarok and K3b are both running in 4.3.1. I prefer OpenOffice so KOffice is not something I want or use.
Thanks, again.
i can not help the instabilities if you are not using the packages as intended or expected. but if you are on 64-current, there are new compiles out on http://cardinal.lizella.net/~vbatts/...ackages/4.3.2/ that addressed another issue spotted.
further, i'm not sure how you expect to be running a "stable" system if you are using bleeding edge packages from somewhere other than official slackware repositories!

feel free to use them, and thanks again for being a guinea pig.

Take care,
 
Old 10-14-2009, 10:59 AM   #11
~sHyLoCk~
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vbatts View Post
feel free to use them, and thanks again for being a guinea pig.
LOL. Thanks for the packages, I love testing them.
 
  


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