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KDE Software GUI Linux

KDE 4 Uses 40% Less Memory Than 3 Despite Eye-Candy 566

An anonymous reader writes "Pro-Linux reports that KDE 4, scheduled to be released in January 2008, consumes almost 40% less memory than KDE 3.5, despite the fact that version 4 of the Free and Open Source desktop system includes a composited window manager and a revamped menu and applet interface. KDE developer Will Stephenson showcased KDE 4's 3D eye-candy on a 256Mb laptop with 1Ghz CPU and run-of-the-mill integrated graphics, pointing out that mini-optimizations haven't even yet been started." Update: 12/14 22:40 GMT by Z : Or, not so much. An anonymous reader writes "The author of the original KDE 3.5 vs KDE 4.0 memory comparison has come out with a more accurate benchmark. In reality, KDE 4.0 uses 110 MB more memory than KDE 3.5.8.
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KDE 4 Uses 40% Less Memory Than 3 Despite Eye-Candy

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  • Just tried (Score:4, Interesting)

    by gardyloo ( 512791 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @09:47PM (#21692192)
    I just downloaded and ran the Debian live version using KDE4 in vBox. It was pretty. However, I couldn't figure out how to disable the "Lancelot" applet thing, which was annoying since anytime the mouse cursor got near it, it'd launch a 1/4-screen-covering window with lists of recent applications, documents, etc. Couldn't even right-click on it to disable.

          Still, covering 1/4 of the screen sure didn't take much memory!
  • Re:xfce. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Colin Smith ( 2679 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:06PM (#21692406)
    Indeed. XFCE is nifty. Having switched to it, I don't think I'm missing anything.

  • Re:New Headline: (Score:5, Interesting)

    by aminorex ( 141494 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:15PM (#21692478) Homepage Journal
    That would be wrong, though. A basic KDE 3.5 desktop environment uses mid-way between what a Gnome 2.14 and an XFCE 4.2.2 will use. This suggests that a 4.0 desktop may consume less than XFCE does now.
  • by TheVelvetFlamebait ( 986083 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:20PM (#21692544) Journal

    Good job KDE! It's yet another reason to stop using GNOME, if all the Microsoft pandering wasn't enough.
    The very best way to pander to Microsoft is to make your systems look and feel completely different from theirs, and to overload the interface with configuration options and a cluttered interface. That way, you manage to alienate any flip-floppers, and strengthen the hardcore geek market, which MS accepts they will never win back. MS wins because no-one leaves their platform, the competitor survives on a niche market. GNOME is probably Microsoft's worst nightmare right about now.
  • Re:Now if only... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Goaway ( 82658 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:32PM (#21692640) Homepage
    No, seriously, I was curious how it was shaping up, design-wise, and I check out the site and find stuff like this:

    http://www.kde.org/announcements/announce_4.0-rc2/krunner.jpg [kde.org]

    And this:

    http://www.kde.org/announcements/announce_4.0-rc2/dolphin.jpg [kde.org]

    Colours, fonts, and icons are all over the place. Insane and useless borders and gradients cluttering up the interface, and an overall lack of clarity of any kind. It's like a big joke.

    I mean, just look at that krunner screenshot again. What is that thing? Black, white, black, white, then suddenly grey and shaded and colourful icons, and fonts right out of a VGA BIOS.
  • by smittyoneeach ( 243267 ) * on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:39PM (#21692702) Homepage Journal
    Or to completely underload it, as in Ion [cs.tut.fi]
    Summary of Ion features

    * Tiled workspaces with tabbed frames, as discussed above.
    * Designed to be primarily used from the keyboard.
    * Fully documented configuration and scripting interface on top of the lightweight Lua extension language.
    * Modular design. The main binary implements only basic window manager functionality. Additional modules implement extra features and window management policies.
    * The query module implements a line editor similar to mini buffers in many text editors. It is used to implement many different queries with tab-completion support: show manual page, run program, open SSH session, view file, goto named client window or workspace, etc. Menus are also displayed as queries.
    * A statusbar that adapts to the tilings, taking only the space it really needs, modulo constraints of the layout. The statusbar can also be configured to swallow other (small) windows, and does so automatically for Window Maker protocol dockapps, and KDE-protocol system tray icons.
    * Full screen client windows are seen as workspaces on their own. It is possible to switch to a normal workspace while keeping several client windows in full screen state and also switch clients that do not themselves support full screen mode to this state.
    * The scratchpad module provides a conveniently toggleable area for random tasks, akin to the consoles of many FPS games.
    * To run those particularly badly behaving programs, Ion also supports floating windows of the PWM flavour. These can be had as separate workspaces without an underlying tiling, or floating on top of a tiling. Tiled windows can be detached to float, and reattached.
    * It is not a project of the self-proclaimed "free" or open-source software movement, and does not suffer from popular fads among it, such as Xft/fontconfig and autoconf.
  • by spoco2 ( 322835 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @10:53PM (#21692828)
    Really, Microsoft really couldn't give a flying crap.

    Ask anyone other than your core geek friends about this and they'll say "Wuh?"

    No-one cares outside of geekdom, really they don't.

    And it doesn't help that all the screenshots I'm seeing of this are of an interface that really does look pretty average.

    You give this news far to much import compared to what it actually has.

  • by WhodoVoodoo ( 319477 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @11:14PM (#21692984)
    I agree. There was always something about KDE that I just disliked, which is why I always used gnome. When this drops I'll probably take a moment to check it out, plus nautilus was never too great, especially since nobody ever paid attention to my bug reports (in file-roller for example, though they sorta fixed the problem by totally removing drag-out functionality...)

    I've always been pretty jealous of the kio-slave system, too.
  • Re:Just tried (Score:3, Interesting)

    by trawg ( 308495 ) on Thursday December 13, 2007 @11:23PM (#21693042) Homepage
    It might sound lame, but this is really the major stumbling block I have with adopting Linux as my desktop OS.

    I hate, with a passion, the default massive gumby sized icons and toolbars and everything that appear to be the norm in most Linux VMs. I don't run in 1600x1200 so I can waste half my desktop space with huge icons.
  • Double buffering? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by lpontiac ( 173839 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @01:00AM (#21693820)
    IIRC the Qt3 -> Qt4 move brought about explicit double buffering of all surfaces by Qt itself.

    Does anyone here know how much of the 40% save (however it is measured) comes as a result of applications no longer needing to do their own explicit buffering, in places where double buffering is desirable?

    And whether there is a corresponding increase in memory used elsewhere, eg within the X server or in video memory itself?
  • Seriously? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by JimNTonik ( 1097185 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @01:33AM (#21694056)

    Are people seriously bragging about composited graphics? I mean, Vista shipped with them a year ago.. VISTA. Are people supposed to be impressed with a feature set that has been available for years? Can we please get past this and move on to things that really matter?

  • Re:What Balderdash! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by DaedalusHKX ( 660194 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @02:54AM (#21694524) Journal
    Nah, that whole generation, IMHO, were misunderstood. I agree though, about the whole bouncing from job to job. My father used to fire his employers, (aka, walk out in a huff) until eventually he went and started his own companies. The commies told him "no way" so he moved to America and did his own thing (and thus he no longer had to quit every time some boss pissed him off). I think a certain bit of genius or whatever that trait is, involves being unable or rather, unwilling to surrender, or give in to adversity.
  • by SoapDish ( 971052 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @02:59AM (#21694562)
    Well, it works fine on an eeePC 900MHz celeron M (as has been noted earlier): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wedw701Gy8s [youtube.com]

    Also, since there's so much integration within KDE, the RAM usage doesn't jump that much when using an application. I'm running KDE 3.5 with opera, kmail, ktorrent, amarok, and yakuake, plus all the services, and I'm at about 300MB of RAM used - not much higher than when none of the apps are running.
  • by arivanov ( 12034 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @03:11AM (#21694634) Homepage

    How often have *you* wondered why fonts on windows and OSX still look better - For the last 3 years none, I suggest you wake up from your slumber and look around.

    When was the last time that you tried to use, say, firefox, via X11 across even a fast LAN network? - At the moment actually. When I am at home I use remote X instead of local even on my laptop which has a faster CPU (Dual Core2) than my aging server. Remote X and a well set-up Xterm is considerably faster than running X locally. The reason why Firefox is slow in most lame remote X setups is fonts and flash. The first thing you need to do when dealing with Xterms is to set up a font server. The second is to set-up pulse and provide flash with working audio. If you do not, it will drag its feet horribly because it will keep trying to open the audio and fail at it.

    Oh, and ever notice how an X11 UI (regardless of windowing toolkit) feels sluggish and less "solid" than the competition? - you really need to awake from hibernation mate and get a clue. For your information Vista has now turned most 2D accelerated ops and all 2D accelerated font rendering. As a result X11 setup on relatively recent hardware beats it flat at trivial things like moving a window, redrawing a window, drawing text in a window and so on. The margin is more than 50%. This is all over the computer press by the way so I suggest you actually read it, look at some real benchmarks and stop talking out of your arse

  • by RossyB ( 28685 ) <ross@@@burtonini...com> on Friday December 14, 2007 @04:13AM (#21694956) Homepage
    As with 99.9% of all memory benchmarking, it was done by someone who didn't totally understand how to measure memory use (and how Linux doesn't allow accurate measurements without a patched kernel). Just read the comments in the post which pointed at the original story [kdedevelopers.org].
  • Re:Wow. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by donaldm ( 919619 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @04:43AM (#21695084)
    Why would you want to run old Linux applications? Surly you run "yum", "apt-get" or whatever your updating tool is that is available for your distribution or purchase an upgrade for any commercial applications. Of course if you have an old Linux application that is not supported anymore then if you have the source you can recompile the source and any bugs, features or optimisation can either be fixed or added by yourself or whoever you can get (normally pay) to do the job. If I could not get an update to an old product and the source was not available I would look for something to replace it.

    I do agree that MS Windows does have the ability to run old applications but again why don't you upgrade these old applications since there will be plenty (well maybe) bug fixes with newer releases. Why many people don't do this they don't want to pay for a newer release since they perceive the old release is good enough if they have to pay for the newer product. Actually all commercial products do let you upgrade for a price and this applies to all Operating Systems.

    As an aside I run Fedora 8 on my laptop (no dual boot to MS Windows) and to go from Fedora 7 to Fedora 8 with an upgrade takes about an hour. Normally I don't do upgrades preferring a pristine install (personally I have found that there are less issues doing this) so it takes me approx 45 minutes to backup my data (30GB), an hour to do the fresh install and approx 50 minutes to recover my data and approx one hour to customize to what I want which normally means installing the latest release applications I use or may use. Actually Fedora 8 is the first Fedora release that wireless just worked for me. Sound works fine as well.
  • by houghi ( 78078 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @06:23AM (#21695552)
    I do not use either. One of the reasons I went from Windows to Linux was that is hated the way it looked.

    I first went to Enlightenment! and then to WindowMaker.

    I just can not understaqnd people who want to have something that is windows not made by Microsoft.
    Microsoft is the best maker of Windows. If you want Windows, run Windows.
  • KWrite? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by orzetto ( 545509 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @07:56AM (#21695928)

    The memory footprint for apps such as Word, Excel and Powerpoint are much lower than comparable Linux apps like OpenOffice, AbiWord and KWrite.

    It would be interesting to see your source about this. The claim on OpenOffice.org Writer may be credible, but KWord (I suppose you meant that by KWrite, since KWrite is a very basic text editor) is way faster and snappier than MS Word (fine, it has also less features and all, but it is faster to load), and I am not going to believe your claim without data to support it.

    GEdit is much slower than notepad.exe,

    Not sure about GEdit, but Notepad is almost featureless and has not changed in a decade or so. It has no code highlighting, no handling of different line endings, no support for different encodings, no tab handling, no plugin framework, no multi-file mode, and in fact its only feature is a search feature without regular expressions. Of course it's going to be fast. For that sake "Hello world" is even faster. I do most of my programming in Kate [kate-editor.org] and I am very happy with that. Notepad may be faster, but it does not do what a text editor is supposed to do in order to be useful.

  • Re:KWrite? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * on Friday December 14, 2007 @09:17AM (#21696318)

    Notepad is almost featureless and has not changed in a decade or so. It has no code highlighting, no handling of different line endings, no support for different encodings, no tab handling, no plugin framework, no multi-file mode, and in fact its only feature is a search feature without regular expressions...

    ...And it doesn't even handle text encodings correctly!

    Try this: write "this app can break" (without quotes), or any other text with the same pattern of spaces, in an otherwise-blank file, save it, and then reopen it. It'll show up as unprintable characters because that's (apparently) the magic sequence to switch Notepad to Unicode mode.

  • Re:Unbloating? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by SnapShot ( 171582 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @10:09AM (#21696746)
    Dammit, KDE, we're buying these fancy new computers and you want us to use less memory? I've just upgraded to 2GB RAM and I want to use ALL of it!

    Reminds me of the boss who was really disappointed -- almost angry -- that the SLOC decreased by hundred of lines in a dot release. The mindset seemed to be, "I'm paying you bums to write negative lines of code?"

  • Re:Actually... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cmacb ( 547347 ) on Friday December 14, 2007 @03:53PM (#21701296) Homepage Journal

    MS stuff feels faster than Linux equivalents on the same OS, yes.

    If what you meant by that is that (for example) IE on windows loads faster than Firefox on Linux I think that is a big part of the problem with respect to Windows bloat.

    Somewhere back in the 90s when people (unfortunately the wrong people) were making their decisions about what to run on their newly minted corporate PC networks the simple minded (or was it corrupt?) editors of some of the most popular tech publications would pit a product like Wordperfect against Word and score one or the other higher due to how fast the product loaded. Ditto for comparisons of web browsers, spreadsheets and so on.

    I think it was Microsoft's desire to win these contests at all cost that started them down the path to building the APIs for all their applications right into the operating system, and making applications settings into an always loaded database (the registry). Competing products had to rely on stubs that would get loaded at boot time to achieve a similar effect. I always thought that this latter approach was best as it allowed the user to decide how best to allocate his resources, but that notion never made it into most corporate IT decision trees.

    Even today many users are oblivious the fact that their actual use of a product such as Word or IE is sluggish, but will immediately notice that Firefox or Open Office takes longer to launch. They gain ten seconds at start-up at the expense of many minutes of wasted time throughout the day. I don't know what can be done about the willfully clueless other than let them stew in their own juices.

    I've had Windows-using friends COMPLAIN to me that my vintage Linux machine runs circles around their fairly new Windows systems, but they refuse to consider doing anything about it. Ironically they still call me for help with their registry setting and such. Hopefully more people will raise up on their hind legs eventually at take back control of their time and energies. Web-centric or net-centric tools for many things will also hopefully make this switch easier for them.

egrep -n '^[a-z].*\(' $ | sort -t':' +2.0