[clug] For the {Ubuntu,Gnome}-ites

Brad Hards bradh at frogmouth.net
Sat Jan 17 05:11:59 GMT 2009

On Saturday 17 January 2009 03:41:25 pm Fred Pilcher wrote:
> Brad Hards wrote:
> Since I've had to use Gnome on my EeePC (after installing Eeebuntu) I've
> noticed that a lot of things that seem to be inbuilt in KDE have to be
> installed as packages in Gnome. This is one example. Others I've noticed
> so far include showing minimised apps in the panel and running a desktop
> wallpaper slideshow.
> Is it generally true, though, and, if so, is Gnome inherently leaner
> than KDE because it doesn't have all this stuff included?
I don't think it is true to say that either Gnome or KDE is "leaner". At best, 
you can compare features / speed / code size only on roughly equivalent 
applications, and (inevitably) it is going to be subjective and fairly user 

I think the reason why KDE includes this kind of thing (rather than having 
add-ons) is partly because of the architecture, partly because of the 
packaging, and partly because of the development community.

The last one is the easiest to understand. Its very easy to get a svn account 
for KDE. So there isn't much incentive to do development of add-on features 
outside of the main development tree - it does happen, but not as much as 
some other projects.

KDE is often packaged in big chunks (e.g. all of kdebase, all of kdegraphics), 
rather than at the level of individual apps. That is probably due to the 
architecture (see below), partly because of historical build / packaging 
issues, and partly because of politics.

The KDE architecture (especially the KParts embedding approach) doesn't lend 
itself so much to separate packaging. It is possible that you can get a 
konqueror shell package that didn't have the KHTML part and didn't have 
dolphin, and then it won't be able to do web or local filesystem browsing. 
Overall, it is just easier to package at the svn module level, and lots of 
distros do that.


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