Link - KDE 4 Windows

Feb 27 2009: updates
May 22 2009: update on Kubuntu 9.04 with KDE 4.2

In addition to the plethora of great Linux applications running on Windows via GTK, QT and Java, there is now a fairly stable version of KDE4 for Windows. It's still not entirely stable and requires some effort to get going, but at this rate my old Windows 2000 system may make it to the year 3000 !!!

Which begs the question, why mess around with Windows at all when you can get the same or better with a Linux installation ?

KDE4 still has some maturing to do. A good introduction is the Kubuntu 9.04 Live CD with KDE 4.2. It will be upgradeable from the repository after installation to disk. Kubuntu is not particularly good nor particularly fast as a Live CD, but provides an excellent demonstration of a more or less working KDE4 environment.

I think Kubuntu will eventually make a good disk installation but not yet. I had numerous problems, including Xorg consuming 75% of CPU with Plasma tagging along at 20%. I played with the KDE settings and eventually CPU for Xorg and Plasma settled down to a normal range, but other experiences were equally disconcerting ( such as dysfunctional Javascript in Konqueror ). Run the Live CD for a preview of KDE 4 and leave the disk installation to the next release.

Overall, it is more Macintosh and Gnome-like than KDE3 and that's good in some ways - it's very pretty and definitely looks like the future of KDE.

I haven't had time to work with KDE 4 in depth, but there have been significant architectural changes such as separating the browser and file manager that may help stability in the future. KDE is a great desktop and application suite but it has suffered from way too many crashes in recent releases, particularly the file manager. Improved stability may eventually turn out to be the best reason to upgrade.