Documentation Desktop Beat

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Fedora Desktop

This section details changes that affect Fedora graphical desktop users.



Previously, users could move the GNOME panels to from one part of the desktop to another by clicking on the gnome-panel, dragging it to another location while holding down and releasing the mouse button. Now, users must also hold down a key on the keyboard while moving the panels. By default, this modifier key is the Alt key, but users may change it to any other key by using the windows preference tool (System>Preferences>Windows).

This change in behavior greatly reduces the chances of a user accidentally moving the panel, and makes moving the gnome-panel the same as moving windows in GNOME.


The bluez-gnome Bluetooth management tools was replaced by gnome-bluetooth. This adds easy access to switching Bluetooth on/off for laptops, an easier to use new device setup assistant, as well as the ability to connect to input and audio devices.

The ObexFTP browsing code now has full write support, and new support for the Wacom Bluetooth tablet is included.

Bluetooth audio support is included in gnome-bluetooth and pulseaudio as a technology preview.

Root User disabled for GNOME Display Manager

Root user is disabled by defaulf for GNOME Display Manager (GDM) from Fedora 10 onwards. We strongly recommend that you avoid logging in as root user and instead use su - or sudo for running commands requiring root access. If you wish to revert this setting however, refer here.


This release features KDE 4.2.2. Compatibility libraries from KDE 3.5.10 are provided for the remaining KDE 3 applications.

KDE 4.2 is the latest release series of KDE 4 and provides several new features over 4.0 and 4.1, in particular most of the features known from KDE 3 and several new ones. KDE 4.2.2 is a bugfix release from the KDE 4.2 release series.

Fedora 11 includes a snapshot of the NetworkManager plasmoid kde-plasma-networkmanagement, which replaces the KDE 3 knetworkmanager snapshot in Fedora 10. As it was not considered ready for production use, the KDE Live images still use nm-applet from NetworkManager-gnome instead, as in Fedora 8, 9 and 10. The gnome-keyring-daemon facility saves passwords for nm-applet. If you wish to try kde-plasma-networkmanagement, it can be installed from the repository.

Software Updates (PackageKit)

As the default updater in KDE is kpackagekit (since Fedora 10), the gnome-packagekit updater is no longer set up to run in KDE (as of Fedora 11). This avoids the situation where both update applets were trying to run at the same time. Users of Fedora 9 or 10 who were running gnome-packagekit under KDE should install kpackagekit when upgrading to Fedora 11.

Desktop Effects

KDE 4.2 improves support for desktop effects in KWin, the KDE window manager, in particular, they should be more reliable, and more effects are provided, including the famous Cube effect known from Compiz. However, desktop effects are still disabled by default in Fedora due to stability and reliability concerns. Desktop effects can be enabled in the Desktop applet of the System Settings application.

Alternatively, Compiz may also be used with KDE. It can be installed from the repository by installing the compiz-kde package. Please note, however, that enabling desktop effects in KWin is the preferred way to use desktop effects in KDE 4.

Package and Application Changes

  • kde-plasma-networkmanagement replaces knetworkmanager. It has also been made available as an update for Fedora 10, but does not replace knetworkmanager there. Please note that the nm-applet from NetworkManager-gnome is still the default NetworkManager applet in Fedora 11.

In addition, the following changes made since the Fedora 10 release, which have been backported to Fedora 10 updates, are also part of Fedora 11:

  • KDE has been upgraded from version 4.1.2 to 4.2.2.
  • qt and PyQt4 have been upgraded from 4.4 to 4.5.
  • The phonon library has been upgraded from 4.2 to 4.3.
  • A kdepim3 compatibility package, providing the KDE 3 version of libkcal, has been added to provide ICal support for taskjuggler again.
  • A new subpackage kdebase-workspace-googlegadgets provides support for Google Gadgets in Plasma.
  • The former package qgtkstyle is now part of qt.
  • The former package kde-plasma-lancelot is now part of kdeplasma-addons.
  • New system-config-printer-kde and kdeutils-printer-applet subpackages have been split out from kdeadmin and kdeutils, respectively.
  • The Akonadi framework is now used in several kdepim applications. Some changes have been made to accomodate it:
    • The akonadi package now requires mysql-server so the default configuration works. The MySQL server does not have to be configured, as Akonadi starts up a per-user instance of mysqld with a default server configuration. It is also possible to set up Akonadi to use a manually-configured systemwide or remote MySQL server instance, however this is not the default.
    • A kdepimlibs-akonadi subpackage has been split out from kdepimlibs because some libraries from kdepimlibs are also used in non-PIM applications. The split allows installing these applications without installing Akonadi and MySQL.
  • kde-l10n supports more languages.