From Fedora Project Wiki

This chapter introduces the KDE desktop in Fedora 11. It is easier to explain how to use the desktop throughout this guide after explaining some of the common terminology used with the KDE desktop.

The KDE Desktop

If Fedora 11 was installed from the KDE Live CD, KDE is the default installed desktop. If you installed Fedora 11 from the Fedora DVD image, GNOME is the default and KDE is available as an option on the login screen. If you wish, you can skip this section and go directly to the Tour of the GNOME Desktop or the Tour of the Xfce Desktop .

By default the KDE desktop has two distinct areas:

  • The desktop area
  • The KDE panel

The layout and location of these items can be customized, but the term used for each of them remains the same.

The desktop area is the large space where windows are displayed. The Home Folder and Trash icons are located in the top left corner of this area; users more familiar with Microsoft Windows may equate Trash to the Recycle Bin.

The KDE Panel is located at the bottom, and spans the entire width of the screen. It features the K menu and application launchers, displays the running applications as buttons, and gives access to the workplace switcher, calendar, and the clock.

The following sections discuss the KDE desktop area and the KDE panel in further detail.

The KDE Desktop Area

Before any additional icons are added to it, the desktop area is fairly empty and contains only the Home folder and Trash icon. Right-clicking on the desktop presents a menu of actions related to the desktop area. For example, selecting Configure Desktop lets you change the desktop background, configure the desktop behavior, or set a screen saver.

Adding Icons to the Desktop
  • You can add icons to the desktop for applications or places by finding them under KMenu, right-clicking them and clicking Add Item to Desktop.
  • There is another way to add launchers to the panel if the application is already listed in the Applications menu: navigate to the application in the Applications menu, right-click on it, and select Add item to main panel.

The KDE Panel (Kicker)

The Kicker Panel at the bottom of the screen has several icons with different functions.

Icon How the icon functions
The Kickoff Application Launcher opens Favorites, Applications, Computer Places, Recently Used Items, and Desktop Sessions.
Shows Mounted Devices, such as a usb memory stick. Rolling your mouse over the icon displays the devices.
Four Workspaces are configured by default in the Desktop Switcher Panel. Clicking on one of the faded workspaces will change to that workspace. Or you can use the shortcut keys by pressing [Alt] +[F1...F4] which takes you to the appropriate Virtual Desktop.
Click this icon to bring up the Calendar. Double clicking the Clock also opens the Calendar.
The Notifier shows the clipboard, applications that are open, and current functions such as updates or downloads, and network connections.
The Clock can be reconfigured with a right mouse click.
Clicking on the Plasma icon lets you add widgets and configure the panels. There is another Plasma icon in the top right corner of the desktop that functions the same. These icons light up when you roll you mouse over them.

When you open the Kickoff Application Launcher you have access to:

  • Favorites tab contains the Web Browser, System Settings, File Manager, and favorite applications or places. Right click on the application or places icon and you can add it to the Favorites menu.
  • The Applications menu lists all of the applications installed by default and those you have added.
  • Clicking the Computer icon provides access to:
  • System Settings
  • Places such as your Home folder, Network, Root directory, and Trash.
  • The Removable Storage sections displays any devices, such as flash drives or floppy discs, pluged in to your computer.
  • Selecting Recently Used shows applications you have used and places you have been. It also displays:
  • System Settings icon.
  • Help manual icon.
  • File Manager.
  • Leave tab allows you to:
  • Logout which ends your session.
  • Lock will lock the screen.
  • Switch User lets you start a paralled session.
  • Suspend to Disk will pause the system without loggin out.
  • Restart your computer.
  • Shutdown turns off the computer.

At the bottom of each of these tabs is a Search window for finding what you want quickly.

Use the key combination [Alt] +[Tab] to switch between open windows.
Holding down the [Alt] key while you tap the [Tab] key allows you to cycle through all open applications.

See the KDE Quickstart Guide and KDE Home Page for more information.

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