KDE (K Desktop Environment) is one of the most common desktop environments used under Linux and Unix systems. Apparently it has reached version 4. KDE4 is based on Qt4 which is also released under the GPL for Windows and Mac OS X. Therefore KDE 4 applications can be compiled and run natively on these operating systems as well. The centerpiece is a redesigned desktop and panels collectively called Plasma which replaces Kicker, KDesktop, and SuperKaramba by integrating their functionality into one piece of technology.
In this tutorial I will show you how to install and run KDE4 applications natively on Windows. Windows 2000, XP, and Vista are supported. Of course since this project is still beta some applications may not work correctly or even may not work at all. However it is a very promising project that will allow Windows users run Linux applications. KOffice, Kopete, Amarok, Ktorrent, Konquerror, KDevelop, K3b, Kmail, Dolphin are only some of them. Trust me, the list of Qt applications is very big!
To get started click on the following link to download KDE Installer for Windows . Here click on kdewin-installer-gui-0.9.3-1.exe (1) (or the latest one) and select Save. When the download completes click the Run button. You may get a Security Warning. Just click again the Run button
Now you must choose a directory in which all applications packages will be stored. Here i have chosen C:\KDE4. Click Next. In the next screen you must select the mode the installer should work. Since you just want to run KDE applications leave the default 'End User' option selected. Click Next. Next you must select the directory where downloaded packages are stored. Here I have again chosen C:\KDE4.
After that you must select the server from where you want to download all packages. You 'd better choose the location which0 is closer to you.
The next screen shows you additional packages that must be installed as dependencies. Just click Next. Now sit back and wait till the installation process completes! In case you have chosen oggvorbis for installation a window will pop-up. Here click the I Agree button. At some point Visual C++ 2005 Redistributable will be automatically installed. Depending on your Internet Connection the installation will complete sooner or later.
Under System Variables find the Path variable (1) and click the Edit button (2). A new window will pop up. Here at the end of the Variable value add %KDEDIRS%\lib;%KDEDIRS%\bin; And click Ok.
The default KDE widget style on Windows is the native one. However you can use KDE4 Oxygen style theme. Go to C:\Documents and Settings\your_user\.kde\share\config and select to open kdeglobals with Wordpad. In that file paste the following lines: [General] widgetStyle=oxygen
To change the mouse to use double click: Add a new section with a line: [KDE] SingleClick=false Newly started applications (Dolphin and Konqueror) should use double click now.
To change locale setting: Add a new section with the line: [Locale] Country=** Language=** Replace ** with your lowercase alpha-2 country code . Of course, during the installation process you should have installed your language localization package.
To choose native or KDE file dialog: Add a new section with the lines: [KFileDialog Settings] Native=false Either set Native to true or false.
KDE on Windows seems a very good and very promising effort on nativelly porting KDE applications on MS Windows. Maybe this will become a reason for more Windows users to try the real thing, which is a Linux distribution of course. Please do not use the comment function to ask for help! Have fun!