Is KWin getting too complicated?
The K Desktop Environment's window manager KWin has long prided itself on its configurability. But is it getting too complicated?
Really, you can do almost anything with the windows KWin displays. Here's a humble example. Let's say you want to underline the window title and go from this...
Yes, there's a control for it! Here's all you do:
- Right-click the title bar.
- Choose Configure Window Behaviour.
- Select Windows (on the left).
- Click on the Fine Tuning tab (under Decoration Options).
- Tick Draw separator between title bar and active window contents.
These thoughts were prompted by this post: How to Set Special Window Settings with KWin. It's good, useful information, but just look at all those options. Five whole tabs of them!
And then there's the drop-down selections. Here's a typical example...
Or how about these choices for Placement...
What's the difference between Force and Force Temporarily? Or between Force, Remember and Apply Initially? Please, anyone?
And while we're on the subject, what is the difference is between Special Window Settings and Special Application Settings?
Seriously, can anyone tell me? Why do we need two lots of tabbed settings that appear to be identical? I've been using KDE4 for years now, I' ve googled both numerous times but have never a satisfactory explanation. This is the nearest I've come:
|There is very little
difference between the two. If you compare the two different
settings, side by side, for the same application, you will find in just
about every case, all available options are the same. The difference
will be how each is configured.
Which is essentially saying they're the same but different.
In most operating systems, a new application that doesn't run full-screen will open in the centre of your display. But not in KDE. Most will open wedged up in the top left hand corner. And while you can position things precisely with Special Window Settings -- even to the extent of specifying which desktop to start on -- you have to set every application separately. There's even a setting for setting those settings...! (Right-click the title bar, choose Configure Window Behaviour, scroll down and click Window-Specific.)
Yes, yes, I know that that is technically an application developers' issue, but if the underlying window manager makes simple centre-positioning so tricky, who's really to blame?
Want some more fun? Did you know that Special Window Settings are infinitely recursive? You can set Special Window Settings on the Special Window Settings "Special Window Settings" window! It's do-your-head-in stuff and not particularly useful, but it brings me back to my original question: is KWin getting just too complicated for the average user?
What do you think?