Friday, December 18, 2009

News from the KDEWin front - Part 1

If you've been wondering how KDE on Windows is doing lately, well we're actually doing pretty good, particularly on the PIM side where we have reached important milestones this week.

First of all, Kontact on Windows got quite some TLC over the past months, with lots of stability improvements and bugfixes. Just to name a few : proper timezones support, ical calendars, GnuPG integration using gpg4win (in collaboration with our friends at g10), and more...
Of course this is all in trunk, so feel free to give it a try using our cool emerge build tool or using the kdewin installer ! Alternatively, for a more conservative choice you can try the enterprise4 branch of kdepim, available under the enterprise4 category in emerge. This branch has its own tag of kdelibs and frozen dependencies, so it's less likely to break or have regressions. I use it as my email and groupware client at work, and I haven't had a single crash in months ! ;)

But the real news come from the next version of Kontact, based on Akonadi. Our team of fearless developers at KDAB is working day and night to bring this to life, and making it work on Windows has been an objective from the start, with some help from yours truely. This past week we've had the first official demo of an Akonadi-based Kontact running on Windows, with the mail, address book, and calendar/todo plugins up and running, and already pretty functional.

Enough words, here are some screenshots :

Akonadi-based kmail

Akonadi-based korganizer

To prove that this is not a fake (nope, the shadows don't look all wrong), here's a screenshot from akonadiconsole, our development aid for Akonadi, showing a mail in the browser tab, with the data coming straight from the mysql backend :

As you can see, things are shaping up pretty nicely, and progress is fast. Akonadi is running great on Windows now, with many resources and agents already available. With the good progress of plasma in parallel, Akonadi-aware plasmoids such as Sebas's Lion Mail are now just a fingertip away on Windows. Of course there are still some rough edges, for example we're still accessing an external mysql server, but starting and running our own internal server is next on my TODO list.

Finally, I want to give a big thumbs up to the following :
  • Patrick Spendrin and Ralph Habacker from the KDEWin team, for their help and all the monster work
  • the Akonadi/Kolab folks who did an awesome job over the past weeks, in particular : Volker Krause, Allen Winter, Thomas McGuire, Stephen Kelly, Laurent Montel, Kevin Ottens, Tobias K├Ânig, and of course Till Adam.
Cheers !


  1. Sounds pretty amazing !
    Congratulations on your achievements and hopefully we all can enjoy the same awesome tools no matter what platform we use in the near future.

    Keep up the good work, it's totally appreciated !

  2. Nice work! I think porting KDE apps to Windows can and will only help KDE and F/OSS. Good luck with your endeavor!


  3. I am impressed!

    These apps already look and behave more natively than .NET programs.

  4. what about amarok?

  5. I think the naming is totally confusing, why do you call this KDEWin? This is so easily mistaken for Kwin, which is something completely different.
    Why not choosing KDEWindows or, even better, KDEonWindows? At least one really knows what you are talking about, then. I think it is very important to have a clear naming structure that doesn't lead to confusions. While it might be evident for developers, did you think of the users?

  6. Myriam: my bad ! Indeed this should have been named "KDE on Windows", as on

    kdewin is indeed an internal name used by developers mostly.

    Thanks for pointing this out, I'll be more careful in the future !

    ps: sorry everybody for holding your comments, I didn't realise moderation was on.