Archive:Getting Started/Set up KDE 4 for development (zh TW)

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啟動 KDE 4 應用程式和工作階段

當您開始 KDE 4 的開發時,通常您有三個選擇:


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啟動 KDE 4 應用程式

在普通的 shell 裡使用 sux

使用這個方法需要 sux 工具( )。sux 在大多數發行版上都有提供。當然你也可以參考下一篇的 在普通的 shell 裡不用 sux文件。sux 可以讓您用一種干淨而簡潔的方式在切換到其他使用者帳號時隱式地管理 X 轉發(認證和顯示輸出)。


sux - kde-devel



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在普通的 shell 裡不用 sux

啟動 KDE 4 應用程式最簡單的方法是使用 su 登錄 kde-devel 使用者,然後從命令列啟動程式。請輸入以下文字登錄

su - kde-devel


export DISPLAY=:0

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使用 SSH

The simplest way to run a KDE 4 application with SSH in your current desktop environment is to get an X-aware shell prompt as the kde-devel user like this:

Now you can launch KDE apps as usual, for example:


The two lines can be conveniently combined:

ssh -X [email protected] kwrite

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Before anything serious can be done using this method, a passwordless login needs to be set up. To start, run the following command as the regular desktop user:

ssh-keygen -t rsa

Hit enter three times to accept the path of ~/.ssh/id_rsa and an empty passphrase. Now, copy the single line in ~/.ssh/ that's printed after running this command:

cat ~/.ssh/

After that line is copied, ssh back into the kde-devel user and put the copied line in the file $HOME/.ssh/authorized_keys:

ssh -X [email protected] $HOME/kde/bin/kwrite \

Paste in the line, save the file, and quit KWrite. Now try running KWrite again with the same SSH command; you shouldn't have to enter a password anymore:

ssh -X [email protected] $HOME/kde/bin/kwrite

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SSH 桌面檔案

If you want to be able to launch apps more easily than running them with an SSH command from the command line, one way is to create .desktop files that ssh into the other account. Template:Note (zh TW)

You can start with an existing .desktop file as a template (like one from your desktop) or you can make one from scratch. The main idea is to prefix the command being run with this string:

ssh -X [email protected] $HOME/kde/bin/

A simple .desktop file that runs KWrite would have the following contents:

[Desktop Entry]
Exec=ssh -X [email protected] /home/kde-devel/kde/bin/kwrite %U
GenericName=Text Editor
Name=KWrite (kde-devel)

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啟動 KDE 4 工作階段

嵌套 KDE 4 工作階段


Instead of using a full-blown new virtual X for developing software you can use Xephyr to embed your KDE 4 session into your working KDE 3 or other X11 environment.

You can also do this with xnest, but as xnest cannot handle extensions like Render many people prefer Xephyr.

If you want to get a minimal KDE session up and running, just launch Xephyr (available in Kubuntu as xserver-xephyr; Gentoo users compile x11-base/xorg-server with USE="kdrive"):

Xephyr :1 -extension GLX &

You can now launch KDE:

su - $USER
export DISPLAY=:1
/path/to/kde4/bin/startkde-modified &

startkde-modified is a copy of the startkde-script which includes the following lines on the top:

export KDEDIR=`kde4-config --prefix`
export PATH=$KDEDIR/bin/:$PATH
export KDEHOME=~/.kde4

You can also use Xephyr with KDM via the Xdmcp protocol and simply a new KDE 4 session to KDM.

On Kubuntu, you can enable it by changing

# Whether KDM should listen to incoming XDMCP requests.
# Default is true

in /etc/kde3/kdm/kdmrc to

# Whether KDM should listen to incoming XDMCP requests.
# Default is true

and adjust your /etc/kde3/kdm/Xaccess to allow your local machine access. Additionally you should make sure to set up a port blocking policy on all external interfaces for the Xdmcp port if you are doing this on a laptop or a PC in an untrusted environment.

If you are done, simply launch Xephyr:

Xephyr -query localhost :1 -host-cursor -screen 1024x768&

where -host-cursor tries to reuse the host's cursor and -screen sets the screen dimensions.

Note: If you get lots of refused connection errors, you might want to use the -ac option of Xephyr. For example:

Xephyr -ac :1&

Another option to try if you get lots of refused connection errors is you may need to grant assess to your kde-devel user to your X server. As root or using sudo execute:

xhost +local:kde-devel

If you do not have Xephyr, you can also use Xnest:

Xnest -ac :1& export DISPLAY=:1

This section needs improvements: Please help us to

cleanup confusing sections and fix sections which contain a todo

Sping 00:25, 9 April 2007 (CEST)
I use this for my start script

#! /bin/bash
export DISPLAY=:0
Xephyr :1 -screen 1024x768 &
export DISPLAY=:1
$HOME/kde/bin/startkde-modified &

If you run into

"Call to lnusertemp failed (temporary directories full?).
 Check your installation."

try this:

mkdir /var/tmp/kde-devel-kde4

The above code assumes you work with user kde-devel. Template:Note (zh TW)

唯一的 KDE 4 工作階段


To run a full KDE 4 desktop environment session, you can either start it from the command line as you normally would, with something like this:

X :1 & export DISPLAY=:1

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or you can can add it to your login manager. If you are using KDM (or a compatible login manager) this is done by creating a .desktop file in either `kde-config --prefix`/share/apps/kdm/sessions/ or in /usr/share/xsessions/. The easiest thing to do is to copy an existing kde.desktop file and name it kde4.desktop. Open this new .desktop file in a text editor and change the Exec, TryExec and Name entries to look something like this:


Replace $HOME/kde in the example above with the prefix you are installing KDE4 into.

After restarting the login manager (Alt+e in KDM) this new entry should appear in the sessions menu.

You might have to edit your startkde scripts, ie: change



to this


or paste this

export KDEDIR=`kde4-config --prefix`
export PATH=$KDEDIR/bin/:$PATH
export KDEHOME=~/.kde4

on top.

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This section will explain how to use KDevelop 3.4 to develop KDE 4 applications. If you have any questions, corrections or rants about this section, please post them on the discussion page.


You need at least KDevelop 3.4 for this, which is still a KDE 3 application. Versions lower than 3.4 do not have Qt 4 support among other things. The KDE 4 version of KDevelop is not yet ready for serious development. You can get KDevelop at the KDevelop homepage. Make sure you install KDevelop like all other KDE 3 applications, not with your kde-devel user.

You also need the lastest GDB version, which is currently 6.6.0. Note that the GDB version which is shipped with openSuse 10.3 is broken, it constantly crashes when examining variables (which KDevelop does automatically). Use the GDB version from this repository instead.

You need to have the kdelibs API documentation locally, which is described in the build instructions.

You also need ctags, htdig, htmerge and htsearch. valgrind and callgrind can also be useful.

Be sure you followed the steps in the KDE 4 build instructions and have a working KDE 4 environment. Make sure simple KDE 4 applications like Konsole or KWrite can be started from the command line of the kde-devel user without problems.

The following steps are all done with the kde-devel user. You need to login as that user by typing

su - kde-devel


KDevelop has no native support for CMake projects. Fortunately, CMake has the ability to generate KDevelop project files itself. In order to do this, you need to pass the -GKDevelop3 flag to the cmake command. This tells CMake to generate project files for KDevelop alongside the normal makefiles. The best way to do this is to modify your cmakekde function in your .bashrc. Just change

-DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=debugfull&& \
make && \
make install;


cmake $srcFolder -GKDevelop3 -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=$KDEDIR \
-DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=debugfull&& \
make && \
make install;

After you have done that, re-login so that the changes to the .bashrc file take effect. Then you need to rerun cmakekde in the (root) build directory of the project you want to work on with KDevelop (if you didn't use -GKDevelop3 on the building step). For example, if you want to work on Konsole, which lives in kdebase, you need to run cmakekde in the $KDE_BUILD/KDE/kdebase directory. This unfortunately completely rebuilds everything, but only once when you change the generator.

Since all environment variables of the kde-devel user are KDE 4 specific, these need to be set back to match your KDE 3 environment before starting KDevelop. A simple way to do this is to add the following function to your .bashrc:

function start3app {
  mkdir -p /tmp/$USER-kde
  export PATH=/opt/kde3/bin:/usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/bin:/usr/bin/X11:/usr/games 
  export LD_LIBRARY_PATH= 
  export KDETMP=/tmp/$USER-kde 
  export KDEVARTMP=/var/tmp/$USER-kde 
  export KDEHOME=$HOME/.kde 
  export KDEDIR=/usr 
  export DISPLAY=:0 
  eval "[email protected]"
  source $HOME/.bashrc   #Reset environment variables again

The PATH and LD_LIBRARY_PATH variables are taken from the KDE 3 user, and they may be different on your system. Type

echo $PATH



as normal KDE 3 user to get these values. The above function assumes that KDE 3 is installed in the /usr prefix, as it is the case on Debian-based systems. If your KDE 3 is installed to a different prefix, you need to change the line setting KDEDIR accordingly. Here's an example how you find out your KDE installation prefix; in this example it is /opt/kde3:

kde-config --prefix

Now you should be able to start KDevelop by typing start3app kdevelop. Do that now.

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Symptome: kdevelop says "cannot talk to klauncher". You cannot open a file.

Solution: add your KDE library path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH, e.g.:

export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/opt/kde3/lib

建立 KDevelop

Now that KDevelop has started, you need to adjust a few settings. Go to Settings->Configure KDevelop...->Documentation for this. Remove all entries that are not relevant to KDE 4 coding.

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Optionally, you can add the kdelibs API documentation. You must create it beforehand. Then add the documentation by clicking Add.... In this dialog, use the following settings:

  • Type: Doxygen Documentation Collection (needs to be set first)
  • Location: $KDE_SRC/KDE/kdelibs/kdelibs-apidocs/index.html

Now add the Qt API documentation, which also must be created beforehand, using the following settings:

  • Type: Qt Documentation Collection (needs to be set first)
  • Location: $HOME/qt-copy/doc/html/qt.dcf

After you have added kdelibs and Qt API documentation, make sure all checkboxes (TOC,Index and Search) are enabled. Then, go to the Full Text Search tab and make sure the paths to the htdig, htmerge and htsearch executables are correct. You can then close the settings dialog.

Now it is time to open the project you want to work on by clicking Project->Open Project.... The project files are located in the build directory. For example, if you want to work on Konsole, you need to open $KDE_BUILD/KDE/kdebase/apps/konsole/konsole.kdevelop. You now need to adjust a few project-specific settings in Project->Project Options. You need to do this every time you start to work on a different project.

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  • C++ Support->Code Completion
Here you need to add code completion databases for Qt and kdelibs, and more if you like, for example you might need a database for kdepimlibs when working on kdepim.
For kdelibs, click the Add... button and choose KDevelop Custom Directory PCS Importer, then add your KDE include directory ($HOME/kde/include) to the list and proceed. You can use the file selection dialog and the Add button to add it.
Now, add the database for Qt 4 by selecting KDevelop Qt4 PCS Importer this time. You need to select the Qt 4 include directory, which is $HOME/qt-copy/include.

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  • C++ Support->Qt Options
Check Enable Qt options and choose Qt4 as your version. Set the QMake Binary path to $HOME/qt-copy/bin/qmake. Then choose Qt 4 style as Qt include syntax. Use $HOME/qt-copy/bin/designer as Designer Binary. Make sure to use the Change Plugin Paths dialog to add the plugin directory from KDE so you see the KDE widgets when designer is started. To do this add $HOME/kde/lib/kde4/plugins to the lineedit and then click the Add button.
  • Run Options
Make sure you use the correct binary as Executable. For example, if you want to run Konsole, this is $KDE_BUILD/KDE/kdebase/apps/konsole/src/konsole. You should add --nofork to the Debug Arguments or debugging some applications like KMail will not work at all.
Because the start3app functions changes some environment variables, you need to change them back here so the KDE 4 applications can be run without problems from within KDevelop.
For some applications, like Konsole, this is not strictly necessary, but others like KMail will crash if you do not change this.
Simply click the Add / Copy button to add new environment variables. You will need the following, which are the same as in your .bashrc:
Name Value
PATH $KDEDIR/bin:$QTDIR/bin:/usr/local/bin:$PATH
KDETMP /tmp/$USER-kde4
KDEVARTMP /var/tmp/$USER-kde4

  • Build Options->Build
Make sure the correct build directory is selected. Again, for Konsole, this would be $KDE_BUILD/KDE/kdebase/apps/konsole.
  • Build Options->Make
You might want to check Abort on first error. You also might want to add VERBOSE= or VERBOSE=1 to Additional make options to control the level of verbosity for the build process.
If you have more than one processor or if you have access to an icecream cluster, you might want to check the Run multiple jobs option and set the Number of simultaneous jobs to the number of available processors. This increases the compile speed. It is the same as the -j option for make.
  • Formatting
You should set all options here to match the coding style of the project you are working on.
  • CTags->General
You need to correctly set the Path to ctags binary, which is /usr/bin/ctags on Debian-based systems.
You probably want to enable the When more than one hit, go directly to the first option.

Now you have finished adjusting your project-specific settings. Now you should remove some plugins you do not need, in Settings->Configure Plugins.... I for example disable the following plugins:

Abbreviation Expansion, Code Snippets, Doxygen Support, Embedded Konsole, File Tree, Final Packaging Support, "Open with" Menu Addon, QuickOpen, Regular Expression Tester, Scripting, Security Checker, Shell Filtering and Insertion, Text Structure and Tools Menu Addition.

You should at least disable the bold ones.

Now, open any source file if none is open already. This will enable the Settings->Configure Editor... entry, where you need to set the tab options to match the tab style used by the project you are working on. The important settings are:

  • Appearance->Borders->Show line numbers: Should be checked.
  • Appearance->Borders->Show icon border: Should be checked.
  • Editing->Tabulators
  • Editing->Static Word Wrap->Show marker: Should be checked
  • Indentation->Automatic Indentation->Indentation mode: Should be C Style
  • Indentation in general

In the mainwindow, click the CTags tab on the bottom tabbar, then click the Regenerate button to create a CTags database for easier source code navigation.

Now you have completed all essential configuration, congratulations!

使用 KDevelop

Refer to the KDevelop manual for general help using KDevelop. The following section will only deal with special cases for KDE 4.


KDE apps have many symbols, which means that you need a lot of memory to get a decent loading times for debugging. To quote a GDB developer: "I would be reluctant to debug KDE on something with <1GB RAM." If the stepping function of the debugger is slow for you, try the following tips:

  • Hide local variables. The Locals part of the variable tab on the left causes a big slowdown when stepping if you have many local variables. Simple collapse the Locals part of the tree, the local variables are then not updated every step. You can still examine variables by using the Evaluate expression function.
  • Use the patch at It prevents the update of the framestack widget at each step, speeding up stepping considerably. The patch introduces some minor glitches, which is why it is not yet commited.

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KDE4's ktimetracker loaded as eclipse project

This describes how to use Eclipse to develop KDE 4 applications. It has been tested with Eclipse Ganymed and SUSE Linux 11.1 but should work same or similar with every combination. As an example KDE application we use ktimetracker from the kdepim module, other applications short work analog.

Using this description you will be able to

  • update your working copy of KDE source code using the command svn
  • build your KDE module using cmake
  • build your KDE application from within eclipse using make
  • compile and run your application with one click from eclipse
  • get auto-completion when editing KDE source code
  • have an overview and navigation about your classes within eclipse
  • have call trees for your functions

Set up Eclipse with KDE

  • Check your requirements
Trying with a virtual machine I had problems starting Eclipse with less than 1 GB RAM. After assigning 3 GB RAM to my virtual machine, Eclipse finally started.
  • Install eclipse
Download Eclipse IDE for C/C++ developers from We unpack it to /home/user/eclipse.
  • Install the CDT
Download the Eclipse IDE for C/C++ Developers (68 MB) from and unpack it into your eclipse folder, in our case /home/user/eclipse.
  • Download kdepim
As said, we use kdepim as example here. So, download ("checkout") kdepim using svn, e.g. as anonymous:
svn co svn://
We assume you checked out into /home/user/kdepim.
  • Compile kdepim
Compile kdepim so the usual makefiles are present for all kdepim applications. If you have problems doing this, follow our build instructions
  • Import your project into eclipse
Surprise: To import your project, you should not use "File -> Import". Rather do: File -> New -> C++ Project -> Makefile project -> Empty Project -> un-tag "use default location" -> choose /home/user/kdepim/ktimetracker. Call it "ktimetracker".
  • Build your project
Make sure Project -> Properties -> C/C++ Build -> Builder Settings -> Build location -> Build directory is set correctly.
Choose Project -> Build Project
  • Run the project
Choose Project -> Properties -> Run/Debug Settings -> New. As project, enter ktimetracker, as C/C++ Application, enter /home/user/kdepim/ktimetracker/ktimetracker. Choose Apply -> Ok -> Ok. Now you can click on the "Run" button and start it.


Custom builders

If you want to integrate the cmake build step into your build toolchain, you will need to

  • create a custom builder like this:
cat >/bin/eclipsebuild<<EOF
cmake . && make -j4 && make install
chmod 777 /bin/eclipsebuild
  • Add your builder
Choose Project -> Properties -> Builders. Un-tag all existing builders. Click "new" -> Program -> (name it "Builder for KDE"). -> Location: /bin/eclipsebuild -> Working directory /home/user/workspace/myproject1/kdepim.
  • Build
Now you can build your project. Every time after you restarted eclipse, choose myproject1 -> Project -> Properties -> C/C++ Build -> Ok -> Project -> Build.
Revert what eclipse did

To revert what eclipse did to your project simply run

rm -rf .externalToolBuilders/ .project .cproject
Why Subversion does not work

When using eclipse's svn plugin and building a KDE program, you will get error messages complaining that your svn binary is too old. If you want to try and change this, here's how you get to that error:

  • Install the subversion plug-ins
Help -> Software Updates -> Available Software -> Add Site -> -> Add Site ->
Now add it: Subversive Site -> Subversive SVN Team Provider Plugin
Subversive SVN Connectors Site -> Subversive SVN Connectors -> SVNKit 1.3.0 Implementation (Optional)
  • Click on Install
  • Restart eclipse
  • Import your KDE module
Choose File -> New -> Other -> SVN -> Project from SVN -> -> Check out as project configured using the New Project Wizard -> C++ Project -> Makefile Project -> Empty Project. As name, we choose kdepim5 -> Finish
  • Set cmake as build environment
Choose Project -> Properties -> C/C++ Build -> Builder Settings. Un-tag "use default build command", set "cmake" instead. Choose Project -> Properties -> C/C++ Build -> Behavior. Replace "all" by ".".


Qt Creator

這裡說明如何使用 Qt Creator 開發 KDE 4 應用程式。It has been tested with QtCreator 1.2.80 and SUSE Linux 11.1 but should work same or similar with every combination.我們使用來自 kdepim 模塊的ktimetracker作為 KDE 應用程式的範例。


我們使用 ktimetracker 作為範例專案。

  • 匯入 CMakeLists.txt 檔案

File -> Open -> kdepim/CMakeLists.txt.

  • 配置 Qt Creator 只建構 ktimetracker

Projects -> ktimetracker -> build settings -> Add a configuration ktimetracker.

As build directory choose /home/youruser/kdepim/ktimetracker. As arguments for cmake use ...

開始 KDE 專案

想要開始一個新的專案你需要告訴 Qt Creator 建構時使用 KDE 程式庫。因此,選擇 File -> New... 並創建您的專案。在這裡我們稱為yourproject。為了能夠使用 KDE 程式庫,在你的家目錄,cd 進入yourproject並修改。加上

LIBS += -lkdeui

This page was last edited on 23 June 2013, at 13:15. Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.