< Development‎ | Tutorials
Revision as of 23:03, 5 January 2007 by Milliams (talk | contribs) (Ok, it looks quite good. Clean up the page)

Development/Tutorials/First program

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Your first program shall greet the world with a friendly "Hello World", what else? For that, we will use a KMessageBox.

To get more information about any class you come across, Konqueror offers a quick shortcut. So to look for information about KMessageBox, just type "kde:kmessagebox" into Konqueror and you'll be taken to the documentation.

The Code

All the code we need will be in one file, main.cpp. Create that file with the code below:

  1. include <QString>
  2. include <KApplication>
  3. include <KAboutData>
  4. include <KMessageBox>
  5. include <KCmdLineArgs>

int main (int argc, char *argv[]) {

 KAboutData aboutData( "tutorial1", "Tutorial 2",
                       "1.0", "KMessageBox popup",
                       KAboutData::License_GPL, "(c) 2006" );
 KCmdLineArgs::init( argc, argv, &aboutData );
 KApplication app;
 KGuiItem guiItem( QString( "Hello" ), QString(),
                   QString( "this is a tooltip" ),
                   QString( "this is a whatsthis" ) );
 KMessageBox::questionYesNo( 0, "Hello World",
                             "Hello", guiItem );

} The first KDE specific code we come across in this program is KAboutData. This is the class used to store information about the program such as a short description, authors or license information. Pretty much every KDE application should use this class.

Then we come to KCmdLineArgs. This is the class one would use to specify command line switches to, for example, open the program with a specific file. However, in this tutorial, we simply initialise it with the KAboutData object we created so we can use the --version or --author switches.

On line 13 we create a KApplication object. This needs to be done exactly once in each program since it is needed for things such as i18n.

Now we've done all the necessary KDE setup, we can move on to doing interesting things with our application. We're going to create a popup box but we're going o customise one of the buttons. To do this customisation, we create a KGuiItem object. The first argument in the KGuiItem constructor is the text that will appear on the item (in our case, a button). Then we have an option of setting an icon for the button but we don't want one so we just give it QString(). Finally we set the tooltip (what appears when you hover over an item) and the "What's This?" (accessed through right-clicking or Shift-F1) text.

Now we have our item, we can create out popup. we call the KMessageBox::questionYesNo() function which, by default, creates a message box with a "Yes" and a "No" button. The second argument is the text that will appear in the middle of the popup box. Then we set the caption the window will have and finally we set the KGuiItem for (what would normally be) the "Yes" button to the guiItem we created.

We're all done as far as the code is concerned. Now to build it and try it out.


If you set up your environment as described in Getting_Started/Build/Unstable_Version, you can compile this code with

gcc main.cpp -o tutorial1 \
-I/home/kde-devel/qt-unstable/include/Qt \
-I/home/kde-devel/qt-unstable/include/Qt-Core \
-I/home/kde-devel/qt-unstable/include \
-I/home/kde-devel/kde/include \
-L/home/kde-devel/kde/lib \
-L/home/kde-devel/qt-unstable/lib -lkdeui -lkdecore -ldl 

and then run it with


Using CMake

If that worked, you may want to use CMake, just like the rest of KDE.


Create a file named CMakeLists.txt in the same directory as main.cpp with this content:

  1. name of the project

project (tutorial1)

  1. find and use the necessary libraries and headers

find_package(KDE4 REQUIRED) include_directories( ${KDE4_INCLUDES} )

  1. compile
  2. using a variable is not really necessary:
  3. using the single line
  4. kde4_add_executable(tutorial1 main.cpp)
  5. does the same, but when you add more stuff to the project,
  6. using the variable makes things a bit easier.

set(tutorial1_SRCS hello.cpp) kde4_add_executable(tutorial1 ${helloSources})

  1. and link properly

target_link_libraries(tutorial1 ${KDE4_KDEUI_LIBS})

Make And Run

Then it's simply a case of doing (from the directory where main.cpp is)

cmake .

Moving On

Now you can move on to using KMainWindow.

This page was last edited on 8 September 2020, at 14:30. Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.