Projects/PIM/KMail Junior Jobs

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KMail Junior Jobs

On this page, you'll find small coding jobs for a beginner to work on. All these problems are relatively easy, some of them might even be one-liners. Of course, it is always a good idea to find your own thing to fix, the best motivation is scratching your own itch.

These tasks are intended for beginners with little or no experience programming with KDE. For those beginners, the biggest challenges are not actually the coding problems, but setting the development environment up, finding the correct place of code where the bug happens (in the jungle of all those source files) and interacting with the community, with the final step being sending the patch.

The knowledge prerequisite for those jobs are not that big. You should be familiar in C++, and knowing Qt a bit would help. Knowing kdelibs or KMail internals is not required, that can usually be picked up during coding.

For more general information, visit the following places:

  • KDE Techbase: Contains a lot of information about developing KDE, in particular a section on how to build KDE from source
  • KMail's HACKING file: Some KMail specific information.

The steps for your first coding contribution are roughly like this:

  1. Build KDE trunk from sources, including KDEPIM
  2. Set up your development environment, i.e. your editor or IDE
  3. Pick something to work on, like some of the things suggested below
  4. Start coding and fix the problem!
  5. Send in a patch (We prefer reviewboard)

Should you need help, feel free to ask us in the #kontact IRC channel, or mail either Thomas McGuire (the KMail maintainer) or the kde-pim mailing list.

If you find some information missing, feel free to add it to this page after you learn it.

Below follows a list of junior jobs. It always includes a rough location where in the KMail sources to start.

The default column sizes of the message structure viewer are too small

Starting point: kmmimeparttree.cpp

Difficulty: Easy

Description: When starting KMail for the first time (i.e. empty kmailrc configuration file), the column sizes for the message structure viewer are not good. The name column is too small, although it should be the largest. KMail should provide good default column sizes for the default window size.

Move aggregation, theme and sorting options to the menubar

NOTE: I think Vincent is working on this, so don't take this for now

Starting point: kmmainwidget.cpp, messagelistview.cpp/core/widgetbase.cpp, configuredialog.cpp, kmmainwin.cpp/kmail_part.rc

Difficulty: Medium

Description: Currently, there are 3 little comboboxes next to the quick search dialog, that control the theme, aggregation and sort order. Experience has shown that people don't find it there. Your task is to clean this up a bit. Move the 3 little comboboxes to the menubar, as submenues of the View menu. Also, make those submenus available when right-clicking a header of the message list. Also, it would be nice to add settings to the configure dialog to change the default theme, aggregation and sort order.

Unify options to enable or disable the tooltips in the folder and message list

Starting point: configuredialog.cpp, folderview.cpp, messagelistview/core/view.cpp

Difficulty: Medium

Description: The message list and the folder list both have tooltips that can be enabled or disabled. However, the options for this are not in the same places. The folder list tooltip can be disabled by right-clicking the header of the folder list, while the message list can only be disabled in the configure dialog. Your job is to unify this: add an option to disable the folder list tooltip to the configure dialog, and an option to disable the message list tooltip to the message list header context menu.

Better handling of empty column titles in the message list

Starting point: messagelistview/core/themeeditor.cpp, messagelistview/core/view.cpp

Difficulty: Medium

Description: When using the classic theme, you can select additional columns by right-clicking the header. There are many icon-only columns here, like Action Item or Signature. For those icon columns, the column header text doesn't fit into the width, and this looks bad. Your job would be to add an option to the theme editor like Don't display column header text. This would simply show nothing as the column header, but still show the column names in the context menu. Also, the default themes should be adjusted to use this.

Bug 156653: Changing the font size has no effect on the separate reader window

Starting point: kmreaderwin.cpp, kmreadermainwin.cpp

Difficulty: Medium

Description: The font setting has no effect when using a fixed font, and when using the separate reader window. Your job is to fix the situation.

Bug 71945: Refresh IMAP cache even enabled when action can't be used [done]

Starting point: kmmainwidget.cpp

Difficulty: Easy

Description: The Refresh IMAP Cache action in the File menu is even enabled when there are no IMAP accounts or when no IMAP folder is currently selected. Your job is to fix this be disabling the action when necessary.

Bug 89446: Convert more settings to KConfigXT

Starting point: kmail.kcfg

Difficulty: Easy (but possibly boring)

Description: KMail does many manual calls to readEntry() and writeEntry() for reading and saving configuration. These are error-prone and should be ported to the 'new' KConfigXT system, that is already used in some places (you'll notice the GlobalSettings class being used a lot).

In the first run wizard, rename the cancel button [done]

Starting point: accountwizard.cpp

Difficulty: Easy

Description: See the forum post. Basically, when the user sees Cancel, he might think that would quit KMail entirely.

Bug 192897: Message refers to non-existent UI element [done]

Starting point: accountdialog.cpp

Difficulty: Dead Easy

Description: The message mentioned in the bug report refers to a button at the bottom of the dialog, however the button is in another tab now. Your job is to fix the message to refer to the correct place.

Bug 178402: Font settings for message list have no effect

Starting point: configuredialog.cpp, messagelistview/core/themeeditor.cpp, messagelistview/core/themedelegate.cpp

Difficulty: Medium

Description: In the configure dialog in KMail, one has the option to change the font of the messages in the message list. However, this setting is not honored, which is a clear bug.

The problem is that the fonts can be configured in two places: In the theme dialog and in the normal configure dialog.

In the normal dialog, the option of configuring the date field should probably be dropped, since other fields don't have this special treating. However, the font setting for normal, unread, new, todo and important messages should be honored, at least if the font set in the theme editor is set to "default".

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