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Thread: What's up with the desktop?

  1. #1
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    What's up with the desktop?

    I've just installed kubuntu 9.1 on my son's old pc. (he's 6y.o. and the upgrade is from 7.something) I was trying to copy his files back to his desktop. When I plugged the usb drive in up popped something called dolphin. I tried to drag and drop the files and got a weird menu asking me "folder view, lancelot something, and something else" none of which copied the folder onto the desktop. So I thought, this dolphin thing is weird, let's do this with konqueror, that's a known quantity. But still I seem unable to put things on the desktop. I can only guess that the desktop is now something other than a simple folder. Who knows it probably has all sorts of amazing features but right now it's just making me feel like a moron who can't tell a . Is there something I can read that will explain?

  2. #2
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    Quote Originally Posted by ukemike View Post
    I've just installed kubuntu 9.1 on my son's old pc. (he's 6y.o. and the upgrade is from 7.something) I was trying to copy his files back to his desktop. When I plugged the usb drive in up popped something called dolphin. I tried to drag and drop the files and got a weird menu asking me "folder view, lancelot something, and something else" none of which copied the folder onto the desktop. So I thought, this dolphin thing is weird, let's do this with konqueror, that's a known quantity. But still I seem unable to put things on the desktop. I can only guess that the desktop is now something other than a simple folder. Who knows it probably has all sorts of amazing features but right now it's just making me feel like a moron who can't tell a . Is there something I can read that will explain?
    dolphin is a file browser.....
    Hi

  3. #3
    anewguy is offline I Ubuntu, Therefore, I Am
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    Wink Re: What's up with the desktop?

    Okay, first I am *not* any form of an expert on the KDE desktop, but....

    I think 9.10 installs KDE 4 by default, and it seems to work a little different. There are these plasmoid "things" (applets??) that make up what you see on the desktop, and the desktop itself doesn't appear to be a folder. I noticed when I copied things to my desktop folder that they don't show on the desktop. However, if by default you have a folder view up on the desktop, it may be opened to your desktop folder - that's what happened with me. If I deleted it, nothing showed on the desktop. I could drag things to the desktop, but they still only showed on the desktop but not in the desktop folder. If you deleted the folder view, you can add it back and change what folder it is showing by default.

    So, if I remember correctly (I had to remove all of the kde stuff from my PC temporarily) and if you have folder view off the desktop, you will to find the objects in the menus, then right click on things to add them to the viewable desktop (not to be confused with the desktop folder).

    Like I said, I am NOT an expert, and don't understand it myself - just made it work for what I needed.

    Hope that helps in some small way.

    Dave

  4. #4
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    Right-click the desktop, go to Desktop Settings, and change the desktop type to 'Folder View'.

    Either that or add the Folder View widget to your desktop.

    KDE 4 is very nice, but it is a complete rewrite from the 3.5 days you will be used to from older versions of Ubuntu.
    I try to treat the cause, not the symptom. I avoid the terminal in instructions, unless it's easier or necessary. My instructions will work within the Ubuntu system, instead of breaking or subverting it. Those are the three guarantees to the helpee.

  5. #5
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    KDE 4 is very nice, but it is a complete rewrite from the 3.5 days you will be used to from older versions of Ubuntu.
    ================================================== =====

    you ain't kidding. I'm used to Win, OSX, a little with KDE, but this is totally foreign. I did set it to folder view and nothing I do has an expected result. At one point I had what appeared to be a file on the desktop. It was an icon, and I could move it around but when I tried to delete or open it I was told that it didn't exist. So after much digging I found where the shell was hidden and looked at the desktop folder and sure enough there was no such file. By switching out of folder view and then back in the icon disappeared (but it didn't it was hiding under another icon.) In the process I managed to remove the bit from the bar at the bottom (used to be the kicker) where the running programs are indicated, and the equivalent of the windoze "start" button. Trying to restore them gets me these little boxes that each say "folder view." When I right click on the panel and select panel options I get a weird thing that doesn't offer any apparently pertinent options.

    The computer in question is my kid's computer and a sort of long term pilot project to see if I could use linux, because I was unhappy with windows. We've been using kubuntu because it made more sense to me, but this is crazy. When I use the mouse nothing happens like I would expect. Even ctrl-c ctrl-v do weird things. Every context menu is full of terms that don't have any meaning to me. My tried and true method of "click it and see what happens" has already lead me down a few paths that I can't figure out how to back out of. It makes me feel like I'm some confused old stoner. Just as I was starting to get the hang of it, it totally changed. In nearly 30 years of using computers I've never blundered around so badly. Hell my intro to unix and vms in the late '80s went smoother. AND it's also dog slooow on this old pc.

    Would kubuntu 9.last_version be better? Or maybe I should give gnome another try? I really didn't care for it when I tried it back around ubuntu 6.something. I figure if I can't even stumble around in this kde4 then how can I teach my son to use it?
    Last edited by ukemike; December 7th, 2009 at 08:58 AM.

  6. #6
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    I only tried a couple of LiveCD because i am trying to find linux for beginner. And so far Ubuntu 9.10 and Linux mint 8 (based on ubuntu) seemed much more intuitive to me (a Windows user) than Kubuntu. I could immediatelly find what i was looking for in both of them (Ubuntu and Linux Mint).

    You can always give it a try with a liveCD although i don't know how good your old computer is. Expect lag when trying out the LiveCD.

  7. #7
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    In Kubuntu 9.1 The desktop can be set to folderview-thing. You know the way it looks like doze with the KDE bar in the bottom of the screen and the normal icons on the desktop...

    Believie it's also the way it looked in KDE 3...
    Laptop: core i7-3517U 1.9 ghz - 3.4 | 10 Gb DDR3 RAM| 500 GB HD + 24 GB SSD| nvidia geforce GT 620m 1GB, optimus | Ubuntu 13.10 64 bit.
    Desktop: core i7-2600 8x3.4Ghz| 8 Gb DDR3 RAM| 500GB HD| MSI Geforce 580 GTX 3GB lightning| Windows 7 64bit.

  8. #8
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    Kubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    Just my personal view, but I reckon you should either give Gnome another try (have a go with the LiveCD this time, rather than going right ahead and installing it without trying it!); or you could investigate running KDE 3.5 in Karmic, which is probably easier to understand than KDE 4. This page has some information on this and a link to a downloads page; I imagine it is also possible to just remove KDE 4 and add KDE 3 on your current installation, but I wouldn't know how...

  9. #9
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    I'm always determined to switch to KDE, and then a couple of weeks later I'm back in Gnome.

    Gnome is definitely easier, at least for me. Maybe for you too.
    I try to treat the cause, not the symptom. I avoid the terminal in instructions, unless it's easier or necessary. My instructions will work within the Ubuntu system, instead of breaking or subverting it. Those are the three guarantees to the helpee.

  10. #10
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    Re: What's up with the desktop?

    thanks for the input.

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