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Here we go! The next version of KDE Plasma is now in Beta and ready for wider testing, with some really great sounding changes. This is my favourite Linux desktop environment I use at home, plus it's the Desktop Mode on Steam Deck!

One of the big changes coming in Plasma 5.27 is the addition of Flatpak permission settings, so you'll no longer need another additional application (like Flatseal) to sort through what Flatpak packages can do. This is great, and has been needed for a while.

Multi-monitor support should also be a lot better, as they've done a huge overhaul on it behind the scenes. While it should be mostly invisible to the end-user the changes involved were quite big and should result in no more empty desktops, you shouldn't see panels and widgets getting lost, a better experience with USB-C based docks (hello Steam Deckers) and so on.

This is probably what I am most excited about, as someone who uses Plasma for basically everything, it has been a nuisance at times with docking the Steam Deck and with it losing my second monitor on my desktop at times. 

Some of the other changes coming include:

  • More Flatpak improvements for Discover.
  • A SteamOS backend for performing Steam Deck updates in Discover.
  • Plasma Welcome - a new tool for users getting started using the desktop.
  • Upgrades to their Pipewire integration.
  • Lots more Wayland improvements.
  • Quick and easy window tiling.
  • Plus loads more fixes and improvements.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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22 comments
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As a very happy Plasma user....... Im always excited to see whats in the new versions....... So far I have not been disappointed.......

I am most excited about the improved multi monitor support....... The empty desktop.... thing..... bug?....... Is quite annoying...... If they can solve that I would be a very happy camper......
Lanz 20 Jan
Glad to see the Flatpak permission settings. The Linux desktop needs some serious security modernization work, and this is a step in the right direction.
Multi-monitor has been the achilles heel of using Plasma last year. As someone who has multiple monitors with 3-5 workspace/desktops at a time, kwin/Plasma has often crashed requiring me to run the restart-plasma script (kill/restart kwin & plasma) I've binded to a shortcut. More improvement on that is welcomed.

Not requiring Flatseal anymore is nice. That and the new welcome app seems like one of the Deck-driven improvement that benefits everyone that uses KDE as well.

Having followed Nate's Pointiest Stick blog, it's been awesome seeing improvements to Plasma every week and that improvement is now finally landing. Here's to a good last hurrah for Plasma 5.
Quoting: mr-victoryThis time KDE stole from Microsoft, the new tiling feature is probably inspired by Win11's corresponding feature. (was it called snapping?) But they didn't just copy pasta but slightly improved it.
Regarding tiling, the only thing that KDE 'stole' from Microsoft is the Snap Layouts that appears when you however Maximize button -- in the form of someone making Exquisite, which is similar to that Snap Layouts feature.

Snap Layouts I've found to be rather annoying, but I do use it sometimes so I keep it on despite how bothersome it is sometimes (I've disabled the screen-top's Snap Layout UI tho, too annoying considering I put my taskbar at top).
MayeulC 20 Jan
Quoting: Izaic
Quoting: NerdNoiseRadioOne question: didn't I hear that Plasma 5.26 added support for animated wallpapers? That's a feature that I will definitely plan to start using once I know I have access to it! :-)

Yes, but only for Wayland as it was disabled in Xorg due to a memory leak in an underlying library that was used to achieve it. It supports both avif and heif formats for the animated wallpapers, and all you have to do is add them to your wallpapers folder and select them as if they are any other wallpaper.

Hmm, why not allow a wayland client to draw on the background plane? Probably with wlr-layer-shell or something similar.
CyborgZeta 20 Jan
The Flatpak permissions are pretty handy, since it means you won't need to install a separate program (Flatseal). Also, if you care about consistency, not having to use Flatseal means not having a GTK program on a Qt DE.

If Plasma 5.27 makes it into Kubuntu 23.04, I may consider upgrading to an interim release. For now, I'm staying on 22.04.
ridge 20 Jan
Upgraded to the beta yesterday and it's all smooth sailing. I have three screens so the multi-monitor improvements are super nice to have
Viesta2015 20 Jan
"better experience with USB-C based docks"
Yes please, make it so it just wakes up and stays up... and not wake up and sleep until the Task menu is minimized.
14 21 Jan
Thank you, KDE developers!
14 21 Jan
Quoting: ridgeUpgraded to the beta yesterday and it's all smooth sailing. I have three screens so the multi-monitor improvements are super nice to have
By the way, how did you install the beta on Arch? AUR? I don't see version 5.27 even in the KDE-Unstable repo.
ridge 22 Jan
[quote=14]
Quoting: ridgeeBy the way, how did you install the beta on Arch? AUR? I don't see version 5.27 even in the KDE-Unstable repo.

It's in KDE-Unstable, but Plasma beta versions use "X.X.90" versioning, so 5.27 beta is 5.26.90, and will get bumped to 5.27 when released.
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