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The KDE 3.5 Control Center - Part 2 - Desktop

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KDE

The Desktop section of the Control Center focuses on the functionality and layout of the desktop(s), the taskbar, and the windows themselves, how they function, behave and what features are turned on or off. This section mostly covers functionality and focuses very little on the actual "eyecandy" experience of the system. There is some parts that do touch on the look and feel of various parts of the system, but most of the options focus on functionality. Now let's look at the first subsection and see some of what it can do to improve or change some of our user experience and productivity.

The Behavior subsection handles configuration of the KDE desktop itself and its behavior. There's quite a few useful tools in here to work with. First off, let's look at the first tab. Under the General tab you'll see three basic sections. At the top is a checkbox that says "Show icons on desktop". This is pretty straight forward and self explanatory. If you want icons to be displayed on your desktop (the preferred behavior), leave this checked, otherwise uncheck it. The second option labeled "Allow programs in desktop window" is an option you should not touch...ever. Let me explain why. The KDE window manager controls a hierarchy of windows objects, the lowest being the "desktop window", as mentioned in this option. It's also known known as the 'root' window. The most common application run in the root window is a slideshow. One reason for running a program (say Firefox) in the root window would be for a kiosk computer. This way the only thing the user sees and interacts with is the browser preventing tampering with the OS. So, unless you're setting up a kiosk, the best rule of thumb is not to enable this option.

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