Plasma Wayland ISO Checkup

My Plasma Wayland ISOs are building nicely fresh each day.  I asked Betty the fuzzy Guinea Pig to gave one a try today and there’s still obvious bugs like no text on task bar and the blue window bars are back but she’s generally impressed at how this is likely to be a good replacement for X in the near future.

Download 1.0GB ISO

Betty the Fuzzpig Tries Plasma Wayland



Completed Foundation Safety and Rescue Training Provider

I completed my FSRT provider training and should shortly be able to provide this course.

At the start of the process I was disappointed at how few club coaches did it and how little encouragement there was in doing so (e.g. few provider training days) but now I think I’ve changed my mine.  It’s a large effort to run courses like this and to do so to the required standard takes time and money and commitment which is typically beyond what club coaches can do.  I see 1 star courses running all the time with bad practice and not following the syllabus so I can understand why there needs to be a process to keep the courses to a decent standard.

All of the items in the syllabus are simple enough but doing them with the right techniques and tweaks to follow best practice, knowing different ways to explain it and what common mistakes people make that need pointed out and then knowing alternative methods when one method fails is quite a lot to know.

On the course I ran I struggled a bit with emptying a large Pyranha Fusion, they’re so rounded you can’t get a good grip on the end to rotate it.  You typically separate kayak empty and getting a swimmer back in a kayak to keep people dry for that bit longer but best not to do this with Canadian canoes as getting back in the boat is typically done when the boat is still full of water.  I also demonstrated Canadian canoe towing by tying the painter onto the same boat which isn’t clear at all, best to demo with two boats.

It’s a lot for students to take in for one day and if they’re not already at a high two star standard they won’t manage everything, it’s ok to leave a bit of stuff out if you have to concentrate on the more relevant parts.  But also don’t be afraid to say it’s time to move on if an exercise is taking too long.  Just remember to put it on the action plan at the end.

For kayak self rescue I did eskimo rescues and missed out a simple swim to the side and empty kayak, but during the eskimo rescues people swam out anyway and did swimming and bank empty wrong so I should have included that before any eskimo rescues.

drysuit £360.00
second drysuit cos I lost my first £330.00
training £60.00
whiteboard pens printing £15.00
hotel for training £156.00
hotel for observation £46.45
second hotel for observation cos I booked on wrong day £56.00
equipment lomo (throw line, tow line) £26.99
equipment tiso (sling) £5.40
fuel to training £50.00
fuel to observation 1 £5.00
fuel to observation 2 £15.24
total £1,126.08

With the travel and equipment I bought it comes out a over £1000 to do this, eek.  I could save money by not being a fool and losing my dry suit and booking my hotel for the correct night and finding courses which were closer, but who needs to pay off a mortgage really?

Plasma Wayland Images Go Daily

With Neon’s infrastructure moving ahead nicely I’ve been able to update my Plasma Wayland images to build on the Neon infrastructure fresh each day.  It uses packages built from KDE Frameworks and Plasma Git master branches and has a default session of KWin running as a Wayland compositor.  The foundation is Ubuntu 16.04LTS.

Download the ISO today


follow the 1 step instruction on Martin’s blog if you already have Neon Dev edition unstable installed.

As usual it doesn’t work in Virtual Box.  Rendering errors appear often, especially with a second monitor. Control-c doesn’t work on konsole.  Otherwise it’s perfect 🙂


KDE neon User Edition Testing Survey Results

We made a tech preview release of KDE neon User Edition 10 days ago and I made up a survey to get results for how people’s experiences were.  We got 59 responses, here’s a summary:


Most people from Europe, a number from the US, the rest spread around the usual parts of the world.

How did you make the installable drive/disk?

First past the post is people who used a Virtual Machine, sensible enough for a testing release.

Next is ROSA which I discovered recently and seems to work on most OSes.  Then people who use dd and risk wiping out their hard disk with a 1 letter typo.  Surprisingly there are still people who write to a DVD to install, I’ve no idea why.

In the other category is:
rufus (Windows only)
usb-image-creator (Ubuntu only)
suse imagewriter (unmaintained)
gnome multiwriter (Linux only and why would you want to write multiple at once?)
using: sudo cp neon-useredition-20160426-1028-amd64.iso /dev/sdb + sync (err, does this even work?)

Problems which occurred during booting of the live system

no problems for most

several people reported the black bar in the isolinux/syslinux theme.  these themes are spooky voodoo.

people commented on UEFI not being supported, UEFI is even more spooky voodoo and secureboot is evil voodoo.

“The GRUB splash is practically blank. Pressing the arrow keys opened a dropdown list for language selection. Then I pressed the Esc key to get to the GRUB splash. The “Install” option isn’t any different from the “Try without installing” option.”

“Select the language Spanish, and half the options were translated.”

Problems which occurred running the live system

Lots of “none” here too.  Mostly querying the lack of applications, that’s a feature for now, we’ll add apps soon.

“klipper in menu? Im-config in menu? Panel icons wrong size/blurry”

“Upon mouse click in kicker panel consistently resulted in black screen with no recovery. Possible issue with Plasma 6 and AMD GPUs.”

“Baloo crashed immediately (notification in system tray), but did not seem to affect system function.”

Problems which occurred running the installer

‘The “Continue” button is available even after all the steps.’

“You do not ship with open-vm-tools-desktop, so my virtual desktop was smaller than the Ubiquity window”

“the installer was unable to install some packages: (although the provided list was blank), so i couldn’t install the system”

“Does not recognize UEFI partitions/System. Only legacy boot possible.”

“1. On the second page of the installer is a non replaced variable: “$(RELEASE)” 2. While installing there is no teaser how awesome kde is :-), just a blank page.”

‘Text “$(RELASE)” is displayed in german version of “Download updates while installing neon” * Checkbox “Download updates while installing neon” cannot be checked’

“Can’t continue installation in second step (prepare) due continue button is non-functional. Improvement: Install-Program should be in favorites”

There’s bugs in here that come from Ubuntu and bugs that come from not having various bits installed.  I don’t think there’s much point spending much time on this as I expect to change to Calamares soon.

Problems which occurred on the installed system:

Quite a few without problems

Lots complain about missing icons, this is a cache issue “On the kicker menu, there were no icons, but they appeared after a re-boot.” we’ve fixed this, I hope.

“Can not start system, just weird colors after install. ”

“After install of guest additions on VirtualBox desktop panel would load but then disappear.”

“Wanted to install it on dualboot with win 10. Grub does not appear so I cannot boot kde neon which I prefere as primary OS.”

“got a grub shell after install”

“Text garbage on the light blue loading screen after the GRUB menu.”

“if a display goes to sleep plasma partly crashes (same happens on kubuntu) it’s a qt problem as far as i know”

“Illegible characters till NVIDIA driver loaded ”

“Unable to use software-properties-kde : Error: could not find a distribution template for neon/xenial” (known bug this one)

“System boots to console login prompt. X can be started after login. ”

Problems which occurred when installing new software

“Plasma Discover crashed” I have this too and it’s a priority to look into

“There was a problem installing kde-l10n because of conflict with plasma-desktop-data”
Problems which occurred when updating the system to latest packages:

No problems for most people but some issues:

  • The updater applet didn’t seem to work for some reason. Had to use Discover.
  • * First boot after “apt-get update” and “upgrade”: the system boots to graphical login screen, but after login only the “x” pointer ist visible. –> Hard reset
  • * After reboot only console login is visbile, X does not start “Timeout locking .Xauthority”
  • Could not find repos
  • ANOTHER – using Discover, added Gwenview – it installed but closed Discover on completion?

Thanks a lot to everyone who tested and gave feedback.  That gives me a good idea of the priority areas to work on.  Keep on testing and reporting bugs and of course any help welcome 🙂