A.5. Using the
The panel stretches across the bottom of the desktop. By
default, it contains the Main Menu and
quick-launch icons for starting a Web browser, email client, word
processor, and other commonly used applications.
Applets are small applications that run on the panel. There are
several types of applets: some perform functions such as system
monitoring, time and date display, and others launch applications.
Some applets run on the panel by default. This section covers them
By default, KDE provides four desktops that you can use to
display multiple applications without having to crowd all of them
onto one desktop. Each desktop can hold icons, open applications,
and be individually customized.
For example, while you are writing a message in Evolution on desktop one, you can have Mozilla browsing the Web on desktop two, the
OpenOffice.org Writer word processor
open on desktop three, and so on.
The taskbar displays all running applications, both minimized
and displayed, on all desktops.
Figure A-9. Applications on the Taskbar
You can maximize running applications or bring them to the front
of your working windows by clicking on the associated item on the
Another way to bring minimized or background windows to the
front is to use the [Alt] and
[Tab] keys. To pick an item from the
taskbar, hold down both the [Alt]
-[Tab] key. To scroll through the
tasks, hold down the [Alt] key, while
tapping the [Tab] key. When you have
found the task you want to maximize and bring to the front, release
both keys and the application appears on the desktop.
The Taskbar is also configurable.
Right-click on the handle — the
small arrow that appears to the left of the taskbar — and
select Configure Taskbar.
The Main Menu is the central point for using
KDE. Clicking on the icon on the
panel displays a large master menu from which you can perform tasks
such as launch applications, find files, and configure your
desktop. The main menu also contains several submenus that organize
applications and tools into major categories, including , ,
, , and more.
From the , you can lock your
session, which displays a password-protected screensaver. You can
also run applications from a command line as well as logout of your
Configuring the Panel
As with the other tools available with KDE, the panel is
configurable. Right-click on the blank portio of the Panel and select Configure
Panel. Configure the panel's orientation and size, or set the
panel's hiding configuration.
Figure A-10. Panel Settings
Applets to the Panel
To further customize the panel for your particular needs, you
can include additional launcher icons to start applications without
using the Main Menu. To add an
application launcher to the panel, right-click on an unused portion
the panel and choose . Then select
and make your choice from
To add a new launcher to the panel, right-click the panel and
choose => and choose the application or
resource you wish to add to the panel. This automatically adds an
icon on the panel. You can move the icon anywhere you want on the
panel by right-clicking the icon and choosing , where Application
is the name of the application associated with the icon.