A.5. Using the Panel
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 in detail.
A.5.1. The Pager
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.
A.5.2. The Taskbar
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 taskbar.
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
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.
A.5.3. The Main Menu
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,
, 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 KDE session.
A.5.4. 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
Figure A-10. Panel Settings
A.5.5. Adding 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 the menus.
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
where Application is the name of
the application associated with the icon.