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Getting Help

Lauri Watts

User Manuals

Most applications come with a comprehensive user manual , which you can reach various ways:

  • By pressing F1 inside the application.

  • From the menu bar: Help -> Application name

  • By browsing to it in KHelpCenter

  • By using the help KIOslave in Konqueror. So, in the Location Toolbar, simply type help:/ Application name

  • Online at

Context and “What's This” Help

Many applications also provide context help in two forms: Tooltips, and “What's This” help.


Tooltips are small informational windows or balloons that display when you hover the mouse over an item on your screen without clicking.

KDE uses tooltips in many places to provide brief help or information about an item on your screen. For instance, most toolbar buttons inside applications will display their name in a tooltip if you rest or hover your mouse over them.

Tooltips have another function, which is not specifically tied to help. In the Konqueror file manager and on your Desktop, tooltips can provide information about files. This is commonly referred to as “meta information”.

You can find out more about meta-information tooltips in the section about the Konqueror file manager.

What's This?

What's This?” help is usually more detailed than tooltips. You can access “What's This?” help in two ways:

  • By pressing the ? button in the titlebar of the window.

  • By pressing the key combination Shift - F1

The cursor will change to a pointer with a question mark next to it. Click on the item you want to know about, and a small window will pop up displaying information.

Mailing Lists, Newsgroups and IRC

Mailing Lists

KDE provides many mailing lists which can provide you with help and guidance in using and configuring your Desktop.

Some of the lists you might find useful are:

The KDE User List

This mailing list focuses specifically on OS-independent questions and discussions regarding using KDE. Operating-system-specific questions and discussion are off-topic here. For example, the question “How do I change the margin size for KWord documents” is appropriate for this list; whereas “How do I set up my printer using KDE under UnixOS X.Y” is not. Questions asked and discussions here should apply to all KDE users using the applicable KDE software, not just those using the same operating system.

You can subscribe to this list at

You can find archives at

The KDE-Linux� List

This mailing list focusses specifically on questions and discussions regarding using KDE on Linux�. Questions and discussions can involve any issue confronting desktop users who run KDE on a Linux� system. Hence, questions such as “How do I setup a networked printer for printing from KDE on LinuxDistro X.Y” are appropriate here. If you prefer a list limited to OS-independent questions and discussions concerning KDE, please use the general KDE mailing list.

You can subscribe to this list at

You can find archives at


There is a #kde channel on Freenode ( for support and other general talk about KDE. As usual, you can access this channel by using any of KDE's popular IRC clients which include konversation, KSirc, as well as Kopete. For more information, check the the section called “IRC section.

More Resources

There are many other resources which you may found useful; some of these are listed below:

This website has a searchable KDE news resource where you can find out about a superfluity of innovations in the world of KDE.

The paramount resource for KDE icandy, including themes, window decorations, wallpapers, mouse themes and icons for your KDE desktop. Note also that the site contains a howto section on how to install the most common of these.

The official KDE Wiki. From here you can have access to a plethora of information ranging from frequently asked questions and HOWTOs to tips and tricks. The wiki should never, however, be used as a substitute for the respective application's handbook or the official KDE documentation.

  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire