KDE Plasma and KDE Apps on Wayland Review and Video: The First Plasma Wayland Live Image

Recently releases of KDE and GNOME Desktop Environment have a serious progress to Wayland porting – the first Plasma Wayland live image is available for download. Last versions of GNOME work more or less stable and how about KDE? Time to explore it.

How to run KDE Plasma in Wayland mode without LiveCD from KDE Project in KDE >= 5.3? We need to install some packages:

# apt-get install kwin-wayland kwin-wayland-backend-drm kwin-wayland-backend-wayland libqt5waylandclient5 plasma-workspace-wayland xwayland qtwayland5

And stop Sddm (KDM in other Linux Distributions) – default Desktop Display Manager in Kubuntu:

# systemctl stop sddm

Run KWin (KDE window manager) and KDE Plasma in Wayland-mode:

Ctrl+Alt+F1 (go to tty1)
#kwin_wayland --libinput --xwayland "plasmashell --platform wayland"

Great, we now have a KDE Plasma in Wayland mode!
KDE Plasma on Wayland

It’s time to run KDE Apps with Wayland backend:

$ export QT_QPA_PLATFORM=wayland
$ kate

$ kate --platform wayland


Kate Editor in Wayland
Kate Editor in Wayland

We also can start some application together with KWin:

# kwin_wayland --xwayland "kate --platform wayland"
# export QT_QPA_PLATFORM=wayland
# kwin_wayland --xwayland kate

Thanks for the tip to Martin Graesslin, KDE Developer.

Ark in Wayland mode
Ark in Wayland mode

About problems: sometimes cursor do not switch in text<->window resize mode. Resize windows is very slow and crash sometimes. Copy and paste text don’t work in some application – I can’t  copy text to terminal. Several application don’t work in Wayland/XWayland session.

Resume: If you want to work in Wayland today – GNOME is best choice. KDE also have a good progress, but isn’t ready today.

See also full review of KDE Plasma 5.5:

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