Help me lock unique panels to individual Virtual Desktops in KDE, openSUSE 13.1

Virtual Desktops: I keep hearing about them, other users promoting their Use, although through the years I could not really relate and saw little value in them, other than another bell, or whistle, or bell & whistle, to play with.

Recently, there were more exchanges in the Forums about Virtual Desktops, and this time I decided to actually spend the time to look a little deeper into the subject. I scoured the internet for reasons and methods for using Virtual Desktops. Then, while still a bit skeptical about the touted advantages, I decided to try them out for awhile to see if I could determine enough value to use them.

(Aside: * I also looked into Activities, and in the differences between them and Virtual Desktops, and decided the latter would likely be the most suitable to my work habits and, therefore, Desktops is where I would start exploring.*)

So, several weeks ago, for the first time ever, I added my first additional desktop, limiting it to an Activity that I perform on a regular, usually daily, basis.


You know what?

I do like this!

I created a unique panel-menu launcher-system tray bar for each desktop, removing most of the icons I use on my Main Desktop, customizing the icons instead to match the group of activities I do on the second desktop (such as, creating a Dolphin icon that launches my base file directory for those related activities and creating a Konsole icon that loads my path related to those activities).

Works great. I have different Wallpaper for each Desktop, and different panels for each desktop.

When I log in, I simply right-click on the panel, choose Panel Options->Remove this Panel, click the cashew in the top left corner of the pop-up dialogue, choose Move to Desktop, and click on the desktop I want the panel to appear on. I then make certain to click Cancel, instead of Remove Panel (learned this the hard way;)), which I personally see as a design flaw. I need to do this with each panel.

I have since moved on to a 3rd Virtual Desktop, and I believe there are going to be a few more in the coming weeks and/or months.


I scoured the internet looking for the solution, but so far have not found the answer. I am hoping that at least one of you multiple Virtual Desktop promoters has already found and successfully applied the solution.

These unique panels remain tied to their respective desktops throughout my session, a good thing.:slight_smile:

Unfortunately, each time I power up the computer and log into KDE, all three panels appear super-imposed on one another on all desktops, a very annoying thing.>:(

So, first thing I need to do is switch to Desktop 3, go through the routine to lock the panel that is covering the other two panels to the 3rd Desktop, then Switch to Desktop 2 and do the same there, then do the same in the Main desktop.

I have tried locking widgets, hunted for other solutions, and still cannot solve this problem. It holds fine when I hibernate, but when I shut down and later cold boot, I have to go through the routine again.

I am a regular cold boot enthusiast, no Sessions carried over, and that will not change. So, I need a solution.

… please.

Here all the panels are the same on my 4 VD. I think you are pushing things to have different ones on the different VD. That is more what activities are for.

Note on Activities. They are a complete change of focus. ie all virtual desktops can be different in the different activity.

To allow each desktop to have its own distinct objects (Folder views, etc), go to:

Application Launcher / Configure Desktop / Workspace Behavior / Virtual Desktops

Enable (check) “Different widgets for each desktop”
Warning, whatever was on the desktops previously will now be gone.

Now each desktop can be configured with its own wallpaper, widgets, etc.
None of which will show on the other desktops.

I always do this on my machine.
Each of my 4 desktops has a distinct wallpaper and widgets specific to that desktop.

Already did that (in fact, did that before creating additional Desktops):), but that does not fix the problem of the different panels. If you re-read my original post, you will see I already have different wallpaper and different widgets on each desktop.:wink:

I think you are right about that,:wink: but so far I like it like this, and it is working fine, other than the panels all reappearing on all desktops at login. Just means a few extra steps I need to take at login, just a small, nagging annoyance. I was hoping there might be a configuration file where this behaviour could be tweaked.

That is more what activities are for.

Note on Activities. They are a complete change of focus. ie all virtual desktops can be different in the different activity.

I may look into Activities (in fact, almost certainly will) sometime in the future, but for now I am focusing on Virtual Desktops. Somehow, I have not been able to wrap my head around Activities as opposed to Desktops, and have not made much attempt at doing so, for now.

In the meantime, I am hoping to find a solution to the panels.

Keep one panel per activity. You can have any number of Virtual desktops in an activity.

So you can have a game activity and a daily work activity and end of month work activity etc Each VD set for some sub set of that activity.

What you can’t have is a different panel for each VD in an activity. Youi could have a different panel in each activity but that has to be common for all VD in that activity.

Maybe plasma 5 will change that but with 4.X I’m pretty sure that is how it is.

If you add pager to the panel you can switch between VD’s Also turn on the cube if you have 4 VD and get real eye candy. Make all your MS using friends jealous >:)

Also Configure Desktop - Workspace Behavior - Screen edges - set a corner or edge to Show all Windows It gives a nice mosaic of all the open Windows

That is probably the way I may eventually migrate, but I seem to have a thing against activities. Something from the past, when I found them annoying for some reason. I have – for the longest time, now – always gone into the Activities setting and deleted all the activities except one. If I could remember exactly why (memory is not as sharp as it once was):, maybe it was an insignificant thing and it may be that I will like going that route once I get over my aversion to it.

I do know that I never did like icons on the Desktop. On the Windows side, I quit having Desktop icons with Vista, so KDE in openSUSE really is not much of a different atmosphere than Windows, in the Desktop appearance and actions.

If you add pager to the panel you can switch between VD’s

That was the first thing I did when setting up the first extra VD.:wink:

Also turn on the cube if you have 4 VD and get real eye candy

Actually, from the looks of it, I am going to have probably 7 or 8 VDs.:slight_smile:

I have seen the cube mentioned here & there, but have not yet hunted it down.

Make all your MS using friends jealous

… they already are.rotfl!

Also Configure Desktop - Workspace Behavior - Screen edges - set a corner or edge to Show all Windows It gives a nice mosaic of all the open Windows

I have never liked that. One of the first configuration changes I make when installing openSUSE is to turn off the Screen edges features as I find it very annoying when you bump to a screen edge unintentionally and annoying things happen. I also dislike wrap-around with the cursor.

I also do not like windows popping up all over the place, so I set all to pop up where I want them, 0-0 cornered.

In the early 4.x version activities were very broken. They seam much better now.

I don’t use the edges and as far as I know edges are not on by default but I do use the corners. Top left is the cube. Top right is Dashboard. Bottom left is no screen saver. Bottom right is show all windows from all desktops.

I also have Desktop pager on the panel and also have change desktop with mouse wheel on

I have corners off, as well.

I also have Desktop pager on the panel and also have change desktop with mouse wheel on

That is the way I do it, too.

Still hoping for one of the Wizzes to show me an advanced config.

May be this will push in right direction

After all these years it is time for a poll on how to conceptualize activities :slight_smile:

Might also help with “not just me” if someone should suffer from that.

KDE is a mental experience.

Not positive, but I think the problem is with the way you are setting them up. Make sure the screens are set to allow different wigets and wallpapers. Delete all the panels. then, using the screen you want for the new panel, create the panel. Then go to the next screen. there should be no panel. Create one the way you want it to look. then go to the next screen. I think the problem is that you are creating them on one screen and moving them to another. If I open an application, it opens on the screen I am using at the time. I can move that window to another screen, but when I log out and back in, it again opens on the active screen. There is also a setting (of course I can’t find it right now) that lets you have different panels for different screens. That should be set appropriately. Sounds like it isn’t.

I think of all the reasons for using multiple (preferably four) desktops, the very best one is the look on Windows users when you use the cube animation! It’s priceless!


I was wrong about the different panel option. I was thinking about the settings of the animate desktop switching option in the desktop effects area. Something still doesn’t sound right about having to move the new panel to a different desktop. If I get the chance this weekend, I’ll start the laptop and play with this. Don’t want to lose the carefully crafted panel on this machine.


If they do not know any better it might work but

Windows also can offer polished “My Little Pony” experience :slight_smile:

I think concept is flawed and stupid to be honest. They should deprecate it. If too many KDE devs. get bored all they have to do is ask for requests!

Having said stupid it might be good to remember Activities was not invented this year. Is ancient and was probably more brave and cool at the time than stupid. Today it is stupid because most do not use desktop the same way. Can take a peek at Gnome as an example, “web” arrived. So many people not even sure what it is should also hint it is flawed as a feature for man kind. Or as with their semantic stuff not developed enough or sold well enough, because not developed enough, blah blah. But if goal primarily is to make exciting projects for developers this funky part of KDE might be heaven :slight_smile:

Activities is just smart idea in some ones head, there will never be public demand for it hence it should not be baked right in to the desktop with own power settings and what not. Might be baked in so deep it is not easy to remove = why it is still here! High cool factor if in to the thing, like hopefully lots of KDE devs?, but overall has to be edge case feature.

I don’t know if I agree with you. I fussed with Activities a bit and it does have some good features. A small business owner might want to set it up so they represent his accounting duties, his sales activities, programming tools, customer support activities and the like. With one click his whole setup could correctly address only the tools he needs at the time. Wish I had had that ability available to me about 15 years ago. Even if, as you propose, there never develops a public demand, making the abilities a loosely integrated and poorly implemented add-on is not in the spirit of Linux. Customization is. And one should not be cast into a derogatory class because of having different needs than mainstream.

Actually, it does not make any difference how you create them, I tried each different way.

What happens is that they all appear on all desktops until you “move” them to a specific desktop. They will stay that way until you end your session (ie: logout or cold boot with the option to start with a clean session chosen). They will even stay pinned to the chosen desktops through hibernate and wake.

But, shut down, or logout, without having sessions carried over, and you have to move them to their own desktops (which I have always called “Workspaces” in my personal logs since before the dinosaurs vanished, BTW ;)) again.

So, it is held somewhere in a temporary configuration, but that setting disappears when the session ends.

It would be nice if that configuration could be captured and re-invoked when next logging in.

To make things clearer, I am posting my (currently) 4 Workspaces(Desktops).

Remember that I only recently started using Virtual Desktops, so they are currently a work in progress, and there will probably be a few more than the 4 current ones.

My Main Workspace, where much of my hodge-podge of work is done. Pay attention to the panel and the icons that are different on each Workspace, and special attention to the command line in the dolphin setting window, different for different Workspaces, and you will get a beginning idea of how it is all working. It is where, while posting this message, I have my log files and my Firefox open to read the forum and post:

Here is Workspace 2 (hah, getting a kick out calling the Virtual Desktops “Workspaces”, to play on that semantics thing>:)). It is where I open several related text and log files, particularly my log files for my Websites, to spot intrusion attempts, misuse, and abuse so I can continue hardening Security on the Server:
Here is Workspace #3, where I do all my Photography and Image Processing. While writing this post, it actually has GIMP open so I can prepare the screenshots for this message:
Next Post will have the last Workspace.

And Virtual Desktop #4 is for Video Editing:

I like things this way, have grown very attached to organizing this way, and especially like the ease with which I can (with that cool thing called “The Cube”, for example) flip between the Workspaces.

I tried the “Activities” thing, and it did not work as smoothly, plus was as vague an idea as that mishmash in that link you posted proves.

Those who want Activities are welcome to them.

But those who like Virtual Desktops/Desktops/Workspaces – whatever you wish to call them – and want to use them like this, or their own way, should be allowed to. And NOT have their functionality deprecated!

… Of course, saying that here, in the openSUSE Forums, where the KDE project is not developed, is like P---------- in the Wind, to paraphrase a Jerry Jeff Walker hit song from a few years back.