Nice things you get with openSUSE + Plasma that you don't get with Kubuntu?

I’ve been running Kubuntu for the last 3 years, but I recently started reading more about openSUSE and set up an openSUSE server.

One of the things that came up is that Kubuntu ships a pretty “vanilla” Plasma, whereas openSUSE has a lot more customisations that tie it into the underlying OS.

So, what are your favourite things that you get with openSUSE + Plasma 5 that you don’t get with Kubuntu 15.10?

I heard that openSUSE is the “home” of KDE development, so I expect plenty of you use it :slight_smile:

I’ll give you an easy one for free: great branding, wallpaper etc. That lizard is very cool :smiley:

Welcome to openSUSE!

I don’t know about currently, but I remember right before KDE 4 came out, the main menu style was available in openSUSE before it came out in KDE 4 (or Windows Vista for that matter). So I guess it comes down to getting some of the newer or developing bits before it becomes “official”

I have to admit, though, that I am not using Plasma anymore, and have moved to Xfce on my openSUSE Tumbleweed installation so I haven’t been keeping up with Plasma at all.

Another consideration is whether to try openSUSE Tumbleweed or Leap. Tumbleweed is a rolling release so you install once, and just have to run updates every-so-often to update packages but when a new versions of LibreOffice comes out, you don’t have to wait for the next version of openSUSE (or Kubuntu) to come out. Once it is packaged, it is available to download and install on your system. Really handy and openSUSE does a great job of making sure things keep working (it’s “bleeding edge” without the blood :wink: )

The Leap version is more traditional and what you may be used to with Kubuntu. It is based off of the enterprise version (SUSE) so it has a rock-solid foundation, but with many components running up-to-date versions rather than conservative updates that enterprises are known for. I don’t remember how long it is supported but it is a couple of years though not as long as LTS. I am looking at setting up a server at home running openSUSE Leap, when I can get around to it.

Things may be a little different between openSUSE and Kubuntu, but if you are flexible and willing to learn I think you’ll find it a rewarding change.


Thanks for your response. That’s an interesting example, I might give tumbleweed a try for a bit :slight_smile:

I could do with a fresh installation anyway, this laptop has been upgraded through about 4 ubuntu releases and has quite a bit of cruft on it!

If you have your /home directory in a separate partition and are careful when setting up partitions (not going with the default) then your settings from the previous installation will perpetuate with the new one.

I was surprised when I ran the installation and first time booting in I saw my regular wallpaper set in the background.

Problem is if you have applications with custom launchers (minecraft, xampp, copy, etc.) then those will still show but will point to nothing.

This Forum, and the Forum participants.:wink:

openSUSE Forum

like the others say, plus OBS ( the openSUSE Build Service ), openQA, SUSE Studio


OBS (openSUSE Build Service) is openSUSE’s response to PPAs. People maintain packages of things there and you can search through the packages for just about anything. It also includes packages for other distributions (e.g. Fedora, Ubuntu)

Ubuntu (and thus Kubunu) has a number of (desktop) applications pre-packaged for it either in the repositories or PPAs or .deb files.

OBS is a good place to search if you don’t find a specific application in the openSUSE repositories (or Pacman… that’s the only additional one I use). You can search for packages here

I’m bringing it up because it was something that I noticed helped me migrate from Ubuntu to openSUSE.

I don’t have a separate /home partition, but I do back up my config files to a remote server using Git, so I should be able to migrate quite easily!

I’ve used the OBS before for the ownCloud desktop client and server packages - it’s one of the things that put openSUSE on the map for me! I didn’t know about openQA.

SUSE studio looks great too! The SUSE infrastructure in general seems very well organised.

I feel like I should point out that Kubuntu has a great forum at - I’ve had a lot of help there on a whole range of issues, not limited to Kubuntu. It’s often new Linux users’ first experience of using Plasma, so it’s just as well people are so patient and helpful :wink: . I don’t say that to take anything away from this forum!

I myself have just jumped ship from Kubuntu 14.04 to Leap 42.1, and I suspect I am not the only *buntu user who is doing this. The LTS is already showing it’s age and 16.04 doesn’t release until… well… 04/16. Leap releasing in the last couple of months was timely to say the least.

We will see how it goes, but the concept really seems to strike the right balance to me. I am a gamer, and gamers need a tricky balance between stability and good support for newer hardware. The 5 year LTS *buntu versions are great, but 5 years is a very long time for a gaming machine - the OS will mostly outlive the hardware for gaming purposes. Want to drop in a new graphics card? Sorry, 14.04 is on kernel 3.x and fglrx from repos is older than you are son.

I will say that installing Leap was the easiest OS install I have done, period. Maybe it’s partly because I am more proficient than I was a few years ago, and maybe my hardware has better support down in the kernel than it used to, but it took literally 5 minutes and I was running the network installer on a USB drive.
I was on Steam and playing BattleBlock Theater with my 5 year old son in short order :slight_smile:

I’m still getting used to Yast and the more granular repositories, but the one-click install options through the SUSE pages online have made it easy. I’m still a bit confused on the finer points of RPM based package management but it does seem actually quite similar to deb, just have to learn the slightly different syntax for doing the same things.

After using tumbleweed for a few days, here are a few things I noticed that are nicer than Kubuntu:

  • Kleopatra and GPG integration works properly! I was having trouble with it in Kubuntu (Kleopatra was failing the self-tests).
  • It’s really nice to have calendar, email etc in the same place with Kontact. I’m sure this would have been possible with Kubuntu but I never realised it because of the default setup.
  • I like the way the Kickoff menu is set up with favourites added as icons along the left - much more compact.
  • One click install is a neat feature - I’ll have to read more about how that works :slight_smile:

Glad I gave openSUSE a try!

I haven’t used the new Plasma 5 yet, I am still running 13.2 with KDE 4.4 but I have tried
Kubuntu on a couple of occasions via VM’s. There is more to the question of KDE on OpenSUSE vs
KDE on Ubuntu (Kubuntu). Fundamentally they are running on different distributions. So while you may
say KDE on OpenSUSE is ‘nicer’, it really is your familiarity with the distro that is going to determine
whether or not you can live with it.

Personally, I cannot stand the whole apt-get thing in Ubuntu, and sudo makes me nuts. There is no
YaST equivalent in Ubuntu or any other distro for that matter. For me these items make Kubuntu unusable.
It has nothing to do with KDE being better or worse. Having said that you won’t find a more ‘fleshed out’
and polished version of KDE than what ships with OpenSUSE. The reason for that is, many years ago, OpenSUSE
adopted KDE as its ‘preferred desktop’. For me it is one of the reasons OpenSUSE is a standout distribution.

Having said that, there is a vocal GNOME community within OpenSUSE and they will be quick to debate the
KDE attachment OpenSUSE has.

At present, Plasma 5 seems to be undergoing teething issues as happened with the move from KDE3 to 4. I am hopeful
it won’t be a long process to get to stability and functionality of KDE4 but one never knows.

If it were me, I’d download 13.2 and start from there. Don’t be in a rush to ‘leap’ just follow the discourse on the forums
and decide when is the time to move on. I usually make the move between versions as soon as the version I am using
reaches what is effectively EOL with regards to support and updates stop.

The entire 13 line of OpenSUSE has been the best ever. It will be a tough act to follow.

Good luck in your experimenting!

I agree that YaST is a nice touch. My first experience using it was on a headless server… the GUI module is much nicer than text mode!

Judging by the stability of tumbleweed at the moment vs Kubuntu 15.10, they’re stomping on bugs pretty fast - this version of Plasma (5.5.3) is much more stable than the one that ships with Kubuntu 15.10 (5.4.2). I guess Kubuntu users could get newer Plasma by using the PPA, but I bet lots of them are doing what I was doing (just waiting).

Linux users are pretty lucky really, we have so many excellent options to choose from!

Zypper is the Apt-get equivalent in openSUSE. Runs nicer in my opinion.

Agreed, although I must admit that in my case, I’m more familiar with zypper. I think that the OP did hit on a few things in their initial post that isn’t always noticed. KDE integration is the nicest that I have seen. Maybe it’s changed from my last Kubuntu experience four years ago, but back then, I’d have one core regularly hitting 30+% from “normal” office-type use. With OpenSuSE and even more desktop shiny things turned on, I’m hitting 6% usage. Additionally, there were a huge number of things that seemed broken on Kubuntu that work fine on OpenSuSE “out of the box”.