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June 19, 2024

KDE Plasma 6.1 Desktop Environment Officially Released: Exciting New Features and Enhancements

The KDE Project announced today the general availability of KDE Plasma 6.1 as the latest version of their acclaimed desktop environment for GNU/Linux distributions.

KDE Plasma 6.1 is the first major update of the desktop environment since KDE Plasma 6.0 and includes exciting new features like explicit GPU synchronization support for NVIDIA users to improve their Plasma Wayland experience if they also use the Mesa 24.1 graphics stack and NVIDIA 555 graphics driver series.

It also brings triple buffering support for smoother animations and screen rendering, better support for Flatpak apps, a new Remote Desktop page in System Settings where you can turn on and configure RDP remote logins, as well as a new “Hide Cursor” effect that will automatically hide the pointer after a period of inactivity.

“Probably the most impactful thing is triple buffering support on Wayland,” said KDE developer Nate Graham. “This should make animations and screen rendering smoother in general–ideally up to the level of the X11 session, which already did triple buffering.”


Furthermore, KDE Plasma 6.1 improves system notifications, adds manual session saving and experimental session restore for Plasma Wayland, enables calculations and unit conversion from the Kicker launcher, and improves support for WireGuard VPNs.

It also enables the new “Shake cursor to find it” effect by default, introduces the ability to keep the backlight color in sync with the active accent color on laptops with RGB-backlit keyboards, and adds support for manually updating Snap apps in the Plasma Discover graphical package manager.

Other noteworthy changes include more modernized System Settings pages and improved search, various Power and Battery, Digital Clock, and Sticky Notes widgets enhancements, direct scan-out for rotated screens, improved support for XWayland apps, and improvements to the Welcome Center app and Night Light feature.


There are also many UI improvements like the ability to wake up a sleeping screen using a stylus, a better cursor icon when dragging windows, an improved custom accent color feature, a new zoom-out effect for Plasma’s Edit Mode, and the ability to configure the screen locker to unlock without a password.

On top of that, KDE Plasma 6.1 brings a new feature for Lenovo IdeaPad and Lenovo Legion laptop users to configure the battery level charging to a specific fixed level like 80% to prolong the battery’s life. Moreover, it introduces support for the Input Capture portal that allows capturing input events from connected physical or logical devices.

Last but not least, KRunner search results now also prioritize System Settings pages, Plasma users can now configure remote logins based on the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) from a new Remote Desktop page in System Settings, and there’s better support for AMD GPUs when using the open-source AMDGPU driver.


But wait, there’s more! KDE Plasma 6.1 also allows XWayland apps to listen for non-alphanumeric key presses, lets you hide the web browser widget’s navigation bar, displays technical audio information in Info Center, and introduces new “edge barrier” and “corner barrier” features for multi-monitor setups.

Check out the release announcement page for more details about the changes included in KDE Plasma 6.1, which will soon make its way into the stable software repositories of various popular GNU/Linux distributions, including Arch Linux, KDE neon, openSUSE Tumbleweed, Fedora Linux, and others.

Last updated 12 hours ago


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