Getting Started with the KDE Desktop

This chapter assists you in becoming familiar with the KDE desktop of your open-SUSE®. If you have not yet installed your system, refer to Chapter 1, Installation with YaST (tStart-Up).

KDE stands for KDesktop Environment and is an easy-to-use graphical user interface graphical user interface that communicates with the underlying Linux system to access and manage files, folders, and programs. It has many applications designed to help you in your daily work. KDE also offers many choices to modify your desktop according to your needs and wishes. Read more about configuring your desktop in Chapter 3, Customizing Your Settings (page 37).

The following description is based on the default configuration of the KDE 4 desktop shipped with your product. If you or your system administrator has modified the defaults, some aspects may be different, such as appearance or keyboard shortcuts.

1.1 Logging In

If more than one user account is configured on your computer, usually all users must authenticate—unless Auto Login is configured for a certain user. Auto login logs the user in to the desktop environment automatically on boot. This feature can be enabled or disabled during installation or at any time using the YaST user management module. For more information, see Chapter 5, Managing Users with YaST (tStart-Up). If your computer is run in a network environment and you are not the only person using the machine, you are usually prompted to enter your username and password when you start your system. If you did not set up your system and your user account yourself, check with your system administrator for your username and password.

The appearance of the login screen depends on the product you use and on the desktop environment installed on your system. The login process is managed by an application. For KDE, it is KDM. If the GNOME desktop is additionally installed on your system, it may be GDM.

To start a normal login, enter your username and password. If desktops other than KDE are installed, you can select which desktop environment to start by clicking the Session Typing menu item at the bottom of the login screen. Press Enter to proceed. For information on how to log out or switch to another desktop, see Section 1.3, "Leaving Your System" (page 11) and Section 1.4, "Switching Desktops" (page 13).

Figure 1.1 A KDM Login Screen

Figure 1.1 A KDM Login Screen

If your system administrator has created an encrypted home directory for you (which is useful as a protection against theft or unauthorized removal of the hard disk), your home directory is mounted on login. After login, you can directly access the data as usual—without entering another password.

NOTE: Connecting to an Active Directory Server

To access shared network resources, you can also authenticate a KDE client machine against an Active Directory server. For further details, refer to Chap ter 5, Accessing Network Resources (page 63). If your machine is configured for this kind of authentication, the login screen also provides an additional field. In this case, proceed as follows during login:

1. Select the domain from the list.

2. Enter your Windows* username.

3. Enter your Windows password and press Enter.

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