You see more lines scrolling down your screen as make works. As with the configure script, if you don't see an error message on the last line of the output from make, you can assume that it completed the operation successfully.
Because the make utility is running a C++ compiler for the components of the KDE application, it can take several minutes to run make for a larger application. Compiling some of the KOffice applications on a slower PC might take 30 minutes. You should see messages occasionally during that time, however, as different steps are executed.
One reason that you use make instead of running the compiler directly is that it detects which parts of the program need to be compiled and which are already in an intermediate format. If you run make again in the same source code tree, it will take less time to complete.
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